The end of tunnelnomics

RAFAH, Egypt — "I recently lost one of my tunnels," Abu Jawad told me nonchalantly. "An Israeli drone flew by, identifying its coordinates, and within minutes an IDF jet had dropped a precision-guided missile, destroying its exit." To Abu Jawad, a Palestinian tunnel entrepreneur and owner/operator of several tunnels, this was another workplace hazard. He ...

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554444_rafahresized2.jpg
A Palestinian man inspects destroyed smuggling tunnels which were targeted by Israeli air strikes overnight in Khan Yunis, southern Gaza Strip, on December 21, 2010. AFP PHOTO / SAID KHATIB (Photo credit should read SAID KHATIB/AFP/Getty Images)

RAFAH, Egypt — "I recently lost one of my tunnels," Abu Jawad told me nonchalantly. "An Israeli drone flew by, identifying its coordinates, and within minutes an IDF jet had dropped a precision-guided missile, destroying its exit."

To Abu Jawad, a Palestinian tunnel entrepreneur and owner/operator of several tunnels, this was another workplace hazard. He cut an imposing figure at over 6 feet tall, with a glaring black moustache and a high-tech hunting vest worn over his traditional galabiyya, with several walk-talkies, pulley grips, and other bits of equipment stuffed in it. "I would fix it for about $10,000, but it's not worth the re-investment as the Israelis already have its coordinates," he concluded with a shrug, "I might just have to build another."

Read more.

RAFAH, Egypt — "I recently lost one of my tunnels," Abu Jawad told me nonchalantly. "An Israeli drone flew by, identifying its coordinates, and within minutes an IDF jet had dropped a precision-guided missile, destroying its exit."

To Abu Jawad, a Palestinian tunnel entrepreneur and owner/operator of several tunnels, this was another workplace hazard. He cut an imposing figure at over 6 feet tall, with a glaring black moustache and a high-tech hunting vest worn over his traditional galabiyya, with several walk-talkies, pulley grips, and other bits of equipment stuffed in it. "I would fix it for about $10,000, but it’s not worth the re-investment as the Israelis already have its coordinates," he concluded with a shrug, "I might just have to build another."

Read more.

<p> Adel Abdel Ghafar is a Ph.D. student at the Australian National University. Follow him on Twitter @dooolism. </p>

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