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49

Lifehacker: Tarek Loubani on 3D-Printing in Gaza

A conversation about innovation under extreme circumstances.

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this was so good

Magazine, L. (2019). Lifehacker: Tarek Loubani on 3D-Printing in Gaza. Logic Magazine, 8, pp. 49-72

52

Now I’m sounding like I’m fucking crazy, but hear me out. When I first started going to Gaza, I thought that I was going to see a place abandoned by capitalism. Then I got there and guess what? KFC was delivering chicken through the tunnels for free. I mean, you had to pay for the chicken, but the delivery was free. Why? I couldn’t understand it. It’s soggy by the time it arrives. It’s like KFC at the bus station. I’m a KFC addict and, like any KFC addict, I recognize that stuff is shit and it’s shit when it’s fresh. Four hours in, it’s really shit.

So why is KFC doing that? Why are they subsidizing free delivery? I also saw billboards everywhere for Coca-Cola and Pepsi, which weren’t readily available at the time. There were also billboards for products that people could never afford, like a BMW or a Mercedes. And they weren’t just in rich districts — they were everywhere.

That’s when I realized, “Oh shit, these guys understand that this thing is almost over too.” Coca-Cola opened a bottling plant there in 2016 that uses more water than all of Gaza has available to it each day. What are they thinking? They’re thinking there’s going to be a day when people can buy Coca-Cola. They’re thinking, “We want to be there first.”

—p.52 by Logic Magazine 2 months, 2 weeks ago

Now I’m sounding like I’m fucking crazy, but hear me out. When I first started going to Gaza, I thought that I was going to see a place abandoned by capitalism. Then I got there and guess what? KFC was delivering chicken through the tunnels for free. I mean, you had to pay for the chicken, but the delivery was free. Why? I couldn’t understand it. It’s soggy by the time it arrives. It’s like KFC at the bus station. I’m a KFC addict and, like any KFC addict, I recognize that stuff is shit and it’s shit when it’s fresh. Four hours in, it’s really shit.

So why is KFC doing that? Why are they subsidizing free delivery? I also saw billboards everywhere for Coca-Cola and Pepsi, which weren’t readily available at the time. There were also billboards for products that people could never afford, like a BMW or a Mercedes. And they weren’t just in rich districts — they were everywhere.

That’s when I realized, “Oh shit, these guys understand that this thing is almost over too.” Coca-Cola opened a bottling plant there in 2016 that uses more water than all of Gaza has available to it each day. What are they thinking? They’re thinking there’s going to be a day when people can buy Coca-Cola. They’re thinking, “We want to be there first.”

—p.52 by Logic Magazine 2 months, 2 weeks ago
68

[...] It’s common for people who travel and volunteer to imagine that they are giving and to minimize the amount they’re taking from the society they’re in. The reality is that without absorbing the resilience of the Palestinians, I would have never understood what resilience was. And so I took hope from them. I took from them the idea that when somebody builds a wall, you dig a tunnel.

—p.68 by Logic Magazine 2 months, 2 weeks ago

[...] It’s common for people who travel and volunteer to imagine that they are giving and to minimize the amount they’re taking from the society they’re in. The reality is that without absorbing the resilience of the Palestinians, I would have never understood what resilience was. And so I took hope from them. I took from them the idea that when somebody builds a wall, you dig a tunnel.

—p.68 by Logic Magazine 2 months, 2 weeks ago
69

Whether Tarek Loubani gets justice is irrelevant in the grand scheme of things. If we could get a couple million dollars to put solar panels on some hospitals, that would be a legacy I would be proud of. What’s the best case scenario if there’s an investigation? The absolute best case scenario is some fucking nineteen-year-old getting thrown in jail for a year for what he did to me. So they would destroy some nineteen-year-old’s life even though we all know it’s a systemic problem? No thank you. I would rather make it so that that nineteen-year-old is never in the position where his whole life depends on him shooting a doctor. I would rather make it so that Palestinians don’t have to go up to the fence with their hands up begging for their humanity.

—p.69 by Logic Magazine 2 months, 2 weeks ago

Whether Tarek Loubani gets justice is irrelevant in the grand scheme of things. If we could get a couple million dollars to put solar panels on some hospitals, that would be a legacy I would be proud of. What’s the best case scenario if there’s an investigation? The absolute best case scenario is some fucking nineteen-year-old getting thrown in jail for a year for what he did to me. So they would destroy some nineteen-year-old’s life even though we all know it’s a systemic problem? No thank you. I would rather make it so that that nineteen-year-old is never in the position where his whole life depends on him shooting a doctor. I would rather make it so that Palestinians don’t have to go up to the fence with their hands up begging for their humanity.

—p.69 by Logic Magazine 2 months, 2 weeks ago