The Only Zebra in Gaza

After two years of economic blockade, the zoos in Gaza are suffering. Only one has a zebra, but there's something about this zebra that seems, um, un-zebralike.
"It's really a painted donkey," admitted Mahmud Berghat, the director of Marah, when asked about the creature. Making a fake zebra isn't easy—henna didn't work and wood paint was deemed inhumane, so they finally settled on human hair dye. "We cut its hair short and then painted the stripes," Berghat explained behind the closed door of his office.

It did the trick—if not for zoologists, then at least for legions of Gaza schoolchildren who have never seen a real zebra. When I asked him whether anyone had ever caught the ruse, the director admitted that two sharp university students had IDed the counterfeit creature. "But don't tell anyone," he said. "The children love him."

Most zoo animals have to be smuggled in through tunnels, but a zebra was too expensive for the Marah zoo. Link -via Arbroath

(image credit: Sharon Weinberger)

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I am the Director General Mahmoud Barghout for Zoo Fun Land, and I personally supervised by the subject and the notions of what pushed me to do that is that the children here, in Palestine, living a difficult life under occupation and it is difficult to introduce zebra here to the Strip, so Haulenakedr can find an alternative for children the ease of our children and for those trapped wanted any further questions that Emily and my mobile number
Mobile / 0599311580
E-mail /
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It's a relief to know that even in the face of political and religious persecution, humans can stil exploit and cage animals for their own entertainment.
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The point of this story isn't the larger conflict -- in which both sides have committed atrocities -- but rather, the point is the persistance of our humanity.

This little Palestinian zoo reminds me of a story from the first Gulf War, when Israeli citizens, under the threat of Iraqi missiles, attended a scheduled concert anyway, in their gas masks.

Humans don't just survive, we LIVE.
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