Despite the cold, the driver's face poured sweat as he drove his truck through the mounds of mud scattered along the border between Egypt and the Gaza Strip. His mission was to transport as many truckloads of mud as possible to Rafah City for use in the production of bricks that Palestinians are now using in the construction of mud houses.
This driver, who preferred to remain anonymous, told Al-Ahram Weekly that people have discovered a new and important benefit to the border tunnels. When tunnels are dug, mounds of mud are created, and this mud is considered prime for the production of mud bricks. Under the siege, and due to Gazans' loss of hope that reconstruction projects will rebuild the thousands of houses and institutions destroyed by the Israeli occupation, particularly during its New Year offensive, many homeowners have begun to explore the mud alternative. Necessity is driving them to this decision, and the ministries and institutions of the Hamas government are encouraging them. This dismissed government has formed a committee that is issuing recommendations to construct model mud houses and institutions. And since Rafah City is near the tunnels, the idea of mud houses is being applied there first.
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