The New York Times reported that recently “Israel allowed a car to cross into Gaza with three suitcases holding $15 million in cash. By Friday morning, thousands of civil servants and police officers employed by Hamas, the Islamic militant group that controls Gaza, were at the post office to collect sorely needed back pay.”
Like other advocates for financial transparency and against money laundering, we are against sneaking cash in suitcases across borders, a favorite tactic of criminals and tax dodgers. But in this case, the cold-cash-in-the-luggage scheme was in the service of an international effort to help residents of the impoverished territory of Gaza, and to deliver salaries to its civil servants and police officers.
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Thanks to David M. Halbfinger, The New York Times, and Gal Berger for putting us on this fascinating story.