Dirty dousing challenge for Gaza

Palestinian journalist invites viewers to pour buckets of dirt over their heads in support of residents of the Strip

Stuart Winer is a breaking news editor at The Times of Israel.

While a summer craze has seen people around the world dumping buckets of iced water on their heads for charity, Gazan Palestinians have come up with their own version — using rubble instead.

The alternative to the Ice Bucket Challenge, which was started to raise awareness for ALS, was inspired by Palestinian journalist Ayman Aloul who posted a video clip on YouTube to draw attention to the plight of people in Gaza after over six weeks of conflict between Hamas and Israel, and in particular the damage caused to thousands of buildings from airstrikes.

Aloul explained in the clip that, due to the recent Israeli bombing campaigns, water was scarce, and ice scarcer still, so instead he chose the one resource that is now in plentiful supply in Gaza — rubble.

Dumping a bucketful of building waste on your head is, suggested Aloul, a way of showing support and understanding for the people of Gaza.

The idea has begun to catch on, with a Facebook page dedicated to the activity gaining over 1,800 “likes” and dozens of people from around the world posting videos of themselves taking the challenge along with the #RubbleBucketChallenge.

Israel launched Operation Protective Edge on July in an effort to halt rocket fire from Gaza at Israeli towns and to destroy a network of attack tunnels dug by Hamas under the border.

By the end of August, the Ice Bucket Challenge, which sought to raise awareness and money for research into curing ALS, was taken by a plethora of the rich and famous, as well as countless others, who reportedly raised more than $50 million.

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