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Israel’s Economy Contracted by One-Fifth as It Attacked Its Own Workforce

CNBC reported on Israel’s release of economic data for the fourth quarter 2023, on Feb. 19. It quoted a City of London analyst that the contraction of Israel’s GDP “was much worse than had been expected and highlights the extent of the hit from the … war in Gaza.”

Despite an obvious big increase in “public consumption” (of weapon systems and ammunition, etc.) by a nation economically more dependent on military spending than any other, GDP fell by a very large 20.9% from the previous, third quarter; private consumption dropped by 26.9%; fixed investment virtually disappeared, down 68%. There is very little construction without the 150,000 Palestinian workers from the West Bank, who have been barred from entering Israel since it went to war against the Gaza Strip.