The Tunnel and The KFC Smuggler

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The Tunnel and The KFC Smuggler

I know that I’m not the only person who finds Fox News amusing. I won’t get into the myriad of reasons that I find myself laughing more than being informed when I watch any of its “news” programs, in lieu of a great story that I read on Fox’s website today.

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The Tunnel and The KFC Smuggler

Apparently, Gaza residents are paying to have KFC delivered by a network of tunnels from Egypt. Not only are they waiting over three hours for their order, but they are paying triple the retail value in order to lick their fingers and say “good” in Arabic.

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While I’ve mentioned Fox News’ website, it should be noted that the article I read cited the Christian Science Monitor as its source.

For six years, Rafat Shororo craved the delicious KFC sandwich that he once ate in Egypt, so this week he treated his palate to a taste through the smuggling/delivery company Al-Yamama.

“It has been a dream, and this company has made my dream come true,” says Mr. Shororo. While many dream for peace in the region, Mr. Shororo keeps his dreams more realistic.

There is a delicious irony, sorry I couldn’t help myself, in the fact that the same tunnels that once (and still do, undoubtedly) were used to transport weapons are now being used to smuggle something far less deadly. I should be more specific, KFC is still deadly for the person eating it, but while causing severe arterial damage, it causes no collateral damage unless you’re feeding a large family.

Israel’s easing of restrictions on Gaza is killing the smuggling business. “The tunnel business is not like before, things are going worse and barely work, especially after the Egyptian army started to tear down the tunnels,” says smuggler Abu Iyad, referring to attempts to shut down illegal smuggling after 16 Egyptian soldiers were killed at Rafah in August 2012.

But one man’s slowdown is another man’s dream. Mohammed al-Madani, financial manager of al-Yamama company, and his co-workers decided to have KFC delivered one night when they were working late, that’s when al-Madani had his chicken epiphany, or Muslim equivalent.

“Then we asked ourselves, ‘Why don’t we provide this service for Gazans?'” said Mr. al-Madani.

After placing a short advertisement on the company’s Facebook page, orders began pouring in to al-Yamama.

“After getting the orders, we call our partner in al-Arish and ask him to make the orders, after getting the meals, he goes to a specific tunnel and asks smugglers to transfer them into the other side of the tunnel; this may take a few minutes,” says al-Madani.

I love this sort of entrepreneurial spirit. It also makes me question whether Mike Myers’ character’s  father (also played by Mike Myers in the film So I Married an Axe Murderer) wasn’t right. When questioned about why he believed that Colonel Sanders ran an Illuminati that included the Rothschilds and the Gettys, the father quickly replied in a thick Scottish accent, “Because he puts an addictive chemical in the chicken that makes you crave it fortnightly…smartarse.”

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While studying economics, Brendan found himself comfortably falling down the rabbit hole of restaurant work, ultimately opening a consulting business and working as a private wine buyer. On a whim, he moved to China, and in his first week following a triumphant pub quiz victory, he found himself bleeding on the floor based on his arrogance. The same man who put him there offered him a job lecturing for the University of Wales in various sister universities throughout the Middle Kingdom. While primarily lecturing in descriptive and comparative statistics, Brendan simultaneously earned an Msc in Banking and International Finance from the University of Wales-Bangor. He's presently doing something he hates, respecting French people. Well, two, his wife and her mother in the lovely town of Antigua, Guatemala. <i>To contact Brendan or give him an exclusive, please contact him at theflask@gmail.com</i>
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