United States – A part of the military-built pier that was severely damaged by storms and meant to transport much-needed supplies, such as food and medicine, into Gaza by sea has been fixed and restored, leading to the Gaza beach. Aid delivery will soon commence, according to US Central Command on Friday.

The part that links the building to the sea, the causeway, was reconstructed two weeks after the storms affected the construction and disrupted the challenging delivery process which began before. Perishable foods and medical supplies are anticipated to enter the enclave through the marine transport in the next few days, as reported by Associated Press.

Storm Damage and Repair Efforts

A long part of the structure collapsed on May 25 as strong winds and high waves pushed by a tropical storm made their way into the area, stranding four military ships present there and leaving three army personnel, including one, in critical condition. The damage was the next challenge towards the ongoing effort of delivering aid, especially food, to hungry Palestinians during the Israel-Hamas war that has been going on for almost eight months now.

The storm had previously hampered the transportation of segments of the pier and US military personnel from Virginia to the area. Initial attempts to deliver food from the pier to Gaza were cut short as people stormed the trucks that the humanitarian organizations were using to transport the food to the warehouses for further distribution.

For a limited time, there is an extra way that has been helping to get additional assistance into Gaza because the Israeli operation in the southern city of Rafah has made it all but impossible at times to get anything through the ground routes that are otherwise much more effective. The Biden administration of America has been clear from the beginning: this pier was never meant to be the cure, and all assistance is always welcome.

Due to the stormy conditions affecting the construction of the causeway, it was cut into several big parts and transported to a port in Israel for refurbishing.

Alternative Routes and Israeli Assistance

Yes, two of the U.S. Army boats ran aground near Ashkelon in Israel, but to my knowledge, they have been released, and the other two are grounded at the Gaza Strip’s shore. Sabrina Singh, a Pentagon spokeswoman, stated that those two ‘took on a lot of water and sand’ and added that the Israeli Navy assists in the repairing process.

Biden’s Plan and Funding Adjustments

Democrat Joe Biden spoke about his plan to build a pier with support from the U. S. military during the State of the Union address in early March, and the military stated that it would take approximately 60 days to get it set up and in working condition. The initial cost of the program was stated to be USD 320 million; Singh recently said that this figure had, however, reduced to USD 230 million due to funding from Britain and that the cost of hiring trucks and other machinery was also lower than expected.

The construction was a bit slower than estimated, lasting for three months instead of the planned two for the pier to become operational, with trucks filled with supplies for the Gaza Strip entering on May 17. It was only the next day that, again, people overwhelmed a convoy of trucks on their way into Gaza, and people stripped the load from eleven out of the sixteen trucks before the trucks could get to a U.N. warehouse, as reported by Associated Press.

The next day, as the officials changed the movement of the convoys, the aid reached the needy for the very first time. Up to 1,100 tons (1,000 metric tons) of aid arrived prior to the causeway’s destruction in the storm, as per Pentagon officials.