Momen Shweikh’s prank show Tawwil Baalak does it again. This time, with hidden cameras set up down the street, he and a young actress take on a small pharmacy in Gaza City.
Momen and the actress playing his daughter pretend to be homeless. Sharing a makeshift bed and a small bag of personal belongings, Momen audibly promises his daughter a comfortable apartment, complete with a large air conditioner and a microwave — basic amenities to many people privileged with a roof over their heads but quite the luxury to many more.
It is after he makes these promises that Mazen Taha, known also as Abu Omar, emerges from the pharmacy and makes a phone call to a friend. His first question: Do you have any apartments for rent? His next request: Something that I can pay for every month.
Momen, who is certainly caught off guard, watches as Abu Omar explains to the man on the phone that he’s looking to help a person in need. “As you know, nobody looks out for one another [these days],” says Abu Omar.
After the phone call, Momen embraces the pharmacist and kisses his head, a deep sign of respect in the Arab culture. Abu Omar insists that his act of kindness is nothing more than duty and repeats to Momen that “we only have each other.”
What makes this especially beautiful is that well over 100,000 Palestinians in the Gaza Strip are homeless, according to the latest figures. This number drastically increased after Israel waged a 51-day assault on the already besieged coastal territory on July 8, 2014, leveling upwards of 10,000 homes and damaging an estimated 30,000 more. Efforts to rebuild Gaza are moving at a slow pace since urgently needed construction materials are not being allowed through the borders. The people of Gaza are facing very hard times, but like Abu Omar, they are still willing to give.
Just days before Israel’s assault last year, Tawwil Baalak broadcast another moving segment in which Momen and a co-presenter pose as settlers who bully an elderly Palestinian man into giving up his land. Watch the entire clip here: ‘Settlers in Gaza’ hidden camera prank will move you.