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Republican Senator Shocked To Discover Gaza On Map, Thought It Was Just a Policy Talking Point

Last updated on March 19, 2024

A senior Republican senator admitted to reporters he was “utterly shocked” to discover that Gaza is, in fact, a real place on the map and not merely a theoretical concept used in policy debates.

“I always thought Gaza was a kind of metaphor for conflict or a test in foreign policy quizzes,” the senator confessed after a long and apparently enlightening briefing with his aides. “To find out it’s an actual location, with coordinates and everything, well, it’s been a real eye-opener.”

The admission came shortly after a heated Senate discussion on foreign aid, during which the senator passionately argued that the US should “not spend taxpayer dollars on places that don’t even exist on Google Maps.” It was only after an aide quietly showed him the Gaza Strip’s location on a globe that the senator’s stance softened, leading to an impromptu press conference.

“Look, geography was never my strong suit. I’m more of a big picture guy,” the senator explained, attempting to clarify his previous statements. “But now that I’ve seen Gaza with my own eyes—on a map, I mean—I’m committed to learning more about it and maybe even visiting it on Google Earth later today.”

Critics and supporters alike were baffled by the senator’s mix of candor and ignorance. Social media quickly lit up with #GazaIsReal, with users posting maps and photos to educate the senator—and perhaps others like him—about the existence of other ‘mythical’ places like the West Bank and the Golan Heights.

In response to the fiasco, a bipartisan group of lawmakers has proposed a new initiative, “Maps for Senators,” aimed at improving geographic literacy among US elected officials. The program will include mandatory workshops on how to use a globe, introductory sessions on Google Maps, and advanced seminars on distinguishing between countries, territories, and regions.

While the senator has since apologized for his oversight, insisting he “values all places, real and theoretical,” the incident has sparked a wider conversation about the importance of geographic knowledge in shaping foreign policy and the need for ongoing education at all levels of government.

As for the senator’s future in foreign affairs, he remains optimistic. “If there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s that the world is full of surprises,” he said, gazing pensively at a world atlas. “I’m just sorry I didn’t realize sooner that some of those surprises are actual places.”

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