JOE the Plumber has set aside his wrenches to become a rookie war correspondent,covering Israels side of its two-week-old military offensive in Gaza.
The Ohio man,who rocketed to fame during the US presidential campaign for challenging Barack Obama on his tax plan,was in the southern Israeli town of Sderot on Sunday to tell readers of the conservative pjtv.com website about the rockets that rain down there from the neighbouring Gaza Strip.
The people of Sderot cant do normal things day to day,like get soap in their eyes in the shower,for fear a rocket might come in,said Joe the Plumber,so dubbed by John McCains campaign,but whose real name is Samuel Wurzelbacher.
Joes rookie reporter status was evident when,standing in front of a pile of spent rockets,he said: I have thousands of questions but I cant think of the right one. What he could summon up quickly was contempt for Israels critics,who are outraged by the more than 870 Palestinians killed in Israels bruising air and ground onslaught against Gazas Islamic militant Hamas rulers.
Why hasnt Israel acted sooner? Wurzelbacher asked. He described himself as a peaceloving man,but added,when someone hits me,Im going to unload on the boy. And if the rest of the world doesnt understand that,then Im sorry.
Wurzelbacher,who underwent intense media scrutiny during his 15 minutes of campaign fame,said pjtv.com enlisted him to cover Israel because hes an expert on media bias. I was on the short end of the stick, like Israel is now,he said.