My email included an apology for, my all but complete, ignorance of the region's history and circumstances. I told her that until I looked at Gaza on Google Maps, I had no idea it was on the Mediterranean coast and asked her to imagine what this implies about everything else that has passed me, and my peers, by. All we can do is plead with her people not to despise us when our self-styled cognoscenti, start holding forth advising her people from this deep well of ignorance.
I mentioned this in passing to Sean, who also knows her. He owned up as well, saying:
I only found out about Gaza’s location because a former student of mine, now an award-winning documentary maker called Olly Lambert made a film about The Day of Peace there a few years ago.
Maybe there's a lesson here about civilised and constructive conversations; own up pre-emptively in one's arguments to one's blind spots.