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The Hawkeye

The Student News Site of University of Louisiana Monroe

The Hawkeye

The Student News Site of University of Louisiana Monroe

The Hawkeye

Israel, Palestine conflict continues

Tribune Content Agency

Since Hamas launched an invasion of Israel on Oct. 7, the Gaza Strip has been the site of intense fighting and bloodshed.

Hamas, described by the United States as a “Foreign Terrorist Operation,” is a political and military group based out of Gaza. Hamas took control of Gaza in 2007 and advocates for complete liberation of the Palestinian people by the destruction of the state of Israel.

On Oct. 7, Hamas launched a barrage of rockets toward Israel and invaded the southern part of the country. Israel reports that 1,390 Israelis were killed in this ground invasion by Hamas, 1,033 of which were civilians.

In addition, Hamas took over 200 hostages from southern Israel, including American citizens. Since the invasion, some of the hostages have been released, though a vast majority remain in Hamas’ control.

Israel responded swiftly by declaring war on Hamas and launching rockets of their own on the same day.

Since the initial day of the war, Israel has sent out notices to the 1 million civilians of northern Gaza, telling them to evacuate to the south immediately.

However, Israel has also cut off electricity, running water, fuel, and food imports into the Gaza Strip — making mass evacuations nearly impossible. There have been multiple internet outages, making communication difficult.

The blockade of Gaza also makes humanitarian aid difficult to reach civilians. Thomas White, the United Nations Relief and Works Agency Gaza Chief, told diplomats that the average Gazan is surviving on two pieces of bread per day and that water is becoming hard to come by.

Israel has been drawing more condemnation from the international community in recent weeks. Human Rights Watch reported that Israel used white phosphorus on civilians, which is illegal under international law.

White also stated that they “can’t even provide them with safety under a UN flag,” as refugee camps in Gaza are frequently being targeted with missile strikes. 72 United Nations workers have been killed in Gaza since fighting began.

In addition to UN workers, journalists in the region have suffered casualties as well. The Committee to Protect Journalists reports that 36 journalists have been killed in Gaza.

On Friday, Israel launched an airstrike at an ambulance that was carrying civilians to southern Gaza, killing 15 people. Israel claims that they targeted Hamas militants, though the attack still left leaders at the United Nations “horrified”.

According to the Gaza Health Ministry, over 9,000 Palestinians have been killed since the conflict began. Around 3,700 of those deaths are children.

Hamas also continues its assault on Israel, with rocket launches and bombardments taking place daily, though these attacks are resulting in fewer casualties than Israeli strikes. Hamas was blamed by U.S. and Israeli intelligence for the bombing of Al-Ahli Arab Hospital in Gaza, an explosion that killed hundreds of civilians, although it isn’t certain that Hamas is responsible.

The United States has begun pressuring Israel into allowing for more humanitarian aid into the region, as well as allowing civilians to have a safe passage out of the war zone. 

Multiple convoys of civilians fleeing south in Gaza have been targeted by Israeli airstrikes.

Israel has so far rejected U.S. pushes for pausing in the fighting. As a result, conditions in Gaza are getting worse by the day. It remains to be seen whether or not the pressure is enough to change conditions on the ground.

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