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Understanding the Israel-Gaza Conflict

Updated on November 29, 2014

Why is Israel Fighting in Gaza?

It’s already winning, so why does it keep fighting? Well, Israel is in it for the image. Its image to its people, and to the world. First, if you attack a sovereign nation, it’s allowed to fight back. Its people need to feel protected. But everyone, including the Hamas, knows that politically, financially, and military-wise, Israel has the upper hand. A simple comparison of the 1000+ Palestinians killed and the barely 100 Israelis killed will tell you this. So, why does Israel persist?

The war has afflicted agony upon innocent civilians
The war has afflicted agony upon innocent civilians

Hamas' Position

First, it's because Hamas is unwilling to let go. Hamas is well aware that it can't beat Israel or get any major concessions. They broke cease fire agreements reached, even those ones to which they themselves had made the terms. Logically, Israel has to retaliate if attacked. Why also, do I say that Israel is in it for image?

Israel's Image

Remember the case of the kidnapped boys Israel was searching for? In the process of the 'search', Israel arrested hundreds of Hamas operatives in the West Bank. The operatives were part of the shahid squad. Part of the demands of Hamas is that these prisoners be set free. But that can't be their main goal. You can't sacrifice thousands of your citizens to free a few hundreds. I digress. Israel made the search despite already knowing that the teenagers were dead. But how could they do nothing and face their citizens?

Hamas Strategy

Hamas knows it can't win. Its goal is to survive and get empathy. The way to do it: bait Israel into killing its civilians. It's all out there in black and white-all one has to do is read the script. Israel is after Hamas' military infrastructure. The Hamas leaders know this too well and proceed to deliberately put the hardware among homes and hospitals. There can only be one outcome. Innocent civilians will die. Meanwhile, the Hamas leaders are safe in the tunnels they've built. It’s tantamount to using a person as a body shield in a gun battle.

The world should open its eyes to this.

Smoke rises in Gaza as lives are lost
Smoke rises in Gaza as lives are lost

So What Does Hamas Want from Egypt?

Hamas wants to get Rafah open. (Rafah is the border crossing between Egypt and Gaza) They are hoping that the Egyptians will allow Qatari and other money transfer, which have been blocked by Egyptians. So the basic essence of it all is to force Cairo's hand into action. How so?

Sympathy. One word-sympathy. Anyone can tell that the Egyptian government is in no rush to rescue the Muslim Brotherhood of Palestine. However, with the growing number of deaths of innocent Palestine civilians, the public opinion of Egyptians is being affected.

So when you look in-depthly at it, the one purpose for this war is to force Cairo to change its policies.

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