Israel Hamas Conflict: The Background

Israel Hamas Conflict: The Background

The Israel Hamas conflict has been a recurring topic in the news. The current events of the conflict may be hard to follow along with in the news because of its long history.  As Assumption students, it’s important for us to be informed and educated about what’s happening in the world. Before we can understand the current events of this conflict, students need to know its history.

Palestine was a former Ottoman territory, but was put under the United Kingdom’s (UK) administration by the League of nations in 1922 following World War I. During World War I, the Balfour declaration was established, and it supported “the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people.” After World War II the British declared Palestine a Jewish homeland for misplaced European Jews after WWII. From 1922-1947, many Eastern European Jews immigrated to Palestine especially during the 1930s because of Nazi persecution. However, in 1937, the Palestinian Arabs fought for independence and rebelled. In 1947, the UK turned the conflict over to the United Nations (UN).

In 1947 the UK turned Palestine over to the United Nations. The UN adopted the Partition Plan to create separate states out of Palestine for the Palestinians and the Jewish population. The holy land, Jerusalem, which is sacred to the Arabs and Jewish alike was internationalized between the two states. The Jewish state declared their independence as the nation of Israel during the 1948 Arab-Israeli War. The new nation of Israel absorbed 77% of Palestine and part of Jerusalem causing many Palestinian Arabs to flee or be forcibly removed from the land. In 1967, Israel occupied the Gaza strip, West Banks, and east Jerusalem leaving half a million Palestinians as refugees. The UN reaffirmed in 1974 that the Palestinian people had the right to independence, sovereignty and to return to the land.

The Palestinian militant group Harakat al-Muqawama al-Islamiya (HAMAS) was created in 1987 during the Palestinian uprising. Since 2007, HAMAS has been the controlling government body in Gaza after overtaking the Palestinian government. According the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, there is said to be 20,000 to 25,000 members and their goal is to resist Israeli occupation. The tensions between HAMAS and Israel reached a violent tipping point on October 7, 2023 when HAMAS launched a surprise attack on Israel leading to the current war.

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Now that you know the history, you will have a better understanding of the current events of the conflict. Check out the December 2023 edition of the Rocket Launch to learn more about the current events of the Israel Hamas conflict.

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