Israel is at war with Hamas
- October 8, 2023
- Posted by: OptimizeIAS Team
- Category: DPN Topics
Israel is at war with Hamas
Subject : IR
Section: Places in news
Context: Israel declared a state of war after Palestinian militants launched barrages of rockets into southern and central Israel.
More about the news:
- Hamas militants launched a surprise attack on Israel, infiltrating its borders through various means and firing thousands of rockets.
- The attack resulted in casualties on both sides, with Israel caught off guard.
- The conflict escalated tensions in the region due to various factors, including settlement construction and Jerusalem’s holy site.
- The situation led to a state of war, raising questions about Israel’s preparedness and security.
- Hamas is calling its attack ‘al-Aqsa Flood.’
Some of the worst flare-ups between Hamas and Israel:
- In 2014, the deadliest confrontation between the two sides unfolded, resulting in 2,251 Palestinian deaths, including 1,462 civilians, and 67 Israeli soldiers and six civilians killed during 50 days of conflict.
- In May 2021, tensions flared with clashes at Al Aqsa in Jerusalem, leading to rocket exchanges between Hamas in Gaza and Israeli airstrikes, lasting 11 days.
What is Al-Aqsa Mosque:
- Al-Aqsa Mosque, located in the Old City of Jerusalem, is the third holiest site in Islam.
- The mosque was built on top of the Temple Mount, known as the Al Aqsa Compound or Haram esh-Sharif in Islam.
- Muslims believe that Muhammad was transported from the Great Mosque of Mecca to al-Aqsa during the Night Journey.
- Islamic tradition holds that Muhammad led prayers towards this site until the 16th or 17th month after his migration from Mecca to Medina, when Allah directed him to turn towards the Kaaba in Mecca.
Why is al-Aqsa so inflammatory:
- The Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem holds deep religious significance for both Muslims and Jews, situated on the Temple Mount.
- It symbolizes the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, with claims to Jerusalem rooted in its history.
- Palestinians view it as a symbol of national aspirations, while some Israelis see it as a statement of sovereignty.
- Control of the complex remains contentious, particularly regarding Israeli security forces and Jewish prayer, seen as destabilizing the status quo.
What is Hamas:
- Hamas is the largest Palestinian militant Islamist group and one of the two major political parties in the region.
- Currently, it governs more than two million Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.
- It was founded in the late 1980s, after the beginning of the first Palestinian intifada
- The organization, however, is also known for its armed resistance against Israel
- Hamas as a whole, or in some cases its military wing, is designated a terrorist group by Israel, the United States, the European Union, the United Kingdom, and other countries.
How was Hamas formed:
- Hamas, formed in the late 1980s during the first Palestinian intifada, against Israeli occupation, evolved from the Palestinian Muslim Brotherhood.
- The Brotherhood had pursued a non-confrontational approach, focusing on Islamizing Palestinian society.
- However, in response to perceived failures in the Palestinian national movement, particularly PLO concessions to Israel, Hamas emerged with a mission to confront the occupation through armed struggle, marking a shift in Palestinian resistance dynamics.
How did Hamas begin its ‘resistance
- Hamas rose to prominence by opposing the Oslo Peace Accords, as it believed the two-state solution would neglect Palestinian refugees’ right to return.
- Using suicide bombings, it disrupted the peace process, contributing to Israel’s withdrawal and the ascent of Benjamin Netanyahu.
- In 2006, Hamas won democratic elections, capitalizing on disillusionment with failed peace efforts and its social initiatives.