2024-02-09 - The conflict between Israel and Hamas in Gaza

The murderous rampage by Hamas and its allies in Southern Israel on October 7, 2023 and the subsequent war between the Israeli army (IDF) and militants in Gaza is nothing short of horrifying. But the situation is complicated, and people who haven't spent their lives thinking about this part of the world may find it bewildering, so here are some thoughts and perhaps a bit of a primer on the conflict.

This document is mostly just factual. It is undoubtedly tainted by the biases of the author, however.

No attempt is made to "solve" the problem of the Israeli/Palestinian conflict: firstly, because nobody is asking me or would do what I suggest and secondly, becuase I don't think it's amenable to realistic solutions.

I've also avoided discussing protests for or against either side of the conflict that are taking place in the West and across the Muslim world. That's a whole other topic.

What happened on October 7?

Hamas - a widely sanctioned terrorist group and the de-facto government in Gaza, and Islamic Jihad - their closely allied friends - managed a huge and (militarily) successful attack against Israel:

Read more (if you have the stomach for it):

How did Hamas manage this?

A very short bit of history

Israel is a very old place... Here is a simplified timeline.

What about the claim that the conflict really started 75 years ago?

Are Israelis "settlers"?

Isn't Gaza an "open air prison?"

Is Israel practicing genocide in Gaza?


When did Arabs start identifying as Palestinians?

What do most Palestinians today want?

What do most Israelis today want?

Is peace achievable?

What does any of this have to do with the wider regional conflicts?

What will happen to Gaza?

What's up with UNRWA?

Stolen land and illegal settlements

Could the Palestinians go anywhere else?

Where did all the money go?

People with insightful opinions

If you want to learn more about this conflict and prefer a video format, there are a few interesting people to look up:

Note that the above links are mostly pro-Israeli. If you know of an articulate, credible and smart pro-Palestinian personality on YouTube, let me know and I'll add them here. I tend to get one side more than the other because of where I'm from and what the social media algorithms push at me, is all.

Note also that most of Fareed's stuff is on CNN, not YouTube. I record his weekly show on my PVR...

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