What About the Gaza Strip?

Palestinians stand next to the rubble of a destroyed building following an Israeli air strike in Rafah town in the southern Gaza Strip, on July 12, 2014. Photo by AFP

After a summer of intense conflict and constant news coverage, the world seems to have too soon forgotten the devastation that war caused in the Gaza Strip.

Over the summer, the Gaza Strip was plagued with conflict between the Palestinian organization HAMAS and the Israeli state. After two years of relative peacefulness conflict erupted because of the kidnapping and murder of three Israeli teenagers while hiking in the West Bank. Israel blamed HAMAS and HAMAS denied it, but on the day the bodies were found rockets were launched from Gaza at Israel and Israel started air strikes on Gaza. In retaliation to the murder of the three Israelis, a Palestinian teenager was kidnapped and burned to death. After that the conflict just seemed to escalate. There were 11 ceasefires arranged throughout the summer, but none seemed to last more that a few days until the ceasefire brokered by Egypt in late August. According the the Jerusalem Post they will continue negotiating the ceasefire agreement in the first week of October.

After the 50-day conflict the Gaza Strip was left in ruins. According the BBC more than 100,000 people were left homeless, 2,133 Palestinians were killed, and 1,489 are believed to have been civilians. On the Israeli side, 66 soldiers and seven civilians were killed.

This past month Fatah and Hamas gave power in the Gaza Strip to the Palestinian Authority and a deal has been agreed by Israeli and Palestinian officials to allow building materials into the Gaza Strip for reconstruction. That’s a whole lot of change coming their way. Before anyone starts rebuilding in Gaza they need to take a second and think about a few things:

  • How long will this ceasefire last?
  • Are they going to be wasting money rebuilding things to be destroyed again?
  • Is this problem fixable?

The cycle of war has been going on between Palestine and Israel for far too long. The people need to be focusing on a long term solution for their conflict before anything can be rebuilt, or home and schools will be pointlessly rebuilt just to be destroyed by the same conflict that has plagued this land for years. Something has to give because it is the Palestinian people that will get the brute of this conflict with the continuation of mass civilian causality.

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