Skip to content

Context, timing, issues: what is happening in Gaza?

Since Friday afternoon, the Israeli army has been conducting strikes against the Palestinian enclave, targeting, according to him, the armed group Islamic Jihad. The latter, for his part, accuses the Jewish state of wanting to “start a war” against the Palestinian people. A war that in fact has never really stopped on this bloodless strip of land that has been under blockade for fifteen years.

context

● Since Friday afternoon, the Israeli army has been carrying out an offensive against the Gaza Strip.

● After targeting a building in a residential area nestled in the heart of Gaza City, the Jewish state eliminated Tayssir Al-Jabari overnight, head of the Al-Quds Brigades, the armed wing of Islamic Jihad, which exercises with Hamas, but to a much lesser extent, its control in this enclave under Israeli blockade for fifteen years.

● According to the Gaza authorities, these raids have so far left at least 15 people dead, including a five-year-old girl, and 125 injured. For their part, the Israeli authorities say they have killed 15 fighters.

● For the Jewish state, this new offensive is a “preventive war”. Starting point for this new aggression? The Monday arrest of Bassem Saadi, one of the leaders of Islamic Jihad in the occupied West Bank.

● Since then, the Israeli authorities have feared reprisals from the Palestinian enclave.

● Yesterday, the Al-Quds brigades said they launched “more than a hundred rockets” towards Israel. A “first response” to the assassination of Tayssir Al-Jabari.

● On the Israeli side however, no victim has been identified so far.

● Israel has an anti-missile system – the Iron Dome – which allows it to intercept rockets launched from the Gaza Strip.

● Islamic Jihad accused the Jewish state of having “started a war”. “The Zionist enemy started this aggression and must expect us to fight relentlessly,” the organization’s secretary general, Ziad al-Nakhala, said in an interview with Lebanese television Al-Mayadeen. while he was traveling in Tehran.

● On Saturday morning, the Israeli army announced the arrest of 19 members of Islamic Jihad in the West Bank.

● Egypt is currently playing go-betweens and could host a delegation from Islamic Jihad today. However, he has ruled out the option of a ceasefire for the time being.

● In recent days, Egyptian and Qatari officials as well as UN diplomats have tried to defuse the situation by talking to Hamas, Islamic Jihad and Israel in order to avoid an escalation. In vain.

Read also

Lebanon condemns Israeli attack on Gaza

Timing

● This new Israeli attack against Islamic Jihad comes in a context of acceleration of the shadow war that has opposed Israel and Tehran for two decades, with, in recent years, a series of assassinations carried out in Iran itself. However, the Islamic Jihad is sponsored by Tehran and, unlike Hamas, unambiguously embraces its positions in the regional and international arena.

● Last Thursday, indirect negotiations on nuclear power between Washington and Tehran resumed in Vienna, in a climate of high tension, with little hope – even if it is still possible – of reaching an agreement.

● It also comes three weeks after Joe Biden’s tour of the Middle East, where the US president was welcomed with great fanfare by the Jewish state as part of a trip aimed, among other things, at marginalizing Tehran on the diplomatic scene and during which Biden explicitly stated that without a deal, Washington would not hesitate to use force.

● The bombings in Gaza take place while Israel is going through an internal political crisis. In late June, Israel’s parliament voted to dissolve it and decided to send the country back to the polls in November for the fifth time in less than four years.

● The latest Israeli attack comes more than a year after the May 2021 war – in which Hamas was involved this time – which left nearly 260 dead on the Palestinian side, more than 100,000 displaced and totally or partially destroyed near than 1,770 households, according to the United Nations. Since then, reconstruction has been struggling.

Read also

The “collective punishment” inflicted by Israel on Palestinians in the West Bank

Challenges

For Israel: as the November elections approach, it is the “centrist” Yaïr Lapid who assumes the governance of the country as interim Prime Minister. Israel is turning a little more to the extreme right every day and in these circumstances, the Israeli offensive allows Yaïr Lapid to play the all-security card to galvanize his chances in the next election.

For Hamas:

● The movement that controls the Gaza Strip is keeping its distance for the time being. Certainly, he issued a statement in which he asserted that “Israel will be held responsible and will have to pay the price for its new crime” and that “the military wings of the resistance are united and will respond with force”. But he seems to be opting for a strategy similar to that of 2019, when he stayed away from the “conflict” which then pitted Israel against Islamic Jihad.

● Although they both officially share the same objective, namely the elimination of Israel, Islamic Jihad is much more intimately linked to Tehran than is its partner and competitor.

● But it is above all out of pragmatism that Hamas seems to be holding back for the moment. Unlike Islamic Jihad, it has political responsibilities.

● The Palestinian enclave is bloodless because of the Israeli blockade and the successive wars to which the Jewish state has subjected it and cannot afford a new bloodbath and new large-scale attacks against its infrastructures.

● Diesel deliveries to Gaza’s only power station have been blocked and it is no longer functioning due to a shortage. The closure of border crossings since Tuesday has also forced thousands of Gazans working in Israel to stay at home, including, according to the World Health Organization, around 50 people who usually leave the enclave daily for medical treatment. .

Since Friday afternoon, the Israeli army has been conducting strikes against the Palestinian enclave, targeting, according to him, the armed group Islamic Jihad. The latter, for his part, accuses the Jewish state of wanting to “start a war” against the Palestinian people. War which in fact has never really stopped on this bloodless strip of land and under blockade for fifteen…

.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.