Hamas The Palestinian conflict with Israel has erupted again. The current conflict began when Hamas attacked Israel and killed 700 Israelis and kidnapped dozens of others on Saturday, October 7 2023. This attack was the deadliest since Egypt and Syria attacked in the Yom Kippur war 50 years ago.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu revealed that Israel would carry out massive revenge. Israel then retaliated against the attack by Hamas troops on Sunday, October 8 2023. At least more than 400 people, including 20 children, were kill by Israel in the retaliatory attack.
Hamas is an abbreviation of Harakat Al-Muqawamah Al-Islamiyyah which means “Islamic Resistance Movement”. It is an Islamic nationalist and militant movement active in the West Bank and Gaza Strip and has the goal of establishing an independent Islamic state in Palestine.
Reporting from Britanica, Hamas found in 1987 as an effort to oppose the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) in the context of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and oppose efforts to hand over parts of Palestine to Israel.
Before the founding of Hamas, since the 1970s many Muslim Brotherhood activists established a network of charities
clinics and schools in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank occupied by The Muslim Brotherhood’s activities in these two areas initially proceeded without violence. However, some groups then began to urge jihad against Israel. The peak occurred in December 1987, when there was an uprising against the Israeli occupation, which was the beginning of the founding of Hamas. This was the beginning of what became known as the first Palestinian Intifada.
Quoted from the Encyclopedia of the Palestinians (2005) written by Phillip Mattar, one of the founders of Hamas, Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, in the 1988 Hamas Charter state that Hamas’s goal to liberate Palestine from Israeli occupation and declared that Palestine was an Islamic land that should not be hand over to non-Muslim.
A number of attacks by Hamas led to Israel arresting several leaders, including Sheikh Ahmed Yassin in 1989. Over the next few years, Hamas underwent reorganization to strengthen its command structure and keep its top leaders out of Israel’s reach.
Hamas later criticized the 1993 peace agreement between Israel and the PLO. Hamas frequently steps up its campaign of suicide bombings. The PLO chairman, Yasser Arafat, attempted to integrate Hamas in the political process and appointed several of its members to leadership positions in the Palestinian Authority.
The collapse of peace plans between Israel and Palestine in September 2000 led to an increase in violence.
The violent conflict that escalated in the early 2000s became known as the Al-Aqsa Intifada (Second Intifada), characterized by levels of violence unprecedented since the First Intifada. Hamas activists have intensified their attacks on Israeli citizens and have been involved in a series of suicide bomb attacks.
After the Second Infadah, Hamas began to correct and moderate its stance on peace. In 2006, Hamas participated in legislative elections. Since then, senior Hamas leaders have repeatedly expressed their willingness to support a two-state solution based on pre-1967 borders. This willingness is stated in the 2017 General Principles and Policy Document.
However, protests occurred again on the Gaza border in 2018, with demonstrators trying to cross the border into Israel and sending kites and incendiary balloons into Israeli territory. Israel responded with a violent crackdown, resulting in the deaths of 60 people and injuries to 2,700 Palestinian demonstrators. In 2021, there was a series of armed conflicts between Israel and Hamas, which was the largest since 2014.