The Picador

Outbreak of Palestinian Protests

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Enraged Palestinians protest along the fence lining the border of Gaza and Israel on Friday, April 13th, in hopes of returning to the lands that they believe to have been taken from them. On the other side of that fence stands the Israeli military, who are using violent measures to suppress the protesters to protect their lands and people, as they believe the protesters to be terrorists.

 

Many have heard of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, but few truly understand the matter and why the two groups are fighting. Following World War II, Jews began leaving Europe for then-called Palestine. Although the Jewish people recognized the land as Arab Palestine, they had the intention of creating their own country, Israel. After the UN attempted to help the situation by dividing up the land, giving the Jews slightly more than half, Israel declared itself a country. This incited the surrounding Arab countries to fight Israel. This resulted in a victory for the Israelis, who proceeded to force the Palestinians off of their land and into the Gaza Strip and the West Bank. The 1967 Six-Day War saw Israel emerge victorious, occupying the lands of Gaza and the West Bank, which they still do to this day. All of these events have caused great tension between the Palestinians and the Israelis.

 

Recently, roughly 10,000 Palestinians have attempted to non-violently protest along the border of Gaza and Israel to be able to return to the lands that were once theirs. Three protests have occurred since March 30th, 2018, yet they have not exactly kept up with their non-violent goals. Frequently, the Palestinians can be seen burning the Israeli flag, tires, and posters of Donald Trump. In the most recent protest, though, the Israeli military made a statement that the Palestinians detonated an explosive on the fence and threw firebombs.

 

These protests are sparking major controversy, though, as the Israeli military is using lethal force against civilians. Between the three protests, the Israeli soldiers have killed 35 and have injured upwards of 1,000 Palestinians; these include women, children, and civilian journalists. The Israeli Defense Force claims that the protesters are being sent by the local government in Gaza, Hamas, which is a known terrorist group.

 

The relationship between the Palestinians and Israelis continues to worsen, in part, because of these protests. The outcome of the protests is uncertain, but it is certain that any move in the direction of peace is stalled, if not pushed back.

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