War or Blockade: Desperate Gazans See Little Reason to Hope for Better

Civilians Ordered From Homes, But Have Nowhere to Flee

7+ years under Hamas, Gazans are used to Israeli attacks, and this is the seventh major offensive of that period. Each war ushers in a fragile new peace, but it’s always the same under the blockade.

For nearly eight solid years, getting anything into the Gaza Strip has been an exercise in futility. The occasional humanitarian shipment is allowed in, but Israel has openly bragged about keeping even basic supplies like food in short supply, seeking the bare minimum to avoid mass starvation. Medicine is always scarce, and basic construction material is so impossible to come by that much of the damage from the 2008-09 invasion is still untouched.

So even if the current Gaza attacks end, the blockade remains, leaving Gazans in desperation, with no hope for anything better. In that regard the ceasefire seems to matter little, and either way they’re under attack.

The gloom is underscored as locals receive text messages and leaflets from the Israeli military ordering them to leave residential areas to avoid an imminent invasion and escalating airstrikes. It’s a nice thought, but there is realistically no place to go. The whole strip is under attack, even if some refugee camps are being hit harder than others, and many see the choice as simply between dying at home or dying a couple of miles down the road.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.