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Nakba Day begins amidst escalating tensions between Israel and Palestine


Nakba Day begins amidst escalating tensions between Israel and Palestine

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Photo: Mohammed Salem

Palestinians will commemorate Nakba Day after a week of escalating violence between Palestinians and Israelis.

This past week the Israeli Government threatened the eviction of Palestinian residents from Sheikh Jarrah—a historically Palestinian neighborhood, sparking riots and civilian violence. In response, massive rocket attacks on Tel Aviv by Hamas and airstrikes in Gaza by Israel have escalated, with neither side suing for a ceasefire. Israel amassed tanks and troops on the Gaza border and is threatening a full ground invasion of the enclave.

The Israeli-Palestinian status quo periodically spikes in intifadas. However, this does not look like a typical intifada. The associated violence this week has exceeded the deadly intifada of 2014 and the ensuing Gaza war. Furthermore, new indiscriminate violence between Jewish and Palestinian civilians highlights the wider societal conflict at play.

Without a political solution, conflict is highly likely to escalate to a full-scale war in the Gaza Strip. More broadly, the US has postponed UN Security Council efforts and is sending an envoy to aid in de-escalation talks. The likely approaching ground war in Gaza will be prolonged and inflict heavy casualties, which will force the US and the international community to draw hard lines on the character of a future Israel.

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