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  • the 2023 israel-hamas war, also referred to as "operation iron swords" by israel, and as the "battle of seif al-quds" by hamas, marked a significant and deadly escalation in the long-standing israeli-palestinian conflict. this conflict has deep historical roots, primarily revolving around territorial, national, and religious disputes between israelis and palestinians.

    the immediate events leading to the war began on october 7, 2023, when hamas launched a large-scale attack on southern israel from the gaza strip. this attack involved gunmen entering israeli territory, resulting in significant casualties and hostages being taken back to gaza. in response, israel launched extensive military airstrikes and a ground invasion aimed at neutralizing hamas' military capabilities and recovering hostages.

    historically, the gaza strip has been a focal point of conflict. hamas, which governs gaza, is designated as a terrorist organization by israel, the united states, and the european union, among others. it took control of gaza in 2007, following its victory in the 2006 palestinian legislative elections and subsequent conflicts with the fatah party. the israeli government has since imposed blockades on gaza, citing the need to limit hamas' ability to arm itself. these blockades, coupled with repeated cycles of conflict, have led to significant humanitarian issues in gaza.

    the broader historical context includes the establishment of israel in 1948, subsequent arab-israeli wars, and ongoing disputes over territories and the rights of palestinians and israelis. various peace efforts over the decades, including the oslo accords in the 1990s, have attempted to address these issues but have largely failed to achieve a lasting resolution.

    the 2023 conflict has been marked by extensive military operations, significant casualties on both sides, and widespread international concern over the humanitarian impact, particularly in gaza. efforts by other countries and international organizations to mediate have continued, but the situation remains highly volatile and deeply complex.