Scroll Top

The Battle of Gaza: The Guilty Bystanders


Gaza also known as Gaza City, is a Palestinian city in the Gaza strip. Gaza is located on the eastern coast of the Mediterranean sea at the northeast of the Sinai Peninsula and it borders Egypt and Israel. Interestingly Gaza has been ruled, repopulated, and destroyed by many dynasties and powers. After rule by the Ottoman Domain ended there in the first World War (1914-18), the Gaza region turned out to be important for the League of Nations mandate of Palestine under English rule. The British mandate came to an end on May 15, 1948, and on that very day the main Middle Easterner-Israeli conflict started as the General Assembly of the United Nations (UN) in November 1947 acknowledged an arrangement for the Arab-Jewish partition of Palestine under which the town of Gaza and an area of encompassing domain were to be distributed to the Bedouins. Hence, this area became the Gaza strip. Its boundaries were demarcated in the Egyptian-Israeli peace negotiation arrangement of February 24, 1949, as a result of heavy fighting in the autumn of 1948 among them. [1]

The Israel-Palestine War

The Egyptian military ruled Gaza from 1949 to 1967. In the six-day war of June 1967, also known as the third Arab-Israeli war or June war or Naksh, the Gaza strip was taken by Israel, which involved the area for the following 25 years. In December 1987 revolting and violent street clashes between Gaza’s Palestinians and possessing Israeli soldiers denoted the introduction of an uprising that came to be known as the ‘intifada’ (in Arabic means “shaking off”). In the 2006 parliamentary elections, Fatah which had ruled the Palestinian legislature since its establishment during the 1950s, experienced an unequivocal misfortune to Hamas, reflecting years of disappointment with Fatah’s administration. In 2007 Israel declared the Gaza Strip under Hamas a hostile entity and endorsed a progression of authorizations that included power cuts, vigorously limited imports, and boundary terminations. In June 2008, following quite a while of continuous strikes and attacks, Israel and Hamas consented to execute a ceasefire scheduled to last a half year. When the truce authoritatively lapsed on December 19, Hamas announced that it didn’t plan to extend it. More extensive hostilities emitted as Israel, responding to sustained rocket fire, mounted a progression of air strikes across the region, among the most grounded in years, intended to target Hamas. Following seven days of air strikes, Israeli powers started a ground crusade into the Gaza Strip in the midst of calls from the international community for a cease-fire. In 2012, Israel sent off a series of air strikes in Gaza, because of an increase in the number of rocket attacks terminated from Gaza into the Israeli domain over the past months. As the battle continued to increase, Israel launched 50-day hostile strikes into the Gaza Strip in July 2014. About 2,100 Palestinians and in excess of 70 Israelis were killed in the resulting conflict, with around 5,000 targets injured in the Gaza Strip. In the spring of 2018 a progression of protests by Gaza along the line with Israel, which included endeavors to cross the boundary and flying blazing kites, was met with a violent reaction from Israel. Both the protests and the brutality reached a peak when around 40,000 Gazans joined the protests, leading the Israeli troops to open fire and kill about 60 people and wounding about 2,700 others. The brutality swelled into military strikes from Israel and rocket fire from Hamas and went on for a very long time. All through 2019 and 2020, Gaza and Israel kept on arranging a long-term “understanding” for maintaining harmony and easing the blockade. A major heightening occurred in May 2021, after weeks of stewing pressures in Jerusalem bubbled over when Israel’s Supreme Court was set to lead the expulsion of many Palestinian families from their homes. Conflicts between Israeli police and Palestinian demonstrators provoked Hamas to send off rockets into Jerusalem and portions of southern Israel, Israel answered with air strikes in the Gaza Strip. And the war continues in 2022. [2]

The World and Gaza

The Human Rights Council established the United Nations Commission of Inquiry in 2018 protests in the occupied Palestinian Territory. The commission was set up to investigate all the violations of International Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law alleged by the concerned states. The commission in its report gathered several documents, medical reports, affidavits, photographs, videos, satellite imageries, interviews of the victims and eyewitnesses, statistics supporting the same and expert legal opinions related to the events occurring at the demonstration locales. The Commission also revealed a number of facts that constrained it to carry out the survey including the lack of cooperation from the Israeli government, the Israeli government did not grant access to Israel, and the Israeli government did not properly respond to any of the commission’s requests. And in its report, it concludes that the heinous actions of Israel in the war between both countries are affecting the human rights of the common public including children, women, old age, as well as adults. The health graph, economic growth, environmental balance, and basic human rights, all are endangered. [3]

Across two states, each in power, Israeli specialists multiplied down on arrangements to curb Palestinians and privilege Jewish Israelis. The public authority’s policy of keeping up with the domination of Jewish Israelis over Palestinians across Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT), combined with the especially extreme constraint against Palestinians living in the OPT, adds up to the crimes against humanity of apartheid and oppression. There are several documentaries as well as reports on the number of civilian deaths and casualties including children, due to Israel’s constant attacks and bombings in Gaza, that are supporting evidence of this inhumane activity. The apparent war is a complete violation of human rights. The political agenda of the participating countries are ignorant of the innocent lives of the people. The cruel bombings and attacks along with the eviction of thousands of residents from their homes are barbaric to basic human rights. People losing their homes, occupation, and loved ones to war is inhumane. [4]

The most desensitized social psychological effect is that, even though witnessing this heinous war crime, many states choose to turn a blind eye and not get involved. Many powerful nations who could have mediated and prevented the bloodshed, abdicated. Surely, international law offers no panacea for the demise and annihilation of war, nor does most media coverage of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict dedicate more than the scantiest attention regarding the basic human rights inference of such brutality. So far, Qatar has been providing aid to Gaza that is partially helping to reduce the economic stress on Gaza. The United Nations and United Nations Human Rights Council have also failed to protect the principal docket for which they operate, i.e. to maintain peace and harmony among the countries. Mere reports and committees could not solve the Israel-Gaza conflict. During the May battle, the Biden administration censured rocket attacks by Palestinian armed groups, yet not Israeli conduct, and continued with the offer of $735 million in arms to Israel, including the sort of precision-guided weapons utilized in unlawful attacks in Gaza. The UN Human Rights Council established an ongoing Commission of Inquiry (COI) to address abuses arising from the war and promote accountability to those responsible but, all the western states on the council abstained and voted against creating the Commission of Inquiry. During the May 2021 hostilities, Facebook unjustly eliminated and stifled content by Palestinians and their allies, including denials of human rights abuse. The European Union denounced Israel’s settlement policy and Israeli-Palestinian maltreatment, yet divisions among EU member states have baffled attempts to take on additional forceful measures. The war between Israel and Palestine has divided the world into two and impacted the economic growth of several nations. Israel being a persuasive nation and major refined petroleum exporter has controlled the powerful nations to not utter a word against its odious agendas to bloodshed and illegally conquer Gaza. [5]


Violence due to war in Gaza is unacceptable and inhumane. It is unbearable to watch such a massive number of people, including women, children, and the elderly, being harmed and killed every day. Many powerful nations have been quiet and ignorant of the war and its circumstances. The political issues and the enmity between the two nations have resulted in nothing but the unjust death and suffering of the people in Gaza. The people of Gaza refrain from their basic human rights. Journalists and Officials who take a stand for Gaza are either arrested or killed. Many nations, big personalities, and celebrities have come out in support of Palestine but everything is in vain. Should people in Gaza or anywhere around the world face such brutality? And the answer is no. There need to be some measures taken to resolve the issues between the two nations amicably, discarding any further loss of lives. All the developed and developing nations have to come together in order to stop the warfare. There can be no amends made for the damages the war has done but at least the further destruction of life can be stopped.    

Author(s) Name: Shaikh Iram Rizwan (Dr. D.Y. Patil College of Law, Nerul. Mumbai University)

[1] Marie-Elisabeth Ingres, ‘MSF Statement on Violence on Protestors in Gaza Strip’ (MSF Organisation, 14 May 2018) <> accessed 15 October 2022.

[2] ‘Israel-Gaza Violence: The Conflict Explained’ (BBC News, 08 August 2022) <> accessed 12 October 2022.

[3] Human Rights Council, ‘Report of the detailed findings of the independent international Commission of inquiry on the protests in the Occupied Palestinian Territory’ (2019) 1,2,224 <> accessed 13 October 2022.

[4] Hosam Salem, ‘Timeline: Israel’s Attacks on Gaza since 2005’ (Al Jazeerah, 07 August 2022) <> accessed 14 October 2022.

[5] Kenneth Roth, ‘Israel and Palestine’ (Human Rights Watch Organisation, 2021) <> accessed 14 October 2022.