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Smoke billows from the east side of Gaza City, Jan. 09.

The Gaza Strip is a small strip of land 360 square kilometers, and has a population of 1.7 million people, making it one of the most densely populated places in the world. It was under Egyptian control from 1948 until 1967 when Israel conquered it in the Six Day War. Israel withdrew from the Gaza strip in August 2005, effectively returning sovereignty to the Palestinian Authority. In June 2007, the radical militant terrorist group Hamas forcefully took control of the Gaza strip from the PA.

It is little-known that when Israel became a nation in 1948 it expelled about 750,000 Palestinians from their homes. Many Palestinians fled to the West Bank and surrounding Arab nations (and were never allowed to return home). Others fled south to Egypt and the oasis of Gaza. Today Gaza has about 1.7 million people and over half are descendants of these refugees. [1]


Hostilities in late 2008-present

Terrorists are still attacking Israel from the Gaza strip with missiles, in response to this Israel is bombarding with a disproportionate amount of bombs. On January 3, 2009 Israel has started a ground campaign in Gaza. It was preceded by an artillery barrage to soften the border so Israeli troops could cross safer. Israel still insists that this campaign is against Hamas targets and that it has no plans to reoccupy the land. Hamas, rather than stop firing rockets into Gaza has begun sabre rattling and stated that they will kidnap and kill invading Israeli soldiers and cause mental illness from the horrors they will bring them. They have also stated that they will begin suicide attacks again.[2]

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