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The Israeli military campaign against Hamas reportedly among deadliest and most destructive in history – Associated Press

The Israeli military campaign in Gaza, as reported by Julia Frankel of the Associated Press in her article ‘Israel’s military campaign in Gaza seen as among the most destructive in recent history, experts say‘, now stands as one of the deadliest and most destructive in recent history. Frankel’s report reveals a stark picture of the scale of devastation and the human toll of this conflict.

The offensive, spanning just over two months, has caused more destruction than significant historical conflicts such as the razing of Syria’s Aleppo, Ukraine’s Mariupol, or even, proportionally, the Allied bombing of Germany in World War II. Julia Frankel’s report brings this comparison to life: “In just over two months, the offensive has wreaked more destruction than the razing of Syria’s Aleppo between 2012 and 2016, Ukraine’s Mariupol or, proportionally, the Allied bombing of Germany in World War II,” she writes.

The scale of this devastation is unprecedented, with over two-thirds of structures in northern Gaza and a quarter in Khan Younis destroyed, as revealed by satellite data analysis.

This campaign has also resulted in a staggering number of Palestinian casualties, surpassing 20,000, marking a significant humanitarian crisis. The Israeli military has been reticent about the specifics of their arsenal, but according to the AP report, the majority of bombs dropped on Gaza are U.S.-made, including 2,000-pound “bunker-busters.” These have been particularly devastating in densely populated areas. Experts, analyzing blast fragments and strike footage, have shed light on the severity of these armaments.

The historical context of this conflict is profound. Robert Pape, a U.S. military historian, quoted in the AP article, notes, “Gaza is one of the most intense civilian punishment campaigns in history… It now sits comfortably in the top quartile of the most devastating bombing campaigns ever.” This comparison starkly frames the current situation in Gaza within a broader historical perspective.

The international response has been one of growing concern. Amid escalating Palestinian casualties, there have been widespread calls for a ceasefire. The Biden administration’s stance is particularly notable. President Biden acknowledged concerns over Israel’s “indiscriminate bombing,” indicating a shift in international perception of the conflict.

The human cost of this war is not just in lives lost but also in the destruction of infrastructure. U.N. monitors report significant damage to essential services, with about 70% of school buildings across Gaza affected. This damage extends to hospitals, religious sites, and civilian shelters. Israel holds Hamas responsible for civilian deaths, claiming that the militant group embeds itself within civilian infrastructure, as noted in the AP report. However, this claim does little to alleviate the dire situation faced by civilians in Gaza.

In conclusion, Frankel’s report for the Associated Press offers a comprehensive view of the situation in Gaza. The scale of destruction, the use of potent weaponry, and the resulting humanitarian crisis call for urgent international attention and action. As the world grapples with the aftermath of this offensive, the need for a balanced and humane approach to conflict resolution becomes ever more apparent.