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Young Palestinians Skeptical That Hamas-PA Unity Will Help Them Escape Gaza

Grant Rumley
5th November 2017 - Quoted by Elisheva Goldberg - Haaretz

Jehad Abu Saleem was studying Hebrew in the Gaza Strip when he heard he had been accepted to a Ph.D. program in the United States. He was ecstatic. This was his dream — to study Palestinian intellectual history at one of the world’s top universities. But first he had to get out of Gaza — and that was not going to be easy.

Abu Saleem is the eldest of four children, and the only one in the United States. His youngest sibling, he said, “doesn’t know a world with 24 hours of electricity.”


Grant Rumley, an expert on Palestinian politics at the Washington, D.C.-based Foundation for Defense of Democracies, said in an email that the “fatal flaw” in Israel’s disengagement plan was that it “looked like a retreat.”

This, he said, is what gave Hamas the upper hand. The group, whose identity revolves around militant resistance of Israel, won Gaza’s democratic parliamentary elections in 2006 and forcibly took over its government in 2007.

Israel responded by revoking all day-labor permits and shuttering the crossings. With the military tightly controlling the border, the number of people crossing via Erez per month fell precipitously, with only a few thousand permits allotted for what the Israeli military called “exceptional humanitarian cases.”


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gaza, hamas, palestinian-politics