The besieged Gaza Strip in Palestine is said to be the world’s largest open prison. Because on one side of this valley is the sea. And the remaining three sides are surrounded by high walls. 2.3 million citizens live in the surrounding valley.
Despite the large population, Gaza was well organized. But in the last two and a half months, Israel has turned the tidy Gaza Strip into rubble. In just two months, 40,000 tons of bombs have been dropped on the Gaza Strip.
Benjamin Netanyahu’s government declared war on the Palestinian independence armed group after a sudden attack by Hamas on October 7. Airstrikes begin in Gaza. About three weeks later, the ground campaign began.
In the name of eliminating Hamas, Israeli forces have been targeting civilians and civilian facilities such as residential buildings, hospitals, schools and mosques since then.
In the attack, bunker busters, JDAM, SPIES and other powerful and sophisticated bombs supplied by the US are being used. Israel has also used its biggest and most destructive bomb.
Analysts say that the damage already done in Gaza by the Israeli aggression has made Gaza one of the most destroyed cities in history.
Last year, Russia started military operations in Ukraine. Many cities in Ukraine have been destroyed by Russian forces in the last two years. Mariupol was the worst affected. According to analysts, Gaza has surpassed even Mariupol in terms of devastation.
Gaza has even surpassed the damage inflicted on Germany by the Allied forces during World War II. More civilians have been killed in the Gaza war in the past two and a half months than in the three-year anti-IS battle in Aleppo, Syria.
In the last two and a half months of Israeli attacks, Gaza is no longer Gaza. The entire valley is practically razed to the ground. Two-thirds of the buildings in northern Gaza and a quarter of Khan Yunis were destroyed. Such information has emerged in a joint research report of the CUNY Graduate Center and Oregon State University.
The research work was carried out using the Copernicus Sentinel-1 satellite. According to the research report, before the conflict started on October 7, there were 288,000 residential buildings, schools, hospitals, mosques, churches and business establishments in the Gaza Strip. Out of this, 1 lakh 2 thousand to 1 lakh 29 thousand buildings were destroyed.
The United Nations says 18 percent of Gaza’s infrastructure has been destroyed since the October offensive. They used the satellite UNOSAT to determine this. According to the organization, 60 percent of Gaza’s housing system and 50 percent of all infrastructure in northern Gaza have been destroyed.
According to the United Nations, 70 percent of Gaza’s schools and educational institutions have collapsed. 56 percent of these destroyed schools and educational institutions were shelters for Palestinians displaced by Israeli attacks.
Besides, 110 mosques and three churches were destroyed by Israeli attacks. Numerous libraries were destroyed, including the main library in Gaza. These libraries had millions of books and documents. Cory Secher, a researcher at the CUNY Graduate Center, says the Israeli attack has changed the complexion of Gaza.
Gaza has surpassed even Germany’s devastation
In some ways, Israel’s destruction in Gaza has surpassed that of the Allies in Germany during World War II.
According to American historian Robert Pape, between 1942 and 1945, the Allies attacked 51 German cities, large and small. About 40 to 50 percent of Germany’s urban area was destroyed in that attack.
Pepe said that the damage that occurred in German cities at that time was about 10 percent of the entire country’s infrastructure. But in just two months, the Israeli attack destroyed 33 percent of the infrastructure of Gaza, which covers only 360 square kilometers.
The number of bombs dropped on Gaza is also unprecedented in history. According to a 1954 estimate by the US Army, 7,100 tons of bombs were dropped on Dresden, Germany, over three years during World War II. And in just two months, 40,000 tons of bombs were dropped in the Gaza Strip, which is several times more bombs than the city of Dresden.