Home Arab and Middle East unrest How the Israel-Hamas conflict erupted – podcast

How the Israel-Hamas conflict erupted – podcast

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On Saturday, as thousands of young people danced at a music festival, Hamas launched a deadly attack. Breaking through the heavily controlled walls and fences that surround Gaza, its soldiers moved into Israel, taking over military bases, before arriving at the festival. They shot revellers and took others hostage, in an attack that left more than 250 people dead.

It was a scene played out in other communities near Gaza – and has left Israel reeling. In retaliation, the country has launched airstrikes against Gaza, cut off electricity supplies and vowed to reduce the densely populated area, which is home to more than 2 million people, “to ruins”.

In an extra episode of Today in Focus, Peter Beaumont makes sense of these events and explains how the latest conflict has unfolded. He tells Michael Safi just how Hamas managed to take Israel by surprise and break through one of the most secure borders in the world. They discuss what the terrible events of the past few days mean for Israelis, Palestine and the world.

Smoke rises after an Israeli bombardment on Gaza City

Photograph: Ahmad Hasaballah/Getty Images