DENVER- Every morning, Denver resident Asya Abdul-Hadi wakes up and immediately calls her family still living in Gaza. So far, she's been relieved to hear they're all still alive despite the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas.
"Both sides have to stop. There has to be a ceasefire," Abdul-Hadi said.
Tuesday morning, there was a ceasefire. But, it only lasted several hours. The deal brokered by Egypt wasn't taken seriously by Hamas and they continued launching rockets.
Jonathan Adelman, professor of International Studies and the University of Denver, says the strikes on Israel are useless, in part because of the Iron Dome Defense System.
"Hamas has been more focused on the struggle; the struggle with Israel; the struggle for Muslim brotherhood in Egypt rather than doing something about the day-to-day life of the population," Adelman said.
On a Skype call, Abdul-Hadi's nephew stands on his balcony in Gaza. He shows her a home across the street that had been bombed out. His neighbor lost both his legs in an Israeli missile strike. Nearly 200 people have lost their lives in Gaza. Only one person has been killed by a Hamas rocket.
"You have to be awake every time because you are afraid there are going to bomb this building again or another building. If they did, you have to run away. You have to survive," Abdul-Hadi's nephew Muhammad said.
As a Palestinian, Abdul-Hadi sees Hamas as a resistance movement. Although Hamas started the latest fight by firing rockets into Israel, she says Israel is the real aggressor.
"I don't want any civilian lives lost on either side. But the side that is losing the most and afflicted the most is the Palestinian side," Abdul-Hadi said.
The unemployment rate is 40 percent in Gaza. Professor Jonathan Adelman says if Hamas and Gaza want to succeed they have to meet the basic needs of the people first.
"The want food; they want clothing, they want shelter; they want to be part of the global economy. They don't want to be a country at the level of Afghanistan," Adelman said.
Adelman expects the fighting will continue at least for a few more days. This is the third major conflict Israel and Palestine have had in six years.
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