Learning About Gaza And The West Bank

Over the years I've heard of these places, "the Gaza strip", and, "the West Bank", words that describe a place somewhere in the Middle East that people live in and fight over.
  • How big is the Gaza Strip?
  • The west of what is the West Bank?
  • Is this country Palestine?
  • How many people live there?
  • Who's the government of these places?
No idea, basic actual facts about these places have never been placed before me so I'll have to go find out for myself eh ... yeah yeah, I'll do it tomorrow, stuff to do.

"1 million people in Gaza have been told to move to the south."

That was the moment for me. Was that a 5 minute walk, if so that sounded pointless.

After an afternoon of reading the Web I have a much clearer sense of the environment everyone is suffering within.

So, how long have been those in north Gaza been ordered to go?
The Gaza Strip is 41 km (25 mi) long.

Let's say 20-25 km, doesn't seem very far for me. Can you imagine leaving your home (before it is blown up) to go down the the road and hear the bombs still dropping.

Look, I won't have the answers to all those questions you'll have, "Who is Hamas?", "Why is Israel?", "When will the killing end?". Your job is to increase what you know before picking a side.

If you don't know then your default should be a human one, be on the side of people who just wanna have a boring week, go to work, and grumble about potholes, especially the women and children.
Wellington City To Sea Bridge art at sunrise, especially the heart

How big is the Gaza Strip?
The Gaza Strip is 41 km (25 mi) long, from 6 to 12 km (3.7 to 7.5 mi) wide, and has a total area of 365 km2 (141 sq mi).
The west of what is the West Bank?
It initially emerged as a Jordanian-occupied territory after the 1948 Arab–Israeli War, before being annexed outright by Jordan in 1950, and was given its name during this time based on its location on the western bank of the Jordan River.
Is this country Palestine?
Palestine is a state whose legal status is the subject of controversy although it is currently recognized by 138 of 193 United Nations member states. The state claims the West Bank (including East Jerusalem) and the Gaza Strip as its territory.
How many people live there?
Gaza: 2.2 million
West Bank: 2.7 million Palestinians, and over 670,000 Israeli settlers
Who's the government of these places?
... OK, it's all a bit fuzzy but here we go ... 

Gaza: Hamas are in charge. Yes, the killing machines but they also run the buses and bin collection. However the Palestine National Authority (PNA) say they are the legitimate government, but aren't in reality.

West Bank: This was an eye opener to me. 

The Oslo Accords [1993], signed between the Palestine Liberation Organization and Israel, created administrative districts with varying levels of Palestinian autonomy in specific areas:

  • Area A, which is administered exclusively by the PNA; 
  • Area B, which is administered by both the PNA and Israel;
  • and Area C, which is administered exclusively by Israel.

Area C accounts for over 60% of the West Bank's territory. 

Under the Oslo Accords, Area C was supposed to be "gradually transferred to Palestinian jurisdiction", but such a transfer never happened.

It's quite the mess tbh, go check it out.
I get why the the Area C Israeli settlers are contentious to the max.

Note: all quotes are from Wikipedia.


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