Gaza Celebrates 'Victory' Amidst the Rubble

Buoyant Mood Among Palestinians as Ground War Averted

Smiles in the Rubble: Gaza soldiers celebrate the morning after truce with Israel is announced.
getty images
Smiles in the Rubble: Gaza soldiers celebrate the morning after truce with Israel is announced.

Published November 22, 2012.
  • Print
  • Share Share
  • Single Page

Gazans savoured the calm that pervaded their coastal enclave on Thursday after an Egyptian-brokered ceasefire halted eight days of relentless Israeli bombardment that killed 162 people.

Despite the death and destruction, many were buoyant, echoing assertions of the Gaza Strip’s Islamist Hamas rulers that their rocket salvoes, which reached Tel Aviv and Jerusalem for the first time, had trumped Israel’s military might.

“Congratulations on your victory,” passersby said as they shook hands with Hamas traffic policemen back on the streets after days in hiding to avoid Israeli bombs and missiles.

But joy mingled with grief as many Palestinians walked by wrecked houses and government buildings, glimpsing shredded clothing, ruined furniture and cars half-buried in the rubble.

Fighting ended late on Wednesday after the Hamas movement and Israel accepted a truce, although doubt abounded on both sides that this would be anything more than a pause in a deadly struggle between deeply distrustful adversaries.

Jubilant crowds celebrated in Gaza, most waving green Hamas flags, but hundreds with the yellow emblems of the rival Fatah group led by Western-backed Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

“Today our unity materialised, Hamas and Fatah are one hand, one rifle and one rocket,” senior Hamas leader Khalil Al-Hayya told several thousand people in the main square of Gaza.

Nabil Shaath, a senior Fatah figure, even shared the stage with leaders of Hamas, Islamic Jihad and other factions.

The striking images of reconciliation broke a prevailing pattern of bitterness since Hamas gunmen drove Fatah from the Gaza Strip in 2007, politically reinforcing the territory’s physical separation from the Israeli-occupied West Bank.


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • Law professor Dan Markel waited a shocking 19 minutes for an ambulance as he lay dying after being ambushed in his driveway. Read the stunning 911 transcript as neighbor pleaded for help.
  • Happy birthday to the Boy Who Lived! July 31 marks the day that Harry Potter — and his creator, J.K. Rowling — first entered the world. Harry is a loyal Gryffindorian, a matchless wizard, a native Parseltongue speaker, and…a Jew?
  • "Orwell would side with Israel for building a flourishing democracy, rather than Hamas, which imposed a floundering dictatorship. He would applaud the IDF, which warns civilians before bombing them in a justified war, not Hamas terrorists who cower behind their own civilians, target neighboring civilians, and planned to swarm civilian settlements on the Jewish New Year." Read Gil Troy's response to Daniel May's opinion piece:
  • "My dear Penelope, when you accuse Israel of committing 'genocide,' do you actually know what you are talking about?"
  • What's for #Shabbat dinner? Try Molly Yeh's coconut quinoa with dates and nuts. Recipe here:
  • Can animals suffer from PTSD?
  • Is anti-Zionism the new anti-Semitism?
  • "I thought I was the only Jew on a Harley Davidson, but I was wrong." — Gil Paul, member of the Hillel's Angels. http://jd.fo/g4cjH
  • “This is a dangerous region, even for people who don’t live there and say, merely express the mildest of concern about the humanitarian tragedy of civilians who have nothing to do with the warring factions, only to catch a rash of *** (bleeped) from everyone who went to your bar mitzvah! Statute of limitations! Look, a $50 savings bond does not buy you a lifetime of criticism.”
  • That sound you hear? That's your childhood going up in smoke.
  • "My husband has been offered a terrific new job in a decent-sized Midwestern city. This is mostly great, except for the fact that we will have to leave our beloved NYC, where one can feel Jewish without trying very hard. He is half-Jewish and was raised with a fair amount of Judaism and respect for our tradition though ultimately he doesn’t feel Jewish in that Larry David sort of way like I do. So, he thinks I am nuts for hesitating to move to this new essentially Jew-less city. Oh, did I mention I am pregnant? Seesaw, this concern of mine is real, right? There is something to being surrounded by Jews, no? What should we do?"
  • "Orwell described the cliches of politics as 'packets of aspirin ready at the elbow.' Israel's 'right to defense' is a harder narcotic."
  • From Gene Simmons to Pink — Meet the Jews who rock:
  • The images, which have since been deleted, were captioned: “Israel is the last frontier of the free world."
  • As J Street backs Israel's operation in Gaza, does it risk losing grassroots support?
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.