SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – As the fighting continues between Israel and Hamas, there’s a growing concern about children and families caught in the middle of that conflict.
Another short-lived ceasefire between Israel and Hamas. Earlier this week, a truce negotiated by the Egyptians ended when Hamas militants in Gaza launched rockets at Israel. Then on Thursday, an Israeli airstrike killed three Hamas leaders.
The current conflict began more than a month ago in early July, and although there has been several attempts at a ceasefire, most ceasefires ended just as quickly as they began.
Thousands of civilians have been killed. Western Massachusetts residents called it “a loss of innocent lives, caught in the middle.”
Thursday night the Springfield Rotary Club invited Dr. Mohammad Bajwa to discuss the Gaza conflict. 22News spoke with Dr. Bajwa and the President of the Jewish Federation of Western Massachusetts about both sides calling for each other’s destruction.
Susan Firestone, the President of the Jewish Federation of Western Massachusetts, said “If you read Hamas’ charter, in their charter, it’s in writing, they are vowing to not just destroy Israel but kill all the Jews everywhere. So it would certainly be hard to negotiate with someone whose goal in life is to kill you.”
Dr. Bajwa said “They are too stuck with their demands. They are not willing to compromise, so some outside countries that have influence, they have to step in.”
Last month the U.S. sent $47 million to provide shelter, food and other assistance in Gaza.