Growing Support for Hamas among Palestinians in the West Bank

The recent war in Gaza has led to an increase in Israel’s military operations in the occupied West Bank, resulting in more forceful tactics against the Palestinian people. One city in particular, Jenin, has become a weekly battleground as the army raids the area. Palestinian teenagers, who are running from the army, display dismissive attitudes towards the Palestinian president and his appeals for protection against Israel’s occupation. The constant incursions into Jenin and the killing of young people are adding to the anger and resistance of the Palestinian people. Since the attacks by Hamas, support for armed resistance has grown in many parts of the West Bank, with the new generation especially backing Hamas. There has been a shift in priorities among the Palestinian youth towards the liberation of their homeland through resistance, whether peaceful or armed. Both Fatah and Hamas are realizing that they complement each other and are considering integration between the two movements. Some senior figures in the Palestinian administration are advocating for a united political front, with the Palestinian Authority suggesting that Hamas join a unity government led by them. The crisis in Gaza could potentially strengthen the political wing of Hamas at the expense of its military wing. While Israel aims to destroy Hamas, the international community has added the Palestinian cause to its list of priorities. The Palestinian Authority has been widely seen as corrupt and ineffective, unable to pay its civil servants or police since the war in Gaza. Hamas flags and slogans have multiplied in the West Bank, contrasting sharply with the absence of the PA’s president and security forces. Israeli settler violence in the West Bank continues to cause destruction and fear among the Palestinian population.