The Second Intifada

The Second Intifada

The al-Aqsa is the wave of violence that began in September 2000 between Palestinian Arabs and Israelis; it is also called the Second Intifada. Palestinians consider the intifada to be a war of national liberation against foreign occupation, whereas Israelis consider it to be a terrorist campaign.

On the Palestinian side, a variety of groups are involved in violence. They have waged a high-intensity campaign of guerrilla warfare and terrorism against Israel. Military equipment is mostly imported light arms and homemade weapons, such as hand grenades and explosive belts, assault rifles, and the Qassam rocket. They also have increased use of remote-controlled landmines, a tactic which has become increasingly popular among the poorly armed groups. Car bombs were often used against "lightly hardened" targets such as Israeli armored jeeps and checkpoints.

Soldiers crying

The tactic which the Palestinians have become most infamous for is the suicide bombing. Conducted as a single or double bombing, suicide bombings are generally conducted against civilians or checkpoints to try to raise the cost of the war to Israelis and demoralize the Israeli society. Most suicide bombing attacks (although not all) are targeted against civilians, and conducted on crowded places in Israeli cities, such as public transportation (buses), restaurants and markets.

The Second Intifada is considered to have ended at the Sharm el-Sheikh Summit of 2005, despite incidents of sporadic violence during the first months of 2005. The change in Palestinian government following the death of Yasser Arafat and the Israeli Disengagement Plan can be attributed to the lull in violence.