Tuesday, February 06, 2024

Mapping the Spread of War in the Middle East

The Hamas attacks in Israel on 7 October 2023 have led to increasing violence across much of the Middle East. 

In response to the Hamas attacks Israel launched a devastating and destructive campaign against Gaza. In Yemen the Houthi responded to Israel's attacks on Gaza by targeting ships in the Red Sea. The US & UK replied by targeting Houthi locations in Yemen. Israel and the US have both bombed Syria. The US has bombed targets in Iran and Iraq, and Pakistan and Iran have begun launching tit-for-tat strikes against each other.

If you are struggling to keep track of who is attacking who and where then you can refer to The Guardian's interactive map How Gaza war led to violence spreading around the Middle East. The Guardian's story map starts with the 7 October Hamas attack on Israel, which led to the death of 1,200 Israelis. The map then chronologically maps the escalating crisis across much of the Middle East.

A very large proportion of the violence in the Middle East is of course funded by American tax payers. According to the US Campaign for Palestinian Rights every year the U.S. government gives Israel $3.8 billion. The Campaign's U.S. Military Funding to Israel Map, can show you what your tax dollars could buy you if the money sent to Israel was spent at home.

Enter the name of your state or city into the interactive map and it will tell you how many local tax dollars are being sent to Israel every year and how much public housing, child healthcare, school teachers, or respirator masks that money could buy.

The campaign's map obviously only takes into account the $3.8 billion given to Israel by the government. It doesn't include the money spent by America on its own military presence in the Middle East and the escalating costs of U.S. military strikes against targets in Yemen, Iraq and Syria.

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