Nine weeks ago, the Gaza Strip was an active home to more than two million people. Today, Israeli air strikes have flattened neighborhoods, and invading Israeli tanks have bulldozed farming communities.
Video and satellite images captured in late November and early December reveal a devastating transformation across much of northern Gaza.
Gaza Port has been the lifeline of Gaza’s fishing industry, with a fish market located next to the beach.
But now the entire area has been destroyed.
Satellite images show that the fighting has resulted in severe damage in almost every corner of Gaza City, far from the port area. A UN assessment in early November concluded that at least 6,000 buildings had been damaged, about a third of them destroyed.
Israeli officials vowed to destroy Hamas following the group’s surprise attack on October 7, and have since subjected Gaza to one of the most powerful bombing campaigns of the 21st century.
Before the war, Omar Al-Mukhtar Street was the main thoroughfare in Gaza City, with restaurants, banks and shops lining the Park of the Unknown Soldier.
Now the road is filled with the rubble of destroyed buildings. Those still standing were severely damaged.
Destruction along the coast
The Gaza seashore was previously a refuge for Palestinian families during the hot summers, which were accompanied by frequent power outages.
The beaches are now deserted except for Israeli tanks and bulldozers. Many high-rise hotels that once provided tourists with sea-view rooms have burned down, their windows shattered.
The damage to the Gaza coast extends to the northern border, where Israeli forces invaded the Strip on October 27.
Al-Shati, initially established as a refugee camp in 1948, has developed into a densely populated neighborhood north of Gaza City, near the coast. Its narrow streets, shown below, were home to 90,000 people before the war.
After suffering multiple air strikes, buildings collapse and the streets are filled with rubble.
The cost of dividing Gaza into two parts
The Israeli forces that invaded the Strip from the east effectively separated Gaza into two parts and closed the roads extending from north to south. The area around this advance suffers some of the most concentrated damage.
The next phase
These photos capture only a fraction of the devastation in the Gaza Strip. Recent assessments indicate that more than half of the buildings in northern Gaza show signs of destruction.
The south has also been hit by repeated aerial bombardments since the war began on October 7, including the Al-Amin Muhammad Mosque, as shown here.
The mosque, located northeast of Khan Yunis, was destroyed in an Israeli air strike at the beginning of the conflict.
Israeli forces are now focusing their ground attack on Khan Yunis, the largest city in the southern Gaza Strip, which increases the possibility that the devastation witnessed in northern Gaza will soon be reflected in the south. Israeli officials say the Hamas leadership established a stronghold there after fleeing the north.
Hundreds of thousands of civilians who were asked to seek refuge in the south at the beginning of the war find themselves once again at the heart of the conflict. Humanitarian conditions are rapidly deteriorating, with the United Nations warning that shelters are far exceeding their capacity, leaving many people sleeping on the streets or in empty spaces.
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