(WWLP) – Hamas launched the attack inside Israel over the weekend, killing hundreds and taking others hostage. There’s a long history with the militant group, which has ruled the Gaza Strip since 2007.

22News spoke with political science professor Paul Musgrave at UMass Amherst. He said Hamas has been a major threat to Israel since they took power.

Their latest attack is to drive Israel out of Gaza but to also claim leadership and power over the Palestinians in the West Bank. Hamas has carried out suicide bombings, and over the years has fired tens of thousands of increasingly powerful rockets from Gaza into Israel.

“The long-term occupation of Gaza Strip has created a lot of pain, a lot of suffering, a lot of anger, that lets groups like Hamas recruit and rule and lead to situations like this one,” said Musgrave. “They’ve used connections around the region, including to Iran to get their hands on resources and training they can use to build a military, build a force that is really incredibly capable, as we learned over the past 72…96 hours.”

Musgrave adds that this is not something that will end anytime soon. The Israeli infrastructure minister said in a tweet that he had “ordered to immediately cut off the water supply from Israel to Gaza,” adding that “electricity and fuel were cut off yesterday” to the Palestinian territory, which is home to some 2 million people.

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Kayleigh Thomas is a digital reporter who has been a part of the 22News team since 2022. Follow Kayleigh on X @kayleighcthomas and view her bio to see more of her work.