The armed group overran Israeli defences, ransacked military bases, and briefly seized control of several settlements. Palestinian fighters killed around 1,200 Israelis, including both soldiers and civilians, and took more than 200 hostages back into Gaza.
In the hours and days that followed, Israel’s western allies and leading media organisations were quick to call the attack “unprovoked”, aiming to justify an Israeli response that has already killed more than 15,000 Palestinians across Gaza and the occupied West Bank.
The 7 October attack was indeed unprecedented, but to call it “unprovoked” reflects a deliberate attempt to obscure the fact that Israel created the violent conditions that rendered a violent response inevitable.
Today, nearly two months into the Gaza massacre, Israeli forces are killing and maiming yet another generation of Palestinians - and provoking the next cycle of violence.