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A look at Hamas' ideology and history

A photo hangs on a refrigerator next to bullet holes in a house at Kibbutz Kissufim in southern Israel, Saturday, Oct. 21, 2023. The Kibbutz was overrun by Hamas militants from the nearby Gaza Strip on Oct. 7, when they killed and captured many Israelis. (Francisco Seco/AP)
A photo hangs on a refrigerator next to bullet holes in a house at Kibbutz Kissufim in southern Israel, Saturday, Oct. 21, 2023. The Kibbutz was overrun by Hamas militants from the nearby Gaza Strip on Oct. 7, when they killed and captured many Israelis. (Francisco Seco/AP)

As the war in the Middle East enters its tragic third week, Hamas — the political and military organization that governs Gaza — is in the spotlight. So what is the group’s ideology and history in the region?

Bruce Hoffman has studied terrorism and insurgency for nearly 50 years, and has directed Georgetown University’s Center for Security Studies. His article “Understanding Hamas’s Genocidal Ideology” appears in The Atlantic, and he joins host Robin Young to talk about the group’s stated objectives and alliances.

This article was originally published on WBUR.org.

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