Arab Perspective on Gaza Conflict

Nadeem Mazen, the first Muslim elected to Cambridge, Mass. city council, offered his thoughts on presence of Israeli troops

After a 10-day air war, Israel launched a ground invasion of the Gaza Strip late overnight.

Israeli Consul General Yehuda Yaakov joined Jim Braude on Broadside Wednesday to discuss one side of the conflict.

Friday, Cambridge, Massachusetts City Councilor Nadeem Mazen, the first Muslim and the first Arab elected to that position, appeared on Broadside to share his thoughts.

"Some of these things are impossible to agree with if you look at Gaza and you look at Hamas," said Mazen. "Americans don't understand that this is an open-air prison - 140 square miles, larger than the size of Boston, similar population - 160 days, can't enter or leave, economic blockade by land, sea and air, and the proposal for a ceasefire not necessarily run by government administrators. You have a situation where Israel is saying, 'We want a ceasefire with no conditions,' and Gazans are saying, rightfully so, 'If we're going to have a ceasefire, can we please have a normal economy, can our fishermen be returned to the sea, rather than being removed from their economic livelihood?'"

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