Mohammed Saqar is seen in his classroom in Gaza where he works as an English teacher. Andrea Bruce/VII Network for NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Andrea Bruce/VII Network for NPR

Young Palestinian men practice parkour, a sport that involves climbing and jumping on buildings and other structures, in Gaza City on July 26. Mohammed al-Jahbir (right, in orange shorts), 21, gets defensive when people are surprised that Palestinians are into parkour. "When anything new comes out in Gaza, everyone is like, 'Oh, wow, they do parkour? Oh, wow, they surf?' It should be normal that we do these things here, too," he says. Andrea Bruce/VII Network for NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Andrea Bruce/VII Network for NPR

Thousands of Israeli supporters mark Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit's fifth birthday in captivity in the Gaza Strip on Saturday at a rally outside Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's residence in Jerusalem. Shalit was captured by Hamas-allied militants in 2006, when he was 19. Gali Tibbon/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Gali Tibbon/AFP/Getty Images

Palestinians enjoy the Mediterranean Sea at a Hamas-run beach resort in Gaza City. Ventures such as beach clubs, wedding halls and a shopping center are one way the militant Islamist group is strengthening its rule over the Gaza Strip. Andrea Bruce/VII Network for NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Andrea Bruce/VII Network for NPR

In the Gaza Strip, many homes remain in ruins after Israel's military incursion at the end of 2008 crippled the territory. The war destroyed thousands of buildings, but the Israeli government won't allow construction materials in even though there is a dire need. Andrea Bruce/VII Network for NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Andrea Bruce/VII Network for NPR