After surviving four wars and a nearly 15-year blockade, Hamas has only become more resilient, and Israel has been forced to accept that its sworn enemy is here to stay.

Each month, hundreds of trucks heavy with fuel, cement and other goods cross a plowed no man’s land between Egypt and the Gaza Strip — and Hamas becomes stronger, reports the Associated Press.

Hamas collects tens of millions of dollars a month in taxes and customs at the crossing in the border town of Rafah, according to estimates. The funds help it operate a government and powerful armed wing while international aid covers most of the basic needs of Gaza’s 2 million residents.

That this is happening with the quiet acquiescence of Israel, which considers Hamas a terrorist group, might come as a surprise.

Israel says it works with Egypt to supervise Rafah in return for quiet. The opening of the crossing “was a common interest for all parties to ensure a lifeline for Hamas that would enable it to maintain calm in Gaza and prevent an explosion,” said Mohammed Abu Jayyab, an economist and editor-in-chief of a business daily in Gaza.

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