Martyn McLaughlin (your report, 11 July) brings to our attention the vexed issue of using children and other soft targets as a tactical measure. Hamas locates its offices in residential areas, knowing that they will draw Israeli fire. Should its premises be hit, the chance of innocent collateral damage is thereby heightened – the reverse of Hitler’s strategy of hiding armaments in the basements of treasured buildings, like Koelner Dom.
While Hitler, with a minimal understanding of the western mind-set, banked correctly on an unwillingness to damage this world treasure, Hamas is banking on Israel, with Jewish thoroughness, destroying its property, and along with it, innocents in the vicinity. Then Israel can be made to appear anti-Palestinian as well as anti-terrorist.
To counteract this, Israel telephones every household warning its members to leave the area. Not a foolproof plan.
The western mind cannot fathom the complexities of Middle Eastern thought and how it is that a charming expression can hide a treacherous terrorist heart.
Had Israel held on to Gaza in 2006 none of this would have happened.
Margaret E Salmond