SIR - The debate (or argument) is not as to whether people have died in Gaza in the recent conflict; it is sadly clear that many have. The argument is about how many, who they were and whose fault this has been. When Hamas refuses to let civilians take shelter but instead forces them to remain in exposed positions, then they are equally as responsible, if not more responsible, than those who fire the shells that hit.
In similar manner, should between 5 and 10% of Hamas rockets (we keep hearing how primitive and harmless they are!) have misfired and fallen on buildings within the Gaza Strip itself – which also appears to be the case – then Israel is not to blame for these casualties either.
Nor for those Palestinians executed by Hamas on suspicion of spying for Israel or Egypt. And I repeat, combatants are NOT civilians. If Hamas had not fired the rockets in the first place, Israel would not have had to counter-attack.
Rabbi Dr. Walter Rothschild, Passauer Strasse 4, Berlin, Germany