Israel expected a stronger Hamas

The Washington Post reports that Hamas’s resistance to Israel during Operation Cast Lead was ineffective:

Interviews with Israeli officers and soldiers who took part in the assault, along with a review of IDF information released during the war, indicate that Hamas fighters did not significantly challenge the assault and that the gunmen who did used tactics and weapons that were largely ineffective. Israeli officials had feared Hamas would deploy Iranian-supplied antitank missiles, for example, but such weapons do not appear to have been used against Israeli forces. . .

Ultimately, Hamas “was less professional than we expected it to be,” [an Israeli] commander said, and was unable to cause significant Israeli losses. . .

The IDF said Hamas did make widespread use of booby traps and roadside bombs, and described homes with petroleum-soaked walls, mannequins dressed like fighters and rigged to explode, and situations in which Hamas gunfire and movement seemed designed to draw IDF forces down streets littered with explosive traps.

But such tactics largely failed.


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