Israeli Military: Killing of Gaza Family a ‘Targeting’ Mistake

Officials Figured Hamas Commander Might Be Inside

With the Israeli press expressing concern that an attack on a civilian neighborhood in central Gaza, which killed 12 members of a family including several children, was likely to provoke international opposition to the war, Israel’s military struggled to explain the deaths.

Officials speaking anonymously in the press referred to “targeting errors” and technical problems that were related to the attack, which they initially said killed a top Hamas commander and his family but later conceded killed some other random family. They provided no direct explanation for why they even thought a Hamas commander might happen to be in the houseload of children.

Israeli media speculated that Hamas’ leadership tends to hide underground, and that it was conceivably possible that the commander they wanted was underground beneath the house at some point. There was no information to suggest this was the case, however.

Today’s attack brought the overall number of children killed since the Israeli attacks on Gaza began to 13. That number is likely to rise dramatically as children are among the wounded and hospitals are running out of medication.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is senior editor of