The 2014 Gaza Conflict

May 3, 2015 - Military Buildup in the Gaza Strip and Events Leading to the 2014 ..... The Operation began as a measured aerial campaign to disrupt and disable the launching of .... “social media activists,” encouraging the inflation of civilian fatality figures: .... Despite the best efforts of military forces, there is always the.
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TABLE OF CONTENTS Page

Maps ................................................................................................................................................v Executive Summary .................................................................................................................... vii

I.

II.

III.

Introduction ........................................................................................................................1 A.

The Nature of the 2014 Gaza Conflict .....................................................................3

B.

Israel’s Conduct During the 2014 Gaza Conflict .....................................................4

C.

Assessing the Consequences of the 2014 Gaza Conflict .........................................5

D.

Purpose of the Report...............................................................................................7

The Background to the 2014 Gaza Conflict ....................................................................9 A.

The Threat Posed by Hamas and Other Terrorist Organisations in the Gaza Strip ........................................................................................................................10

B.

The Ongoing Armed Conflict with Hamas and Other Terrorist Organisations .........................................................................................................14

C.

Military Buildup in the Gaza Strip and Events Leading to the 2014 Gaza Conflict .........................................................................................................21

D.

The International Legal Basis for Israel’s Actions to Protect its Citizens .............28

Israel’s Objectives and Phases of the 2014 Gaza Conflict............................................32 A.

Israel’s Strategic Objectives ..................................................................................33

B.

Phases of the 2014 Gaza Conflict ..........................................................................36 1.

Phase One: The Aerial Campaign (July 7 – July 17) .................................37 In-Depth: The Tunnel Threat ....................................................................40

2.

Phase Two: The Ground Operation (July 17 – August 5) .........................46

i

3. C. IV.

V.

Phase Three: Redeployment and Aerial Strikes (August 5 – August 26) ..............................................................................53

Ceasefire and Outcome of the 2014 Gaza Conflict ...............................................54

Violations of the Law of Armed Conflict, War Crimes, and Crimes Against Humanity Committed by Hamas and Other Terrorist Organisations During the 2014 Gaza Conflict....................................................................................................58 A.

Hamas and other Terrorist Organisations in the Gaza Strip Committed War Crimes and Crimes Against Humanity by Deliberately Attacking Israeli Civilians .................................................................................................................60

B.

Hamas and Other Terrorist Organisations in the Gaza Strip Embedded their Military Activities amongst the Civilian Population and Exploited Hospitals, U.N. Facilities, Schools, Mosques, and Homes for Military Operations...............73

C.

Hamas and other Terrorist Organisations in the Gaza Strip Directed the Movement of Civilians in Order to Shield Military Assets and Operations ..........97

D.

Hamas and Other Terrorist Organisations in the Gaza Strip Utilised Additional Unlawful Tact