Search and Destroy in Gaza

The abduction of a young soldier prompts a punishing Israeli raid against Hamas. Hopes for Middle East peace may have been shattered in the process

If you had to search for a missing person, few places in the world would be more forbidding than the sandy 28-mile-long sliver of land known as the Gaza Strip. Its cities are a chaotic maze of dusty alleyways lined by warrens of crumbling buildings that each seem indistinguishable from the next. The 1.4 million people who live there make it the most densely populated patch of land on earth. At times, the streets and souks can become a suffocating crush of human congestion. And the task of finding a lost soul is made more hazardous by the long-held air of suspicion...

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