Using your own people as weapons is not a new tactic. During WWII, the Soviet Union was effective against the Germans, not because it had good weapons, but because it had a seemingly inexhaustible supply of cannon fodder. When the Germans advanced on Russia, the Soviets threw unarmed men in front of the Germans, causing the Germans to exhaust their missiles and bullets, even as the Soviets willingly threw more bodies in front of the guns.
What the Soviets did was just a numbers game — “our population is so big that, even semi-armed, it can absorb all your bullets and leave you dangling” — but what Hamas did in 2008 in the Gaza strip was little bit different. Hamas fighters made a calculated decision to use civilians as an integral part of Hamas’ own weapons infrastructure. This IDF, using data discovered during Operation Cast Lead, explains how Hamas operated: