Asmahan Abu Al-Rous, sits next to her destroyed house in Rafah's district of Shawkah in the southern Gaza Strip, Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
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Asmahan Ismail Abu al-Rous started wondering a year ago about the cause of the cracks on the walls of her Gaza home.Two Israelis were killed and a third was initially believed to be captured by the militants.That attack drew what was by far the heaviest Israeli shelling in the Gaza war, killing nearly 100 people that day alone and instantly unraveling a cease-fire shortly after it came into force. A day later, Israel determined the missing soldier, a 23-year-old infantry lieutenant, had been killed in the initial attack. On Tuesday, when a new 72-hour truce took hold, residents returned for the first time to see the extent of the destruction -- the worst in a single district anywhere in the Gaza Strip in four weeks of fighting. Across Rafah, thousands of others stood amid the ruins of their homes, staring at what was left of their lives.Nearly 1,900 Palestinians -- mostly civilians, including 400 children -- have died since the conflict began July 8 .More than 60 Israelis, mostly soldiers, have been killed.
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