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A reporter in Gaza tweeted his attempts to save two Palestinian children's lives

Zack Beauchamp is a senior correspondent at Vox, where he covers ideology and challenges to democracy, both at home and abroad. Before coming to Vox in 2014, he edited TP Ideas, a section of Think Progress devoted to the ideas shaping our political world.

It can be easy for outsiders to see the conflict in Gaza as something happening far away, and the victims as abstractions, rather than as a very real conflict that kills and maims very real people. But this firsthand story how three reporters helped save a Gazan child's life hammers home the conflict's essential, critical humanity.

Peter Beaumont, a journalist for the Guardian who is currently in Gaza, came across two children wounded by shrapnel. What follows is the story of how Beaumont and two colleagues helped the kids the treatment they need — and of the Palestinians who died in the same strike. It's a story notable less for the actions of Beaumont and his colleagues than for the window it provides into the lives of Gazans during these times of violence:

It's true that almost all wars kill civilians, and it's equally true that there are cases in which civilian deaths are an unavoidable tragedy in a just war. But the really hard question for the conflict's antagonists is whether the fighting can accomplish anything that's worth the suffering Beaumont and others have documented.