WYOMISSING, Pa. -

As the war rages on in the Middle East, members of the Jewish Federation of Reading got together on Wednesday night to show solidarity.

The head of the federation even responded to criticisms that the Israel may be going overboard in its quest to defend itself.

"It's a tough question," said William Franklin, president of the Jewish Federation of Reading. "The loss of Palestinian non-combatant life is tragic and to be mourned, but at the same time, we know that Hamas is using them as human shields, which is a violation of the laws of war."

The sore spot of this conflict continues to be the blockade of Gaza's borders, which are controlled by Israeli and Egyptian forces.

There are complaints that that not enough food is getting through and the injured are not getting the medication they need.

At the same time, there are also allegations that Palestinian Hamas is launching attacks from highly populated areas putting their own people at risk.

Israelis say they will stop the attack when Hamas stops launching missiles into Israel.

Officials also took this opportunity to put the bring the local Jewish community up to speed on the ground situation, and what they hope for the future.

"It has to be a stable, secure, sustainable peace," said Franklin. "In actuality it's not a war of Israel against the Palestinian people, it's a war of Israel against Hamas, and it is tragic."

Local Jewish officials were clear about what it will take to end the war. They say it will take the demilitarization of Hamas.