‘We Can’t Find Witnesses’: Israeli Police Contradicts NYT Report on Oct. 7 Sexual Assaults

Israel’s own media and police seem to contradict the NYT allegations. (Image: Palestine Chronicle)

By Ramzy Baroud & Romana Rubeo

This failure comes after nearly three months of investigation by all branches of the Israeli police and military.

Only seven days after the publication of what was meant to be a major investigation by the New York Times into alleged rape carried out by Palestinians who entered Israel on October 7, Israel’s own media and police seem to contradict the American allegations. 

Indeed, the Israeli newspaper Haaretz, citing the country’s police, said authorities are “having difficulty” finding “victims of sexual assault from the Hamas attack”.

This failure comes after nearly three months of investigation by all branches of the Israeli police and military.

Due to its inability to locate such alleged victims, or even those who have “witnessed such attacks”, the police has decided to “appeal to the public to encourage those who have information on the matter to come forward and give testimony”.

“This is the reason we went to the media. It’s not something that comes easily to us,” Associate Professor Adi Edri, an investigator in the police unit, told Haaretz, adding: “If someone reads the article and is sexually harmed – I’m available for them at every step. It is clear to me that it takes strength to speak. I would be happy to listen to the story and also provide assistance if needed.”

The Haaretz report, which is based on official police information, seems to be a direct contradiction to the New York Times report entitled “‘Screams Without Words’: How Hamas Weaponized Sexual Violence on Oct. 7.” 

Did Hamas Fighters Decapitate Israeli Babies? – Israeli Newspaper Answers

In its report, the US’s supposedly newspaper of record has based its information on testimony by a young woman only referred to with the initial S.

S. has alleged that she has directly witnessed the “rape and murder” of at least two women at the Nova Music Festival. She went as far as claiming that she had also witnessed the mutilation of corpses by Palestinians.

Haaretz itself reports that Israeli police has “thoroughly checked the details of the testimony and found it to be very reliable”. 

‘Very reliable’ despite the fact that the Israeli police itself admits that it has been “unable to identify the women who, according to the testimony of S. (..) were raped and murdered”. 

“I have circumstantial evidence, but in the end my duty is to find support for the version and the identity of the victims,” said Adri, “at this stage I don’t have specific bodies.”

Another interesting fact about the report is a claim by the police that very few eyewitnesses from among the public have testified to “sex crimes”, while “many of (the) testimonies (came from) military personnel.” 

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Haaretz, along with other Israeli newspapers, has either directly debunked or poked holes in many of the allegations made in the early hours and days of the war regarding the conduct, or alleged misconduct, of Palestinian fighters. 

In its latest report, Haaretz reiterates that it has “reported in November that the lack of forensic evidence makes it difficult for investigators to understand the extent of the atrocities on October 7 and to identify the victims.”

The same newspaper also reported on November 18 that “An IDF (Israeli army) combat helicopter that arrived at the scene (at the Nova Festival – PC) from the Ramat David base fired at the terrorists and apparently also hit some of the revelers who were there.”

Not Hamas, but Israeli Military Killed Civilians at Nova Music Festival – Media Reports

Haaretz, however, was not the only Israeli media that raised questions regarding the very claims, now mostly debunked, of Palestinian fighters decapitating Israeli babies, killing hostages and the like. For more information, click HERE, HERE, and HERE

It is interesting that The New York Times has found S.’s allegations reasonable enough to taint the behavior of the Palestinian Resistance on October 7, which Israel cites as the reason behind the genocidal war that has resulted in the killing of tens of thousands of Palestinians. 

While Mondoweiss and other independent media have reported on the ill reputation of the initial alleged witnesses – who initiated some of the ludicrous claims on October 7 –  pro-Israel US mainstream newspapers, like NYT, continued to peddle unsubstantiated claims about Palestinian crimes. 

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Meanwhile, in Gaza, the well-documented Israeli crimes, often committed on live television, resulting in the worst humanitarian crisis, arguably since World War II, is yet to be depicted as genocide by US officials, or media. 

US State Department spokesman Matthew Miller said on Wednesday that allegations of genocide “should not be made lightly, and as it pertains to the United States, we are not seeing any acts that constitute genocide.”

(The Palestine Chronicle)

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