October 7th – What Really Happened

Three weeks after the Hamas breakout assault on Israel on 7 October, a clearer picture of what happened – who died, and who killed – is now beginning to emerge. Instead of the wholesale massacre of civilians claimed by Israel, incomplete figures published by the Hebrew newspaper Haaretz show that almost half the Israelis killed that day were in fact combatants – soldiers or police. In the interim, three weeks of blanket western media reporting that Hamas allegedly killed around 1,400 Israeli civilians during its 7 October military attack has served to inflame emotions and create the climate for Israel’s unconstrained destruction of the Gaza Strip and its civilian population. Accounts of the Israeli death toll have been filtered and shaped to suggest that a wholesale civilian massacre occurred that day, with babies, children, and women the main targets of a terror attack. Now, detailed statistics on the casualties released by the Israeli daily Haaretz paint a starkly different picture. As of 23 October, the news outlet has released information on 683 Israelis killed during the Hamas-led offensive, including their names and locations of their deaths on 7 October. 

Of these, 340 casualties have been confirmed to be soldiers and police officers, many of them female. Another 13 are described as rescue service members, and the remaining 339 are ostensibly considered to be civilians – mainly armed settlers. While this list is not comprehensive and only accounts for roughly half of Israel’s stated death toll, more than half of those killed in the melee are clearly identified as Israeli combatants. There are also so far no recorded deaths of children under the age of three, which throws into question the Israeli narrative that babies were targeted by Palestinian resistance fighters. Of the 683 total casualties reported thus far, seven were between the ages of 4 and 7, and nine between the ages of 10 and 17. The remaining 667 casualties appear to be adults.

Age Distribution of the Israelis killed during Hamas’ October 7 operation (as of 23 October till 1 November 2023).

The numbers and proportion of Palestinian civilians and children among those killed by Israeli bombardment over the past two weeks – over 10,000 killed, including 3, 360 children and 2,000 women, and more than 30,000 injured – are far higher than any of these Israeli figures from the events of 7 October.

Revisiting the Scene

The daring Hamas-led military operation, codenamed Al-Aqsa Flood, unfolded with a dramatic dawn raid at approximately 6:30 AM (Palestine time) on 7 October. This was accompanied by a cacophony of sirens breaking the silence of occupied Jerusalem, signaling the start of what became an extraordinary event in the occupation state’s 75-year history. 

As per the spokesperson of Hamas’ armed wing, the Al-Qassam Brigades, around 1,500 Palestinian fighters crossed the formidable Gaza-Israel separation barrier. However, this breakout was not limited to Hamas forces alone; numerous armed fighters belonging to other factions such as Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) later breached the armistice line, along with some Palestinians unaffiliated with any organized militia.  At least 340 active soldiers and intelligence officers were killed on October 7, accounting for close to 50% of confirmed Israeli deaths. The casualties included high ranking officers like Col. Jonathan Steinberg, the commander of Israel’s Nahal Brigade. (Many first responders and armed Israeli civilians were also killed). The lighting assault immediately overwhelmed Israel’s Gaza Division. Video recorded from GoPro cameras mounted on the helmets of Palestinian fighters shows Israeli soldiers cut down in rapid succession, many still dressed in underwear and caught off guard.  Very senior officers of the intelligence, security and military were captured as well, many dragged out of their homes still in underwear!

Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) launched Operation Al-Aqsa Flood at 6 AM on October 7, quickly overwhelming the military bases from which Israel maintain its siege of the Gaza Strip. Chief among the objectives outlined by Hamas and PIJ was the release of Palestinians imprisoned by Israel, including as many as 700 children passing through the system each year along with 1264 Palestinians currently being held without charges.

The 2011 swap for Gilad Shalit, an Israeli soldier captured five years prior and released in exchange for 1027 prisoners, provided clear inspiration for Al-Aqsa Flood. By storming military bases and kibbutzes, the Palestinian militants aimed to capture as many Israeli soldiers and civilians as possible, and bring them back to Gaza alive. As it became apparent this was no ordinary resistance operation, hundreds of videos quickly flooded social media depicting dead Israeli troops and settlers, fierce gunfire battles between various parties, and Israelis being taken captive into Gaza.

These videos were either taken on the phones of Israelis, or were released by Palestinian fighters filming their own operation. It wasn’t until hours later that more gruesome and downright dubious allegations began to surface. 

Unsubstantiated Allegations of ‘Hamas Atrocities’

The story of rape, beheaded babies, and so on, are all Israeli lies, designed to stroke up emotions in Israel and the West, as well as to garner sympathy for Israel and to” condone the genocidal revenge” committed by the IDF. A vast majority of Israelis killed on October 7th were killed by the IDF tanks, helicopters and soldiers. Below, we will give you some stories as told by Israelis: Israel’s military received orders to shell Israeli homes and even their own bases as they were overwhelmed by Hamas militants on October 7. How many Israeli citizens said to have been “burned alive” were actually killed by friendly fire? Several new testimonies by Israeli witnesses to the October 7 Hamas surprise attack on southern Israel adds to growing evidence that the Israeli military killed its own citizens as they fought to neutralize Palestinian gunmen.

Tuval Escapa, a member of the security team for Kibbutz Be’eri, set up a hotline to coordinate between kibbutz residents and the Israeli army. He told the Israeli newspaper Haaretz that as desperation began to set in, “the commanders in the field made difficult decisions – including shelling houses on their occupants in order to eliminate the terrorists along with the hostages.” A separate report published in Haaretz noted that the Israeli military was “compelled to request an aerial strike” against its own facility inside the Erez Crossing to Gaza “in order to repulse the terrorists” who had seized control. That base was filled with Israeli Civil Administration officers and soldiers at the time. These reports indicate that orders came down from the military’s high command to attack homes and other areas inside Israel, even at the cost of many Israeli lives.

An Israeli woman named Yasmin Porat confirmed in an interview with Israel Radio that the military “undoubtedly” killed numerous Israeli noncombatants during gun battles with Hamas militants on October 7. “They eliminated everyone, including the hostages,” she stated, referring to Israeli Special Forces. As David Sheen and Ali Abunimah reported in Electronic Intifada, Porat described “very, very heavy crossfire” and Israeli tank shelling, which led to many casualties among Israelis. While being held by the Hamas gunmen, Porat recalled, “They did not abuse us. We were treated very humanely… No one treated us violently.” She added, “The objective was to kidnap us to Gaza, not to murder us.”

Much of the shelling in Be’eri was carried out by Israeli tank crews. Apache attack helicopters also figured heavily in the Israeli military’s response on October 7. Pilots have told Israeli media they scrambled to the battlefield without any intelligence, unable to differentiate between Hamas fighters and Israeli noncombatants, and yet determined to “empty the belly” of their war machines. “I find myself in a dilemma as to what to shoot at, because there are so many of them,” one Apache pilot commented.

Video filmed by uniformed Hamas gunmen makes it clear they intentionally shot many Israelis with Kalashnikov rifles on October 7. However, the Israeli government has not been content to rely on verified video evidence. Instead, it continues to push discredited claims of “beheaded babies” while distributing photographs of “bodies burned beyond recognition” to insist that militants sadistically immolated their captives, and even raped some before torching them alive.

The objective behind Tel Aviv’s atrocity exhibition is clear: to paint Hamas as “worse than ISIS” while cultivating support for the Israeli army’s ongoing bombardment of the Gaza Strip, While hundreds of wounded children in Gaza have been treated for what a surgeon described as “fourth degree burns” caused by novel weapons, the Western media’s focus remains trained on Israeli citizens supposedly “burned alive” on October 7. Yet the mounting evidence of friendly fire orders handed down by Israeli army commanders strongly suggests that at least some of the most jarring images of charred Israeli corpses, Israeli homes reduced to rubble and burned out hulks of vehicles presented to Western media were, in fact, the handiwork of tank crews and helicopter pilots blanketing Israeli territory with shells, cannon fire and Hellfire missiles.

Indeed, it appears that on October 7, Israel’s military resorted to the same tactics it has employed against civilians in Gaza, driving up the death toll of its own citizens with the indiscriminate use of heavy weapons. And so, without any intelligence or ability to distinguish between Palestinian and Israeli, the pilots let loose a fury of cannon and missile fire onto Israeli areas below.

Israel Bombs its own base, Near center of the Gaza siege

The Erez Crossing is the home of a massive military and Coordination of Government Activities in the [Occupied] Territories (COGAT) facility which functions as the nerve center of Israel’s siege on Gaza. When it was overrun by Palestinian fighters on October 7 with droves of army bureaucrats inside, the Israeli military flew into a panic.

According to Haaretz, the commander of the Gaza Division, Brig. Gen. Avi Rosenfeld, “entrenched himself in the division’s subterranean war room together with a handful of male and female soldiers, trying desperately to rescue and organize the sector under attack. Many of the soldiers, most of them not combat personnel, were killed or wounded outside. The division was compelled to request an aerial strike against the [Erez Crossing] base itself in order to repulse the terrorists.”

An Israeli massacre in Kibbutz Be’eri?

In its report on the events at Be’eri Kibbutz, ABC News photographed artillery pieces resembling Israeli munitions outside a bombed-out home. Additionally, videos of the scene show homes that appear to have been struck by munitions that Hamas fighters did not possess. Israel’s military “eliminated everyone, including the hostages,” firing tank shells into kibbutz homes.

One of many homes in Kibbutz Be’eri which appears to have been shelled with heavy weapons

Photos of the aftermath of the fighting inside kibbutzes like Be’eri – and of the Israeli bombardment of these communities – show rubble and charred homes that resemble the aftermath of Israeli tank and artillery attacks inside Gaza. As Tuval Escapa, the security coordinator at Kibbutz Be’eri, told Haaretz, Israeli army commanders had ordered the “shelling [of] houses on their occupants in order to eliminate the terrorists along with the hostages.”

Destroyed homes in Kibbutz Be’eri following the fighting on October 7, which included Israeli tank shelling of residences

A video posted by the Telegram account of Israel’s South Responders shows the bodies of Israelis discovered below the rubble of a home destroyed by a powerful explosive blast – likely a tank shell. The right-wing New York Post ran a report on a similar incident about a boy’s body found scorched beneath the ruins of his home in Be’eri. The phenomenon of charred corpses whose hands and ankles had been tied, and who were found in groups beneath the rubble of destroyed homes, also raises questions about “friendly” tank fire.

Yasmin Porat, the hostage who survived a standoff at Be’eri, described how Hamas militants tied her partner’s hands behind his back. After one militant commander surrendered, using her as a human shield to ensure his safety, she saw her partner lying on the ground, still alive. She stated that Israeli security forces “undoubtedly” killed him and the other hostages as they opened fire on the remaining militants inside, including with tank shells. Yasmin Porat, an attendee of the Nova music festival who fled into Kibbutz Be’eri, told Israeli Radio that when Israeli Special Forces arrived during a hostage standoff, “They eliminated everyone, including the hostages because there was very, very heavy crossfire.” “After insane crossfire,” Porat continued, “two tank shells were shot into the house. It’s a small kibbutz house, nothing big.”

A Hebrew-language Haaretz article published on 20 October, which only appears in English in a must-read Mondoweiss article, paints a very different story of what went down in Be’eri that day. A Kibbutz resident who had been away from his home – whose partner was killed in the melee – reveals stunning new details:

“His voice trembles when his partner, who was besieged in her home shelter at the time, comes to mind. According to him, only on Monday night (9 October) and only after the commanders in the field made difficult decisions — including shelling houses with all their occupants inside in order to eliminate the terrorists along with the hostages — did the IDF complete the takeover of the kibbutz. The price was terrible: at least 112 Be’eri people were killed. Others were kidnapped. Yesterday, 11 days after the massacre, the bodies of a mother and her son were discovered in one of the destroyed houses. It is believed that more bodies are still lying in the rubble.”

Israeli security forces also opened fire on fleeing Israelis whom they mistook for Hamas gunmen. A resident of Ashkelon named Danielle Rachiel described nearly being killed after escaping from the Nova music festival when it was attacked by militants from Gaza. “As we reached the roundabout [at a kibbutz], we saw Israeli security forces!” Rachiel recalled. “We held our heads down [because] we automatically knew they’d be suspicious of us, in a small beat-up car… from the same direction the terrorists were coming from. Our forces began shooting at us!” “When our forces fired at us, our windows shattered,” she continued. It was only when they shouted in Hebrew, “We’re Israelis!” that the shooting stopped, and they were taken to safety. From Danielle Rachiel’s video testimony on October 7.

Some Israelis were not as lucky as Rachiel. Adi Ohana was shot dead by Israeli police near his home after being mistaken for a Palestinian guerrilla. “An innocent man was killed in the most negligent way possible,” his niece complained. Israeli media is now filling up with reports of the military gunning down fellow Israelis, even as they were defending their homes from Palestinian gunmen.

Photo evidence of the destruction in Be’eri corroborates his account. Only the heavy munitions of the Israeli army could have destroyed residential homes in this manner.

Aftermath or Be’eri Kibbutz after the fire power of the two sides ceased

Hamas Behaviors: Evidence vs Allegations

Porat had attended the Nova rave and testified to the humane treatment throughout different interviews she conducted with Israeli media. She explained that when she was held prisoner, the Hamas fighters “guarded us”, telling her in Hebrew to “Look at me well, we’re not going to kill you. We want to take you to Gaza. We are not going to kill you. So be calm, you’re not going to die.” She also added the following:  

“They give us something to drink here and there. When they see we are nervous they calm us down. It was very frightening but no one treated us violently. Luckily nothing happened to me like what I heard in the media.”

Increasingly, and to the horror of some Israeli officials and news outlets, Israeli eyewitnesses and survivors of the bloodshed are testifying that they were treated well by Palestinian fighters. On 24 October, Israeli state broadcaster Kan bemoaned the fact that prisoner Yocheved Lifshitz, released by Hamas the day before, was allowed to make statements live on air. As she was handed over to Red Cross intermediaries, the elderly Israeli female captive was caught on camera turning back to squeeze the hand of her Hamas captor in her last goodbyes. Lifshitz’s live broadcast, in which she spoke about her two-week ordeal, “humanized” her Hamas captors even further as she recounted her daily life with the fighters: 

“They were very friendly toward us. They took care of us. We were given medicine and were treated. One of the men with us was badly injured in a motorbike accident. Their (Hamas) paramedics looked after his wounds, he was given medicine and antibiotics. The people were friendly. They kept the place very clean. They were very concerned about us.”

Did Israel’s now-disappeared “Hamas atrocity” photos depict dead Hamas fighters?

Among the most gruesome videos of the aftermath of October 7, also published on the Telegram account of South Responders, shows a car full of charred corpses (below) at the entrance of Kibbutz Be’eri. The Israeli government has portrayed these casualties as Israeli victims of sadistic Hamas violence. However, the melted steel body and collapsed roof of the car could not have come from small-arms fire.

The comprehensively scorched corpses inside, evidence a direct hit from a Hellfire missile.

It is also possible that the male occupants of the car were Hamas activists who had streamed in after the fences were breached. They may have also been returning to Gaza with Israeli captives inside their car.

Destruction Reminiscent of Israeli Attacks on Gaza

Some rescuers who arrived at sites of carnage in southern Israel after October 7 said they had never seen such destruction. For those who have borne witness to Israel’s bombardment of the Gaza Strip, however, the images of bombed-out homes and burned cars should have been familiar.

By the afternoon of October 7, placid settlements and desert roads across southern Israel were charred and lined with bombed-out cars. Were the lightly-armed Hamas fighters actually capable of exacting destruction on such a comprehensive scale?

In relation to the events of 7 October, there are certainly some videos depicting possibly unarmed Israelis, killed in their vehicles or at entrances to facilities, so that Palestinian troops could gain access.

There are also videos which show the fighters engaging in shootouts with armed Israeli forces, where there were unarmed Israelis taking cover in between, in addition to videos of fighters shooting toward houses and throwing grenades into fortified areas. Even at the Israeli “peace rave”, which has been cited as the single deadliest attack committed by Palestinian fighters during their operation, videos emerged that appeared to show Israeli forces opening fire through a crowd of unarmed civilians, toward targets they believed to be Hamas members. ABC News also reported that an Israeli tank had headed to the site of the festival.

Whether or not Israel is intentionally killing its captive citizens in Gaza, it has proven strangely allergic to their immediate release. On October 22, after refusing an offer from Hamas to release 50 hostages in exchange for fuel, Israel rejected an offer from Hamas to free Yocheved Lifshitz, an 85-year-old Israeli peace activist, and her 79-year-old friend, Nurit Cooper.

When Israel agreed to their release a day later, video showed Liftshitz clasping hands with a Hamas militant and intoning “Shalom” to him as he escorted her out of Gaza. During a press conference that day, she recounted the humane treatment she received from her captors.

The spectacle of Lifshitz’s release was treated as a propaganda disaster by the Israeli government’s spinmeisters, with officials grumbling that allowing her to speak publicly was a grave “mistake.”

The Israeli military was no less displeased by her sudden freedom. As the Times of Israel reported, “The army is concerned that further hostage releases by Hamas could lead the political leadership to delay a ground incursion or even halt it midway.”

The Hamas Plan

There is little to no credible evidence that Palestinian fighters had a plan to – or deliberately sought to – kill or harm unarmed Israeli civilians on 7 October. From the available footage, we witness them engaging primarily with armed Israeli forces, accounting for the deaths of hundreds of occupation soldiers. As Qassam Brigades’ Spokesman Abu Obeida made clear on 12 October:

“Al-Aqsa Flood operation aimed to destroy the Gaza Division (an Israeli army unit on Gaza’s borders) which was attacked at 15 points, followed by attacking 10 further military intervention points. We attacked the Zikim site and several other settlements outside the Gaza Division headquarters.”

Abu Obeida and other resistance officials claims that the other key objective of their operation was to take Israeli prisoners that they could exchange for the approximately 5,300 Palestinian prisoners held in Israeli detention centers, many of whom are women and children. 

Hamas Deputy Head of the Political Bureau of Saleh Al-Arouri, in an interview after the operation, stressed: “We have a large and qualitative number and senior officers. All we can say now is that the freedom of our prisoners is at the doorstep.”

Both sides play this game: Since the start of its military assault on Gaza, Israel has rounded up and imprisoned more than 1,500 Palestinians in the occupied West Bank. To date there have been 38 prisoner exchange deals between the resistance factions and Tel Aviv – deals that Israelis often resist to the very last minute. 

While these kinds of testimonies trickle out, reports are emerging that Israeli authorities have dialed up the mistreatment, torture, and even killing of Palestinian prisoners in their custody – a violation of the Geneva Conventions, which ironically, a non-state actor like Hamas appears to have followed to the letter. 

More Questions than Answers

It is essential to recognize that in many reports by western journalists on the ground, the majority of information regarding the actions of Hamas fighters comes from the Israeli army – an active participant in the conflict. Both the Israeli military and the Western MSM are spewing a huge volume of lies. The greatest weapon is not a gun or a bomb. It is the control of information. To control the world’s information is to manipulate all the minds that consume it.

 The casualties suffered by both the US military and the IDF, along with their captured soldiers -, is increasing hour by hour. For how long can they hide it? Emerging evidence now indicates that there is a high probability, especially due to the scale of the infrastructural damage, that Israeli military forces  have deliberately killed captives, fired on incorrect targets, or mistaken Israelis for Palestinians in their firefights. If the only source of information for a serious claim made is the Israeli army, then it has to be taken into account that they have reason to conceal cases of friendly fire. Israeli friendly fire was rampant, even in the days that followed, from an army with very little actual combat experience. In the city of Ashkelon on 8 October, Israeli soldiers shot dead and shouted insults at the body of a man they believed to have been a Hamas fighter, yet later realized they had executed a fellow Israeli. This is just one of three such examples of friendly fire in one day, resulting in the killing of Israelis by their own troops.

Amid the fog of war, parties to the conflict have different perspectives on what occurred during the initial raid and its aftermath.  An independent, impartial, international investigation is urgently needed one that has access to information from all sides involved in the conflict. Neither the Israelis nor the Americans will agree to this, which itself suggests that Tel Aviv has much to conceal.

Putin has rightly called the West and its rulers as “The Empire Of Lies”. They are masters at taking the truth and twisting it to suit their narrative. If that’s not enough, then they will invent outrageous lies meant to stir up emotions.  After reading the above, many people are beginning to realize that this is it, that they cannot take the nonsense spewed by these deranged people. The MSM is 100% complicit in this-from lying about Covid to hiding the truth about Ukraine’s defeats, the genocidal nature of the Israeli power elite and its gangster force-the IDF.

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