Day 89 roundtable: NY Times revives Israel’s rape propaganda

On 28 December, The New York Times published an article claiming that a two-month investigation by its reporters had uncovered a broad “pattern of gender-based violence” on 7 October.

This sensationalist article gave new life to Israel’s propaganda campaign asserting without any credible evidence that Hamas systematically used rape as weapon of war during its military assault on Israeli army bases and settlements across the boundary from Gaza.

Ali Abunimah took a detailed look at the new Times’ article and showed how its major claims collapse under scrutiny.

“This is still a genocidal propaganda campaign, not based on any credible evidence, and I hope to show that,” Ali told us.

Over the next hour, Ali unpacked some of the key themes “which help us understand this sophisticated piece of war propaganda and how it’s constructed, and I think will also be tools for people to start to deconstruct other pieces of war propaganda.”

Later on, Jon Elmer gave a detailed analysis of some of the most significant maneuvers by Palestinian resistance groups against Israeli occupation forces in Gaza.
He showed videos released by the Qassam Brigades, the armed wing of Hamas, of behind-the-scenes footage of their operations.
One video shows a message, written by resistance fighters, on a wall for the residents of the house that the fighters had used to defend the neighborhood from Israeli forces.

“If you could just imagine what the people who live in this house have been through for the last 85 days,” Jon said.

“Driven from their homes, put on a death march to the south, no food, no water, no medicine, all the things that The Electronic Intifada has done a great job of documenting through this whole war. … Somebody’s going to come back and get a message here written from the resistance that says that your struggle was not in vain, that this was part of the national liberation struggle.”

And I give a brief news report at the beginning of the broadcast, summarizing some of the top stories over the last few days including Israel’s assassination of Saleh al-Arouri, the deputy head of Hamas’ politburo, in Beirut; calls by top Israeli lawmakers to ethnically cleanse Palestinians in Gaza; and continued Israeli attacks on hospitals.

Watch the entire broadcast above or listen via Soundcloud below.


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Nora Barrows-Friedman

Nora Barrows-Friedman's picture

Nora Barrows-Friedman is a staff writer and associate editor at The Electronic Intifada, and is the author of In Our Power: US Students Organize for Justice in Palestine (Just World Books, 2014).