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Noa Agarmani, one of many Israeli girls kidnapped on October 7 and held hostage in Gaza, was filmed by her Hamas captors, conveying their latest message about the hostages to an Israel audience. Reading from, or prompted by, a Hamas script, she described how two fellow captives, Yossi Sharabi and Itay Svirsky, had died as a result of two Israeli bombardments. The IDF has said, in response, that it did not bomb the building where the three hostages were being held. Undoubtedly Sharabi and Svirsky were murdered by their Hamas captors. More on this endless cruelty by Hamas, and the long calvary both for the hostages and for their families in Israel, can be found here: “Israeli Hostage Forced to Say Fellow Captives Dead in Latest Hamas Video,” Algemeiner, January 15, 2024:
…“I was located in a building,” Argamani said in the Hamas video, evidently under distress and seemingly reading a script in front of a blank white wall. “It was bombed by an IDF [Israel Defense Forces] air strike, an F16 fighter jet. Three rockets hit us — two of the rockets exploded, and one did not. We were in the building with Al Qassam [Hamas] soldiers and three hostages: myself, Itay Svirsky, and Yossef Sharabi.”
Argamani added that they were all buried in rubble after the building was hit. “Al Qassam soldiers saved my life and Itay’s,” she said. “Unfortunately, we were not able to save Yossi’s.”
What kind captors these Hamas captors must be: “Al Qassam soldiers saved my life and Itay’s.” What unexpected behavior, coming from those who, we know, not only savagely murdered Israeli men, women, and children on October 7, but have continued to murder hostages taken to Gaza — at this point, about two dozen Israeli hostages have died in captivity.
“After many days … two nights, Itay and I were relocated to another place,” she continued. “While we were being transported, Itay was hit by an IDF airstrike. He did not survive.”
Again, as with the death of Shalabi, it is an IDF airstrike that is being blamed for Svirsky’s death. That’s the script Noa Argamani was forced to read. He was, she said, being “relocated to another place.” The IDF has said it did not hit the building where it supposedly dropped three bombs, one of which went off, according to Argamani’s prepared-by-Hamas statement, killing Shalabi. And then Svirsky, in transit — being “relocated to another place” — was supposedly hit by another Israeli airstrike. It’s possible, all right, but is it plausible? It sounds as if the IDF was being careful to avoid hitting the building where the three hostages were being kept, and presumably it would also have taken extreme care not to attack anyone, hostages or kidnappers, as they were being moved — “relocated” — to another place.
Argamani said she suffered a head injury during the ordeal before addressing Svirsky and Sharabi. “They died because of our own IDF airstrikes,” she said to conclude the video. “Stop this madness and bring us home to our families. While we are still alive, bring us home.”
This of course is the script Hamas wrote and made Argamani read. It’s an attempt to convince Israelis that the IDF airstrikes are responsible for their deaths, and for the deaths of other hostages that will soon follow unless the attack dogs of the IDF are called off. Hostage families must exert pressure on their government to call a halt to hostilities. This steady stillicide of psychological torture is having its effect on the hostage families, who are pleading desperately with their government to at least agree to a long ceasefire in order to get the hostages out.
The Algemeiner was unable to verify what had happened to the three hostages. However, Israel’s chief military spokesperson disputed some of Hamas’ claims, specifying that Svirsky was not killed by Israeli fire.
“Itay was not killed by our forces. This is a Hamas lie. The building where they were held was not a target and was not attacked by our forces,” said IDF Spokesman Rear Adm. Daniel Hagari. “We don’t attack a place if we know there may be hostages inside.” Hagari noted that areas nearby had been targeted.
According to Rear Adm. Daniel Hagari, the building where the three hostages were held was “not a target.” Hamas says it was, and claims, in the script read by Noa Argamani, that an airstrike killed Yossi Shalabi despite the efforts of Hamas to save all three hostages from under the rubble. And while Argamani and Svirsky were being transferred to another location, she is made to claim, another Israeli airstrike killed Itay Svirsky.
The IDF is certain that neither Shalabi, nor Svirsky, died in the way that Argamani, following the Hamas script, was made to claim. Whom should we believe — the IDF, which insists it was not targeting the building where the three hostages were being held, or Hamas? One of them has a long history of telling the truth, and the other of telling lies. Shouldn’t that matter?