What is the real story behind the New York Times October 7 exposé?

by Jeremy Scahill, Ryan Grim, and Daniel Boguslaw, The Intercept

Anat Schwartz had a problem. The Israeli filmmaker and former air force intelligence official had been assigned by the New York Times to work with her nephew Adam Sella and veteran Times reporter Jeffrey Gettleman on an investigation into sexual violence by Hamas on October 7 that could reshape the way the world understood Israel’s ongoing war in the Gaza Strip. By November, global opposition was mounting against Israel’s military campaign, which had already killed thousands of children, women, and the elderly. On her social media feed, which the Times has since said it is reviewing, Schwartz liked a tweet saying that Israel needed to “turn the strip into a slaughterhouse.”

“Violate any norm, on the way to victory,” read the post. “Those in front of us are human animals who do not hesitate to violate minimal rules.”

the times headquarters shown at night

The New York Times, however, does have rules and norms. Schwartz had no prior reporting experience. Her reporting partner Gettleman explained the basics to her, Schwartz said in a podcast interview on January 3, produced by Israel’s Channel 12 and conducted in Hebrew.

Gettleman, she said, was concerned they “get at least two sources for every detail we put into the article, cross-check information. Do we have forensic evidence? Do we have visual evidence? Apart from telling our reader ‘this happened,’ what can we say? Can we tell what happened to whom?”

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