Telling the truth when it matters most

Telling the truth
when it matters most

Episode 4

What is the Hannibal Directive?

mages and videos of burnt cars, blacked and charred bodies and incinerated homes in
southern Israel were plastered on every phone screen and television after the October 7th
Hamas attack.
The images and videos were used by the Israeli government to justify the military’s heavy
handed tactics in their ongoing war against Hamas.
But were they actually the result of the Hamas attack?
Surely Israeli civilians were brutally killed by Hamas on October 7th but there’s mounting
evidence that we think any responsible journalist needs to examine. Let’s take a look at
something called the Hannibal Directive.
I’m investigative journalist Ben Swann and this is Reckoning: Israel and Gaza.
So far, in this investigative series we’ve discussed how Israel had received concrete and
credible intelligence from foreign intelligence agencies, their own military and even Israeli
citizens about where and when the October 7th Hamas attack would take place.
But the military rammed through the approval of the Nova Music festival at the last minute
despite pushback from people within the army and even threatened legal action against soldiers
who tried warning and preparing for the Hamas attack.
And when the attack began, what did the military do? Nothing. Evidence we’ve uncovered
points to there being some type of military stand down at the beginning of the attack.
But we need to take a look at another crucial aspect of that day.
When the IDF began to finally use their firepower and military to engage Hamas in southern
Israel, did they exclusively target enemy militants?
Well, evidence actually points to no.
To understand what the Israeli military did to their own civilians on October 7th, you have to
understand the political aspirations of Hamas and what the goal of taking hostages is.
Political leverage. There are over 10,000 Palestinians in Israeli jails. 3,000 of whom haven’t
been to trial or charged with a crime.
When militant groups manage to capture Israeli civilians or soldiers. It gives them leverage to
force a prisoner swap and get some of their people out of Israeli prison.
For example, in 1986, Hamas managed to kidnap 3 Israeli soldiers and bring them to Gaza.
They demanded 1,150 Palestinian prisoners in return for these soldiers.
After this, the military drafted a secret field order to prevent future kidnappings. It was called the
Hannibal Directive. The directive gets its name from the Carthaginian general who chose to
poison himself rather than allow himself to be captured alive by the romans.
In 2003, strangely enough on October 7th 2003, three Israeli soldiers were taken hostage and
brought into Lebanon. Following the activation of the Hannibal Directive, IDF attack helicopters
fired indiscriminately on 26 vehicles thus ensuring the death of their own soldiers and therefore
robbing Lebanese militants of the ability to demand Israel make concessions.
The Last known application of the Hannibal Directive was in 2014. In Rafah. Hamas fighters
managed to capture an Israeli soldier, Lt. Hadar Goldin.
Instead of allowing the lieutenant to be used as leverage by Hamas, the military killed him.
Dropping bombs, missiles and shells on the area he was being held, killing the soldier. And also
over 100 Palestinian civilians.
The scale of the Hannibal Directive on October 7th was entirely different from those of the past.
A retired Israeli air force general, Nof Erez, described it during a podcast with Haaretz, an Israeli
“The Hannibal Directive was apparently applied at a certain stage, because at the moment they
understand there is a kidnapping, they immediately say, ‘Guys, this is Hannibal.’ But the
Hannibal we trained for all of the last twenty years, is for a vehicle we know at what point of the
fence it enters, on what side it drives, and maybe even on which road it drives. This was a
mass Hannibal.”
Mass Hannibal.
Well we know the Hannibal Directive means to kill your own…so what does “mass Hannibal”
If you look in Israeli media you’ll find some interesting things.
Let’s read this quote directly from YNET, a large mainstream Israeli media outlet.
“In the week after Black Shabbat [October 7th], soldiers of elite units, at the initiative of the
Southern Command, checked about 70 vehicles that remained in the area between the Otaf
settlements and the Gaza Strip. These are vehicles that did not reach Gaza, because on the
way they were shot by a combat helicopter, an anti-tank missile or a tank, and at least in some
cases everyone in the vehicle was killed.”
70 vehicles. And in some cases, everyone in the vehicle was killed. These are Israelis. Killed by
Israel. Again, only reported on in the Israeli media.
Here in the U.S. we’ve been repeatedly shown these pictures of cars burnt to a crisp as
evidence of Hamas barbarism.
But was it Hamas’ AK-47’s and homemade rockets that burnt all of these cars to a crisp, or
perhaps hellfire and anti-tank missiles?
Tuval Escapa, is a member of the security team for Kibbutz Be’eri. He set up a hotline so
kibbutz residents could communicate with the Israeli army.
He told Haaretz that “the commanders in the field made difficult decisions – including shelling
houses on their occupants” in order to eliminate would-be hostages as well the terrorists.
Shelled entire houses. Do we hear this in the American mainstream media? That the Israeli
military targeted and destroyed over 70 cars with hellfire missiles that were filled with Israelis?
And that they decimated entire Israeli homes with tank shells?
A report in Haaretz on October 20th notes that the Israeli military also carried out an airstrike on
their own military base, the Erez crossing.
That base was filled with Israeli Civil Administration officers and soldiers at the time.
An Israeli woman named Yasmin Porat gave an interview with Israel Radio that the military
“undoubtedly” killed numerous Israeli hostages during gun battles with Hamas militants.
IDF General Barak Hiram, who we covered in our previous episode, prevented 100s of troops
from entering Kibbutz Be’eri for hours on 10/7.
When he finally allowed the IDF to go in, he ordered tanks to fire on multiple homes. The tank
shells killed at least 12 Israeli hostages and 3 children.
Recently the UN published an investigation confirming several of these facts, namely, that the
IDF had in fact activated the Hannibal Directive on October 7th.
“The Commission is aware of allegations that Israeli Special Forces used the “Hannibal
Directive” to prevent the capture of Israeli civilians and their transfer to Gaza, even at the cost of
killing them…The Commission documented one statement by an ISF tank crew, confirming that
the crew had applied the Hannibal Directive..”
So to recap, the Israeli military, Israeli civilians and the United Nations all admit to the IDF
purposely killing their own on October 7th. How many? It’s hard to tell.
Tank shells hitting homes full of people, hellfire missiles destroying at least 70 full cars, “Mass
Hannibal” … but still, on social media if you make such claims you’ll be hit with a “community
note” or be promptly linked to a bogus “fact check” website.
The imagery of charred bodies and incinerated cars and homes are still used to this day to
manufacture consent for Israel’s ongoing assault of the Gaza Strip, where more than 37,000
Palestinains have been killed.
During war, all sides produce propaganda, but has Israel been offering up images of the
aftermath of their own assault on their own people and presenting it as something their enemy
We know these are some pretty heavy claims, so please, fact check us and let us know if what
we are reporting is in any way inaccurate. Again, we want to know.
If you haven’t already, you can follow us on X @truth_inmedia or you can follow this series by
signing up to see each episode as it comes out at At TruthinMedia you will
find the transcript of this story along with the source articles.
Check them out for yourself and stay tuned as we continue to unveil the truth around Israel’s
war on Gaza

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