Skip to content Skip to footer

US Claims IDF Is Investigating Hind Rajab’s Death, But Aid Group Says It Isn’t

For months, US officials have deflected questions on the 6-year-old’s death, claiming Israel is investigating itself.

Artist Emmalene Blake puts the final touches to a mural of Hind Rajab, the 6-year-old Palestinian girl who was killed in Gaza, outside Dalymount Park in Dublin, Ireland, which held the soccer match between the Palestine women's national team and the Bohemians on May 15, 2024.

For months, Biden administration officials have deflected questions on the Israeli killing of 6-year-old Hind Rajab and her family members, saying that they are leaving the investigation of the incident to Israeli officials. But a Palestinian aid group has now refuted the claim that the Israeli military is investigating the incident at all, new reporting reveals.

On Monday, State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller said that the latest update from Israel on its supposed investigation into the killing is that Israel has asked the UN and the Palestineian Red Crescent Society (PRCS) for information about the incident, but neither group responded.

“All I can tell you is what they’ve told us, and what they have said is they went to the UN and the Palestinian Red Crescent and asked them to supply information that would help them, and what they claim is that they were given none,” Miller said.

But The Intercept’s Prem Thakker reported Tuesday that the Israeli military has never reached out to the PRCS, the group says.

“Since the attack at our ambulances that was dispatched to save Hind Rajab, there has been no investigations made by the Israelis or any contact from the Israelis to the Red Crescent,” PRCS spokesperson Nebal Farsakh told The Intercept. “We as the Palestinian Red Crescent have not received any kind of communication from the Israeli military.”

The conflicting statements suggest that either Israeli or U.S. officials are lying about their knowledge of the involvement of Israeli forces in the death of Rajab in January this year. The tragedy became a flashpoint in Israel’s genocidal assault after a haunting recording of her three-hour phone call (before Israeli forces killed her) pleading with rescuers to save her circulated online.

A recent investigation by Forensic Architecture found that Israeli forces had shot 355 rounds into the car that Rajab and her family were in, with the gunshots and damage left behind consistent with weapons used by Israeli forces. There was no plausible way that the shooter in the tank wasn’t aware that Rajab and her 15-year-old cousin, Layan Hamada, were in the car they were firing on, Forensic Architecture found.

The investigation further found that the destruction of the ambulance and killing of the PRCS dispatchers who came to rescue Rajab was also likely done by an Israeli tank.

Israeli officials have claimed they had no presence in the area at the time, but Palestinians have refuted this claim, while evidence gathered by journalists and outside investigators has shown, time and again, that Israeli tanks were in the area and had surrounded the car that Rajab was hiding in when she and her family were killed.

Further, both Rajab and Hamada had told emergency dispatchers that there was an Israeli tank directly adjacent to the car.

But U.S. officials running defense for the Israeli army on the horrifying attack, and Miller, repeated Israel’s claims that its military wasn’t present in the area on Monday.

U.S. officials have been relying on Israel to investigate itself across many horrific incidents throughout its genocide, perhaps seeking to deflect attention from the U.S.’s knowledge of Israel’s wrongdoing as Biden officials continue to fund the slaughter.

The Israeli army has claimed to have opened several investigations, usually surrounding incidents that garnered scrutiny after being circulated through news media or online, but many of these investigations remain open. In one incident, the army did conclude an investigation — a probe into the Israel Defense Forces’s killing of seven World Central Kitchen workers that garnered international rage – and in which Israeli forces cleared themselves of wrongdoing just four days after the killing.

Countdown is on: We have 3 days to raise $31,000

Truthout has launched a necessary fundraising campaign to support our work. Can you support us right now?

Each day, our team is reporting deeply on complex political issues: revealing wrongdoing in our so-called justice system, tracking global attacks on human rights, unmasking the money behind right-wing movements, and more. Your tax-deductible donation at this time is critical, allowing us to do this core journalistic work.

As we face increasing political scrutiny and censorship for our reporting, Truthout relies heavily on individual donations at this time. Please give today if you can.