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The Lead with Jake Tapper

Aunt Of Israeli Held Hostage By Hamas Speaks Out; Attack Plans Found At Kibbutz Where Residents Fought Off Hamas Militants; IDF Chief Of Staff: War With Hamas "Will Not Be Short"; Interview With The Father And The Best Friend Of The Woman Hamas Kidnapped On A Motorcycle. Aired 5-6p ET

Aired October 18, 2023 - 17:00   ET



JAKE TAPPER, CNN HOST: President Biden said in Israel that he seen intelligence indicating that the cause of the hospital explosion was a misfired rocket from Islamic Jihad and Islamic militant group in Gaza.


JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I was outraged saddened by the enormous loss of life issued in the hospital in Gaza. Based on the information we've seen to date it appears as a result of an errant rocket fired by a terrorist group in Gaza.


TAPPER: The Hamas controlled Palestinian health ministry however, immediately blamed the Israeli military for the explosion. But after investigating the matter, Israel said that they actually have evidence that the cost of the blast was a failed rocket launch from Islamic Jihad. Israeli officials also stated the damage does not suggest an Israeli missile. Earlier today, a spokesman for the Israeli Defense Forces told me that the rockets, the failed rocket from the Islamic Jihad, was actually caught live on Al Jazeera.


LT. COL. PETER LERNER, IDF SPOKESMAN: They were broadcasting it live and I actually have an image here of the launch -- of the broadcast. And this is a screen caption of what they did. And you can see this is -- just 6:59 you see the Al Jazeera emblem, and that's the rocket that actually fell into the hospital.


TAPPER: The Israelis also released audio of individuals whom they claim are members of Hamas discussing the incidents, acknowledging reports at the time that it was Islamic Jihad and that that failed rocket fell near the hospital. The U.S. National Security Council reaffirmed just a few minutes ago that initial intelligence does not suggest that Israel was behind the blaster. They issued this updated statement this evening saying, quote, "The U.S. government assesses that Israel was not responsible for an explosion that killed hundreds of civilians yesterday at the Al-Ahli hospital in the Gaza Strip. Our assessment is based on available reporting, including an intelligence, including missile activity and open source video and images of the incident. Intelligence indicates that some Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip believed that the like -- that the explosion was likely caused by an errant rocket or missile launch carried out by Palestinian Islamic Jihad, Pij. The militants were still investigating what had happened," unquote.

But Palestinian officials in Gaza maintain it was Israel. And either way regardless of what the facts are, the claims of the Palestinians in Gaza, those claims are being believed by Arab leaders. And those claims are being believed on streets throughout the Arab world. Jordanian and Palestinian leaders, therefore cancelled their plans meetings with President Biden. And because of those claims, false it appears, there are protests ignited on the streets in Beirut and throughout the capitals of other Arab countries.

Frustrations, no doubt also because of Israel's bombardment of Gaza, also because, frankly, of Israel's very existence, and also because of President Biden's reaffirmation of us support for the Jewish state today. Another priority for the U.S., expressed today by President Biden in Israel is securing safe passage along the southern Gaza border with Egypt for food and water and medical supplies and fuels to get into Gaza, because of the dire humanitarian crisis in Gaza, and for civilians, including hundreds of U.S. citizens, Palestinian Americans and others, desperately trying to get out of Gaza. Let's get right to Erin Burnett, who is live for us in Tel Aviv.

Erin, what is the latest we're hearing from officials about that blast at that hospital in Gaza?

ERIN BURNETT, CNN ANCHOR, OUTFRONT: Well, Jake, as you lay out so many of the points, right, they've put out, you know, their maps, right, satellite maps. They put a map out here of rocket trajectories to show that they know exactly where a rocket comes from. They say it came from that cemetery near the hospital. They've put out all their aerial images to show that an Israeli missile would cause a crater and there isn't a crater present here. They put out a map of every single missile, a rocket, I'm sorry, they say, has been fired by a jihadist group in Gaza that has missed its target and landed short in the Gaza strip in the past 10 days.

So they've done all of that. But to your point, Arab leaders believing that the Jordanian Foreign Minister today said to CNN, Jake, the quote was, "The Israeli army is saying it's not responsible, but to be honest, try and find anybody who's going to believe it in this part of the world." And that's the challenge. And a former U.S. intelligence official was telling me that, look, you could present this evidence to King Abdullah of Jordan, and he could see it and realize it to be true, if that's how he sees it. But he's not going to be able to go out and convince people in Jordan that this is true, and this is fine and Israel didn't do it.

So that's the reality. As you point out, it's a circular situation. And there isn't going to be a situation where across this region, people say, OK, this is what really happened, Israel wasn't responsible. It's not going to happen.

TAPPER: Erin, tell me about this interview you did. You spoke with somebody who survived Hamas' terrorist attacks. Tell us about that.


BURNETT: So, Jake, I mean you have spoken to people, you know, who have gone through this incredible trauma. And I spoke to a young man named Raz. He's 23. He has lymphoma. He's been trying to beat it for 10 months.

Because he has cancer, he went to the festival late. Got up early in the morning, was going to drive and just spend a few hours there. He had spent time in the Israeli Defense Forces himself. Here's the rocket, starts to see the shooting, just a few miles short of the festival, gets out of his car and runs into a shelter. And he's in this room with five other people and they throw in, grenade after grenade.

Eight grenades, Jake. Pictures of the horrible carnage inside. He survived by putting a dead body on top of himself. And when they came back in, he sees the gun slowly coming in as he describes it. He -- they shot that dead body again and again and again.

He was underneath it and was shot in the stomach. But he had in all of this, when the terrorists first came in, Hamas terrorists, Jake, into this room, he describes the weapons slowly advancing in and he looks the terrorist of the eye. And here's what he said.


RAZ PERI, SHOT DURING HAMAS ATTACK: They come to the shelter, and we look them and they look me. And what I see is --

BURNETT: You look them in the eye?

PERI: In the eye.

BURNETT: And what did you see you when you look them in the eye?

PERI: The commander of Hamas, what you see is -- what I see.

BURNETT: No, nothing? No --

PERI: In the eyes, crazy. I don't look every -- the size, I don't seem look like this. It's crazy. The drugs is --

BURNETT: It looked like they were on drugs?

PERI: Yes. Yes, of course.


BURNETT: Jake, he also described the atrocities he saw when he ran for help, true and horrible, horrific atrocities. But I'll say this, this is the reality that this was so intense and personal, the crimes, the carnage, the stabbing, and that there were people who would look eye to eye with a person who was willing to execute them. That is, of course, worth remembering every day what started it, it was that. Back to you.

TAPPER: All right. Erin Burnett in Tel Aviv, thank you so much.

And now I want to go to CNN's MJ Lee who was at the White House for us.

And MJ, as you know, President Biden spoke with reporters on Air Force One about many subjects, including about the humanitarian aid that is just waiting in Egypt trying to get into Gaza. What did the President have to say about that?

MJ LEE, CNN SENIOR WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Yes, the President has just told reporters on Air Force One that he had reached an agreement with Egypt's president, President Sisi, that the agreement is to open the Rafah crossing to get this humanitarian aid into Gaza. The agreement, he said was to allow 20 trucks through for the time being. And then in terms of the timeline, how quickly this could happen, the president saying literally the roads need to get fix, potholes needs to get -- need to get fixed before trucks can get through this area. So he estimated that those 20 trucks could start rolling into Gaza around Friday. He also said that this purpose was only to get the humanitarian aid through that it would not be to allow a lot of people out.

So, clearly, this was a key sticking point in his discussions with the President of Egypt. He called this a very blunt negotiation that he had with his counterpart in Egypt. He said that they spoke for over an hour while Air Force One was on the ground for a refueling stop. Obviously, the President is on his way back to Washington. So, Jake, we were just talking about how the President didn't get an opportunity to meet face to face with some of these Arab leaders.

The White House had said when the Jordan piece of the trip was canceled that he did plan on speaking on the phone with some of the leaders and this we are seeing playing out in real time. He had this phone call, he said was over an hour. And now this is sort of the result of that conversation. I should also quickly note, Jake, that over the last few minutes, the White House has announced that the President tomorrow is going to deliver a prime time address from the Oval Office to address both the situation in Israel and the war in Ukraine. Just another vivid reminder of how much events overseas have -- has -- have overtaken the President's priorities and schedule.

TAPPER: All right. MJ Lee at the White House for us, thank you so much.

The hospital blast and Gaza ignited angry protests across the Middle East. And Lebanon pro-Palestinian demonstrators skirmish with police near the U.S. Embassy which is just north of Beirut. Police fired tear gas and used water cannons against the demonstrators. CNN's Nada Bashir is in Amman, Jordan, where a large demonstration took place today near the Israeli embassy. It's after midnight there now, have things calmed down?

NADA BASHIR, CNN REPORTER: Well, look, Jake, we left (inaudible) just a short while ago and there was still hundreds of people at the sea near the Israeli embassy carrying on with that protest. As we saw last night those protests carried on to the early hours of this morning and this was sadly a huge show of solidarity with the Palestinian people but also of course a huge show of protests against Israeli airstrikes on the besieged Gaza Strip.


And we've been speaking to protesters throughout the day, many of them told us that they felt it was their duty to come out and show this -- to show their opposition as these airstrike continue to intensify. Take a listen.


HADI BAYDIS, PRO-PALESTINIAN DEMONSTRATOR: This thing we can all do is just to stand here and be the voice of the people. It's pretty emotional. I mean, the whole thing has been running for like, nearly a lot of years, nearly 100 years has been going on. And I think it's about time that, you know, people know the truth, and what's exactly going on.


BASHIR: Now, of course, during these protests on you -- we've been seeing protests taking place here in Amman and across Jordan, from the outset of this war on an almost daily basis. Protests across the Middle East, as you mentioned. And of course, this is the cause, which is deeply resonated with the Arab world. Many expressed outrage and concern over the mounting civilian death toll in Gaza. And of course, a lot of the focus has been on the situation of the Al-Ahli hospital inside Gaza, hundreds killed, as you mentioned there and as Erin mentioned, Israel has categorically denied responsibility.

Hamas and Palestinian authorities have placed the blame, as well as the Jordanian government on Israel. And when you speak to people on the ground here Amman, I mean, we speak to people across the Middle East, they feel that this is yet another example of an escalation of violence by Israel on civilians inside the Gaza Strip.

TAPPER: All right. Nada Bashir in Jordan, thanks so much.

Let's go back to Israel now. CNN's Nic Robertson is in Sderot, the area just outside has become an Israeli military staging ground ahead of unexpected ground incursion into Gaza.

Nic, few hours ago, you saw rockets from Gaza and heard what sounded like Israeli artillery fire. Have things quieted down at all?

NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLAMATIC EDITOR: Yes, it has Jake. But that's perhaps the last half an hour. And some of that artillery, interestingly, was landing pretty close to the border, it seemed. It was loud here, which means it wasn't far away. I think the thing that we're listening out for here tonight is any indication of a ground incursion, heavy movement of traffic or heavy machine gunfire, the heavy bombing or artillery strikes in the immediate lead up to it. Well, right now it's quiet.

TAPPER: And is the sense of impending action as strong as it was earlier this week, doesn't Israeli incursions still seem likely? Do you sense that the U.S. constant sending of major cabinet officials or the president is the only thing that's been holding back the incursion? Or is there something else going on?

ROBERTSON: Yes, look, I think one of the big moves from countries in the region, Arab nations, has been to try to call for a humanitarian pause, which would really, in effect, stop a military incursion, exact pause was in place and everyone that is opposed to war would want that pause to be extended. It hasn't happened. There was a vote at the U.N. Security Council, U.N. -- United States ambassador there vetoed it. So, I think the perception here is still on the ground and the support President Biden has given the situation that is still primed, Israel still ready for a ground incursion. We're told to expect a long war, but I think the anticipation is that the next phase of it will be some sort of ground incursion.

But again, no decision on it yet that we're aware of.

TAPPER: Nic Robertson in Israel for us, thank you so much.

CNN has obtained chilling new documents detailing the extent to which Hamas planned to go on their attacks on the kibbutzim. And hundreds of families are still waiting to hear about their loved ones being held hostage. Are they satisfied at all with the response of the Israeli government? We're going to talk with one of those families next.



TAPPER: Hundreds of families, suffering families, are still waiting to hear something, frankly, anything about the whereabouts of their loved ones kidnapped by Hamas. That includes Ofir Engel's family. They tell us that Ofir was kidnapped after visiting his girlfriend. He's 17 years old. Look at him, he's just a kid.

On October 7 in Kibbutz Be'eri, that's just a few miles from the Gaza Strip. And joining us now to talk about Ofir's aunt, Yael Engel Lichi.

Yael, it's a horrible question to even ask, but how are you and Ofir's family holding up?

YAEL ENGEL LICHI, NEPHEW KIDNAPPED BY HAMAS: We try to be together all the time. We don't leave my brother's house. At all times we, like, pray together. Think about Ofir. Think about what he's going through.

If he's cold at night, if someone can hug him. We really, really don't know what to think. We just hope that you will come to us quickly. That's what I can say. It's really unbelievable what we're going through with other hundreds of families that didn't do anything, anything.

Just, you know, affair just went to be with his girlfriend in a kibbutz, in very beautiful kibbutz with a great family. In 6:00 in the morning, they started to hear gunshots and bombs and the terrorists went inside their house. Just grabbed them from the safe room and put them on the car and took them like things. I don't know what to say.


LICHI: And we -- I don't know if you can see Ofir's picture, but look at his green eyes. And we really just hope to bring him back.

TAPPER: And he's just a boy. He's just a boy.

LICHI: He's just a boy. He's a basketball player. He loves the life.



LICHI: He laughs all the time. He's so sensitive. And we are really so worried. When I heard -- can I say something about Biden's remarks today? Because when I heard what he has to say about the kidnapped people, it gave us really hope.

It gave us a feeling that the leader of the free world standing next to us and hug us -- hugs us. And we just hope that he really does everything to make -- to bring Ofir home. I don't know if you know, but we are a Dutch family. Ofir is a Dutch citizen.


LICHI: And we all -- you know, we can choose where to live. But as President Biden told that -- Golda Meir told him, we have only one country, and this is our country. And we will stay here and we hope that we will stay here in peace. We really hope so.

TAPPER: If you could talk to those who took Ofir, what would you say to them?

LICHI: It's a very, very hard question. Because the obvious thing is, he didn't do anything. Bring him home. I don't think you can talk to them. I don't think -- I just hope Ofir can you hear me and that Ofir can -- will know that we are doing everything, everything we can day and night to bring him home.

We love you so much. We hope they treat him as a human being. We hope they let him be with other people. We hope they don't do anything bad to him. To him and to all these 200 and something people, children, old people that they took without their oxygen, without the medicine.

They took children without the parents. It's really -- you know, I don't have words in English or in Hebrew or in any other human language to describe what we're going through. And I don't think I have anything to say to them but bring him home. Bring him home, let us hug him again. Let us be safe. TAPPER: He reminds me of my son. He looks like my son. Yael, thanks for talking to us. We'll be right back.

LICHI: Thank you. Thank you very much. Bye.



TAPPER: Tonight, new and chilling information about the extent Hamas was prepared for the October 7 terrorist attacks from Gaza into nearby Israeli targets. This comes in multiple cases from documents retrieved from the bodies of Hamas terrorists slain by the Israelis. Our Matthew Chance joins us now from Northern Israel. And just a warning, some of the images we're about to see are disturbing.

Matthew, the Israeli government share these documents with CNN?

MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Wolf -- much of the past week, Jake, we've been gathering this information from multiple sources, including Israeli government officials, but also first responders in this country and Israelis who witnessed the attacks firsthand. And what we built up is a disturbing picture of just a carefully planned the Hamas raids were and how much information they gathered on the Israeli communities that they targeted. Again, viewers may find some of the pictures and the sounds in this report disturbing.


CHANCE (voice-over): CNN has gathered chilling new insights and details on the Hamas assault inside Israel, including disturbing video taken by the attackers themselves as they rampage through Israeli homes, killing on site. And then being killed.

Searches of their dead bodies revealing a trove of highly specific Hamas battle plans, including these detailed maps now shared with CNN by the Israeli government showing communities near Gaza like Kfar Aza targeted by the attackers. These were the terrifying scenes inside as Hamas gunman recorded themselves moving freely through the gardens of Israeli homes.

Code Red, Code Red the Israeli loudspeaker blares in Hebrew, punctuating the sporadic gunfire. After the attack, Israeli first responders saw bullet holes and bloodstains in room after room in what looks like a coldly methodical killing spree.

(on camera): But while hundreds of Israelis were killed, some Israeli communities managed to repel the Hamas gunmen and save lives. The kibbutz methyl (ph) same also near Gaza. Residents pushed back Hamas attack and found documents on the bodies of the militants they killed with disturbing highly accurate intelligence on their homes.

(voice-over): Including precise numbers of armed guards there. Regional defense force at least 20 residents one document reads and 10 soldiers. [17:30:02]

YARDEN RESKIN, KIBUTZ MEFALSIM RESIDENT: They knew basically the size of our security team. They knew about other three or four entrances to the kibbutz.

CHANCE (on camera): It sounds like they knew everything.

RESKIN: They knew everything, where the generators are. They knew where the armory is. They knew about the rural roads around the Kibbutz.

CHANCE (voice-over): Security footage shows how Hamas gunmen killed an Israeli outside the Kibbutz gates, before being repelled. Even with detailed intelligence on their targets, not every Hamas objective was achieved. Nearby Kibbutz Sa'ad wasn't even attacked, although we now have documentary evidence that Hamas intended to inflict the maximum possible human casualties there and to hold hostages.

A highly detailed street map found on another Hamas gunman and obtained by CNN shows individual buildings inside identified and assessed for their military value. The communal kitchen, for example, is described as the main place suitable for holding hostages. Inside the guard room, the soldiers must be neutralized, the Hamas instructions say.

While the Kibbutz Dental Clinic is designated a place for first aid for both enemies and friends. Israeli residents of Sa'ad say they also found that level of detail, outstanding.

SARAH POLLACK, KIBBUTZ SA'AD RESIDENT: Shockingly, the details are very accurate, the map is a map of our Kibbutz. It's very accurate. It's horribly accurate.

CHANCE (on camera): If they did come to your settlement, they would have known exactly where to go exactly where to cause the most damage.

POLLACK: Yes. And we now see that their goal was to take hostages, including children.

CHANCE (voice-over): Israeli officials say they found other documents to that advise attackers to kill anyone posing a threat or causing a distraction to keep captives away from arms or means of suicide, and to use them as cannon fodder. It is a dark turn.

(Speaking in Foreign Language)

CHANCE (voice-over): Even for a group seen here parading before the attacks.


CHANCE (voice-over): It's come to symbolize the uncompromising face of Palestinian resistance and violence against Israel. Israeli officials say a document referencing ISIS and al-Qaeda, which CNN has not been able to authenticate was found on one Hamas gunmen killed during this attack on Kibbutz Be'eri.

The document given to CNN by a senior Israeli government official praises Jihad against Jews and Crusaders. Israeli officials say that evidence, Hamas is increasingly influenced by global Jihadi ideology and the assessment many experts have dismissed. But in the wake of the unprecedented brutality of these attacks, U.S. officials tell CNN, the Hamas threat may now be reassessed.


CHANCE: Well, Jake, a big question tonight is how. How could a mass of Palestinian militant group managed to have gained so much accurate information inside Israel? The survivors we've spoken to so they just don't understand how Hamas could have got that kind of Intel without help from the inside. Back to you.

TAPPER: All right, CNN's Matthew Chance in northern Israel, thank you so much.


Coming up, we just heard President Biden plans to deliver a primetime address tomorrow evening. How will his trip to Israel define his legacy? We're going to talk to an intelligence expert about that next.


TAPPER: And we're back Israel's military news, it is preparing for what will be a long, hard slog. Listen to a top Israeli Defense Forces official speaking to Israeli soldiers earlier today.


HERZI HALEVI, ISRAEL DEFENSE FORCES CHIEF OF THE GENERAL STAFF (through translator): This will not be short. And even if we'll have to expand the campaign in case another enemy gets involved. We'll know how to handle it.


TAPPER: Joining us now is CNN national security analyst and former deputy director of national intelligence, Beth Sanner. Let's start with what he just said. And if somebody else gets involved, he's talking about Hezbollah, I imagine.

BETH SANNER, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: Right. Absolutely. And they today they just moved up some troops and some regular troops and some reservists up to the border kind of bracing for what will happen. I mean, you know, as of last night with the ramifications of this hospital strike, you know, with all of the demonstrations, there's quite a bit of pressure now on Hezbollah to do something, right?

I mean, all the Arab leaders are feeling this pressure, even though I sense that they don't want to escalate necessarily. They may feel that they have to. And so, you know, the next few days, of course, Friday prayers is always the day that we look at. TAPPER: Right.

SANNER: Right. What happens after Friday prayers, are they going to react? But so far, it seems that it's measured and proportional. And hopefully, you know, and Israelis are trying to keep it that way as well.

TAPPER: What you said even though and you didn't say even though it looks like based on the best U.S. intelligence, the Israelis didn't do what happened in the hospital. I mean, there's no definitive assertion by U.S. intelligence, but based on what is public and based on what is being asserted privately by the Israelis and the Americans, it looks like it was a Palestinian misfired rocket, but that doesn't seem to matter to the Arab world.

SANNER: No. I think the latest NSC statement does make it a little bit more clear. It just came out in the last hour or so that it wasn't and there is, you know, probably U.S. intelligence in addition to the Israeli intelligence that would back that up without--

TAPPER: But you don't seem, the Palestinian --


SANNER: It makes no difference.

TAPPER: -- Jordanians and the Egyptians or Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib, none of them say, oh, our bad.

SANNER: No. Perception is reality. And, you know, we're in a position here where, you know, you are fighting against decades of an understanding of the situation that is completely different than our own. That, you know, is about Israeli culpability. And so every, every Arab leader and every Palestinian supporter, and every Arab Street is going to bucket everything the same way.

And, you know, disinformation, misinformation feeds on perceptions. That's the most effective kind, right when you're building up and building on preconceived notions. And so that's what's happening.

TAPPER: Jonathan Swift said, falsehood flies and the truth comes limping after it. Right before President Biden took off Jordan and the Palestinian Authority canceled their trip, the summit that was supposed to happen with him, Egypt was supposed to be in there also. Those countries will never acknowledge it. But does it also just give them an out so that they don't have to play any sort of role?

You know, the skepticism that you and I both expressed about how much Abbas, Sisi, King Abdullah, any of them wants to play in helping the Palestinians have a thriving democracy on the banks of the Mediterranean when Hamas has gone, if Hamas is over gone?

SANNER: Yes. You know, the statement coming out of the Organization of Islamic Council today, which is 57 Islamic countries, ranging from Indonesia, to Syria and Iran and hosted of course, by the where it's located in Saudi Arabia came out incredibly accusation about the United States blamed Israel for the attack.

TAPPER: Which attack?

SANNER: On the hospital. And, you know, and said that basically said that, you know, without saying the word United States that we were giving Israel impunity. But at the same time, you know, that underneath this, that all of these countries actually rely on the United States on the United States presence. We are still the only country in the region that can provide security to this region and they're all terrified of Iran.

So, you know, I think they have to say something because that's what the Arab Street but they're also -- they don't want us to go away.

TAPPER: OK. Beth Sanner, good to see you as always. Did you hear my grumble?


TAPPER: You might remember that horrifying video of that young woman on a motorcycle pleading for help, as she was being kidnapped by the terrorists of Hamas. I'm going to talk to her family next.



TAPPER: Noa Argamani was simply attending a music festival in Israel on October 7th. And then of course, Hamas unleashed its terrorist attack and turned the festival into a massacre. And shortly thereafter, the world saw Noa in this disturbing video. Her arms outstretched. She was pleading for help as she is kidnapped by the terrorists of Hamas. Her boyfriend is also taken.

Joining us now is Noa's father, Yakov Argamani and Shlomit Marciano, Noa's best friend. Last week, Noa would have celebrated her 26th birthday with friends and family. Instead, her family had dinner and birthday cake with two empty chairs at the table one for Noa and one for her boyfriend. Both of them are still missing after Hamas attacked. Shlomit, how are you and how is Yakov and the rest of the family doing?

SHLOMIT MARCIANO, FRIEND OF ISRAELI HOSTAGE NOA ARGAMANI: It's very difficult. I think both of us and the rest of the family still can't believe this is our reality. Yes, every each day is getting harder and harder. But we're trying to stay strong and do everything we can to bring her back.

TAPPER: Ask Yakov if you can how he's how he's holding in there?

MARCIANO: (Speaking in Foreign Language).


MARCIANO: He also says it's very difficult and each day he realize it's happening, so (Speaking in Foreign Language).

ARGAMANI: (Speaking in Foreign Language).

MARCIANO: He's still can't believe this is the situation and it's very hard.

TAPPER: Has the military or the Israeli government provided any information on her condition to you, Shlomit, or to the family? Can you ask Yakov?

ARGAMANI: (Speaking in Foreign Language).

MARCIANO: Actually no, nothing.

TAPPER: Nothing.

MARCIANO: Since that video, they'll don't know how is she.

TAPPER: What do you want people to know about Noa, Shlomit?

MARCIANO: I want people to know that Noa is a very ambitious girl. She's very caring. Her mother suffers from cancer and Noa really took care of her and the rest of the family. She's an only child. But she also loved life. Like I hope every young person she likes to party, to travel she'd been to so many states.


And also she was -- she is very intelligent. She was very excited to go to her next semester. And yes, she goes into so many people hearts and she has so many friends that are caring about her so much right now. And this situation is unbearable for so many people because we have not.

TAPPER: Could you ask Yakov what goes through his mind when he sees that horrible video of her being taken?

MARCIANO: (Speaking in Foreign Language).

ARGAMANI: (Speaking in Foreign Language).

MARCIANO: He's saying, he was in shock. He couldn't believe this is happening. He's only child, the child that he took care of try to protect with everything he has and he just saw her taking away from him to Gaza. And he can't -- if this is true.

ARGAMANI: (Speaking in Foreign Language).

MARCIANO: He's saying, Noa, is his only child and as I said her mother is suffering from cancer. And Noa's presence really gave life to the house and now it's absent.

TAPPER: Last question, if Yakov could deliver a message to the people who took his beloved Noa from him, what would you say to them? What would he want them to understand?

MARCIANO: (Speaking in Foreign Language).

ARGAMANI: (Speaking in Foreign Language).

TAPPER: I know bevakasha means please. And I heard that word a lot. What else did he say?

MARCIANO: Basically he's begging to their hearts, he still believe that they have a heart and he's begging for peace. He said there's enough killing, enough murdering and he truly believe that if we'll talk then --


ARGAMANI: (Speaking in Foreign Language).

MARCIANO: -- then the peace will come without fighting.

ARGAMANI: (Speaking in Foreign Language).

TAPPER: Two nation -- what he say? Two nations one father?

MARCIANO: Two -- same father. Yes.

TAPPER: Yes. Two nations one father.

ARGAMANI: (Speaking in Foreign Language).

TAPPER: Yes. It's beautiful words.

MARCIANO: He really seeking for --

TAPPER: Yes. I hope to hear him. Yakov Argamani and Shlomit Marciano, thanks to both of you. I hope Noa comes back soon. Thank you. Todah rabah.

ARGAMANI: Todah rabah. (Speaking in Foreign Language). Todah rabah.

MARCIANO: Thank you so much.

TAPPER: Tough story. We'll be right back.



TAPPER: Thanks for watching The Lead. Our coverage continues now with Wolf Blitzer in The Situation Room. I will see you tomorrow.