Home The murders of Rabbi Litman and Netanel Litman

The murders of Rabbi Litman and Netanel Litman


By Jon Sutz, Editor, SaveTheWest.com

An extension of “Chronology of Palestinian attacks during the Third Intifada”

(1) About the Litmans and their murders

(2) So what kinds of “news” items did Huffington Post publish on its front page and World page, instead of this one?

(3) How does Huffington Post’s decision to ignore this story compare with the coverage that it provides to Palestinians, Islamist terrorists, animals and others who meet with misfortune?


(1) About Rabbi Yaakov Litman and Netanel Litman, and their murders

Rabbi Litman and son Natanel
Rabbi Litman, 40, and his son, Netanel, 18.

On November 13, 2015 Rabbi Ya’akov Litman, 40, his wife, Noa, and five of their children, including their son Netanel, 18, were driving on their way to a ceremony in advance of his daughter Sarah’s upcoming wedding (November 28).

Palestinian terrorists opened fire on the Litmans’ vehicle with machine guns, killing Rabbi Litman and Netanel, and injuring the rest of the family.

From Israel National News, here is Noa’s account of what transpired:

Noa LitmanSpeaking to Arutz Sheva, Noa Litman said that the family left their home in Kiryat Arba, on the way to their prospective in-laws in Meitar, a suburb of Beersheva. “At a curve in the road they started shooting at us,” she said. “Our car was stuck on the side of the road, but the terrorist came out to the middle of the road and continued firing at us from the front. The first bullet struck my husband Yaakov. Netanel was driving, and Dvir, my other son, screamed ‘save Aba! save Aba!’ But Yaakov did not answer back – that’s when I realized he was no longer alive.”

Netanel, who was still alive, managed to get a call into rescue services, said Noa Litman. “It was too noisy on the phone so he opened the car door to get a more quiet spot, and that’s when the terrorist shot him. He fell down. Dvir still had a phone and he called for help, clearly telling authorities where we were and that two people had been killed.”

And according to this interview, and another she gave to the Times of Israel, Noa said a Palestinian Red Crescent ambulance drove by after the attack, but refused to stop to help:

[Just after the attack] a Red Crescent ambulance passed by, and Noa Litman flagged it down. “But they refused to do anything. All they did was tell us to call Magen David Adom and they drove on. Dvir told them that there were injured people, but they told him in English to call the emergency phone number 101 and they left.”

Another heartbreaking facet of the Litmans’ tragedy emerged when comments at the funeral by Sarah Litman, the bride-to-be, were published in Israeli news media.  From Chabad.org:

Litman’s daughter, Sarah Techiya, who had stayed behind in Kiryat Arba for her own Shabbat Kallah (pre-wedding celebration), cried out at the funeral: “I wanted you at my wedding. Who will escort me to the chuppah? You were such a good father, why did you leave me?”

Sarah Litman, before her father and brother were murdered, with her fiance, Ariel Bigel.

Soon after, Sarah said she will not cater to the terrorists’ hopes, to paralyze her family in fear and hate.  Rather, she said, she was inviting all of Israel to her wedding.  From Israel National News:

“This evening, instead of wearing the bridal dress, I will sit on the floor with a torn shirt,” Sarah told the newspaper Yediot Aharonot Tuesday. “But very soon, we will marry in a large and happy wedding. We will go on and be happy as Father and Netanel always were. We will not be crushed. This will be the million-person wedding,” the couple said. “Multitudes will come to make us happy.”


Friends praised both Rabbi Litman and Netanel at their funeral:

“We were very close with the Litman family,” said Rabbi Yosef Nachshon, program director of Chabad of Kiryat Arba. “It is a small community here, and everyone knows everyone, but Yaakov Litman taught first- and second-graders in our Gan Chabad for the past six years, so he was an especially good friend. He was a man who always had a smile on his face and was very warm in nature. The children loved him.”

Malachi Levinger, the mayor of Kiryat Arba, said that “Rabbi Yaakov… did everything warmly and with a constant smile that inspired a lot of good in wherever he was. Netanel was of the precious boys of Hebron who volunteered at MDA [Magen Dovid Adom ambulance service] and had a great future.”

Hundreds of people attended the funeral for Rabbi Litman and Netanel.

04Jan16 eBizMBA stats on news sites


True to her word, Sarah Litman’s wedding proceeded according to her plan, several weeks later.  One picture suffices to show deeply she felt the presence of her father and brother:


This is one of the numerous videos taken at her wedding (more here):



(2) So what kinds of “news” items did Huffington Post publish on its front page and World page, instead of this one?

HuffPost completely ignored the Litmans’ murders and Sarah’s wedding, meaning that these stories never appeared on its front page or World page. Thus, anyone who gets their news only from these top pages at HuffPost would have no idea that these murders occurred – or of Sarah’s defiant resolve amidst her grief.  The only thing HuffPost published about the Litmans was a sideline editorial, buried on a page beyond the casual reader’s view (and not promoted on either of its top pages).  This is evidenced by the fact that a search, nearly two months later, of their names reveals only the editorial:

06Jan15 Rabbi Litman search at HP - NOTHING but editorial

So what kinds of “news” stories, then, did HuffPost’s editors decide were more worthy of appearing on its front page and World page, during the three days that followed these murders (November 14-16)? Here’s a sampling:

Nov. 16: An original story about a sad three-eared cat in England:

11-17-2015 FPHL 10-18 - lost 3 eared catNov. 14: A sad, original story about the living conditions that Muslim refugees endure in Calais, France, which ran for several days:

11-14-2015 WPHL 11-47 - refugeesNov. 14: The sad story of an “anxiety-ridden bird,” that “destroyed all her feathers while living in conditions of deprivation and neglect”:

11-14-2015 FPHL 11-44 birdNov. 14: The sad story about a stray dog:

11-15-2015 FPHL 18-59 dogNov. 15: An original story about a verbal gaffe by a reporter:

11-14-2015 FPHL 11-44 vulgarityNov. 15: An original story about “Freaky Girls Of The Sideshow”:

11-15-2015 FPHL 18-59 freakshow



(3) How does Huffington Post’s decision to ignore this story compare with the coverage that it provides to Palestinians, terrorists, animals and others who meet with misfortune?

08Apr09-Pali-jrnlst-calloutHere is a sampling of the prominent, sympathetic, graphic coverage that HuffPost provides to: