Category Archives: Nova Music Festival

Nova Music Festival: The Screaming Girl

October 7, 2023—the day is forever seared into my psyche.

The day that Hamas terrorists and Palestinian civilian animals descended upon the Nova Music Festival and stalked, chased, massacred, raped, mutilated, and kidnapped innocent people.

Never again happened again. Never again was happening in real-time.

That deadly October 7 day and the subsequent nightmarish days that followed, when I heard the deafening silence of so many and saw the true colors of too many.

Those so many and too many were people I respected—some of whom I thought were my friends who have said nothing or “but.”

This past Thursday I attended the Nova Music Festival Exhibition in New York City, an in-depth remembrance of the brutal October 7 attack. The exhibition heartbreakingly recreated a music event dedicated to peace and love that was brutally cut short by Hamas and other Palestinian civilians and  terrorists on Israel from Gaza on that horrifically fateful day. For more information about the Nova Music Festival Exhibition click here. 

I knew walking into a small side room in the exhibit would be horrifying because of the warning signs posted outside the entrance.

As I entered the dark menacing room, a young girl in front of me referred to it as “the rape room.” The video monitor was draped with dark-stained and ripped men’s boxer shorts. Were they ripped or were they bullet holes? I wasn’t sure. I was so overwrought that I lost my footing and fell into someone who awkwardly propped me up.

Some of the translated footage was bone-chilling. The Palestinian butchers were saying, “She is the one for rape, so let’s put her back inside for rape.”

One Nova attendee’s interview talked about how he wanted to save a beautiful young blonde girl who was surrounded by Palestinians dressed in civilian clothing, laughing and touching her. But he knew he couldn’t. And he knew what was about to happen to her.

I watched an uncut video of Palestinian civilians cheering, spitting, and stick-beating 22-year-old Shani Louk as her defiled body was traipsed through the streets of Gaza in the now infamous Hamas-filled truck bed.

But it was the cell phone video of a handsome young man lying in the brush, tears flowing down his face, that’s seared into my memory. He was voiceless and motionless—the sounds of gunfire in the background.

And the screaming girl. Her screams were unabatingly otherworldly and so horrific that I will never get them out of my head.

Rat a tat tat. Rat a tat tat. But it was the screaming of that girl that I continue to hear over and over again. Screaming like I have never heard before. Screaming that I pray I will never hear again.

Screams that I can’t get out of my head because I know goddamn well what was happening to her. As long as I live, I don’t think I will ever forget the screams.

The heartbreaking exhibit included remains salvaged from the festival grounds, including scorched cars,

cell phone audio, text messages, bullet-riddled bathroom stalls,

photographs of the murdered and kidnapped, and thousands of personal belongings left behind.

A child’s shoe had me trembling, and I leaned against the wall for support.

The New York City exhibit included video testimonies from survivors, volunteers, and family members, as well as raw footage taken on October 7 from both festival attendees and Hamas and Gazan terrorists.

One young mother talked about hiding in a flat-top ice cream refrigerator for hours. She was saved from freezing to death only by the fact that the terrorists machine-gunned the generator, shutting off the electricity. She wanted to die, but she knew she had to live for her young, fatherless son. Except now, her desire to live is gone. Her son is now living away from her with family, while she struggles every minute of every day to convince herself that life is still worth living.

I learned that some survivors had taken their own lives since October 7, and many others are suicidal.

I listened to phone calls from terrified kids to their parents, saying goodbye.

One mother soothed her daughter with quiet words of affection, comforting her until the sounds of shooting got closer and closer, and then Arabic shouting from not one but many men cut them off forever. How does a mother survive that kind of last call?

Donations from the exhibition go to the Nova Healing Journey, an initiative that supports mental health treatment for victims and families of the October 7 massacre.

The Nova Music Festival exhibit is something everyone needs to see. Maybe then—I say “maybe” the pro-Palestinian, Hamas-loving apologists will get it.

Maybe. But I’m not holding my breath.

I’m just trying to hold it all together and get that screaming girl out of my head.