Was Hamas using Al-Shifa as a shield for a command centre?
Dec 31

Includes facilities underneath the hospital.

At the time of market creation (October 30th).

However if it's clear it was used as a command centre but unclear whether this had stopped by 30th of October or not, will resolve YES.

Resolution criteria:

I will make a judgement based on arguments in the comments and a critical reading of many sources, including the following:

  1. Post war report from amnesty international

    Eg: https://www.amnesty.org/en/documents/mde21/1178/2015/en/

  2. Findings from Isreal's Military Advocate General's Corps

    More about them here: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Military_Advocate_General

    Eg: https://www.idf.il/en/mini-sites/military-advocate-general-s-corps/mag-corps-press-release-update-2-dec-2014

  3. Open source intelligence analysis

  4. Official Palestinian reports

  5. Offical reports from other governments

Market resolution goes based on what I expect the median informed, intelligent person reading the same evidence would come away with.

If I judge there is not a preponderance of evidence pointing one way or another, I'll resolve NA.

I may change the criteria to make them better in response to suggestions.

Get Ṁ600 play money
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@SemioticRivalry Before the inevitable chorus of "that is not enough for yes resolution because it's out of the time range" comes, I want to say that P(they were using it before market creation | they are using it now)>P(they were using it before market creation | what we knew a week ago), which was already rather high.

@nathanwei In before "P? What P? I don't need to go to the toilet."

It's an update, agreed. Not clear yet if they were using it as a command center when they were taken prisoner. Initial reports imply they were in hiding.

bought Ṁ100 YES

All right, all right, I have to go back in. I will try not to waste too much time checking this market.

@nathanwei "At the time of market creation (October 30th).

However if it's clear it was used as a command centre but unclear whether this had stopped by 30th of October or not, will resolve YES."

This is weak evidence that it was used by commanders on or before 10/30. It's far from "clear."

@ElmerFudd Sure, if it starts being used as a command center AFTER October 30, that is not enough to resolve it as yes. But P(they were using it before | they were using it after) is extremely high. And I don't think you will see many people arguing it was not a command center after this, so even NGOs with a left-wing/anti-Israel bias like Amnesty International are unlikely to deny it, which is highly relevant for this question.

bought Ṁ10 YES

All right, I'll play again.

lol I wonder what the Hanania market would be like if it was still open now

@CertaintyOfVictory The description specifies clear use as a command centre on or before 10/30.

@ElmerFudd Of course, but this is still a massive Bayesian update. This recent event has a much higher probability of happening in a world where Hamas used it as a command center before 10/30 than in one where they didn't.

@CertaintyOfVictory "Van Hollen, who had received a classified briefing about the U.S. intelligence on al-Shifa, said there were “important and subtle differences” between what Biden officials were saying publicly and what the intelligence actually showed. “I did find there to be some disconnect between the administration’s public statements and the classified findings,” the senator said."

And the market instead goes in the opposite direction... And I avoid commenting on the other market creator similar to this, who went viral the other day for saying that if you have giant breasts it's a victory for the right...


@Emanuele98 Why do you cut the quote there? Why don't you quote the paragraph that follows immediately afterwards?

"A senior administration official strongly pushed back on Van Hollen’s characterization, saying the information that was shared with the public was an assessment the intelligence community had high confidence in."

Or this one that shows, that even the officials who were critical of Israel in inside discussions had no doubt that the US intelligence showed, that the hospital was used as a Hamas command center:

"In early November, Israel began warning that al-Shifa Hospital, Gaza’s largest, where thousands of civilians were sheltering, was being used by Hamas as a major command center.

That prompted a vigorous debate among Biden officials over whether to publicly support Israel’s claim, according to three senior administration officials who spoke on the condition of anonymity to disclose internal discussions. Some worried that Israel would see such a statement as a green light to raid the hospital, while others wanted to use the information to show the public how Hamas embedded itself among civilians to underline the complexities Israel faced."

I will share an archived version of the article without a paywall so anyone can make themselves a picture without having to worry about dishonest cherrypicking.


@Daniel_MC for your deliberations.

@CertaintyOfVictory Because that part of the article is irrelevant , since it has been known since November, that the Biden administration says Biden did not lie is not new news. Ah, Chris Van Hollen is a Democrat,.

@Daniel_MC stay tuned tonight as Senior Hamas officials are being targeted by IDF in al-Shifa Hospital

sold Ṁ229 YES

Sold, I think there is a command center, but there is a good chance of N/A and toxicity. I think there is like a 65-70% chance of N/A, 30-35% of yes, and basically zero chance of no. If I hold my position in this market I am going to spend a lot of time checking it and arguing with people. So I'll just get out.

Please change the title to "was", it's increasingly misleading.

"This week, ORF correspondent Tim Cupal reported a rather coincidental insight into the underworld of the hospital: he had also been to Al-Shifa Hospital in 2014 to speak to the injured. After filming, he went too far down the stairs into the basement and was suddenly detained by armed men. At the time, it was an open secret that there were Hamas fighters in the Al-Shifa hospital.


Nicola Albrecht, former head of the ZDF studio in Tel Aviv, can also confirm that no one in the Gaza Strip doubts that Hamas is using the cellars under the hospital for its own purposes. She has been to Shifa Hospital around 20 times and it was clear to everyone that they, as media representatives, were never allowed to go into the cellar."


"The idea that one of Hamas’ main command bunkers is located beneath Shifa Hospital in Gaza City is one of the worst-kept secrets of the Gaza war. So why aren’t reporters in Gaza ferreting it out? The precise location of a large underground bunker equipped with sophisticated communications equipment and housing some part of the leadership of a major terrorist organization beneath a major hospital would seem to qualify as a world-class scoop—the kind that might merit a Pulitzer, or at least a Polk.

So why isn’t the fact that Hamas uses Shifa Hospital as a command post making headlines? In part, it’s because the location is so un-secret that Hamas regularly meets with reporters there."


"At the Shifa Hospital in Gaza City, crowds gathered to throw shoes and eggs at the Palestinian Authority’s health minister, who represents the crumbling “unity government” in the West Bank city of Ramallah. The minister was turned away before he reached the hospital, which has become a de facto headquarters for Hamas leaders, who can be seen in the hallways and offices."


Context: ZDF is a German public service television broadcaster, ORF is an Austrian public service television broadcaster.

Regarding this quote from the description: "However if it's clear it was used as a command centre but unclear whether this had stopped by 30th of October or not, will resolve YES."

It seems clear that it was used as a command centre. Maybe someone can share intelligence about whether it's clear or unclear if this has stopped by 30.10.2023.

Images obtained by the Times showed the IDF found underground bunkers and living quarters in the subterranean space. In part of the tunnel that lay outside the hospital complex, soldiers found a room that appeared to have the infrastructure needed for computers and communication equipment. That part of the tunnel was not seen in a video released to the public by the IDF, the report said.

bought Ṁ10 NO

@JimAusman We are talking aboutu 100 meters outside the hospital complex


To be precise, we are talking about a bunker wired to hold computers that was found in a 100-meter-long tunnel outside the hospital complex (so in the image I created it is somewhere inside the red line, I had to enlarge the NYT image and copy some parts because another 100 meters of tunnel does not fit in the image)

bought Ṁ10 YES

@Emanuele98 Given how big the compound is, it's hard to know what the market creator will do with a command center 100m away. This one does not say "under the hospital" in the description.

@nathanwei I pinned a creator comment specifying "under"

@MartinRandall Right, but one in the immediate vicinity can still trigger, "was Hamas using Al-Shifa as a shield for a command centre". So like, how does one ascertain with 100% confidence whether Hamas people intended it to be a shield? Of course they did but they are not going to just come out and say it.

@nathanwei I'm resolving based on"a preponderance of evidence" so don't need 100% confidence. I will look at whether its position would likely have the affect of being a shield, rather than evidence of what Hamas said / intended.

@nathanwei Israel have plenty of munitions accurate enough to hit a target 100m away from a hospital without hitting the hospital itself. I would say that Hamas was using the hospital as a shield for the tunnel entrance, not for the command center.

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