Six Months After 10/7: Why Israel Must Continue to Fight


At the six-month mark, Hamas continues to violate international law. Many across America and around the world seem to forget the simple fact that the basic tenet of Hamas is to destroy Israel and murder Jews worldwide – driving its ongoing campaign of violence and bloodshed. World leaders and human rights organizations continue to call on Israel to implement a ceasefire without making the same demand of the Hamas terrorists. Its leaders view ceasefires – and even peace agreements – as temporary pauses on its path to eliminating Israel.

The Hamas legacy of terror started well before 10/7 and continues to threaten Jews and Israel today:

Verified Evidence: ‘I raped her’

Amit Soussana, a 40-year-old Israeli lawyer, is the first hostage to speak publicly about how a Hamas terrorist sexually assaulted her in captivity, in an eight-hour interview with The New York Times. Amit was one of 253 Israelis forcefully seized on 10/7. Hamas terrorists viciously killed 1,139 Israelis, Americans and other nationalities. It took several months for international experts to acknowledge the barbaric acts performed by Hamas on their female victims, with more stories emerging daily.

“Every day, my guard Muhammad asked, ‘Did you get your period?’ He said, ‘Amit, Amit, take off your towel.’ He sat me on the edge of the bath. I closed my legs. I resisted. And he kept punching me. He came towards me and shoved the gun at my forehead. Then he dragged me to a child’s bedroom covered in images of the cartoon character SpongeBob SquarePants. Then, with the gun pointed at me, he forced me to commit a sexual act on him.” After Muhammad washed up, he stated: “I’m bad, I’m bad, please don’t tell Israel.”

Amit also described the fear of “knowing that every moment it can happen again.” Later during her captivity – she was held in private homes, an office and a tunnel – Amit explained how she was hung from a stick “like a chicken” for 45 minutes, “they were hitting me, laughing and kicking me, and called the other hostages to see me.” An Israeli gynecologist and social worker confirmed Amit’s sexual assault to The Times. She returned to Israel with fractures in her right eye socket, cheek, knee and nose and severe bruising on her knee and back.

A Palestinian Islamic Jihad terrorist Manar Kasem, 28, admitted to raping a helpless Israeli girl: “I entered the kibbutz, went inside the nearest house and found a scared girl. She begged for help, but I laid her down, started undressing her and did what I did. The devil took over me. I raped her.” He described her as wearing a blue skirt, white shirt, sandals, pink underwear and a pink bra. Six months after 10/7, Hamas and other Palestinian terrorists are still holding 134 hostages and have killed more than 250 Israeli soldiers. Released hostages fear that Israeli women and men still being held in captivity are being subjected to similar attacks.

A Hamas kidnapper slung Amit Soussana across his back while walking toward Gaza. (Surveillance video, via Siegal Sadetzki)

Shifa Hospital: ‘A house of terrorists’

World media and international leaders rushed to condemn Israel’s military actions at Shifa Hospital in northern Gaza. It was another kneejerk response similar to what happened when an errant Palestinian Islamic Jihad rocket struck the Al-Ahli Hospital and the world accepted the false Hamas narrative that Shifa was merely a medical facility.

The Israeli Defense Forces recently withdrew from Shifa Hospital – a base used to “conduct and promote terrorist activity.” Mortars, explosive devices, sniper rifles, assault rifles, handguns and other military equipment were found “hidden among medical supplies, inside patient pillows and beds, in the ceilings, in the walls and on patients and visitors who were in the hospital.” Hamas terrorists “fired weapons from inside the hospital’s emergency room and maternity ward, and threw explosive devices from the burn ward.”

By international law, because Hamas used the medical facility for military activities, it is no longer considered a protected site – allowing the Israeli military to enter the hospital. During its operation, the IDF killed more than 200 terrorists and arrested more than 500, including senior Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad leaders. The IDF also evacuated 350 patients and medical staff, providing them with humanitarian aid and supplies. Another 6,200 civilians sheltering at the medical center were evacuated.

While October 7 was the fifth time Hamas violently shattered a ceasefire that sparked a war since Hamas seized control of Gaza in 2006, another unintended tragedy killed seven aid workers who were trying to help feed Gaza civilians. Hamas maintains an unwavering dedication to destroy Israel, which demands a response – often leading to unfortunate civilian casualties. Israel quickly took responsibility for the accidental strike, launched an investigation and mourned the loss of the innocent.

Weapons captured by the IDF at Gaza’s Shifa Hospital, used as an arsenal by Hamas terrorists.

Nucleus of Terror: ‘Iran is the main source of global terrorism’

Iran supports numerous terrorist groups that have directly attacked Israel since 10/7: Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad in Gaza, Hezbollah in Lebanon, the Houthis in Yemen and militias in Iraq. Iran and its allies – especially Hamas – are genocidal terrorist organizations dedicated to destroying the Jewish state and murdering all Jews. Israel’s National Security Council recently warned of a growing terrorist threat to Israelis travelling abroad for Passover: Iran is “the main source of global terrorism” and the potential for attacks on Jews as “extremely high.”

Hezbollah, embedded in Lebanon, is actively supporting Hamas by continuously launching its rockets since Oct. 8 into northern Israel – reducing border communities to ghost towns. Israeli civilian Zaher Bashara was recently killed when a rocket hit an industrial factory. Hezbollah is a much more potent force than Hamas and Israelis have been fearful for years of a cross-border attack similar to 10/7. Its rocket arsenal is estimated to contain about 150,000 rockets that are more precise, powerful and have a much longer range than those in Gaza. Hezbollah commands about 100,000 fighters.

Iran and its terrorist proxies also are a threat to America and its allies. Iran routinely refers to the U.S. as “big Satan” and Israel as “little Satan.” Yemen’s Houthis have a worse slogan: “Death to America, death to Israel, curse the Jews and victory to Islam.” Since 10/7, the U.S. and UK have been engaged in military operations to ensure freedom of navigation in the Red Sea following multiple attacks on commercial shipping vessels.

The War at Home: ‘The 10/7 attacks were necessary’

Hamas supporters in the U.S. continue to target American Jews. The Berkeley City Council recently met to vote for a Holocaust remembrance program. A mother recalled how her seven-year-old son was told by his classmates that “Jews are stupid.” An audience member interrupted and stated that is was “Zionists” who are stupid. Other protestors labeled Jews as “Zionist pigs,” intimidated a Holocaust survivor and implied that city council members were being bought by the Jewish community. The Berkeley mayor and a council member condemned the horrendous actions. At a recent NY rally, protestors chanted “down with the USA.”

University campuses continue to be a cauldron of anti-Jewish hatred. Columbia Univ. is investigating a ‘Resistance 101’ student event where speakers praised Hamas: “The 10/7 attacks were necessary.” Four anti-Israel Vanderbilt Univ. students were arrested, and charged with assault and vandalism. The Univ. of California at Berkeley police released photos of suspects from a violent protest at a Jewish student event.

StandWithUs is urging universities nationwide to adopt best practices for confronting anti-Israel protests. Two Yale professors recently visited Israel and concluded: “Contrary to conceptions prevalent on American campuses, the majority of Israeli Arabs do not seek to separate from Israel. They are in service of more integration into Israeli society.”

1. Hamas is an enemy of peace

Iran-backed Hamas is a genocidal terrorist group that displayed its inherent inhumanity on 10/7. A Hamas official stated that it wants to commit a million more Oct. 7 attacks until Israel is destroyed. The Hamas charter explicitly calls for the destruction of the Jewish state and the murder of all Jews. Hamas intentionally targets civilians – Israelis and Palestinians – and exploits Gaza’s civilian infrastructure to launch attacks. Its actions violate international humanitarian law. Hamas is a formidable obstacle to peace in the Middle East. Hamas must be destroyed to have any chance for a Palestinian-Israeli peace agreement. How can Israel negotiate any agreements with an enemy that is only focused on its destruction?

2. Hamas and its fanatical supporters do not care about facts

From erasing thousands of years of Jewish history to distorting facts about Israeli actions and fabricating incidents to garner sympathy, Hamas and its supporters manipulate public opinion and deflect accountability for its terrorist actions. Recent research proves that Hamas falsifies its data on Palestinian deaths in Gaza. Persistent propaganda about Israeli actions against hospitals, schools and homes is proven to be false by picture and video evidence of war crimes committed by Hamas in its use of civilian infrastructure to launch attacks against Israel.

3. Iran’s threat against Israel and America cannot be underestimated or ignored

Iran’s record of aggression against the Jewish state looms large, extending far beyond its borders. The Islamic Republic presents a significant danger to regional stability, Israeli security and American defense through the development of its nuclear weapons program, progress on intercontinental missiles and its unwavering support for extremist groups. Iranian leaders exploit the powerful Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corp for terrorist attacks around the world. They also provide ideological backing, financial aid and weapons to terrorist groups in Gaza, the West Bank, Lebanon, Syria, Yemen and Iraq.

4.  Hamas supporters are intentionally targeting American Jews

Hamas and pro-Palestinian supporters in the U.S. indiscriminately attack Jews – deceptively trying to use Zionists as a euphemism. Under the guise of anti-Israel protests, they are deliberately singling out American Jews for harassment and intimidation, contributing to a climate of fear and discrimination. Activists state that they are only opposed to Zionists because they think this language is more acceptable than stating the obvious. Protestors are using hateful rhetoric and acts of violence against individuals based on their Jewish identity – antisemitic attacks are skyrocketing. These actions fuel anti-Jewish attitudes and stereotypes, increasing the likelihood of future attacks.

A. Attend a rally supporting Israel

There are a number of rallies marking six months since the brutal Hamas assault on Israelis. Major rallies are being held on Sunday, April 7, in NY, (Six Months Rally in Front of the UN) and Washington, DC, (March to Free the Hostages). Contact local Jewish organizations and other community and interfaith groups in your area to learn about opportunities close to you. It is vital to show support for Israel. This is an excellent opportunity to support your Jewish friends, classmates and neighbors.

B.  Help dispel falsehoods by stating facts in your conversations

Survey data continues to show that many Americans do not understand basic facts. Whether it is the meaning of “From the River to the Sea” or the details of a ceasefire agreement, many are unaware of what is happening in Israel and how it affects American Jews. Every conversation with family, friends and colleagues is an opportunity to educate and inform. The more individuals know and understand, the less inclined they will be to follow false and biased narratives promoted by Hamas and its allies.

Stories Impacting American Jews

Stories Impacting the U.S. and Israel

Remembering Great Jewish Leaders

Former U.S. Senator Joseph Lieberman, 82, and Nobel prize winner Daniel Kahneman, 90, recently passed away.

Sen. Lieberman was well known for not compromising on his Orthodox religious observance while serving the American people: “My Jewish faith is central to my life. My faith has provided me with a foundation, an order and a sense of purpose in my life.” Sen. Lieberman was known for walking five miles or more to attend synagogue on Shabbat.

He was nearly elected vice president with his running mate Al Gore, narrowly losing the 2000 presidential election. Lieberman is remembered by allies and foes for bridging partisan divides while having an independent streak. Gore: “We can learn from Joe Lieberman’s life some critical lessons about how we might heal the rancor in our nation today. He lived his life with friendship over anger and reconciliation as a form of grace.”

Israeli American Kahneman’s experience in Nazi-occupied Europe spurred his interest in psychology. His family was frequently on the run: “It felt like being hunted. We had the mentality of rabbits.”

He is known as a leader in creating the field of behavioral economics, winning a Nobel prize in economics and receiving the American Presidential Medal of Freedom. His book summarizing his research, Thinking, Fast and Slow, became a New York Times bestseller, with more than one million copies sold.

This content is developed by The Focus Project in partnership with Mercaz USA. The Focus Project distributes weekly news and talking points on timely issues concerning Israel and the Jewish people, including antisemitism, anti-Zionism and the delegitimization of Israel. It represents a consensus view across a spectrum of major American Jewish organizations. Mercaz USA recognizes and respects the diversity of views on these issues among its readers and the community at large.

The Focus Project develops and distributes news, background, history and weekly talking points on timely issues to inform individuals and organizations about issues affecting the American Jewish community and Israel, and help readers speak with more consistency and clarity. The editions also provide potential responses for addressing incidents of antisemitism and anti-Zionism. With input from a spectrum of major American Jewish organizations, we focus on that which unites us, rising above political and individual agendas.
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