Brutal Hamas and anti-Semitism deserve unequivocal condemnation
Washington, October 26, 2023
Tags: Foreign Policy
Two weeks ago, the Iran-backed terrorist group Hamas brutally slaughtered Israeli men, women, and children in their homes. They beheaded and burned Israeli families, killing thousands and kidnapping hundreds. These terrorists proudly broadcast some of the most disturbing scenes since the Holocaust across social media.
As if Israel had not suffered enough, immediately following these attacks, we saw an outbreak of violence and antisemitism across the world. An employee at the Israeli embassy in China was stabbed. A synagogue in Berlin was firebombed. In France, a teacher was killed and a security guard seriously injured in a knife attack.
Thousands of pro-Hamas sympathizers were disbursed by French police after marching in defiance of a government ban. France recorded 100 antisemitic acts last week; while in Britain, antisemitic indents increased by over 300 percent. Jubilant pro-Hamas rallies in European and American cities celebrated the massacre of retirees and babies. Law enforcement arrested an illegal alien in Miami Beach after he threatened to blow up a synagogue. On social media, antisemitic rhetoric has raged.
Several U.S. university groups released statements blaming Israel for Hamas’ attack. Roughly 30 Harvard student groups co-signed a letter which declared, "We hold the Israeli regime entirely responsible for all unfolding violence."
By this logic, it is Israel’s fault that Hamas still holds child hostages. On Saturday, hundreds marched in a rally in Cincinnati. Participants claimed Hamas’ attack was provoked, and the rally’s organizer refused to condemn Hamas.
Hamas’ actions are disgusting and evil; Hamas deserves condemnation, not solidarity. There can be no room for equivocation. I stand with Israel, the only democracy in the Middle East, and support our allies in the region. Israel has every right to defend herself against terrorism, just as the United States did after September 11, 2001.
Last week, a hospital in Gaza was hit by a rocket, reportedly killing dozens or hundreds of civilians. Hamas quickly blamed Israel, whose allegations of Israeli involvement were parroted by media sources like the New York Times.
The incident caused the cancellation of a scheduled meeting between President Biden and Jordan's King, Egypt’s President, and the President of the Palestinian Authority.
According to an independent assessment by the U.S. intelligence community, the explosion at the hospital was likely caused by a rocket from the Palestinian Islamic Jihad, a Gaza-based militant group trying to attack Israel. Somehow, when terrorists in Gaza kill their own citizens, it still gets blamed on Israel.
Hamas has a long history of using human shields in its conflict with Israel. Dating back to 2007, Hamas launched rockets and placed military assets in residential and commercial areas. Hamas’ use of human shields is a war crime, according to the Statute of the International Criminal Court. Hamas places the citizens of Gaza in harm’s way for two reasons: it makes it harder for the Israeli Defense Forces to target Hamas without collateral damage, and it poisons public sympathy against Israel.
With their violent actions, and their proud display of their barbaric cruelty on social media, Hamas has shown the world who they are.
In the face of this evil, we must be resolute.
My Ohio Congressional colleagues and I cosigned a letter sharing our unwavering support for the well-being and safety of Jewish communities in Ohio. Now, more than ever, we must stand as a united front and condemn the antisemitic rhetoric and violence we have seen throughout the nation.
The horrific nature of Hamas’ actions must harden our resolve in this time of global crisis. We must realize that Hamas did not act alone. Iran has long been the puppet master of instability in the region, fueling terrorist organizations like Hamas and Hezbollah, and encouraging their goal of forever destroying the State of Israel.
This ruthless attack on sovereign Israeli soil took months to plan, with Hamas and other terrorist factions actively meeting with the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps several times leading up to the attack, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal.
I believe that the Biden Administration has made repeated, serious mistakes in the region by empowering and legitimizing the Iranian regime. By previously announcing the U.S. would release $6 billion in funds back to Iran, they emboldened terrorists. To keep Iran from using these funds to support future terror attacks, I cosponsored legislation that would re-sanction the $6 billion the Biden Administration released in September as well as prevent the release of similar funds to Iran in the future.
As your representative in Congress, I stand ready to support Israel in their fight for survival. As Hamas still holds hundreds of civilians hostage in their twisted campaign of terror, we stand against their barbarity. While I long for both the Jewish and Palestinian peoples to live in peace, we must stand strong against terrorism.This article first ran in the Highland County Press.