An Israeli women’s rights activist said on “Sunday Night in America with Trey Gowdy” that the sexual violence used by Hamas as a weapon of war must be universally condemned.

“I think it’s a disgrace,” Moran Zer Katzenstein told Gowdy about the atrocities committed by Hamas since October 7.

“I think that we should all know that women’s bodies [are] being used as weapons,” Zer Katzenstein said. 

“This is the reason why we all need to draw a red line and say this is not even part of a political issue. You can’t allow women’s bodies to be used as [a] weapon, and this is our expectation of women’s organizations and human rights organizations, and they failed in this area.”

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Gowdy raised the question of whether Hamas could be withholding the release of all female hostages over fear of the “stories” these female hostages would tell if they were released.

Israeli flag, photo of hostage

A woman holds a flag of Israel and a portrait of 13-year-old Alma, held hostage in Gaza since the October 7 attack by Hamas militants in southern Israel, during a protest asking for the release of Israeli hostages in Tel Aviv on November 25, 2023.  (GIL COHEN-MAGEN/AFP via Getty Images)

“Is that possible that they’re withholding female hostages because they don’t want to be further criticized for this?” Gowdy asked.

“The events of October 7th didn’t end October 7th,” Zer Katzenstein explained, suggesting that rape and other forms of sexual violence are still being perpetrated by Hamas. 

She added, “The reason they don’t want to release these women is because they don’t want them to speak up about what happened to them.”

Gowdy noted the “staggering amount of what we call both sides-ism,” pointing to the reluctance of some American politicians to condemn Hamas’s actions. 

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Zer Katzenstein, the founder of women’s rights organization Bonot Alternativa, underscored the universal need to protect women regardless of political affiliations.

“It doesn’t matter who you’re siding [with] because that’s not a matter of sides. Women’s bodies can’t be used against women or as a part of war, and we all need to draw this line. If we don’t, that means that when someone else will be in a conflict area, it can become the norm, and we can’t allow that,” Zer Katzenstein said.

Numerous women’s rights organizations have faced criticism in recent weeks for failing to speak out about rape and sexual violence perpetrated by Hamas terrorists.

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