Did Hamas Use Sexual Violence on October 7?

Written by Jack Elbaum

What’s happening: After The New York Times published an investigation into Hamas’s use of sexual and gender-based violence on October 7, staffers at the paper and other left-wing outlets objected to the story and claimed it was a tool for Israeli propaganda.

The details: The Intercept published a long piece attempting to discredit the Times’s investigation. It highlighted that one of the reporters was relatively inexperienced and had “liked” controversial tweets about the conflict — which, in their view, cast doubt on the objectivity of her work. It also argued that some family members of one reported rape victim questioned whether it happened.

  • However: The Intercept piece quietly acknowledges that sexual and gender-based violence, including rape, almost certainly occurred on October 7.

Further: On Monday, a United Nations report concluded that “There are reasonable grounds to believe that conflict-related sexual violence occurred during the 7 Oct attacks in multiple locations across Gaza periphery, including rape and gang rape, in at least three locations.”

  • Graphic: Murdered women were found “fully naked or partially naked bodies from the waist down … with hands tied and shot multiple times, often in the head,” according to the report.

Evidence: Interviews with eyewitnesses and medical personnel, along with video and photo evidence, have led investigators to conclude that Hamas used sexual and gender-based violence during the events of October 7. No investigators reached a different conclusion.