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June 26, 2024

Dear Members of Congress, 

On behalf of Independent Women’s Voice, which fights to enhance people’s freedom, opportunities, and well-being, we enthusiastically support Senator Marsha Blackburn’s introduction of the “Support the Victims of Hamas Brutality Act.”

This critical legislation addresses the egregious acts of sexual violence perpetrated by Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ), and their collaborators in Israel on October 7, 2023. It mandates a comprehensive report documenting these atrocities and the ongoing sexual violence against captives in Gaza. 

The Secretary of State is instructed to conduct an onsite review of existing and emerging evidence, including the Association of Rape Crisis Centers in Israel’s report “Silent Cry: Sexual Crimes in the October 7 War,” and the United Nations report by Special Representative on Sexual Violence in Conflict, Pramila Patten. 

Importantly, it stipulates Section VI of the UN report, entitled “Visit to the Occupied West Bank,” must be excluded from the State Department’s consideration due to its blatant anti-Israel bias. This section is a glaring example of the United Nations’ documented extreme prejudice against Israel.

Senator Blackburn’s leadership in highlighting the barbaric treatment of Israeli women is paramount as global women’s rights organizations, like UN Women, were conspicuously silent in the aftermath of the horrific sexual violence perpetrated on October 7, 2023. This silence is not only inexcusable but also indicative of a broader issue within these organizations, which fail to condemn such atrocities when the victims are Israelis. Moreover, these organizations are often unwilling to even define what a woman or girl is, further demonstrating their incapacity to address and denounce gender-based violence effectively. 

This bill takes a definitive stand against such hypocrisy and inaction by allocating $10 million from the Economic Support Fund to the Government of the State of Israel. These funds are designated to provide essential physical and mental healthcare assistance to the victims of sexual violence by Hamas, PIJ, and their collaborators on October 7th, as well as to the victims and survivors of sexual violence currently held hostage in Gaza by these groups. Additionally, the funds will support the family members of these victims, survivors, and witnesses to the sexual violence experienced by the victims.

This legislation is a necessary and urgent measure to acknowledge and address these severe human rights violations, providing much-needed support to the victims, survivors, and their families. We commend Senator Blackburn for her unwavering commitment to this cause and willingness to stand beside ALL women. 

Thank you, Senator Blackburn, for having the courage so many others lack. 


Meaghan Mobbs 

Director, Center for American Safety and Security (CASS)

Independent Women’s Voice