First Lady Michal Herzog
First Lady Michal HerzogYonatan Sindel/Flash90

Israel's First Lady, Michal Herzog, today (Wednesday) published an opinion piece in the current affairs outlet Newsweek, expressing the sense of outrage and betrayal over the international community's failure to condemn the use of gender-based sexual violence by Hamas.

Ahead of this year's International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, and following the widespread testimonies and evidence of rape and molestation of dozens of women by Hamas terrorists in the attack on Israel on October 7, Mrs. Herzog noted in the article that leading international women's rights bodies - including the UN Women and Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) - had failed to condemn these atrocious acts, leaving Israeli women and women's rights activists feeling deeply betrayed.

"This deeply impacted our visceral understanding of the cruelty of gender-based sexual violence—and our faith in the international organizations that claim to care about women," she wrote.

The First Lady called the "silence of these organizations" in the face of the murder and rape of Israeli women "inconceivable and unforgivable."

She noted that the condemnations of Hamas' mass murder and mass rape by UN Women and the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) have not been weak, but nonexistent. "They failed us, and all women, at this critical moment."

"We will persist in presenting the truth to the world and to every human rights organization. We owe it not only to our own victims, but to all women who will face these crimes in the future and must know that they are not alone," the First Lady's op ed co