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Hamas massacre

Herzog in TIME Magazine: 'Hamas massacre of Jews in Israel is the worst since Holocaust'

Israeli president's column 'Our Darkest Hour Casts a Shadow on the Entire World' reminds international community it can 'no longer turn a blind eye' to terror

Israeli President Isaac Herzog speaks at a gathering of bereaved brothers, in Tel Aviv, December 13, 2022. Photo by Avshalom Sassoni/Flash90

In his TIME Magazine column on Monday, Israeli President Isaac Herzog reminded the world that the recent Hamas massacre of nearly 1,000 Israelis constitutes the largest single mass killing of Jews since the end of the Holocaust.

“Not since the Holocaust have more Jews been murdered on one day," Herzog wrote.

"The number of dead in the Simchat Torah Massacre are still rising as Israel’s soldiers and rescue services discover more and more families murdered in their homes. Not since the Holocaust have we seen such images of innocent Jewish mothers and children, teenagers and old women loaded into trucks and taken away into captivity,” the Israel president wrote in his column.

Herzog's family history is closely linked to the Holocaust. His late father, former Israeli President Chaim Herzog, liberated the Bergen Belsen concentration camp in northern Germany in 1945 while serving as an officer in the British army.

Like many other observers, the current Israeli president equated Hamas’ crimes against humanity with the savagery of the Islamic State.

“Not since the vile crimes of ISIS, have we witnessed such barbarity. Indeed, this is what Hamas have done: imported, adopted, and replicated the savagery of ISIS. Whole families have been wiped out. Mothers and fathers, with babes in arms, murdered in cold blood. Young people at a party. Old people – even Holocaust survivors themselves. Massacred. Their bodies burned and abused.”

While virtually the entire free world has condemned ISIS terror, some Western pundits have, over the years, tried to rationalize and even justify terrorism against Israeli civilians, in particular.

The Israeli president stressed that the international community can no longer excuse the savagery of Hamas.

“The world can no longer turn a blind eye. Any justification or attempts to rationalize this terrible attack will only encourage them further,” Herzog wrote.

In fact, pro-Hamas demonstrations around the world have celebrated the recent murder of nearly 1,000 Israelis and blamed Israel for Hamas' crimes against humanity.

The Israeli president reminded international readers that Israel withdrew from the Gaza Strip in 2005 and has tried to improve living conditions for ordinary Gazans by offering them work inside Israel.

“It is important to remember that Israel has no presence in Gaza. For months, the border has been ostensibly peaceful. Instead of seeking a brighter future, Hamas has brought havoc on its own people. Tens of thousands of Gazans would cross each day into Israel to work and support their families, working alongside peace-loving Israelis – many of whom I knew well, and sadly have been murdered in this onslaught,” Herzog assessed.

At the time of this writing, the unprecedented Hamas invasion of Israel has so far claimed the lives of more than 900 Israelis, including women, children and the elderly community, even Holocaust survivors.

In addition, there are currently some 2,600 injured Israelis, some in critical condition.

Israel also estimates that Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) are holding between 100 and 150 Israeli and foreign nationals as hostages in Gaza.

Israeli military forces have responded with massive aerial bombings of the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip.

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

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