Law Prof Suggests The Real Problem With Hamas Raping Jewish Women Is That Israel Fought Back
TOPSHOT - Israeli military tanks roll near the border with the Gaza Strip on December 5, 2023, amid continuing battles between Israel and the militant group Hamas. Israel pressed on with its expanded ground operation against Hamas in the Gaza Strip, following the expiry of a seven-day truce on Friday, after which fighting resumed. Hamas militants from Gaza launched an unprecedented attack on southern Israel on October 7, killing about 1,200 people, mostly civilians, and taking around 240 hostages, according to Israeli officials. (Photo by Menahem KAHANA / AFP) (Photo by MENAHEM KAHANA/AFP via Getty Images)

Assistant professor Heidi Matthews (York University’s Osgoode Law School) suggested on Wednesday that while it was horrific to see Hamas terrorists using rape and sexual violence against Israeli women, it was also wrong for Israel to cite those atrocities as “justification” for responding with a “prolonged war” against Hamas.

“Is wartime sexual violence a horrific crime? YES, with no mistake,” Matthews posted on X, adding, “But sex exceptionalism is also traditionally used to whip up support for entire military campaigns — we see Israel and the U.S. doing this now to justify a prolonged disproportionate air and ground war.”

Matthews went on to explain her position further, arguing that because people have a tendency to see violent crimes against women — particularly those of a sexual nature — as more reprehensible than other violent crimes, governments funneled that outrage into support for bloody and brutal military campaigns against the offenders.


“Sex exceptionalism underwrites the idea that sexual violence crimes are worse than others, and therefore justify harsher retaliation (here, via war). This goes back to the essentialist idea that rape is a fate worse than death. None of this is new,” she said.

“Between pretending the rape of Israeli women didn’t happen/is justified and being totally cool with mentally ill men invading women’s spaces/stealing their opportunities for athletic accomplishment, ‘feminism’ is proving itself to be a literal joke. You ladies are embarrassing,” one critic replied.

Matthews continued to defend her position – namely that an Israeli government bent on war was using the fact that Hamas terrorists had raped Israeli women to stir outrage and then support for whatever they chose to do in response.

“I can think of little more disrespectful of the women victims and survivors of sexual violence than the hawkish manipulation of their victimization for the purposes of supporting this horrific war,” she replied to one critic.

“I think it’s absolutely imperative to discuss the role of sex exceptionalism in military imperialism. It is irresponsible not to,” she said.

When Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu publicly called out international women’s rights organizations for their abject failure to speak up when the victims of rape and sexual violence were Jews, Matthews argued that it was proof she had been right.

But Netanyahu was not alone. Israeli actress Gal Gadot spoke out as well, saying, “The world has failed the women of October 7th.”

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