Members of Congress attended a screening Tuesday of the Israeli military’s footage of the Hamas attacks on Oct. 7 and many of the elected officials were deeply moved by the experience, according to the Jewish Insider.

The 46-minute film compiled by the Israeli military contains body cam and CCTV footage, as well as pictures from social media and victims’ phones, showing the brutal murder of hundreds of Israeli civilians that day. Many elected officials were silent, some crying at the film’s conclusion and Democratic Rep. Marie Gluesenkamp Perez of Washington left only minutes after it began in tears, according to the Jewish Insider.

“This morning I viewed the horrific footage of Hamas killing, torturing, and kidnapping Israeli civilians,” Democratic Rep. Haley Stevens of Michigan wrote on X, formerly known as Twitter. “I’m gutted. This is barbarism and an attack on all humanity. We cannot let this ever happen again and we must never forget.”

The film, which the Daily Caller News Foundation had the opportunity to see, shows Hamas killing civilians in their cars, homes and bomb shelters. Many clips included in the film show the terrorists cheering over dead bodies and celebrating the attacks. One Hamas operative calls his parents and tells his father to open WhatsApp to “see how many [Jews] I killed with my bare hands.”

 

Speaker Mike Johnson told reporters Tuesday that the auditorium where the screening was held was so quiet “you could have heard a pin drop,” according to The Hill.

“We had a large group of Republican and Democrat House members in the auditorium this morning, and you could have heard a pin drop — except for the sighs and the cries in the room because the video would make anyone with a soul cry,” Johnson said.

The death toll in Israel has reached over 1,400 since the first wave of attacks that weekend and Israel has responded by sending troops into Gaza to wipe out Hamas. The military posted a picture Monday of the Israel Defense Forces in Gaza’s parliament building and Israel’s Defense Minister Yoav Gallant said that Hamas has “lost control of Gaza,” according to The Times of Israel.

Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was also reported to be in attendance at the screening, according to the Jewish Insider. The New York congresswoman has repeatedly called for a ceasefire between Hamas and Israel since the October attacks.

Republican Rep. Mike Lawler of New York, however, argued that he could not imagine how “anyone could call for a cease-fire after watching that,” the Jewish Insider reported. Lawler recently went to Israel this past weekend.

“Watching the footage made me sick to my stomach, but also more determined than ever to support Israel in its battle against Hamas and its war for survival,” Republican Rep. Darrell Issa of California told the DCNF. This was like visiting Auschwitz or Birkenau, except the events occurred barely a month ago. America must stand with Israel. And Israel must win.”

The Senate is set to view the film Thursday, according to the Jewish Insider

Haley, Gluesenkamp Perez, Ocasio-Cortez and Lawler did not immediately respond to the DCNF’s request for comment.

Kate Anderson on November 14, 2023

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