March 8, 2024

Ms. Jennifer Klein

Director, Gender Policy Council

White House 

1600 Pennsylvania Avenue

Washington DC

Dear Ms. Klein, 

As we look toward International Women’s Day, we write again asking you to speak out forcefully and condemn what happened to innocent women and children on October 7th in Israel. Those hostages still being held and subjected to continued abuse, must be released. Independent Women’s Forum and Independent Women’s Voice have joined with colleagues from the Ayaan Hirsi Ali Foundation (AHA) and the Muslim American Leadership Alliance (MALA) to call upon you to publicly renounce what occurred and demand freedom for the hostages.

The brutal, violent, sexual assault, including rape of women and girls, that occurred on October 7th has to be more loudly and consistently remembered. As we approach International Women’s Day on March 8th, world leaders must send the message that rape is not a legitimate weapon of war, rather it is a war crime, and that violence against women is unacceptable.

We call on all advocates for women’s rights and women’s equality to condemn the use of rape and sexual sadism against women and girls conducted by Hamas on October 7th in Israel, and to demand the hostages are immediately released.

Those who orchestrated and carried out the mass rapes on October 7th should be brought to justice for war crimes. On International Women’s Day, all women’s organizations, indeed, any non-terrorist organization should be clamoring for the release of those still held captive.

Continued silence signals apathy to this ongoing hostage problem and an indifference to the cause of women’s rights and equality. Please loudly and clearly stand up for women and against those who would use rape and sexual assault to demean, abuse, and terrorize women and girls. 


Heather R Higgins, Chief Executive Officer, Independent Women’s Voice

Carrie Lukas, President, Independent Women’s Forum

Amber Schwartz, Executive Vice President, Independent Women’s Forum

Andrea G. Bottner, former Director of the International Women’s Issues Office, U.S. Department of State and Vice President for External Affairs, Independent Women’s Forum

Dr. Qanta Ahmed, Senior Fellow, Independent Women’s Forum

Meaghan Mobbs, Senior Fellow, Independent Women’s Forum

Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Founder and President of the Ayaan Hirsi Ali Foundation 

Zainab Zeb Khan, Founder of the Muslim American Leadership Alliance

CLARITy Coalition

The Honorable Lisa Gable, Former United States Ambassador and United Nations Delegate

Danielle Ofek, Founder, #MeToo_UNless_UR_a_Jew