On the 50th anniversary of the Yom Kippur War, on the dual holiday of Sh’mini Atzeres and Simchas Torah, the Iranian-backed terror group Hamas launched a multi-pronged attack on civilian populations in the Land of Israel. As word slowly got around to the Jewish community in the United States, many are confused on what exactly happened when.

Below is a list of what we know happened at what time, as sourced and confirmed by multiple news outlets. While this is a descriptive rundown of what was happening, it cannot capture the horror of the situation and the repulsiveness of the people who engaged in these despicable acts. No one who called for restraint on Israel’s part can claim they’ve seen the videos that Hamas has published in celebration. Everyone who marched in the streets of New York and other major cities in triumph should be watching these videos, so they see who they stand shoulder to shoulder with. They should see the people dancing without a care in the world while paragliders descend upon them. They should watch as rooms full of women are cowering for their lives, waiting to see if they’ll be taken next. They should hear about the girl who found out her grandmother was killed when she saw the murder video on her grandmother’s own Facebook page.

Will they be proud of the young men who spit on the mutilated body of a dead woman who was thrown into the back of a truck, or the other man who pushed a woman into an SUV where she will continue to be tortured? How about the children who were beating a kidnapped Israeli boy with sticks, goading him into asking for his mother? Or the other children who were being kept hostage in their home, crying for their dead sister?

The father who made sure his family escaped out the window of their house, only to be gunned down because he went last, or the new parents who shielded their twin ten-month-olds, even in death, are not in the official timelines published by The New York Times or ABC news, because these stories are merely part of a larger whole. Over 900 Jews were killed, each one of them a story, each one of them a world, in the greatest mass murder of Jews since the Holocaust itself.

How this came about, what events transpired for this to occur, will take months or years to determine. For now, here is a timeline of what happened, in Israel Daylight Time.

Shabbos, October 7, 2023

6:00 a.m.

A packed all-night music festival in a southern Israeli desert near the Gaza border comes under attack by rockets and Hamas terrorists flying in on motorized paragliders and on foot. Footage shows children and sightseers heading towards the landing paratroopers before shots cause others to flee. Women and children are forcibly taken away in vehicles and transported back into Gaza. A video shows a young woman named Noa being abducted by terrorists as she rode with her boyfriend on a motorcycle. Some people hide for hours, waiting for the executions and kidnappings to end.

Israeli rescue service ZAKA reports that at least 260 bodies were removed from the music festival venue following the attack.



 6:30 - 6:35 a.m.

The first sirens warn of incoming rockets in central and southern Israel. Air raid sirens began sounding in Jerusalem around 6:30 a.m. local time, warning citizens of the attack in progress and to immediately take cover. An estimated 2,200 rockets were fired toward southern and central Israel, including Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, by Hamas, according to the Israel Defense Forces. Meanwhile, Hamas claimed at least 5,000 rockets were fired, all landing in southern and central Israel.

Muhammad Deif, the leader of the military wing of Hamas, said in a recorded message that “The Zionist colonial occupation occupied our Palestinian homeland and displaced our people, destroyed our towns and villages, committed hundreds of massacres against our people, killing children, women, and elderly people, and demolishing homes with their inhabitants inside in violation of all international norms, laws, and human rights conventions.”

Armed Hamas terrorists, many on motorcycles, storm blockaded areas of the Gaza Strip, shooting at Jewish settlers in the Gaza Strip. Video footage surfaces of Hamas terrorists taking Israeli citizens – including mothers, children, and the elderly – hostage and taking them across the Gaza border.

7:40 a.m.

The Israel Defense Forces confirms that Hamas fighters have crossed from Gaza into southern Israel. The Israeli authorities ask residents of these towns, including Sderot, to hide in their homes. “Over the past hour, the Hamas terrorist organization launched massive barrages of rockets from Gaza into Israel, and its terrorist operatives have infiltrated into Israel in a number of different locations in the south.”

Videos posted online captured hundreds of Hamas soldiers breaching the Israeli border from Gaza by boat, pickup trucks, and even motorized paragliders.

8:15 a.m.

Sirens go off in Jerusalem, which rarely gets hit by rockets because of the Iron Dome defense system Israel uses. Witness accounts claim that rockets hit the wooded outskirts of the city.

  8:23 a.m.

Nearly two hours after the first air raid sirens, the scale of the attacks is becoming clear. Hamas has taken hostages in southern Israel and fired wave after wave of rockets. Israel declares a state of alert for war, effectively calling up as many reservists as possible.

 10:34 a.m.

Israel says it has begun its war against Hamas, launching “Operation Iron Swords.”

10:46 a.m.

Israeli fighter jets strike the first targets in Gaza. Video surfaces of a high-rise residential building and the Al-Sousi Mosque in Gaza City being bombed and flattened by Israeli airstrikes.

 11:35 a.m.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel makes his first statement to the nation on the crisis, telling Israelis that they are at war. “This is not a so-called military operation, not another round of fighting, but war,” Netanyahu says. This is the first usage of war declaration in Israel since 1973.

12:21 p.m.

The Israeli military sends troops to southern Israel to reclaim towns taken by Hamas militants. Israel deploys several battalions to the Gaza border, focused on retaking Israeli towns and eliminating terrorists. Rocket fire subsides significantly.

1:46 p.m.

Israel says it has struck 21 buildings that house Hamas military operations.

2:29 p.m.

The United States makes its first statement, with the National Security Council condemning the attacks and expressing support for Israel. Throughout the day, Antony J. Blinken, the Secretary of State, will hold calls with leaders, including his counterparts across the Middle East, seeking support and laying out the US position. “The United States unequivocally condemns the appalling attacks by Hamas terrorists against Israel, including civilians and civilian communities,” said Blinken. “There is never any justification for terrorism. We stand in solidarity with the government and people of Israel, and [we] extend our condolences for the Israeli lives lost in these attacks.”

US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin releases a statement saying he is “closely monitoring” the situation in Israel and extends his condolences to the families of those who have lost their lives in Israel.

“Over the coming days, the Department of Defense will work to ensure that Israel has what it needs to defend itself and protect civilians from indiscriminate violence and terrorism,” Austin said.

2:35 p.m.

PM Netanyahu meets with his cabinet and releases a statement that they will “reinforce other frontiers,” an apparent reference to a possible threat from Hezbollah, the Islamist militant group that operates in southern Lebanon on the border with Israel.

6:08 p.m.

President Biden speaks with PM Netanyahu to express his condolences and support. In a series of messages, including a speech, Biden says that US backing is “rock solid and unwavering.”

“I made clear to Prime Minister Netanyahu that we stand ready to offer all appropriate means of support to the Government and people of Israel,” Biden said in a televised statement. “Terrorism is never justified. Israel has a right to defend itself and its people. The United States warns against any other party hostile to Israel seeking advantage in this situation. My Administration’s support for Israel’s security is rock solid and unwavering.”]

10:16 p.m.

PM Netanyahu addresses the nation, calling Saturday a hard day and vowing to turn where Hamas operates into “cities of ruins.”

“This morning, Hamas launched a murderous surprise attack against the State of Israel and its citizens,” Netanyahu said. “We have been in this since the early morning hours. I convened the heads of the security establishment and ordered – first of all – to clear out the communities that have been infiltrated by terrorists. This currently is being carried out. At the same time, I have ordered an extensive mobilization of reserves and that we return fire of a magnitude that the enemy has not known. The enemy will pay an unprecedented price. In the meantime, I call on the citizens of Israel to strictly adhere to the directives of the IDF and Home Front Command. We are at war, and we will win it.”


Sunday, October 8, 2023

10:00 a.m.

At least 30 Israeli police officers were killed in the fighting, primarily in Sderot. Hamas gunmen take control of the police station.

10:30 a.m.

Israeli officials confirm that ongoing fighting is taking place Sunday morning in six locations, including Sderot, situated just two miles from the Gaza border. Additionally, a rocket strikes, injuring four people.

1:00 p.m.

The Israeli government confirms that a number of civilians and soldiers have been taken hostage. It is reported that at least 100 Israeli citizens and soldiers are being held captive by Hamas fighters.

6:00 p.m.

Blinken, appearing on CNN’s “State of the Union” and NBC’s “Meet the Press,” states that the State Department is working to verify reports that Americans may have been killed or taken hostage. He underscores the US’s full support for Israel, condemning the massive terrorist attack targeting Israeli civilians.

8:00 p.m.

Rocket barrages strike central Israel, leading to a rising casualty count of 150 killed and 1,100 wounded.

8:45 p.m.

Israel officially reports a death toll of 200.

9:20 p.m.

The IDF announces a new wave of airstrikes on Gaza.

10:00 p.m.

The Israeli Defense Minister extends the emergency situation to encompass the entire State of Israel, expanding it from the previous 50-mile radius around Gaza.

10:15 p.m.

Israel raises the official death toll to 250.

11:45 p.m.

The municipality of Netiv HaAsarah releases the names of 15 of its residents killed in the attack.


Monday, October 9, 2023

6:00 a.m. 

At least nine Americans have been confirmed killed in Israel since Saturday due to attacks launched by Hamas, according to an official with the US National Security Council. The official expresses condolences and wishes for the speedy recovery of those injured. Two French citizens are also reported among those killed in Israel.

8:00 a.m.

The Israel Defense Forces announces that their jet fighters have struck 130 targets in the Gaza Strip early Monday, focusing on the Al Furqan area, which serves as a hub for Hamas. Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant orders a “complete siege” on Gaza, including cutting electricity to the region and blocking fuel and food from entering. Lt. Col. Jonathan Conricus, spokesman for the Israel Defense Forces, underscores Israel’s swift response to Hamas attacks, describing it as an unprecedented attack followed by an unprecedented Israeli response.

1:00 p.m.

Hamas threatens to kill Israeli hostages one by one and record the executions unless Israel immediately ceases shelling homes in Gaza without warning. The Israel Defense Forces provides an update on the Israeli hostages taken by Hamas, revealing that they have obtained information on every Israeli kidnapped and have notified 30 families thus far.

1:15 p.m.

The Israel Defense Forces announces the mobilization of 300,000 reserves, marking the largest and quickest call-up in Israel’s history, according to an IDF spokesman, as the death toll reaches 900.

4:00 p.m.

President Joe Biden announces that at least 11 Americans have been killed in Israel and that it’s “likely” American citizens are among those held hostage by Hamas. Biden expresses sympathy for the affected families and emphasizes the need for information on the whereabouts of those still unaccounted for.