Minneapolis City Council doubles down on division while demonizing Israelis
Appallingly, most Council Members demonstrated empathy for only one side of the conflict while ignoring the vast majority of their Jewish constituents
Jan. 23, 2024
Today, the Minneapolis City Council advanced an outrageous “ceasefire” resolution, demonizing Israelis and calling for an end to U.S. aid to the world’s only Jewish state while it faces existential threats from Iran and its proxies Hamas, Hezbollah, and the Houthis.
JCRC continues to be in close contact with Mayor Jacob Frey and the Council Members who have consistently stood up against the demagoguery and division embedded in this resolution.
Painfully, despite abundant advocacy from Jewish constituents describing our heartbreak – including a letter from over 30 Minnesota rabbis – the resolution ignored the consensus concerns of our community.
The Council doubled down on its divisive language by adding an amendment endorsing South Africa’s libelous charge that Israel is committing genocide in its war against Hamas. (The German government has intervened in the case, stating it “has no basis in fact” and rejected the “political instrumentalization” of the Genocide Convention).
JCRC Board Vice President Rhona Shwaid, said she felt pain, fear, and frustration at today’s meeting. “I was dismayed that after multiple conversations with my Council Member, Katie Cashman, explaining why accusing Israel of genocide is inflammatory and wrong, she voted to add that to this resolution anyway.”
We were appalled that in an hour and a half of discussion on the resolution, little to no empathy was expressed for Israelis as ongoing victims of Hamas terrorism, including the innocent hostages whom Hamas has held for 109 days in the cruelest captivity imaginable.
Likewise, there was no recognition of the reality that the civilian death toll is as high as it is because Hamas purposefully and cynically hides behind Palestinian civilians while launching ongoing attacks against Israeli civilians.
We honor the humanity of Israelis and Palestinians alike by exercising empathy — attempting to understand their realities as they experience them.
Shamefully, most Council Members attempted that for only one side in a two-sided conflict.
JCRC extends deep thanks CMs LaTrisha Vetaw, Linea Palmisano, and Michael Rainville for voting against the resolution and CM Emily Koski for abstaining on this resolution. We also extend our appreciation to CM Andrea Jenkins, who opposed the “genocide” amendments.