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‘Heinous antisemitic chaos’ at Oakland City Council meeting

The city body voted to call for a permanent ceasefire in Israel, amid comments from community members promoting conspiracy theories that Israel attacked itself.

Pro-Palestinian activists protest against the unloading of an Israeli ship at the Port of Oakland, Calif., on June 4, 2021. Source: Facebook/Arab Resource & Organizing Center.
Pro-Palestinian activists protest against the unloading of an Israeli ship at the Port of Oakland, Calif., on June 4, 2021. Source: Facebook/Arab Resource & Organizing Center.

A Nov. 27 Oakland City Council meeting descended into “heinous antisemitic chaos,” as the body voted to support a permanent ceasefire in Gaza, excising an amendment from a Jewish councilman that condemned Hamas, The New York Post reported.

Antisemitic conspiracy theories were on display during the public comment portion of the meeting, prior to the unanimous passage of the resolution, sans Hamas condemnation. The amendment failed 2-6, with boos from the audience, which claimed it was “anti-Arab.” 

“There have not been beheadings of babies and rapings,” one speaker said. “Israel murdered their own people on Oct. 7.”

“The notion that this was a massacre of Jews is a fabricated narrative,” said another speaker. “Many of those killed on Oct. 7, including children, were killed by the IDF.”

A third said that “to hear them complain about Hamas violence is like listening to a wife-beater complain when his wife finally stands up and fights back.”

Tye Gregory, CEO of the Jewish Community Relations Council, said it was “one of the most antisemitic rooms” he had ever been in.

“You can say these folks represent the lunatic fringe, but they got their way; the city council chose to not condemn Hamas,” wrote Jim Geraghty in National Review. “The outcome of the war will not depend upon what Oakland city officials say about it. But there was a proposal to denounce what is self-evidently evil, and it was rejected, likely in part because of Oakland citizens like this.”

Geraghty noted that some in the crowd insisted that Hamas wasn’t responsible for the Oct. 7 terror attacks, while others said Hamas did carry out the attacks but was morally justified in doing so.

“Curiously, you almost never hear or see these two groups of lunatics arguing with each other,” Geraghty wrote. “I suspect these groups rarely if ever argue with each other because both interpretations end in the same place: All Israelis, including everyone of every age who got slaughtered that day, are the villains, and all Palestinians, including everyone who committed every atrocity that day, are justified heroes.”

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