CHICAGO — The Chicago City Council passed a resolution condemning the attacks by Hamas in Israel during a special meeting on Friday afternoon.
Heated debate and fiery comments filled the city council chambers over Ald. Debra Silverstein’s (50th Ward) resolution condemning the Hamas attacks.
While reading her resolution and sharing comments, Ald. Silverstein, the only Jewish alderperson in the city council, faced criticism from many in the public chamber who adamantly opposed her her “Israel Solidarity” resolution, which she initially wanted to bring to the floor on Wednesday.
“I want to be clear, the current conflict and this resolution is not about Israel and Palestine,” Silverstein said.
Prior to alderwoman Silverstein’s comments, members of the public shared their voices on the conflict between Israel’s military and Hamas.
“We stand here in support of Alderman Debra Silverstein’s resolution that asks this council to condemn the resolution of Israeli civilians and recognizes the right of Israel a sovereign nation to defend its citizens and uphold the value of democracy,” one public commentator said during the meeting
Some critics said the controversial proposal was one-sided and failed to fully recognize the atrocities Palestinians are enduring.
“This resolution does not address the suffering of the Palestinian people and their demands for liberation. As occupied people, international law gives us the right to resist illegal and military occupation by any and all means necessary,” one public commentator said during the meeting.
Emotions ran high at the meeting and after several disruptions from the public, which included voices from both sides of the argument, Chicago Mayor Bandon Johnson cleared the chambers, leaving only council members and some media.
Once the public was cleared from the council chamber, council members voiced their opinions on the resolution.
“I’ve read it now thirty times during this meeting to make sure I haven’t read it wrong. Nowhere in this resolution are we condemning the Palestinian people, we are condemning a known international terrorist organization,” Ald. Brendan Reilly (42nd Ward) said.
When it came time for a voice vote on the resolution, one councilwoman made her opposition clear.
“Mr. President, I would like to be recorded as a no,” Ald. Rossana Rodriguez-Sanchez (33rd Ward) said.
After a meeting that lasted over three hours, the city council passed the controversial resolution condemning the attacks.