Columbus City Council Takes Stand for Peace

At last, Columbus City Council joined over 100 US cities, town, and village who have passed a ceasefire resolution demanding President Biden and members of Congress to do everything in their power to end the Israel assault on Gaza, that have left over 32,000 Palestinian civilians dead and close to 75,000 more injured. Local Palestinians and their supporters who lobbied CCC for 5 months to pass this measure are now relieved and happy.

OSU student leader Dalal Shalah addresses Palestinian activists and their supporters on the step of Cols. City Hall after attending CCC meeting for cease fire in Gaza. Photo credit: Barbara Berenic/The Columbus Dispatch

I firmly believe that passing a ceasefire resolution by Columbus City Council helps make difference by bringing better safety and well-being for Palestinians and Israelis alike. A ceasefire and the restoration of basic necessities along with humanitarian aid would enable the development of political solutions, including the release and safe return of ALL hostages (Palestinians included), rather than resorting to violence through a military option.

Currently, there are 129 hostages believed to be held in Gaza, among there eight American citizens. In addition to that, there are still the remains of 21 Israelis who were tragically killed in the IOF bombing. Meanwhile, Israel is currently holding about 12,000 Palestinian political prisoners, most of whom are without charges or trail (practically hostages), plus the bodies of 273 Palestinians.

In addition, given the rise in antisemitism, Islamophobia, and anti-Palestinian/anti-Arab bigotry, the language in the resolution helps make clear that the City of Columbus will not condone such hatred or divisiveness, regardless of where it occurs. Passing a cease fire resolution makes a difference between life and death. Thank you, Columbus City Council.

I do have to confess however that listening to Shannon Hardin, the President's Council, delivering his remarks on the resolution left a sour taste in my mouth. He seems eager to condemn Palestinian violence for what happened during Al-Aqsa Flood Operation but chose to ignore the Israeli genocide in Gaza for the last 5 months. Hardin's silence is evidence that he is nothing more than a puppet for spreading Israeli propaganda.

To the local community that was insulting and biased, and to all the activists and organizers, the resolution was a slap on the face, did not meet the bare minimum demands and was too little, too late.

Mahmoud El-Yousseph is a Palestinian freelance writer and retired USA veteran who lives in Westerville, Ohio. He could be reached at: [email protected]

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