(photo: instagram @activismupdateshudsonvalley)
NEWBURGH- On Saturday, Democratic Congressman Pat Ryan (NY-18) issued a lengthy statement explaining his position on the Israel-Hamas conflict days after his Newburgh district office was vandalized by activists demanding the Congressman call for a ceasefire. Messages reading “CEASEFIRE NOW” and “WAR CRIMINAL” were painted on the windows of the office on Broadway in Newburgh.
“War brings out the worst in humanity- making the urgent pursuit of peace both necessary and incredibly difficult to achieve,” Ryan’s statement read.
Ryan laid out seven bullet points he says predicate a permanent and mutual peace. Ryan says all hostages must be returned, that perpetrators of rape and sexual violence must be brought to justice, and Hamas must surrender. He also called for a new Palestinian government in Gaza committed to the wellbeing of the Palestinian people, and recognition by Israel of the new government so that a long-term peaceful two-state solution could be achieved. Finally, Ryan called for an increase in humanitarian aid to Gaza.
Ryan’s predications will be difficult to achieve indeed, since there is no sign that Hamas plans to surrender. Further, the likelihood that a new Palestinian government could be quickly constituted to end the bloodshed and that the new government would be able to negotiate a genuine two-state solution with Israel seems low.
Last month, several hundred people rallied outside Ryan’s Kingston district office to call on him to support a ceasefire in Gaza and stop supporting public funding for the war.
Ryan believes that when it comes to Israel, it has both a right to exist and defend itself and that the Palestinian people deserve their own state. He doesn’t see the choice as one or the other, and is calling for support for his solution.
“If you truly believe, like I do, that Israel has the right to exist and defend itself AND (emphasis in original) that the Palestinian people deserve to have their own state, I urge you to join me in this call for lasting security, dignity, and peace,” read the statement.
Source Mid-Hudson News