Several speakers at a meeting of the Oakland City Council on Monday denied Hamas's Oct. 7 atrocities and made other statements in support of the terror group.
"There have not been beheadings of babies and rapings. Israel murdered their own people on Oct. 7," one member of the public said at the meeting. Another said she supported the "right of Palestinians to resist occupation, including through Hamas, the armed wing of the unified Palestinian resistance."
The California city's government voted unanimously Monday to pass a resolution calling for "an immediate ceasefire; release of all hostages; the unrestricted entry of humanitarian assistance into Gaza; the restoration of food, water, electricity, and medical supplies to Gaza; the respect for international law," while also demanding "a resolution that protects the security of all innocent civilians," Newsweek reported.
The public comments came as the council considered an amendment to the resolution that explicitly condemned Hamas's terrorist attacks on Oct. 7. The body rejected that amendment by a vote of 6-2.
Other speakers at the meeting, video showed, claimed that calling Hamas a terror group "plays into genocidal propaganda that is flooding our media" and asserted that "Hamas is not a terrorist organization just because the U.S. and Israel deems [sic] it so. Hamas is a resistance organization that is fighting for the liberation of Palestinian people in their land."
"To hear them complain about Hamas violence is like listening to a wife-beater complain when his wife finally stands up and fights back," one speaker said.
"The notion that this was a massacre of Jews is a fabricated narrative. Many of those killed on Oct. 7, including children, were killed by the IDF. An amendment condemning Hamas is bald propaganda," said another speaker.
Though there have been reports indicating some civilians may have died in the crossfire between the Israel Defense Forces and Hamas terrorists, there is no evidence that large numbers of the civilians died at the hands of Israel's military.
Anti-Semitic rhetoric has surged since Hamas's attack on Israel. People have torn down posters of Israeli civilians the terror group took hostage, and student groups at colleges have projected slogans onto campus buildings such as, "From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free," which Hamas uses to call for the destruction of the state of Israel.