Supporters of Israel gathered in large numbers on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., amidst strict security measures on Tuesday. The “March for Israel” unified bipartisan voices in solidarity against Hamas and expressed unwavering support for one of America’s closest allies. While criticism of Israel’s actions in Gaza has intensified, the rally offered a resounding endorsement of the country’s cause, with top Democrats and Republicans coming together on the stage to affirm their support for Israel.
The unity projected at the rally, however, masks a sharp division among Democrats regarding Israel’s approach and treatment of Palestinians. President Joe Biden initially expressed wholehearted solidarity with Israel at the war’s outset but has since urged Israel to exercise restraint and mitigate civilian suffering in Gaza. This discrepancy in opinion among Democrats underscores the complexity of the issue.
Various speakers took turns addressing the crowd, denouncing the Hamas attack and the global spread of antisemitism, which Israeli President Isaac Herzog called “an embarrassment to all civilized people and nations.” President Herzog, addressing the rally via video from the Western Wall in Jerusalem, referred to the attack as “the largest massacre since the Holocaust” and called for unity in saying, “never again.” He expressed determination that Israel would not be broken and vowed to rise again.
Sen. Joni Ernst of Iowa emphasized the brutal nature of Hamas, stating that they murder babies, rape women, and abuse the elderly. She found it unfathomable that anyone in America could sympathize with these terrorists.
The incursion staged by Hamas on October 7 resulted in the death of over 1,200 people and the kidnapping of more than 200 hostages. In response, Israel launched a series of attacks in Gaza, resulting in the deaths of over 11,000 Palestinians, according to the Hamas-run Health Ministry.
A grieving mother, Rachel Goldberg, pleaded for the release of the hostages taken to Gaza and questioned why they were being left underground. She highlighted that these hostages encompassed various religions, ages ranging from 9 months to 87 years.
The “March for Israel” was designated as a high-security event, similar to the Super Bowl and other major gatherings, according to the Department of Homeland Security. The FBI and Homeland Security warned law enforcement officials of potential violence or attacks instigated by the Israel-Hamas conflict. Nevertheless, federal officials have not identified any specific threats against the march.
Participants of the rally displayed their support for Israel by wearing Israeli flags and holding placards with names and photos of the individuals seized in Gaza. The event was heavily guarded, with barricades set up and law enforcement personnel scattered throughout the area.
Attendee Jackie Seley of Maryland hoped that the rally would display solidarity with Israel and raise awareness about the hostages in danger. Another attendee, Melanie Lubin, acknowledged concerns about the death toll and criticism of Israel’s military campaign but stressed that Israel did not initiate the conflict.
In an effort to shed light on antisemitism faced on college campuses, organizers played a video featuring Jewish students sharing their experiences. Despite the challenges, the students expressed their determination not to be silenced and pledged to continue advocating against antisemitism.
Massive Rally in Washington Declares Support for Israel and Condemns Hamas’ Actions
Thousands of individuals gathered at the National Mall in Washington, D.C. to partake in a rally showing unwavering support for Israel and denouncing the actions of Hamas. The “March for Israel” drew bipartisan attendance, with top Democrats and Republicans joining together to express solidarity with the country, one of America’s closest allies. However, beneath the united front, Democrats remain divided regarding Israel’s treatment of Palestinians and its course of action.
During the rally, prominent speakers took the stage to condemn the recent Hamas attack and the spread of antisemitism worldwide. Israeli President Isaac Herzog addressed the crowd via video from Jerusalem’s Western Wall, calling the attack “the largest massacre since the Holocaust” and rallying the crowd by proclaiming, “never again.” He emphasized the unbreakable resolve of Israel and the justness of their cause.
Sen. Joni Ernst of Iowa highlighted the extreme brutality of Hamas, describing their acts of violence against innocent civilians, including murder, rape, and abuse. She expressed disbelief that anyone in America could sympathize with these terrorists.
The initial attack by Hamas on October 7 resulted in the deaths of over 1,200 individuals and the capture of more than 200 hostages. In response, Israel launched a series of attacks in Gaza, resulting in the deaths of over 11,000 Palestinians, according to the Hamas-run Health Ministry.
Rachel Goldberg, a mother whose child was taken hostage during the Hamas attack, spoke about the torment and anguish experienced by the families of the hostages. She questioned why people of various religions and ages were being left underground.
The Department of Homeland Security classified the march as a high-security event, similar to major gatherings like the Super Bowl. The FBI and Homeland Security issued a warning about potential violence or attacks linked to the Israel-Hamas conflict but clarified that no specific threats to the march had been identified.
Attendees at the rally proudly displayed their support for Israel through flags and placards with the names and photos of the hostages. Security measures were stringent, with barriers in place and law enforcement personnel deployed throughout the area.
The event aimed to demonstrate solidarity with Israel and raise awareness about the hostages’ plight. Participants hoped to shed light on the issue of antisemitism faced on college campuses, showing their determination not to be silenced and continuing their fight against such discrimination.