Politics

Los Angeles city leaders, including Mayor Garcetti, gather to support Israel

An Israeli Merkava tank rolls back from the Gaza Strip to an army deployment near Israel's border with the Palestinian enclave on Aug. 3, 2014.
An Israeli Merkava tank rolls back from the Gaza Strip to an army deployment near Israel's border with the Palestinian enclave on Aug. 3, 2014.
JACK GUEZ/AFP/Getty Images

Mayor Eric Garcetti and other Los Angeles city officials gathered Tuesday to assert their solidarity with Israel following the recent Israeli/Palestinian conflict, according to a press release from City Councilmember Bob Blumenfield's office.

"Today we speak with one voice standing with Israel, for peace," Blumenfield said, according to the release. "We are not against the Palestinians, nor the residents of Gaza, both of whom have suffered needlessly in this conflict. Their suffering is heartbreaking to all of us. But we stand with Israel against a Hamas regime that terrorizes Israelis from the skies and now, from beneath the ground. That regime prioritizes hatred and destruction over cooperation and prosperity for the Palestinian people, and believes that peace is counter to its aim of total destruction of the State of Israel."

A moment of silence was held for innocents killed in the recent conflict between the Israelis and the Palestinians, according to the release. Blumenfield also played the sound of an air-raid siren.

"When you experience the sirens, you understand a little bit what it's like to live under that constant threat of terror," said City Controller Ron Galperin, according to the release.

"Israel is by far our strongest ally in a tumultuous region," Garcetti said, according to the release. "Our prayer today is that this ceasefire holds so that we have an opportunity to create a lasting peace."

Israeli Consul General David Siegel thanked the L.A. city officials for their support, according to the release.

"The special relationship between Israel and Los Angeles runs deep and today was another affirmation of both our friendship and our shared values," Siegel said, according to the release.

"Israel’s values are Los Angeles’ values," City Attorney Mike Feuer said, according to the release.

The officials included Garcetti, Feuer, City Controller Ron Galperin and several members of the City Council, including Herb Wesson, Mitch Englander, Tom LaBonge, Joe Buscaino, Paul Koretz and Blumenfield, according to the release.