.Sebastopol Is Latest ‘Ceasefire’ Resolution Hotspot

The Sebastopol City Council is the latest target for Gaza war activists in the wine country, who’ve been systematically pushing local councils to pass “ceasefire” resolutions — in hopes of creating a snowball effect up the government chain, all the way to the White House. So far, only the City of Cotati has gotten on board. The Sebastopol Times has the scoop on activists’ latest effort: “For the last several months, as the war in Gaza has dragged on, people have stood up during public comment at Sebastopol City Council meetings, asking that the council — as representatives of Peacetown — pass a resolution demanding a ceasefire in Gaza. And for a few short days last week, it looked like such a resolution was in the offing. Vice Mayor Stephen Zollman assembled a coalition of Jewish peace activists and Palestinian rights advocates, including former Sebastopol Mayor Una Glass, to craft a carefully worded ceasefire resolution. It was put on the agenda to be discussed at [Tuesday’s] council meeting. Then, on Monday afternoon, the city sent out a press release announcing that the ceasefire item had been removed from the agenda for reasons of public safety.” City officials said they were worried that their meeting room would be too small for the “number of participants expected to attend,” given the “the emotionally charged nature of the subject” — and were also concerned about possible “disruption and even violence” at the meeting. And yet “the Gaza ceasefire resolution still dominated the council meeting,” the Sebastopol Times reports, “with more than two dozen ceasefire advocates in the council chambers — and more on Zoom — with signs, some wearing Palestinian keffiyehs. All in all, it was a remarkably subdued demonstration, with protesters politely lining up to speak during public comment. (This somewhat undercut the city’s reason for dropping the resolution for public safety reasons.) Only one person, Ernie Carpenter, spoke in favor of Israel’s current actions, though one other commenter suggested that the resolution be revisited with the help of more mainstream Jewish voices. The vast majority of speakers at the meeting, many of whom identified themselves as Jews or Palestinians — spoke in favor of a ceasefire and praised the current resolution as is.” Activists did get one small win at another meeting a couple days later, when the Sonoma County Commission on Human Rights passed their own ceasefire resolution. “Thank you for hearing us,” the Sonoma County for Palestine group posted on Facebook. (Source: Sebastopol Times & Sebastopol Times & Sonoma County for Palestine via Facebook & Sonoma County for Palestine via Facebook)

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