A local socialist organization is facing criticism from elected leaders on both sides of the aisle for its reaction to Hamas’ invasion of Israel, which killed at least 900 people, including 14 Americans.
Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) has endorsed at least five sitting Democratic members of the Minnesota Legislature, in addition to several members of and candidates for the Minneapolis and St. Paul city councils.
A statement from the group released this week expressed “solidarity with Palestine” while making no mention of Hamas’ attack. Hamas is a designated terrorist organization that governs the Gaza Strip and does not recognize Israel’s right to exist.
“The statement made by the Twin Cities DSA and rallies being held across the country by DSA chapters are unconscionable. This is a time where all Minnesotans should be coming together to denounce the horrific terrorist attacks and offer our prayers and support for the Israeli people, including the  American citizens who lost their lives. I urge those elected officials endorsed by the Twin Cities DSA to speak out against this ignorance and make clear that these extreme views won’t be tolerated,” said House Minority Leader Lisa Demuth, R-Cold Spring.
Minnesota DFL Chair Ken Martin and Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey, whose city council includes DSA-endorsed candidates, condemned the DSA’s statement.
"From the river to the sea" is a chant used by extremists to support the destruction of Israel. It is appalling to embrace this rhetoric in this statement, which also doesn't even acknowledge the slaughter of Israeli & American civilians. This is disgusting @TwinCitiesDSA. https://t.co/bb5V4XB5cS
— Ken Martin (@kenmartin73) October 10, 2023
Appalling. This is erasure of innocent, murdered Israelis, and the genocide against Jews for millennia. Critique of Israel’s ruling coalition policies is fair game, but this attempt to ignore atrocities against Jews, days ago and historically, will let history repeat itself. https://t.co/54MtAzes6y
— Mayor Jacob Frey (@MayorFrey) October 10, 2023
A group of Jewish DFL legislators also released a statement Wednesday saying they were “appalled” by the DSA’s comments.
“In the wake of the barbaric attack and massacre of Israeli civilians, including many elders and children, we stand in solidarity with our Israeli families and friends,” they said. “In this moment of grief and pain in the Jewish communities across the globe, the failure to condemn this bloodshed is hurtful to our communities that have experienced so much generational trauma.”
DFL U.S. Rep. Ilhan Omar has also faced criticism for her comments on the attack after she called on Americans to “oppose an Israeli military response” and said Israel’s response amounted to “a war crime.”