Press Release

In NYC, U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand Stands In Unity With NY Jewish Leaders Calling For Full Military Aid For Israel, Including Replenishing Iron Dome, And Evacuation Flights For New Yorkers; Leaders Condemn Ongoing Terrorist Attack By Hamas Against Israel

Oct 11, 2023

Gillibrand Leads Annual Bipartisan Senate Efforts To Fund U.S.-Israeli Cooperative Missile Defense Programs Like Iron Dome;

Gillibrand, Jewish Leaders, and Other Faith Leaders Call For Congress To Fully and Swiftly Support Israel’s Requests For Military Aid Needed To Defend Itself And Civilians

Today, U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand stood in unity with prominent New York Jewish leaders to call for full military aid for Israel, including replenishing of the Iron Dome air defense system, evacuation flights out of Israel for American citizens, and enhanced security funding for synagogues. Senator Gillibrand was joined by the Jewish Community Relations Council of New York, UJA-Federation of NY, Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, The New York Board of Rabbis, the Orthodox Union and other advocates and faith leaders.

“I strongly condemn the unprovoked terrorist attack launched by Hamas and stand shoulder to shoulder with the Israeli people. My heart goes out to the people of Israel whose lives have been torn apart by these savage acts of brutality. Throughout my career, I have worked with my colleagues in Congress to deliver hundreds of millions of dollars for Israel’s defense systems, and now that work will be more critical than ever. Today, I’m calling for more funding and resources to replenish Israel’s Iron Dome and for evacuation flights out of Israel to help Americans return home. I’m also calling on the Biden administration to swiftly deliver to Congress any supplemental funding requests to aid Israel. I’m also fighting to increase funding for at-risk non-profit institutions, including synagogues, to make security enhancements that will allow New Yorkers to gather safely. This is a moment to come together in unity and show the world that we are unwavering in our stance against antisemitism and hate,” said Senator Gillibrand, member of the Senate Armed Services Committee and Intelligence Committee.

“Hamas’ unprecedented and heinous attack is outrageous and unacceptable, and we must all continue condemning this brutal and vicious assault on our friend and ally Israel. On Saturday night, I visited several synagogues in my district to be with our local Jewish community. Due to Shabbat and the Jewish holiday of Simchat Torah, many did not know or knew very little about what happened. It was heartbreaking to break the news to them. Over the last several days, I have been leading efforts to help Americans return home from Israel since most commercial flights out of the country have been canceled. As we mourn and remember the victims of this unprovoked attack, we underscore our steadfast support for Israel, and continue to stand with our ally at this extremely difficult time,” said Rep. Grace Meng (NY-6).

“Israel is experiencing one of its darkest moments in a generation,” said U.S. Rep. Ritchie Torres (NY-15). “Thousands of innocent Israelis have been either murdered, wounded, abducted, raped, and otherwise terrorized at the hands of barbaric Hamas terrorists. October 7th was the largest mass murder of Jewish people in a single day since the Holocaust, and the psychological effect of what we’re continuing to see unfold is reminiscent of our 9/11. As the leader of the free world, the United States has a moral obligation to provide Israel with whatever funding, humanitarian aid, and equipment it needs to rightly defend itself, just as America would, and I urge my colleagues to join me in honoring our unwavering and ironclad alliance with Israel to make sure our ally has the resources necessary for its survival.”

“I’m extremely grateful to Senator Gillibrand for her consistent and steadfast support of Israel and the right to defend itself, especially now in the aftermath of the terror attack by Hamas. No fair-minded and conscientious New Yorkers should stand on the sidelines as these horrific acts of barbarism are revealed,” said State Senator Brad Hoylman-Sigal.

“We thank Senator Gillibrand for her strong and unequivocal support for Israel in this unprecedented moment. Since learning of the barbaric attack on innocent Israeli civilians by Hamas, Senator Gillibrand has used the full power of her office to help drive Congressional support for critical defense resources requested by Israel. We are deeply grateful to the Senator for her longstanding advocacy and leadership in support of Israel,” said Eric S. Goldstein, CEO, UJA-Federation of New York.

“JCRC-NY greatly appreciates Senator Gillibrand’s steadfast advocacy for Israel, both in times of relative peace and especially now. After days of horrific attacks on civilians by the Hamas terrorist organization, Israel needs the assistance of its ally, America, and its friends in the global community. We ask all other lawmakers to join Senator Gillibrand in urging Congress to ensure continued, unabated, support for Israel at this time,” said Noam Gilboord, JCRCNY CEO.

Click here to read Senator Gillibrand’s letter calling on Secretary of Defense Austin to transfer the United States Army’s two Iron Dome batteries to Israel.

Click here to read Senator Gillibrand’s letter calling on Secretary of State Blinken to coordinate evacuation flights out of Israel for American citizens who want to return home to the United States.

Senator Gillibrand is also working on letters calling for quick action to replenish the Iron Dome air defense system and ensure Israel has the resources it needs to defend itself and calling for $500 million in funding for the Nonprofit Security Grant Program to meet the needs of at-risk organizations, including synagogues, this fiscal year.

Senator Gillibrand has long led a bipartisan letter in support of U.S.-Israeli cooperative missile defense programs, which advance U.S. national security interests by supporting Israel’s ability to defend itself against missile and rocket attacks. For several years, Senator Gillibrand has secured at least $500 million annually for these important programs. In the Senate, Gillibrand has led the push for these programs dating back to at least 2012.