Laursen and Banks sign resolution in support of Israel

Ryan Fitzmaurice

Senator Dan Laursen and Representative Dalton Banks have both signed a resolution that affirms support for Israel’s war efforts in Gaza and condemns Hamas.
The resolution was initiated by Laursen himself, who released a draft with 35 lawmaker signatures supporting the resolution on November 9. During a discussion with the Lovell Chronicle last week, Laursen said he has since gained six more signatures, bringing the amount of support to 41 lawmakers. He said he expects other lawmakers to continue to join in.
Laursen said he drafted the resolution to make sure Wyoming vocally joins others supporting the State of Israel.
“It’s mainly to support Israel and all the Jewish people,” Laursen said. “I think it’s vital that there are people in the U.S. that support them.”
The resolution expresses support to three objectives.
The first is to reaffirm support and commitment to the welfare, security and survival of the State of Israel.
The second is to recognize Israel’s right to act decisively and unilaterally in self-defense to protect its citizens and oppose any pressure to enact a ceasefire prematurely before Israel has secured its safety.
The last is to express support for Israel’s right to pursue without interference or condemnation the elimination of Hamas and any other affiliated group until Hamas and all such groups are permanently neutralized.
When asked why the resolution specifically advocates against a ceasefire in Gaza, Laursen said he believes ceasing hostilities will give Hamas too much of an advantage.
“It gives them time to build their defenses and strategize how to attack again,” Laursen said, clarifying that he is in support of brief humanitarian pauses to help evacuate and bring supplies to Palestinian refugees.
Laursen further stated he does not believe that the civilian casualties are a persuasive argument for a ceasefire.
“Hamas likes to hide behind civilians,” Laursen said. “If that’s the case, people need to get heck out of the way.  I think Israel is giving Palestinians the chance.”
Ultimately, Laursen said the resolution is critical due to the public opinion divide, stating he is concerned by domestic and international protesters which he said are giving vocal support to Hamas.
“(From the river to the sea, Palestine must be free), chanting that kind of thing, they want to get rid of Israel and all of the Jewish people,” Laursen said. “We need to do all that we can to help. It’s a battle of good and evil.”
Banks said that he was proud to sign onto the resolution.
“I believe it’s important Israel knows not only those in Washington, D.C., support them but that those around our nation stand behind them,” Banks said. “I also signed it because it condemns the terrorist organization Hamas and their brutal attacks upon the Israel people. Those good people who are facing this devastating tragedy need our support, especially when around the country we are hearing anti-Israel rhetoric.”
The Oct. 7 Hamas attacks on Israel brought the current Israel-Hamas war to a start, resulting on 1,200 Israel casualties and 240 Israelis and Americans taken hostage, according to numbers provided by the Israeli government.
Since conflicts began Oct. 7, More than 11,100 Palestinians have been killed in Gaza, amounting to one out of every 200 Palestinian residents, according to Gaza’s Health Ministry.