January 12, 2024
New York, NY

Video, Audio, Photos & Rush Transcript: Governor Hochul Delivers Remarks at 100 Days in Captivity Demonstration

Video, Audio, Photos & Rush Transcript: Governor Hochul Delivers Remarks at 100 Days in Captivity Demonstration

Governor Hochul: “I have one message. I want the hostages brought home. I want them brought home now. And I want the rest of the world to start saying the same thing. Because it is barbaric and inhumane to hold them one day longer. Bring them home!”

Hochul: “People of Israel have a right to defend themselves, and they have a right to bring the hostages home.”

Earlier today, Governor Hochul delivered remarks at the 100 days in captivity demonstration.

VIDEO of the event is available on YouTube here and in TV quality (h.264, mp4) format here.

AUDIO of the Governor's remarks is available here.

PHOTOS of the event are available on the Governor's Flickr page.

A rush transcript of the Governor's remarks is available below:

100 days ago, when the horrific attack on innocent Israelis occurred, hostages were taken, families ripped apart. There's no way that 100 days later we would have thought we'd be standing here today demanding the return of those hostages.

What happened? Why aren't they home right now? Why didn't they have a chance to celebrate Thanksgiving and Hanukkah and New Year with their families. Why are not people across this world demanding the freedom of these hostages? I want to know why. Because I want to see on the news every single night the countdown of days like we saw during the hostage crisis that affect other Americans. Because we have Americans who are being held captive right now. Where's the outrage? Where is the daily coverage of the suffering of the hostages and their families?

I'm sick and tired of the way this has been covered as if it doesn't matter. That there are not human beings who deserve our love and compassion and daily focus on what is happening over there. Because over there is also over here. These are our family members. These are our friends. There are more Jewish New Yorkers than anywhere else in the world outside of Israel.

They came here because this is a place where we stand together, and we don't forget people. 100 days. 100 nights – of wondering and waiting. The pain of these families I saw it raw on the first days when I went to Israel. We gathered in a room. We thought it would just be a matter of days. Of course, they'll let them free. This is just temporary, right? What happened? Time came and went, day after day. And I went down. I went to Israel. I went to Jerusalem. But I went south. I was the first elected official to walk in what was left of Kfar Aza.

There's a part of me that wants to describe the horrific smells and the sites and the rooms where the young women were mutilated and murdered, the safe rooms, the so-called safe rooms that were penetrated. But there's another part of me that wants to spare you from that. But Hamas is a terrorist organization that must be stopped.

Because if we don't stop them where they did this, they will continue. They will continue their scourge to destroy the Jewish people and others. This is the lesson that must be taken from October 7th. People of Israel have a right to defend themselves, and they have a right to bring the hostages home.

And we, as American citizens, must stand in solidarity with them. And yes, we mourn the loss of any innocent life, but the people who are dancing at a concert so joyful, the people who are in their homes. People just waking up to start a new day, to celebrate the Holy Day. The people who are about to fly the flags into Gaza.

The room I went to, there had been a tradition on this day every year. They fly kites into Gaza, a sign of hope and peace and love and friendship. The flags that were never – the kites that were never launched because they were in a pool of blood that I stepped over.

I have one message. I have one message. I want the hostages brought home. I want them brought home now. And I want the rest of the world to start saying the same thing. Because it is barbaric and inhumane to hold them one day longer. Bring them home! Thank you everyone.

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