An Israeli family of five, including twin six–year–old girls and their four-year-old brother, were murdered by Hamas over the weekend. Tamar Kedem-Siman Tov and her husband Yonatan rushed into the bunker on Saturday with their daughters Shachar and Arbel and son Omer at their home in Nir Oz, a kibbutz on the outskirts of Gaza. They were eventually discovered and slaughtered by Hamas terrorists who infiltrated their Kibbutz – Just because they were Jews.

The Kedem-Siman family joins countless others who have become victims of Hamas. The images and stories are disturbing and countless. A young woman was caught on camera being kidnapped by Hamas terrorists on a motorcycle. Another woman taken from a music festival by gunmen was paraded around in the back of a truck – naked her body broken. At least 900 people have lost their lives in Israel over the last few days simply because of that nation’s Jewish heritage – a gut-wrenching tragedy that pierces the hearts of humanity reminding us of the urgency to stand up against discrimination, hatred, and violence.

In a world rife with conflicts and divisions, it is imperative to foster solidarity with our allies, especially when they endure unfathomable threats and attacks. One such nation in dire need of unwavering support is Israel. Discrimination in various forms continues to plague Israel, necessitating resolute support from allies.

Israel and Alaska enjoy an important and mutually beneficial relationship.

Alaska possesses a unique opportunity to stand firmly against discrimination by adopting the Israel Anti-Discrimination Act (HB 2). In doing so, Alaska not only reiterates its dedication to defending democracy and human rights but also reaffirms its steadfast alliance with Israel.

The United States has stood by Israel since its inception as a nation in 1948. This longstanding alliance has not only benefited both nations but has also provided a stabilizing force in a turbulent region. This alliance underscores the importance of supporting Israel unequivocally, especially in times of adversity.

Alaska may seem far removed from what takes place in the Middle East, but as a state, we strive to do the right thing and to protect our interests. Israel and Alaska enjoy an important and mutually beneficial relationship. This includes Israel related investments by the Alaska Permanent Fund Corporation along with Alaska’s exports to Israel, which since 1996 totaled nearly $62 million.

In addition, Alaska is a key site for U.S. Israel missile defense cooperation. The U.S. and Israel regularly conduct cooperative missile defense program tests such as Arrow-3, at the Alaska Aerospace Pacific Spaceport Complex in Kodiak.

Let us demonstrate that we are not helpless in our support of Israel; we have the power to actively contribute to halting discriminatory actions perpetuated by the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement.

The Israel Anti-Discrimination Act (HB 2) represents a crucial step in ensuring that Alaska’s state dollars do not inadvertently fund discriminatory actions against Israel. By prohibiting the state from contracting with entities that actively discriminate against Israel, this legislation reinforces the values of equality, inclusivity, and fairness that are fundamental to the Alaskan and American identity.

Adopting HB 2 presents Alaska with a unique opportunity to act on its convictions. It is a chance to vehemently stand against genocide, discrimination, and prejudice, sending a resounding message that Alaska values human rights, and equality, not just within its borders, but across the globe.

In tandem with the proposed Alaska legislation, it is imperative that we engage with the nationwide momentum toward countering discrimination against Israel. A parallel effort, The Countering Hate Against Israel (CHAI) by Federal Contractors Act (H.R. 4564), has gained bipartisan traction within the U.S. Congress. This legislation mirrors Alaska’s Israel Anti-Discrimination Act (HB 2) in its objective to combat discrimination by imposing certification requirements on U.S. government contractors. The CHAI Act mandates contractors to certify that they neither engage in, nor plan to engage in a boycott of Israel throughout the duration of their government contracts.

Remarkably, this principle has already been adopted by 36 states, underlining the urgency to stand against discriminatory practices. Moreover, such legislation has stood the test of legal scrutiny, having been upheld by the courts, reinforcing the necessity and validity of this crucial step toward justice and equality.

Alaska’s support for these initiatives amplifies the collective voice of the nation, demonstrating a united front against discrimination and prejudice. To meaningfully support Israel and combat discrimination, we must rally together and champion the adoption of the Israel Anti-Discrimination Act (HB 2).

This is a fervent call to action for Alaskans to reach out to their legislators, urging them to support and pass this critical legislation during this coming session. Let us demonstrate that we are not helpless in our support of Israel; we have the power to actively contribute to halting discriminatory actions perpetuated by the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement. Together, we can make a resounding difference, standing up for what is right and just, upholding the values of democracy and equality that we hold dear.

The views expressed here are those of the author.

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Rep. Vance urges Alaska Legislature to adopt the Israel anti-Discrimination Act

Sarah Vance
Sarah Vance is a member of the Alaska State House of Representatives.


  • David Eastman says:

    This bill came one vote short of passing the house when we voted on it earlier this year. At the time, there was concern over Section 2(d) of the bill, which states: “A statement by a person…may be considered to be evidence that the person is violating section (a) of this section.”

    If a person is participating in discrimination but says they are not, the law should focus on the action itself, not the speech. Likewise, if a person makes a political statement about Israel or support for a boycott, but does not engage in discrimination, again, the law should focus on the action itself, not the speech. The Constitution is explicit “no law” shall be made “abridging the freedom of speech”.

    Alaska would do well to honor this in our state laws. Political statements are made for many reasons; some good, some bad. Even Dietrich Bonhoeffer supported Hitler publicly on occasion while covertly working with others to assassinate him. Should we hold such statements against him even though he lost his life trying to overthrow Hitler?

    We should not pass a law that creates state sanctions for a person merely for political statements about whether or not they support Israel or, in this case, a boycott against Israel.

    Yes, let us stand against terrorism, but I hope that the current war in Israel will not be used to sweep away valid concerns with how this bill is currently written.

    • Clark says:

      Where was the outrage at the Afghanistans when they were murdering Christians and our own military members, our loved ones? There wasn’t any. That’s shameful. So let’s flip this some. There were no laws mentioned then to protect Afghans from potential hate. What about Asians when there were so many hate crimes against them in our soil? Where is the legislation for hate speech against these groups of people? Do you see how this is only creating more divisiveness? It’s also sending the wrong message. What’s next? Just start mailing out duct tape for your constituents mouths instead of the PFD, because again politicians ruined it.
      There’s a big distinction between physical harm and verbal abuse. Rep Vance, this is not a good idea. There are graver concerns in our own backyards. Racism and hate may exist in AK, but it’s a very small minority, despite what the woke try to get everyone to buy into. I believe Alaskans are already better than this. We are a melting pot that has to get along. It’s pretty simple. Our state government needs to stop wasting time, money and resources on frivolous, unnecessary laws to protect people’s feelings from words.
      I completely agree that if there is ever any action taken it should be punished to the fullest extent. Again, there’s no room for hate or violence. Our politicians need to stop this right here though. Wasting time and money on problems we can’t control or that don’t even exist. Why don’t you start bugging our federal government to get it together first? Better yet, all of you do your jobs and focus on Alaska and solely Alaska! I do understand we need to be cognizant of the world and who else is out there. Yet, we don’t have to make everyone’s problems ours.
      PLEASE FOCUS! Home first, HOME FIRST! We can’t fix our own problems, which are mostly due to stupid laws that are a useless waste of time, or just completely crush our communities like SB91. This government – ALL of it – is just embarrassing at this point. I grew up so patriotic! I love my country with all of my heart! I don’t just fear my government now, I genuinely HATE it! I’m a conservative, and I’m completely embarrassed and ashamed of almost everyone in government. You have opportunities to do better!

    • Ethan A Hansen says:

      the most protected speech, is hate speech, under the first Bill Of Rights. further more. if I choose to do business with a Jew hater, then that should my right under capitalism. The Chinese social credit Score is taking a firm hold on Americans. Russia is starting to look like a better country to live in.

  • Neil DeWitt says:

    I think Sarha. has hit the nail of the head, if there isn’t an agenda attached. It would be good that we as Alaskans show support to Isreal at this time of need. I feel our government not Alaska but federal government started this and we as Alaskans can help by passing this and other laws to support Isreal.

  • Pablo L samaniego says:

    we are a non religion government, if you going to talk about it, talk of thousands of Palestinians that have been kill with not mercy by Jews for decades

  • DaveMaxwell says:

    Rep Vance
    Too late and besides legislative actions, they are useless!
    Good sentiments though!

  • John J.Otness says:


  • Nunya says:

    Explain how exactly Israel is a US ally! It is not in any way, shape or form. Allies don’t commit false flags against your country, take your money and mock you for it, sell your shared military technology to your enemies, fund and endorse the mass invasion of your country while genociding the original populace in their own stolen country, demand nuclear disarmament for everyone else while having g their undeclared amount of nukes pointed at you and your actual allies… The list goes on and on and on. ALASKA FIRST!

  • Dee Cee says:

    Do we really need to have this conversation on two alaskan platforms?

    No to this bill. And no to paying for another one of Israel’s wars.

  • Toscano says:

    Hal Lindsey’s “The Late Great Planet Earth” should not be the basis of a foreign policy. Genocide has occurred in many places. Our own gov’t is not without guilt. Must we always protect the Israeli state? What do they do for us, if they are our allies? Protect our southern border? If only we used our military might to protect our own!

  • John J Otness says:


  • Lucinda says:

    Misplaced virtue signaling.

  • micah says:

    No to this proposal. This is our country with our interests. The general (albeit slow) course of travel is trying to get out of entangling alliances.
    Please do not take a tragedy and try and use it. Not a good look.
    Pray for the innocents and peace.

  • Dee Cee says:

    Ten years ago, I realized what US foreign policy in the Middle East is, and how it actually benefits “America.” I moved all my retirement funds into Lockhead Martin, Raytheon, and ABC Inc. stocks, just like our Democrat and Republican members of Congress. Now I’m a millionaire! And I 1000% vote neocon. I’m an American, and I make money off the senseless bloodshed and destruction of anyone and everyone in the Middle East… and Eastern Europe! You can too…. Go “Pro!” PRO-war, PRO-conflict, PRO-Israel! And watch your retirement take off!!

  • Friend of Humanity says:

    I have heard some people recently say that the only time the left and the right work together is during times of war – both sides push for the same thing and we can definitely see that our legislative bodies. I can’t help but wonder the direction of the bill when I read Ms. Vance’s words. So many of these key phrases that she uses in this article have been used by demonrats and Rinos pushing the globalist agenda. In Ms. Vance’s article I am reading, “blah blah blah we’ll take away your rights blah blah blah.”
    At a time when our own nation is being brought down onto its knees, demonrats and Rinos are pushing hard to turn Alaska into a blue state, our own governor is working with the evil to force us to quit using oil and gas, and the evil is trying to take our children from us, our legislators are pushing to pushing to remove our free speech in this state? Our freedoms to speak however we want should be protected. Physical violence should not be protected. Our right to protect ourselves should be protected. If you want to act out in physical violence against someone, expect consequences that may not be beneficial to you.
    Are the laws that we have on the books now even enforced? No. If they were, there would not be a need to create new laws. Please do not pass a bill that is going to attempt to take away more of our rights and liberties.

  • River says:

    Would you stand with Israel it meant Nuclear war? We need to discriminate the acts of all governments.This is ridiculous Mz Vance.Virtur signaling at its best.

  • Ethan A Hansen says: