Pro-Palestinian Protests Sweep U.S. College Campuses Following Arrests at Columbia, NYU, and Yale

IBL News | New York

Pro-Palestinian protests sweep U.S. college campuses following dozens of students arrested at Columbia, NYU, and Yale on Monday night due to alleged antisemitic messages. Meanwhile, Columbia University canceled in-person classes. [Photos: See scenes of protests.]

Protests over the war in Gaza at a handful of elite American universities had officials scramble to defuse demonstrations.

In addition to rallies, encampments have been set up at the University of California at Berkeley, MIT, the University of Michigan, Emerson College, and Tufts.

“We stand with Palestine and we stand with the liberation of all people,” one protester said. Others were likening the rallies to historic demonstrations over the Vietnam War and apartheid in South Africa.

Recent videos posted online have appeared to show some protesters near Columbia expressing support for the unprecedented Hamas attack on Israel. Democratic Congresswoman Kathy Manning, who toured Columbia on Monday, said she had seen protesters there calling for Israel’s destruction.

The wave of demos has been marred by alleged antisemitic incidents, which the White House has condemned.

When asked about the rallies on Monday, President Joe Biden said he condemned both “the antisemitic protests” as well as “those who don’t understand what’s going on with the Palestinians”.

Students on both sides say there has been a rise in both antisemitic and Islamophobic incidents since Israel’s campaign in Gaza.

The NYU protesters were calling on their institution to disclose and divest its “finances and endowments from weapons manufacturers and companies with an interest in the Israeli occupation”.

The attack on southern Israel on 7 October saw about 1,200 Israelis and foreigners, mostly civilians, killed and 253 others taken back to Gaza as hostages. Israel responded by launching its most intense-ever war in Gaza, intending to destroy Hamas and free the hostages. More than 34,000 Palestinians in Gaza, most of them children and women, have been killed in the conflict.