Politics

White House Condemns Surge Of Antisemitism At Columbia University

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The hallowed halls of Columbia University have become a battleground. Tensions are running high as pro-Palestinian student protests enter their fifth day, with accusations of antisemitism fueling a growing sense of hostility on campus. The White House has stepped in, unequivocally condemning the “blatant” instances of antisemitic sentiment expressed during these demonstrations.

While acknowledging the right of students to peaceful protest, Deputy Press Secretary Andrew Bates underscores, “calls for violence and physical intimidation targeting Jewish students” have crossed the line. This comes in the wake of more than 100 arrests at the university following police efforts to dismantle a protest encampment.

Peter Gerber for Fox News Digital

The situation on college campuses across the nation reflects a deep-seated unrest that stretches for months. Disturbing videos appearing online show some protesters allegedly voicing support for the devastating attacks of 7 October. The White House statement denounces such rhetoric as “blatantly antisemitic, unconscionable, and dangerous,” adding that echoing the sentiments of terrorist organizations is “despicable,” particularly considering the historical horrors of the Holocaust.

President Joe Biden has also spoken out against the surge of antisemitism in higher education, though without directly naming Columbia University. “Harassment and calls for violence against Jews” have stained the landscape of academic discourse, he stated, making it clear that such behavior has no place in our society.

Campus as Battleground: Safety vs. Solidarity

Amidst the swirling controversy, the fear on campus is palpable. New York Mayor Eric Adams has voiced his disgust with the antisemitic rhetoric and promised swift action against any lawbreakers within the protests. Reports indicate that a university-affiliated rabbi, citing the unrest, has even advised Jewish students to stay away, a suggestion met with mixed reactions.

Alex Brandon/AP

The Columbia Barnard Hillel, a Jewish campus organization, disagrees with the idea of students fleeing the university. They have pleaded for increased protection from university administration and city authorities to ensure the safety of its members.

As protests over the Gaza war continue nationwide, the conflict echoes even at events attended by the President. The atmosphere is tense and uncertain, and the question lingers– when, and how, will the cries for peace finally silence those filled with hate?

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