Israel’s Prime Minister Called The Pro-Palestine Protests At US Colleges "Anti-Semitic" And "Horrific”

Netanyahu went so far as to draw parallels between the current protests and the rise of Nazism in 1930s Germany.

Israel’s Prime Minister Called The Pro-Palestine Protests At US Colleges "Anti-Semitic" And "Horrific”

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has strongly condemned the student-led pro-Palestinian protests against Israel's war on Gaza taking place across various university campuses across the United States, calling them “antisemitic” and “horrific”.

In a statement on April 24, Netanyahu took aim at the wave of protests that have swept across college campuses in the US in the last few weeks, calling the student protesters  "antisemitic mobs" who are "calling for the annihilation of Israel" and "attacking Jewish students and faculty."

He went so far as to draw parallels between the current protests and the rise of Nazism in 1930s Germany, stating that the "situation unfolding in America's college campuses is horrifying."

Over the past few months, numerous student-led protests are demanding that US President Joe Biden call for a permanent ceasefire in Gaza and end the US’ unconditional military aid to Israel.

The US has provided billions of dollars in weapons to Israel since Israel declared war on Hamas on Oct. 7.

On April 17, protests began at Columbia University in New York,  and have since spread to more than 20 campuses across the US

Students are establishing encampments and occupying spaces to advocate for their universities to divest from companies linked to Israel's military occupation of Palestinian territories.

The protests have been largely peaceful, with students not engaging in property damage or physical altercations.

However, hundreds of students and staff members, including professors, have been arrested during the demonstrations. 

In Columbia University alone, more than 100 students were arrested for trespassing, with many suspended and now potentially facing criminal charges.

Netanyahu urged for the protests to be "stopped and unequivocally condemned," criticizing the response of some university presidents as "shameful."

Palestinian ambassador to the UK, Husam Zomlot, said in a post on X that Netanyahu’s statement is evidence that the Israeli prime minister "knows the tide is turning, and time is against him and his racist government."

In an address on April 27 to Harvard students who also joined the Gaza encampment movement, Zomlot highlighted Israel’s systematic attacks on Gaza’s educational system, which experts have called “educide” or  “scholasticide”.

Since Oct.7, more than 5,479 students, 261 teachers, and 95 university professors have been killed in Gaza, and over 7,819 students and 756 teachers have been injured – with numbers growing each day.

At least 60 percent of educational facilities, including 13 public libraries, in Gaza have been damaged or destroyed, and at least 625,000 students have no access to education.

While Netanyahu has condemned the protests as antisemitic, Palestinians in Gaza have expressed gratitude and support for the American students' activism, viewing it as a "beacon of hope" amid the ongoing war.

Israel’s attacks have killed more than 34,000 Palestinians,  mostly women and children, in Gaza since Oct. 7.

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