Pro-Palestinians Stage Protest at College in NYC, Barricading Jewish Students in Library

Students at Cooper Union College stage Pro-Palestinian protest while trapping Jewish students in a room. Credit: @SavvyAuntie/X

A pro-Palestinian protest at Cooper Union College in New York City devolved into chaos Wednesday, as students rallied against Israel. It raises concerns about free speech, safety, and the politics of the current war between Israel and Hamas, and the overall conflict that has spanned decades.


The rally, which included some pro-Hamas supporters, took a disturbing turn when it moved into the campus library, trapping Jewish students in the room.

Footage of the protest was circulated on social media.

Tweets from witnesses indicated that law enforcement was contacted, but was hesitant to intervene. Reports suggested that the security personnel at the college locked the students inside the library because they were concerned for their safety.

The Jewish Voice wrote an X post highlighting the urgency of the situation. It noted that one of its followers said their sister was “currently locked in the school library as a pro-Hamas rally outside of the Cooper Union building learnt the Jews were afraid and sitting in the library, then brought the protest inside and are barricading all exits.”


Later, Kim Newman, a spokesperson for the college confirmed, 

The library was closed for about 20 minutes while protesters moved through the building. Some students who were previously in the library remained there during that time. At this point, all the students have dispersed.

This incident did not occur in a vacuum. Similar protests have been held in educational institutions all across the country – even in high schools.

The incident at Cooper Union College is, so far, the closest these demonstrations have come to violence. While no students were harmed, it seems likely that if security had not locked the Jewish students in the library, it could have turned out much differently.


As the situation intensifies in the Middle East, it can be expected that there will be more raucous demonstrations such as this one – especially when Israel launches its expected ground incursion into Gaza to eradicate Hamas.



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