Anti-Israel Protests Disrupt California Graduation Ceremony

Pro-Palestinian protesters disrupted a California graduation ceremony this weekend following a similar demonstration during a Michigan college graduation earlier this month. The move came as anti-Israel protests have gained in numbers and intensity in recent weeks, especially on college campuses.

Hundreds of protesters arrived at UC Berkeley to disrupt the college’s graduation ceremony. The event was delayed as the protesters waved Palestinian flags and showed anti-Israel messages.

Some of the students were students while others appeared to be from outside of the campus.

In Virginia, other students walked out of a commencement address by Gov. Glenn Youngkin (R). Students wearing Palestinian scarves left during the event at the Virginia Commonwealth University.

At the University of North Carolina, the office of UNC Interim Chancellor Lee Roberts was defaced by protesters. The demonstrators placed red palm prints on windows and wrote “LEE ROBERTS IS A FASCIST.” The protesters also wrote “YOU SUPPORT GENOCIDE” on the building.

The action happened after Roberts removed a Palestinian flag hoisted by the protesters.

“This university doesn’t belong to a small group of protesters. It belongs to every citizen of North Carolina,” he said after the flag incident.

“Everybody in North Carolina, everybody who goes to school here, everybody who lives and works here. The flag represents all of us,” Roberts said.

Members of Princeton University’s staff also announced a 24-hour hunger strike on behalf of Palestine, which ended Saturday morning.

The effort was described by one participant as ‘meant to emphasize the efforts of our students who are undertaking this strike, putting their bodies on the line to show their solidarity with the Palestinian people of Gaza and the West Bank, who are being subjected to a forced famine and a genocidal assault by the state of Israel.”

One element is not clear from the recent protests. Most college campuses close for the semester around this time of year. It remains to be seen whether or not the protests facing college campuses will continue or whether or not they will end as students head home.

There is a distinct possibility that the same students will bring their protests back to their hometowns, especially if they do not have any work or other responsibilities during the summer.