Columbia University’s Catholic Chaplain Speaks Out on Protests, Antisemitism Fight

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Amid pro-Palestinian protests at Columbia University that have led to more than 100 arrests, forced classes online, and left Jewish students and faculty feeling unsafe and unwelcome, the university’s Catholic chaplain says the path forward “must first ensure that such malevolent protests, brimming with anti-Semitism, be stopped.”

Father Landry, Columbia’s Chaplain, said he has witnessed many pro-Palestinian protests that have taken place since mid-October — when Israel began its retaliation against Hamas in Gaza after the terrorist organization on Oct. 7 killed more than 1,200 people, and took more than 200 hostages.

Tens of thousands Gazans have died, and more than 1.5 million are now displaced.

Current protests at Columbia University boiled over last week, when students set up an encampment on the university’s South Lawn to oppose Israel’s military action in Gaza, and demand that the university divest from companies with ties to Israel. Ultimately, more than 100 demonstrators were arrested after the university called in police to help dispel the crowd.

Protests have continued this week. Protestors are now also there to stand in solidarity with those arrested last week. On April 23, about 150 demonstrators were arrested for defying a university order to leave.

The Tablet’s John Lavenburg joins Currents News to discuss the uprising.