(NationRise.com) – Students of Columbia University staged a walkout during a lecture by former US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. The protest took place amid the ongoing upheaval at numerous universities and colleges across the United States in response to the Israeli government’s war against the Palestinian terrorist group Hamas.
The walkout was led by protesters over a billboard that showed photographs of students who signed a statement where they blamed Israel for the October 7 Hamas attacks. As reported by The New York Times, these photos were placed above the words “Columbia’s biggest antisemites.” The billboard was affixed to a vehicle circling Columbia University’s Manhattan campus.
The students who left almost halfway through the Democratic leader’s two-hour lecture were joined by other protesters in the university lobby. According to the liberal newspaper, they were demanding a “commitment” to students’ privacy and safety, as well as legal support for those “affected” by the billboard.
The students also staged the protest to express their disagreement with Clinton’s stance on the Israel-Hamas conflict. The former presidential candidate has called Hamas a terrorist group and said she supports the Israeli government. Clinton also claimed during a debate at Rice University’s Baker Institute that those who are calling for a ceasefire don’t understand Hamas’s violent and extremist nature.
Clinton’s declarations became viral, with many students of Columbia saying that her stance on the armed conflict was “too radical.” Many of the students have been claiming that the Israeli government is committing an “ethnic cleansing” and a “genocide” in Gaza. Some have also said that Palestinians are currently living under the “oppression” of an “apartheid state.”
The former secretary of state is currently a professor of practice at Columbia’s School of International and Public Affairs. She started teaching her class “Inside the Situation Room” at the beginning of the academic year in September. Clinton is also a presidential fellow at the university’s World Projects.
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