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Anti-Israel agitators continue nationwide disruptions with escalations at USC, Harvard and Columbia

Multiple U.S. universities were flooded with anti-Israel agitators on Wednesday, with four schools hosting notably chaotic scenes in California, Massachusetts, Texas and New York.

The University of Southern California (USC), Harvard University, the University of Texas at Austin (UT Austin) and Columbia University in New York City were all backdrops with varying degrees of hostility and unruliness amid fierce campus opposition to the Israeli military’s actions in the Middle East.

At USC on Wednesday, mayhem ensued when authorities began cracking down on unlawful activity and arrested protesters. Hundreds of students clashed with USC Department of Public Safety officers as the confrontations escalated.

Some USC protesters were seen falling on the cement sidewalk amid the chaos. A few called for help, while others berated police officers.

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See the chaos that erupted at USC below:

At UT Austin on Wednesday, demonstrators flooded the school’s South Lawn and attempted to set up several tents before being confronted by police. More than 100 protesters participated in the anti-Israel demonstration.

The Austin Police Department (APD) and Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) told Fox News Digital that more than 20 people were arrested in total. The agitators chanted incendiary statements like “Pigs go home!” and “APD, KKK, IDF / they’re all the same.”

See UT Austin protesters confronting police below: 

Republican Gov. Greg Abbott condemned the protest activity on X, writing that the offending individuals “belong in jail.”

“Antisemitism will not be tolerated in Texas. Period,” he wrote. “Students joining in hate-filled, antisemitic protests at any public college or university in Texas should be expelled.”

See the rowdy UT Austin protests below:

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At Harvard on Wednesday, anti-Israel protesters set up a “Gaza solidarity encampment” at Harvard Yard. It began at around 12:49 p.m., according to the Harvard Crimson.

Social media video showed protesters swarming the quadrangle and rapidly setting up tents in a frenetic manner. As of Wednesday night, at least 20 tents were still on Harvard’s campus, but the initial crowd of students had “dispersed,” the Crimson reported.

Demonstrators planned to stay the night and solicited water, food, sleeping bags and tent donations through the Harvard College Palestine Solidarity Committee. The weather in Cambridge was cold and rainy at the time.

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Columbia University, the hotbed of anti-Israel protests over the past week, was also flooded with protesters on Wednesday.

USC protests

U.S. Speaker of the House Mike Johnson arrived at the NYC campus to discuss the ongoing Israel-Hamas war and crisis in Gaza. In his speech, Johnson took aim at school administrators for allowing “threats, the fear and the intimidation of the mob rule to overtake American principles like free speech and the free exchange of ideas and the free exercise of religion.”

“We just can’t allow this kind of hatred and enemy antisemitism to flourish on our campuses, and it must be stopped in its tracks,” Johnson argued.

The Republican leader also said that he planned to speak with President Biden about having the National Guard intervene.

Speaker of the House Mike Johnson leaves Columbia University in New York City

“If this is not contained quickly and if these threats and intimidation are not stopped, there is an appropriate time for the National Guard. We have to bring order to these campuses,” he said. “We cannot allow this to happen around the country.”

In the last few days, the five highest-ranked universities – Princeton, MIT, Harvard, Stanford, and Yale – have all been hotbeds of anti-Israel sentiment. 

More than half of the top 50 U.S. universities have had active anti-Israel protests in the past week.

Fox News Digital’s Bryan Preston and Bradford Betz contributed to this report.

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