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Video: Jewish Students at NYC College Cornered by Pro-Hamas Protesters, Told to Hide in Attic

Jewish students at Cooper Union, a private New York City college, were locked inside a library Wednesday as pro-Palestine and pro-Hamas protesters beat their fists on the doors, screamed, and tried to gain entry.

New York police, however, told The Daily Signal that officers didn’t intervene because “no threats of physical violence were made.”

Videos shot by terrified students trapped in the library initially were shared first on social media Wednesday afternoon by Jake Novak, former media director at the Israeli Consulate in New York.

Novak reported that the New York Police Department was called “as soon as the protesters stormed the main Cooper Union building, but [officers] did nothing.”

New York City Council member Inna Vernikov, a Republican who was born in Ukraine, said Thursday morning that she had spoken by that time with four Jewish students, three of whom were barricaded in the library. No one was arrested in the incident on the Manhattan campus, Vernikov said.

The NYPD responded in writing Thursday morning to a request for comment from The Daily Signal, saying that “no threats of physical violence were made.” The statement from police said:

Community Affairs Officers were present while the demonstration took place inside. The school staff allowed the demonstration to take place. The students dispersed after the incident. No property damage was reported, no criminal reports were filed and no threats of physical violence were made. Additionally there were no injuries reported.

Novak said Cooper Union librarians “bolted the doors” to prevent pro-Palestine and pro-Hamas protesters from entering the library, then told “identifiable” Jewish students to “hide in the attic if they wanted to.”

On social media, this decision drew sharp criticism and comparisons to Anne Frank hiding from the Nazis and other Holocaust situations during World War II.

Both Novak and Vernikov said an unidentified dean at The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art had said he “could not stop” the pro-Hamas protest “because it was not slated to enter school property.”

The protesters, however, stormed campus buildings shortly after the protest began.

Vernikov said Cooper Union faculty members not only canceled class to accommodate a walkout for the protest, but “encouraged students to participate and even offered extra credit” for participating. She also noted that faculty members joined the protest.

The Daily Signal sought comment from Cooper Union, including information on which classes were canceled and which faculty members encouraged students to participate. College officials didn’t respond by publication time.

The Jewish students barricaded in the Cooper Union library were evacuated through tunnels Wednesday evening, while the university and police left the protesters alone, Vernikov and others said.

Campuses across America recently have been home to pro-Hamas rallies following the terrorist group’s Oct. 7 surprise attacks in southern Israel that killed 1,400 civilians, including women and children, and took about 200 hostages. Israel declared war on Hamas and began air assaults on the Gaza Strip, which the neighboring Jewish state had allowed Hamas to govern despite past armed conflicts.

Vernikov reported Thursday morning that Jewish students at Cooper Union were staying home for fear of safety, and some are dropping classes. Three students who were barricaded in the library told her that they “will never walk in there feeling alright again,” Vernikov said.

This isn’t the first time Cooper Union has been wrapped in controversy over radical politics.

In September, Cooper Union hired a professor who only months earlier threatened to “chop” a New York Post reporter with a machete. Shellyne Rodriguez, a leftist professor who also was caught on video cursing at pro-life protesters and damaging the property of pro-life activists, was fired from her job as an adjunct professor of visual arts at Hunter College. She now teaches a sculpture course at Cooper Union.

  • US Marine says:

    Obviously Cooper isn’t an institution of higher learning. It’s a nest of anti American thugs.

  • BrianT says:

    intimidation with prejusice IS a Hate Crime! And if your on an accademic campus “Unauthorized” and attempting to harrass or intimidatelike banging on doors and shouting insultive and intimidating comments you should be arrested. At MINIMUM for Public nuicencecy. NOBODY did anything about this? REALLY? What if the public took it into their own hads to defend the students hiding in fear in that building? THEN would the police have a problem wth that? Just a thought. These students do not deserve to be intimidated because of their religion. THAT is a direct violation of their Constitutional Rights as Americans. And we as America should at LEAST stand for our Constitution when we see it being violated… and also the peopel that were violated by offenders that are hating based on Religion.

  • wjr56 says:

    Expel those antisemitic, democrat scum students!!!

  • MBeached says:

    This is what happens when our Federally funded university faculties poison the minds of the students. I have seen so many students attend places like Harvard and Princeton, including my THD brother, that leave or graduate with a very poor world view because they believe the BS. These universities should have their funding stopped until the BS is over.

    I have a granddaughter in a major university studying for her masters degree. For four years I have remained in close communication with her because she questions the faculty members on the most outrageous statements they make. I instructed her to ask questions saying “prove it” or “show me an example of what you just stated”. Most of the time she can talk them down or get a retraction. She is usually the only student questioning their far-left ideology and the reason she has this ability is because she is Christian, informed and walks the walk; and she is on the Deans List with perfect 4.0 GPA. She will not listen to the BS, does not believe them one bit if it gets excessive and provides written reviews for ALL her professors and courses back to the faculty. This university is not one on the “far-left hot list” but has a few faculty members that spew the far-left talking points and attempt to change history.

  • McKinley Brossette says:

    They are doing a hate crime and need to be charged, If they did that to black or LGBTQ students they would be charged with a hate crime.

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