Palestinian Flag Raised Over US Flag at University

( – On April 27, pro-Palestinian protesters raised three Palestinian flags in its place near University Hall and the Harvard Yard encampment.

Students and faculty have set up encampments on college campuses in protest of Israel’s war with Hamas and are calling for the colleges to divest from businesses that conduct business with Israel. Only people with university identification can enter Harvard Yard after pro-Palestinian protesters established the encampment there on April 24, causing access to Harvard Yard to be indefinitely restricted.

The three protesters raised the flags from over the John Harvard statue near the central administration building in Harvard Yard, where the University sometimes flies the flags of the countries of visiting foreign dignitaries and where it flies the American flag. After the protesters raised the three flags, Harvard Yard Operations were called in by Harvard University Police officers to remove the flags.

Protesters yelled “Shame” as the flags were lowered, and chanted what is considered by many to be an antisemitic chant, “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free” and “Free, free Palestine.”

Though a student protester initially attempted to grab the flags from the campus services Harvard staff member who was walking away with them, other protesters urged him to stop.

Administrators showed up to the encampment following the incident to check IDs and handed students a piece of paper warning them of potential disciplinary action that could be taken, including the possibility that degrees could be withheld from graduating seniors.

A Harvard University spokesperson said the students will face disciplinary actions because their actions “are a violation of University policy.”

According to a statement from Harvard, the American flag is raised at 7 a.m. and lowered at 4 p.m. Monday through Friday, and therefore, was “not flying over the hall at the time” of the incident.

Many criticized the raising of the Palestinian flags at Harvard, including Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, who wrote on Twitter that “not a single taxpayer dollar” should be given to Harvard from Congress. While Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan asked, “How is this happening in our country?”

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