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Covering Columbia's campus protests as a student and GZERO reporter
Covering Columbia's campus protests as a student and GZERO reporter | GZERO Reports

Covering Columbia's campus protests as a student and GZERO reporter

The past few weeks of student protests, counter-protests, and police activity at Columbia have been the tensest moments the University has seen in over 50 years. What’s it like to be a student and graduating senior during this historic moment?

When GZERO writer Riley Callanan began her senior year at Barnard, the women’s college within Columbia, she never expected it would end this way: thousands of student protesters, an encampment and takeover of an administrative building, the attention of the national news media, armed police officers swarming campus, and, ultimately, a canceled graduation ceremony. Now, as she tells colleague Alex Kliment on GZERO World, instead of senior galas and grad parties, Columbia students are having intense debates over the Israel-Palestine conflict, antisemitism, and free speech.

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NYPD officers arrive at Columbia University on April 30, 2024, to clear demonstrators from an occupied hall on campus.

John Lamparski/NurPhoto via Reuters

Chaos erupts overnight on US campuses. What’s next for student protesters?

Last night, hundreds of New York City Police officers entered Columbia University in riot gear, one night after students occupied a building on campus and 13 days after students pitched an encampment that threw kerosene on a student movement against the war in Gaza on college campuses nationwide.

The police came in droves through the campus gates and directly through the windows of the building that student protesters had barricaded themselves in on Monday. They swept the encampment and the occupied building, detaining protesters with zip ties. Students still on campus were told to go to their dorms or leave the premises. I found myself pushed further and further away from my school, and I watched from beyond the barricades as dozens were arrested and marched onto NYPD detainment buses.

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Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives Mike Johnson (R-La.) attends a news conference at Columbia University. April 24, 2024.

REUTERS/David 'Dee' Delgado

Chaos on Campus: Speaker Johnson's visit fans the flames at Columbia as protests go global

“There are so many cameras on campus my mom is going to find out I vape on the cover of the New York Times,” said a senior at Columbia University who I shall keep anonymous for her mother’s sake. But her remark accurately summarizes what it's like on campus these days.

On Tuesday, the cameras were out for House Speaker Mike Johnson and several other GOP lawmakers, who held a press conference about antisemitism on the steps of Columbia’s iconic Low Library.

Johnson demanded that the White House crack down on campus protests and called for the resignation of Columbia President Nemat "Minouche" Shafik.

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Why the US is sending aid to Ukraine, Israel, and Taiwan
Why the US is sending aid to Ukraine, Israel, and Taiwan | Ian Bremmer | Quick Take

Why the US is sending aid to Ukraine, Israel, and Taiwan

Ian Bremmer's Quick Take: Hi, everybody. Ian Bremmer here. And a Quick Take to kick off your week. A big $90 billion package that has been approved by the US House of Representatives, going through the Senate shortly after months of debate and, all of the package, all three major pieces of it, have some significant, complicated features.

First of all, the biggest piece for Ukraine, $60 billion, massive military support.

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