2024 Election

UC Berkley: Jewish Students Forced to Evacuate Building Through Tunnels During IDF Soldier Speech


Jewish students at University of California-Berkeley (UC Berkeley) were forced to leave campus after a mob of pro-Palestinian, anti-Israel protesters shut down their speaking event featuring Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) soldier Ran Bar-Yoshafat.

A speaking event, titled “Israel at War: Combat the Lies,” at Zellerbach Playhouse on the UC Berkeley campus was shut down Monday night after a mob of protesters stormed the area chanting, “Long live the Intifada!” and breaking glass on the doors of the building in which the event was set to be held.

Additional footage posted to social media revealed that some of the anti-Israel protesters had entered the venue before the event could start.

“You guys fucking leave,” a protester clad in a keffiyeh can be heard saying to a student, who replied, “No, this is a private event, you are not welcome here.”

“This is a private event,” the student continued. “You should leave. Stop terrorizing Jewish students. You are the common-day Nazi. You’re a Nazi, leave. My grandparents were Holocaust survivors. Stop harassing us. Leave.”

Other video footage shows protesters banging on the glass doors outside the building.

The anti-Israel protesters were seen holding signs that read, “Students Against Zionism,” “Stop the Genocide,” and “Long Live the Intifada!”

Protesters were also seen breaking the glass on the doors, and then appearing to try to run off, seemingly wanting to avoid responsibility for the destroyed property.

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“You got what you deserve!” one protester yelled.

The pro-Palestinian protesters then began chanting, “Long live the Intifada!”

Another protester was heard shouting something about people’s ancestors and “bloodshed,” adding, “Your arrogance and your shame you will tell your grandchildren you did nothing about!”

Bar-Yoshafat told Daily Wire, “I don’t think this about the IDF, Jews or even Israel. This is them lacking Western values like freedom of speech. For them, I am guilty until proven innocent.”

The IDF soldier added that the location of the event had been moved several times due to security concerns, and that he had been asked to arrive on campus wearing a hat in order to conceal his identity.

Bar-Yoshafat went on to say that he saw about 40 student protesters upon entering the room in which his speaking event was supposed to be held, and that there were hundreds more outside the building.

“I just felt really bad for these kids because they were scared,” he said. “Girls were crying from being attacked and I think the kid that was spat on was just so shocked. I don’t think the students anticipated so many people being violent, they thought they would just chant outside.”

Bar-Yoshafat also claimed that UC Berkeley allowing the event to be shut down was the school basically saying that “those banging on doors and spitting on Jews are allowed to continue, but I had to leave even though I was just peacefully speaking.”

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“Instead of giving more security to us, they gave a prize to those who were violent,” he said.

Bar-Yoshafat added that he and the event attendees had to find a secret location off campus in order for the speaking engagement to proceed.

“Berkeley is on the wrong side of history, and it’s not a safe place for Jews anymore,” Bar-Yoshafat asserted.

UC Berkeley’s Hillel chapter released a statement, saying, “We are saddened and horrified that an event with Israeli speaker, Ran Bar Yosharfat, was shut down by protestors.”

“Breaking windows, intimidating students, and inciting a mob are never acceptable and have no place in civil discourse,” the student group continued.

“We are proud of the students who organized the event and remained steadfast in the face of bullying and intimidation of Jewish and Israeli students,” they added. “Berkeley Hillel remains committed every day to supporting Jewish students’ ability to fully express their Jewish identity without fear.”

In 1964, Berkeley was the home of the Free Speech Movement, which held that any political speech should be tolerated on campus. The movement inspired a generation of activists in the 1960s, who in turn inspired many activists today. Ironically, many of those activists now oppose free speech.

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Ella Ford is a mother of two, a Christian conservative writer with degrees in American History, Social and Behavioral Science and Liberal Studies, based in the Tulsa, Oklahoma area.

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