Biden Says States Shouldn’t Deploy National Guard Against Anti-Israel Protests

[Photo Credit: Screenshot | White House]

Reagan Reese White House Correspondent
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During unexpected remarks, President Joe Biden said that states should not seek to deploy the National Guard to help handle anti-Israel protests that have overtaken college campuses.

Across the country, anti-Israel protesters have set up encampments on college campuses, some have overtaken buildings, refused to comply with trespassing violations and replaced the American flag with the Palestinian flag. Biden addressed the protests for the first time in nine days, in unplanned remarks, condemning violent and unlawful protests, but adding that the National Guard shouldn’t intervene.

“Violent protest is not protected. Peaceful protest is. It’s against the law when violence occurs. Destroying property is not peaceful protest. It’s against the law. Vandalism. Trespassing. Breaking windows, Shutting down campuses. Forcing the cancellation of classes and graduations. None of this is a peaceful protest,” Biden said during his remarks.

“Threatening people. Intimidating people. Instilling fear in people. It’s not peaceful protest. It’s against the law,” the president added.

The president added that the protests have not changed his views on the conflict.

“Mr. President, do you think the National Guard should intervene?” a reporter asked.

“No,” Biden responded before exiting the room.

As students stage their protests across the country, hundreds have been arrested for trespassing and refusing to disband their encampments. The University of Southern California canceled its main stage graduation plans amid the protests and concerns about safety precautions. At the University of North Carolina, anti-Israel protesters knocked over barriers in order to take down the American flag and replace it with the Palestinian flag. (RELATED: Columbia Anti-Israel Protesters Seize Building, Worker Reportedly Says They Held Him ‘Hostage’)

“There’s a right to protest, but not the right to create chaos,” Biden said during his

White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre fielded questions during a Wednesday press briefing about the president’s whereabouts amid the protests.

“He is monitoring the situation closely, so is his team,” Jean-Pierre told reporters.

The president last addressed the unrest popping up throughout the country during his remarks at an Earth Day event on April 22.

“I condemn the antisemitic protests, that’s why I’ve set up a program to deal with that. I also condemn those who don’t understand what’s going on with the Palestinians,” Biden said.