Jewish Voice for Peace activists hold a banner reading, "Jews to Biden: Stop Arming Genocide."

Jewish Voice for Peace activists and allies protest at NBC headquarters in New York City on February 26, 2024.

(Photo: Jewish Voice for Peace New York)

50 Arrested in Jewish-Led Protest of Gaza Genocide at Biden TV Taping

"The president needs to start answering to the American people—not the far-right Israeli government indiscriminately bombing the people of Gaza," said Jewish Voice for Peace.

The historic wave of Jewish-led protests against U.S. complicity in Isreal's genocidal war on Gaza continued Monday as members of the group Jewish Voice for Peace were arrested for occupying NBC headquarters in New York City in a bid to disrupt the taping of President Joe Biden's appearance on a popular late-night TV show.

JVP activists wearing shirts reading "Not In Our Name" unfurled banners and chanted slogans inside 30 Rockefeller Center in Midtown Manhattan, where Biden was taping an interview with the eponymous host of the "Late Night Show With Seth Meyers."

"Biden, Biden, you can't hide, you are funding genocide," the protesters chanted. Banners implored the president to "Stop Arming Genocide" and push for a "Lasting Cease-Fire" in Gaza, where more than 100,000 Palestinians have been killed or wounded and around 90% of the population has been forcibly displaced since the October 7 attacks on Israel.

"President Biden's deadly foreign policy has expedited weapons sales to Israel," said Jewish Voice for Peace New York, which also criticized the administration for ignoring the International Court of Justice's provisional ruling last month that Israel is "plausibly" perpetrating genocide, suspending funding to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East, and vetoing three U.N. cease-fire resolutions.

"The president needs to start answering to the American people—not the far-right Israeli government indiscriminately bombing the people of Gaza, destroying 70% of infrastructure, including hospitals, universities, and the electricity and water grids," the group added.

Jay Saper of JVP said Monday that "our Jewish tradition teaches us that life is precious."

"As Jewish New Yorkers, we are absolutely outraged that President Biden is actively supporting a genocide against the Palestinians of Gaza," he added.

In addition to taping Tuesday's "Late Night" episode, Biden and Meyers visited the on-site Van Leeuwen ice cream parlor, where the president ordered mint chip in a sugar cone. While there, a reporter asked when there would be a cease-fire in Gaza.

"My national security adviser tells me that we're close, we're close; it's not done yet," Biden replied. "My hope is by next Monday we'll have a cease-fire."

Early in the war, Biden proclaimed his "rock-solid and unwavering" commitment to Israel while refusing to call for a cease-fire. As Israeli bombs and bullets killed and maimed tens of thousands of Palestinians—mostly women and children—the president asked for over $14 billion in additional U.S. military aid to Israel, which already receives nearly $4 billion from Washington annually. Biden also repeatedly circumvented Congress to expedite emergency military assistance to the key Middle East ally.

Even after calling Israel's bombardment of Gaza "indiscriminate" and "over the top," Biden has continued to provide the country with military and diplomatic support.

Demonstrations led by JVP and other Jewish-led groups, chiefly IfNotNow, have filled the streets of cities from coast to coast, shut down major transit hubs, occupied landmarks, disrupted Biden's campaign events, and much more in the name of demanding an immediate cease-fire and an end to U.S. complicity in the Gaza genocide.

"The president needs to start answering to the American people. Not the genocidal Israeli government," JVP activist Eve Feldberg said on Monday. "And the people have made it clear: We want a cease-fire now and weapons embargo on Israel."

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