‘New Communism’ Revolutionaries Instigating Pro-Palestinian Protests at Columbia University

‘New Communism’ Revolutionaries Instigating Pro-Palestinian Protests at Columbia University
Police control barricades outside Columbia University after a protesting woman was arrested in New York on April 29, 2024. (Enrico Trigoso/The Epoch Times)

NEW YORK—Communist believers from a group called “Revcom Corps” are calling for “physical revolution … at the soonest possible time” in the United States and were handing out fliers in support of pro-Palestinian protests at Columbia University on Monday.

The fliers say “From Palestine to the U.S., Revolution, Nothing Less!”

Many of the pro-Palestinian protesters at Columbia were not willing to talk to the media and wore masks, making it harder to identify protesters.

One fact of the situation is that a lot of employers in New York City are Jewish, so some students said that if drones took photos of them, they might risk being unemployed in the future.

“They all wear masks. It was chaos and anarchy and the University lost control,” Johnathan Lederer, a financial engineering Jewish student, told The Epoch Times. “Supposedly, there were checkpoints and only students could get in. We know ‘students’ who were not students getting in and everyone was wearing a mask. You can’t identify people [and] people were acting with impunity. So it was a mess.”

Many of the pro-Palestinian protesters were unwilling to condemn Hamas when asked directly. No condemnation of the terrorist group was audible or visible from the protesters holding Palestine flags at the Columbia campus.

The communist flier reads: “Why is this happening? Because fundamental interests of U.S. capitalism-imperialism are at stake. Because Israel plays a ‘special role’ as a heavily armed bastion of support for U.S. imperialism in a strategically important part of the world (the ‘Middle East’). And Israel has been a key force in the commission of atrocities which have helped to maintain the oppressive rule of U.S. imperialism in many other parts of the world.”

Revcom Corps calls for “Emancipation of Humanity,” and says that anti-Zionism is not the same as anti-Semitism. A leader of theirs, Bob Avakian, claims to have developed “a new communism.”

Another of the fliers says that their plan “includes the analysis and strategy for a real revolution in this country (yes, a ‘physical revolution’ … and Bob Avakian has led the work to make that real, at the soonest possible time.”

Mr. Avakian wrote about the infamous Oct. 7, 2023, Hamas attack on partygoers in Israel on his website. “These atrocities should be condemned. But this is not some kind of ‘new Holocaust’ involving genocide against Jewish people—and it is nowhere close to the horrific suffering that Israel has imposed for generations on the Palestinian people.”

Mr. Avakian serves as the chairman of the Revolutionary Communist Party, a Maoist communist party established in the United States in 1975, advocating against capitalism. In his book “From Ike to Mao and Beyond” (2005), Mr. Avakian recounts his journey from being a middle-class California youth who embraced leftist ideologies during the 1960s. Initially involved in movements like the Free Speech Movement and Students for a Democratic Society at Berkeley, he later aligned himself with the Black Panther Party before ultimately founding the Revolutionary Union, which later evolved into the Revolutionary Communist Party, according to KeyWiki.

Some protesters in the crowd appeared to share similarities to agitators of other communist groups like Antifa, while others appeared to be expressing genuine concern for Palestinian civilian lives in Gaza who have been caught in the crossfire.

Many of their chants are very aggressive, such as “NYPD will fall!” or the well-known “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free.”

A poster from the protesters inside the Columbia campus says that they will remain until Columbia concedes to their demands of “Divesting all finances, including the endowment, from corporations that profit from Israeli apartheid, genocide, and occupation in Palestine,” “Complete transparency for all of Columbia’s financial investments,” and “Amnesty for all students and faculty disciplined or fired in the movement for Palestinian liberation.”

Demands At The Columbia University Campus
A poster with demands at the Columbia University campus on April 29, 2024. (Enrico Trigoso/The Epoch Times)

Amanda, a pro-Palestinian protestor who studies computer science at Columbia, says that the encampment was “very harmonious” and that there were several Jewish students who were also against Israel’s actions, adding that people with different cultural backgrounds conducted their prayers at the encampment.

Other Groups

At least one other communist group calling for a socialist revolution in the United States is known to support the pro-Palestinian protests.

The People’s Forum, self-described as a hub for grassroots movements among working-class and marginalized communities, co-organized a “Shut it down for Palestine” event in Manhattan in November 2023. They participated in a march in Washington, D.C., alongside tens of thousands of protesters in support of Hamas, according to the Washington Examiner.

The People’s Forum has also come under scrutiny for hosting events that downplay China’s treatment of ethnic Uyghurs and for receiving significant funding from groups allegedly linked to Chinese propaganda efforts. Furthermore, the organization got at least $12 million of funding from the investment banking company Goldman Sachs operating in New York City.

The People’s Forum promotes Marxism, radicalism, feminism, and socialist books. A feminist group, Palestinian Feminist Collective, also supports pro-Palestinian protests.

Communists are known to subvert people’s good intentions in groups like feminists and environmentalists. In the case of communist feminists, their main goal is to destroy the traditional family in order to prevent unity and control the children’s thoughts.

Chinese Communist Tentacles in NYC

House Ways and Means Committee Republicans have reached out to IRS Commissioner Danny Werfel, seeking details on the agency’s procedures regarding tax-exempt organizations, specifically those believed to be receiving financial backing from the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).

The letter, dated April 24, highlights concerns about potential foreign influence on U.S.-based tax-exempt entities operating under Code Sec. 501. Led by Chairman Jason Smith (R-Mo.), Oversight Subcommittee Chairman David Schweikert (R-Ariz.), and Ways and Means member Nicole Malliotakis (R-N.Y.), the inquiry was supported by all 25 Republican members of the Ways and Means Committee.

They also cite a New York Times report on tech mogul Roy Singham’s tax-exempt organizations they say shows “Singham works closely ‘with the Chinese government media machine and is financing its propaganda worldwide’ and … attended a CCP propaganda forum in July 2023.” They specifically call out an organization they contend Mr. Singham funds, The People’s Forum, linked in a New York Post story to anti-Israel events.

To that end, the letter requests specific information from the IRS on its knowledge of the Energy Foundation and The People’s Forum’s funding sources and relationships with the CCP. The letter also asks whether the IRS has an official definition of anti-Semitism and whether it considers it when looking into an organization’s tax-exempt status claim.

Reuters contributed to this report. 

From The Epoch Times

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