Absolute chaos ensued on Wednesday evening, November 16, as police officers responded to the headquarters of the Democratic National Committee in Washington following a pro-Palestinian protest turned violent. According to U.S. Capitol Police, over 150 people were seen illegally and violently demonstrating near the DNC building.
Some protesters claimed that 300 people were present, while videos show approximately 50 police cruisers from The Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) at the scene.
Videos on social media showed protesters shoving police officers and trying to grab hold of metal barricades at the DNC headquarters as law enforcement attempted to remove them from the area. About six officers suffered injuries ranging from minor cuts, pepper spray burns or being punched by demonstrators during this clash.
These violent protests came shortly after Hamas’ attack on Israel on October 7th and many of these individuals wore black shirts with “Cease Fire Now” written across them. Despite one protester insisting that they were peacefully protesting, it was clear that some members of this group had other intentions in mind.
At the Palestine protest at the DNC headquarters, some pretty intense confrontations with cops and arrests underway pic.twitter.com/NBeKNo4SZv
— ????????kareem???????? (@kareem_elrefai) November 16, 2023
Rep. Brad Sherman, D-Calif., told The Associated Press that approximately 100 people – including House leaders, lawmakers and Democratic candidates running for House – had been attending a reception at party headquarters when speeches were interrupted by chants outside. Seven lawmakers had been huddled in the basement before they were evacuated into police SUVs due to safety concerns over these pro-Hamas demonstrators who seemed intent on starting a riot.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) November 11, 2023
Illinois Rep Sean Casten also thanked police for safely escorting him away from this dangerous situation while former Michigan Representative Peter Meijer noted how different this chaotic event was compared to Tuesday’s peaceful “March for Israel.”
Hamas celebrating Veterans Day in NYC! pic.twitter.com/2ewiNWQahe
— @amuse (@amuse) November 11, 2023
Senator Tom Cotton took to social media calling out President Joe Biden for not responding more harshly against these pro-Hamas insurrectionists like he has done with those involved in January 6th cases. He argued that all law enforcement tactics used in those instances should be employed against these individuals who clearly posed a serious danger towards American citizens and our political system alike.