Shut it down: JVP’s Grand Central action demanding ceasefire generated wall-to-wall coverage


Over the last three weeks, the Israeli military has killed over 8,000 Palestinians in Gaza, among them over 3,000 children. On Friday night, Israel cut off electricity in Gaza — and then escalated its genocidal bombardment even further. In the face of such horrors, there can be no business as usual.

During Friday rush hour, JVP took over Grand Central Station in New York City. Thousands of people filled the station with chants of “ceasefire now” and “let Gaza live,” until the main terminal was fully shut down. After the police shut down all entrances to the station, thousands more congregated outside in an impromptu rally, while inside the station, almost 400 people were arrested, making this the largest action of civil disobedience in NYC since the Iraq War.

Below is a roundup of media coverage related to the October 27 action, which was organized by JVP-NY and supported by comrades from other organizations, as well as many, many members of our community.

‘Let Gaza Live’: Calls for Cease-Fire Fill Grand Central Terminal, The New York Times, October 27, 2023.

The demonstration, organized by Jewish Voice for Peace, came as Israel ramped up its military operations inside Gaza. The protesters filled the train station, chanting, “Cease-fire now” and “Let Gaza live.” Most wore black shirts that read “Not in our name.” One police officer estimated that there were as many as 1,000 protesters.

NYC protesters demand Israeli cease-fire, at least 200 detained after filling Grand Central station, Associated Press, October 28, 2023.

“Hundreds of Jews and friends are taking over Grand Central Station in a historic sit-in calling for a ceasefire,” advocacy group Jewish Voice for Peace said on social media.

The scene echoed last week’s sit-in on Capitol Hill in Washington, where Jewish advocacy groups, including Jewish Voice for Peace and If Not Now, poured into a congressional office building. More than 300 people were arrested for illegally demonstrating.

New York police arrest hundreds after Israel-Hamas protest at Grand Central, Al Jazeera, October 28, 2023.

“No more weapons. No more war. Ceasefire is what we’re fighting for,” they chanted, punching the air. Banners were hung from the concourse’s sweeping staircase, and across the departures board.

Protesters shut New York’s Grand Central, seeking Gaza ceasefire, Reuters, October 27, 2023.

“Grand Central Terminal is closed until further notice due to a protest,” the MTA said on its website, urging commuters to use alternate stations and plan for extra travel time.

“Mourn the dead, and fight like hell for the living,” read one banner raised inside the building.

Jewish Voice for Peace Plans Massive Manhattan Protest to Demand Gaza Ceasefire, Truthout, October 27, 2023.

The protest comes as Israeli forces intensified their bombardment of Gaza on Friday, launching a huge number of strikes on Northern Gaza that some are saying are the biggest yet. Around the same time, the Palestine Telecommunications Company announced a “complete” collapse of cellular, landline and internet services in Gaza due to the strikes, and the Israeli military appears to be set for a ground invasion.

More national coverage

‘Let Gaza live’: protesters take over New York’s Grand Central station, The Guardian, October 28, 2023.

Sit-In Rally at Grand Central Terminal Calls for Israel-Hamas Cease-Fire, Wall Street Journal, October 28, 2023.

Hundreds of demonstrators arrested at New York’s Grand Central Terminal on Friday, NYPD says, CNN, October 28, 2023.

Eye Opener: Protesters flooded Grand Central Station in NYC calling for a ceasefire to war, CBS News, October 28, 2023.

More worldwide protests against Israel-Hamas war, CBS News, October 28, 2023.

NYC protesters demand Israeli cease-fire, at least 200 detained after filling Grand Central station, ABC News, October 28, 2023.

Israel-Hamas war protest closes NYC’s Grand Central Terminal, NBC News, October 27, 2023.

Manifestantes exigen alto el fuego en Gaza con protesta masiva en NY que deja 200 detenidos, Los Angeles Times, October 28, 2023.

Protesters Occupy NYC’s Grand Central Station Demanding Ceasefire In Israel-Hamas War, Forbes, October 28, 2023.

Hundreds Get Criminal Summons at Jewish Group’s Protest for Palestinians, Newsweek, October 28, 2023.

Tens of Thousands Protest for Palestinians Across London and New York, Mother Jones, October 28, 2023.

‘Never Again for Anyone’: Jewish Protesters Demanding Gaza Cease-Fire Arrested in Grand Central Station, Common Dreams, October 28, 2023.

Pose star Indya Moore detained as protesters flood Grand Central calling for Israel-Hamas ceasefire, AOL, October 28, 2023.

War in Israel: Massive Grand Central Station rush hour protest leads to arrests as protesters seek Middle East ceasefire following terrorist attacks, The Indypendent, October 28, 2023.

Israel war: Grand Central Station in New York closed as protesters take over entrance, Washington Examiner, October 28, 2023.

Protests Surrounding the Conflict in Israel Are Increasing in Magnitude Globally, National Public Radio, October 31, 2023.

“Not in Our Name”: 400 Arrested at Jewish-Led Sit-in at NYC’s Grand Central Demanding Gaza Ceasefire, Democracy Now, October 30, 2023.

Democrats Like Rashida Tlaib, AOC Split With Biden Over Israel Ceasefire Calls, Teen Vogue, October 31, 2023.

Indya Moore Was One of Hundreds Arrested at an NYC Rally for an Israeli Ceasefire, them, October 30, 2023.

Palestinian Liberation Is Queer Liberation, Autostraddle, October 31, 2023.

Hundreds arrested at NYC’s Grand Central as pro-Palestinian rallies take place across the globe, JTA, October 29, 2023.

Hand in Hand: Protesters Come Together In Support of Palestine, the Nation, October 31, 2023.

Protesters Demanding Ceasefire in Gaza Shut Down NYC’s Grand Central Terminal, the Messenger, October 27, 2023.

International coverage

JVP: 300 Jewish activists arrested at anti-war protest that shut Grand Central Station, Haaretz, October 28, 2023.

“We refuse to allow our own pain and trauma to be used to justify attacks against another people,” said Jay Saper of JVP. “We are here to say: Not in Our Name.”

New York State Senators Jabari Brisport, Robert Jackson and Julia Salazar, along with State Assembly Members Zohran Mamdani and Emily Gallagher, as well as City Council members Tiffany Caban, Alexa Aviles, Sandy Nurse, and Chi Osse joined the protest.

Huge pro-Palestine protest shuts down New York’s Grand Central station, The Telegraph, October 28, 2023.

Rabbis launched the event by lighting Shabbat candles and reciting the Jewish prayer for the dead, known as the kaddish.

“While Shabbat is typically a day of rest, we cannot afford to rest while genocide is unfolding in our names,” said Rabbi May Ye in a statement released by organisers.

“The lives of Palestinians and Israelis are intertwined, and safety can only come from justice, equality, and freedom for all.”

Cientos bloquean la estación Grand Central de NYC y piden un alto el fuego en Gaza, Univision, October 27, 2023.

Pose star Indya Moore detained as protesters flood Grand Central calling for Israel-Hamas ceasefire, The Independent, October 28, 2023.

200+ Jewish protestors arrested in New York after demanding ceasefire, Al Madayeen, October 28, 2023.

New York police arrest hundreds at Jewish protest urging Gaza ceasefire, France 24, October 28, 2023.

Protesters shut New York’s Grand Central, urging Gaza ceasefire, The New Arab, October 28, 2023.

US police detain over 300 activists demanding Gaza ceasefire at NYC’s Grand Central Station, Roya News, October 28, 2023.

VIDEO: Thousands of Jewish Americans demonstrate at New York’s Grand Central station, demand ceasefire in Gaza, Gulf Today, October 28, 2023.

Jewish Americans arrested after mass sit-in protest demanding ceasefire in Gaza, Middle East Monitor, October 28, 2023.

Grand Central, NYC: Protestors Call for Ceasefire Now After UN Resolution, Times Now World, October 28, 2023.

Anti-war protesters storm Grand Central as station SHUT DOWN – Hundreds arrested, GB News, October 28, 2023.

Urging ceasefire in Gaza, protest held by anti-Zionist group shutters NYC’s Grand Central, Times of Israel, October 28, 2023.

Dozens of anti-war protesters arrested at Grand Central Station in NYC – in pictures, The National UAE, October 28, 2023.

Arrests Made at Protest for Gaza Ceasefire at New York’s Grand Central Terminal, Yahoo! News UK, October 28, 2023.

200 held as Jewish group shuts NYC’s Grand Central calling for Gaza ceasefire, Times of Israel, October 28, 2023.

Israel-Hamas war: Protesters shut New York’s Grand Central, Times of India, October 28, 2023.

Jewish group holds pro-Palestine protest at New York’s Grand Central, India Today, October 28, 2023.

Pro-Palestinian protesters call for ceasefire at Grand Central Terminal, Jerusalem Post, October 28, 2023.

متظاهرون يغلقون محطة غراند سنترال بنيويورك للمطالبة بوقف إطلاق النار في غزة, CNN Business Arabic, October 28, 2023.

إغلاق محطة “غراند سنترال” خلال تظاهرة داعمة لغزة في نيويورك, al Hurra, October 28, 2023.

Anti-zionist groups leads NYC ceasefire protest; hundreds arrested, Jordan News, October 28, 2023.

Manifestantes piden en EE.UU. cese al fuego en la Franja de Gaza, teleSURtv, October 28, 2023.

「ガザ停戦を」各地で抗議デモ NYでは警察が主要駅を封鎖, 47 News, October 28, 2023.

Pro-Palestine and Jewish protestors are ARRESTED in NYC after hundreds stormed Grand Central to demand a ceasefire – as Israel pummels Gaza with ‘unprecedented’ airstrikes, steps up ground operations and ‘cuts all communications’, Daily Mail, October 28, 2023.

Una protesta en la Grand Central Station de Nueva York exige el alto el fuego en Gaza, El Periodico, October 28, 2023.

‘No en nuestro nombre’: Judíos protestan en Grand Central de Nueva York por bombardeos de Israel en Gaza, El Financiero, October 27, 2023.

Jewish Activists Protest at Foreign Office Calling for a Ceasefire, Novara Media, October 31, 2023.

Local coverage

300+ arrested after peace activists hold protests in Grand Central calling for cease-fire, ABC 7, October 28, 2023.

Photos: Grand Central cease-fire protest, NBC 4, October 28, 2023.

Over 200 arrested at Grand Central rally for Gaza ceasefire, CBS 2, October 28, 2023.

Peace activists in NYC rally at Grand Central station, demand cease-fire, FOX 5, October 28, 2023.

Hundreds rally at Grand Central to call for ceasefire, NY 1, October 28, 2023.

Jewish peace activists hold sit-in protest at Grand Central to demand ceasefire in Israel-Hamas conflict, PIX 11, October 27, 2023.

Protesters flood Grand Central, calling for Israel-Hamas ceasefire—and leading MTA to close terminal, Gothamist, October 27, 2023.

Sit-In at Grand Central Calling for Ceasefire in Gaza, NBC 4, October 28, 2023.

Grand Central Terminal shut down due to pro-Palestinian protests, the New York Daily News, October 27, 2023.

Pro-Palestinian protesters shut down Grand Central Terminal during evening rush, the New York Post, October 27, 2023.

Pro-Palestinian rally held inside Grand Central Terminal, CBS 2, October 28, 2023.

Dozens taken into custody during rally inside Grand Central Station, CBS 2, October 28, 2023.

About 100 taken into custody at rally in Grand Central Terminal, CBS 2, October 28, 2023.

200 arrested after peace activists hold protests in Grand Central, ABC 7, October 28, 2023.

Israel-Hamas ceasefire protesters pack Grand Central during rush hour | NBC New York, NBC 4, October 28, 2023.

More than 300 pro-Palestinian protesters arrested in Grand Central: NYPD, New York Post, October 28, 2023.

Grand Central reopens after protest demanding a ceasefire in Gaza, Crain’s New York Business, October 28, 2023.


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