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Pro-Palestinian protests could foreshadow a summer of upheaval

The traffic-snarling pro-Palestinian demonstrations in U.S. cities on Monday could foreshadow a potentially volatile summer of protests, creating a challenge for President Biden and sparking debate over whether some activists' tactics threaten to undermine public support for their movement.

Demonstrators shut down major thoroughfares for hours in cities including San Francisco and New York as part of a global campaign to raise awareness about Israel's war in Gaza on U.S. Tax Day. In Chicago and Seattle, protesters blocked the entrance to international airports, forcing travelers and flight crews to walk to airline terminals or potentially miss their flights. In San Francisco, police had to use welding equipment to free demonstrators from the Bay Bridge after they had locked themselves together with pipes.

The chaos unfolded as the United States heads into a sensitive time related to the presidential election. Biden and former president Donald Trump will appear at their parties' nominating conventions this summer, and both events appear poised to draw a large number of demonstrators. This summer also marks four years since protests exploded nationwide following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis.


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