Protesters stormed the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in Manhattan on Thursday to call attention to the Gaza War, forcing marchers, floats and balloons to veer from their path as activists glued themselves to the pavement on the parade route.
Demonstrators jumped the barricades at Sixth Ave. near W. 45th St. in an attempt to block the festive cavalcade around 10 a.m.
Some demonstrators glued their hands to the asphalt, making it more challenging for police trying to round them up.
The demonstration forced some of the parade’s 26 floats, 32 balloons, and 8,000 participants to navigate around the protesters as cops struggled to remove them from the street.
As the floats and marching bands maneuvered around them, the protesters – clad in white jumpsuits emblazoned with the words “colonialism,” “militarism” and “ethnic cleansing” – poured fake blood on each other and the roadway, videos show.
Some held up a banner reading “Liberation for Palestine and planet.”
Another dozen protesters rushed the parade route and unfurled a banner that read “Genocide then genocide now,” and chanted “Free Palestine,” video shared by the group Writers Against the War on Gaza shows.
Cops hauled the protesters off the parade route and took an unknown number into custody. Police Department spokesmen couldn’t say later Thursday how many were in custody, or what charges were brought against them, if any.
Off the parade route on Thursday, protesters opposed to the Gaza War vandalized the New York Public Library’s main branch on Fifth Ave. near W. 42nd St., leaving red handprints and the words “Free Palestine” scrawled on columns there.
Another protest organized by the group Within Our Lifetime swelled to hundreds at Madison Square Park before marching, video shared online showed.
Protesters later marched through Midtown, stopping to chant outside The New York Times building on Eighth Ave. at W. 41st St. before heading east on W. 42nd St. and massing in Times Square.
This year’s Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade was the 97th since its debut 1924 – the parade was suspended for several years during World War II.
Seven new balloons were among the 32 balloons that floated over the parade route on Thursday. The newcomers included Beagle Scout Snoopy, Blue Cat and Chugs from Cool Cats NFTs, Kung Fu Panda’s Po, and Leo from Netflix’s eponymous animated comedy.
The list of performers who signed on to entertain the estimated 3 million spectators who lined the parade route included Cher, Chicago, Amanda Shaw, En Vogue, Jabari Banks, Enhypen, and Drew Holcomb and The Neighbors.