How Seattle police aided the neo-Nazis in the anti-Sharia protest

Multiple credible sources have reported that the Seattle police harassed counter-protesters but protected anti-Sharia marchers participating in Saturday’s anti-Sharia law march in Seattle.

https://patch.com/washington/seattle/seattle-anti-sharia-protest-counter-protest-15-pictures

http://komonews.com/news/local/anti-muslim-rally-counter-protests-expected-in-seattle

I got permission to copy the post of a friend of  friend, below.   My apologies for the anonymity and “hearsay” nature of this evidence.  Someone at my work attended the counter-protest and says that the post below is accurate: the police were aiding the neo-Nazis.

From a friend’s post:

“Report on Seattle events today. Multiple times fascists attacked a peaceful protest and were released by police each time. Cops arrested the peace keepers. The fascists were belligerent and picking fights in a totally peaceful crowd. Don’t believe the hype that antifa and the left are instigating violence. These guys were looking for a fight and we tried to not give it to them. (PS to join these so-called Proud Boys you are REQUIRED to attack people)

“Regarding the “anti-Sharia” action organized by a hate group and counter protest today [in Seattle] :

I was a part of the marshal team for the counter protest today and feel it is critical that I get my perspective out there on what happened. The marshal team was comprised of individuals from the Greater Seattle General Defense Committee as well as numerous folks from other organizations from the coalition that organized the action.

Our job was to facilitate the counter protest’s march to and from City Hall Plaza and help work to de-escalate situations and keep participants safe throughout the duration. We had two fantastic, designated police liaisons who before the march started, went to City Hall and spoke with multiple SPD commanders regarding our intentions to keep the rallies separated and safe. They were told by SPD that if the fascists wanted to march, they could, and that we would be expected to keep a block away from them which was in accordance with our own intentions anyways.

Unfortunately, the fascists were NOT held to the same standard by SPD.

While at City Hall Plaza, I personally escorted multiple groups of alt-righters, Proud Boys, and even Joey Gibson himself with his violent motorcycle club buddies through our crowd and helped them safely get to their rally without causing a scene on our end.

One particular group, mostly comprised of Proud Boys, crossed through our lines multiple times. I personally witnessed one of them unplug one of our speakers and violently push multiple people out of his way. During their last foray into our crowd, people moved to stop them from coming in and starting a fight and were immediately hit in the face by two of the Proud Boys. This all happened mere feet from at least 2 dozen SPD officers.

As a marshal, I immediately went to them, identified myself as one of the marshal team, and asked that they help get the assailants away from us. I was met with a response of “If you aren’t letting them march through your crowd, then we can’t stop them from hitting you.” The assailants were both pulled to safety by SPD and allowed to wander off. It’s safe to say that if any group of counter protestors would have tried to shoulder their way through the fascist rally, SPD would NEVER respond in such a manner.

In fact, just last week Portland Police Bureau and DHS officers cooperated with far-right militia members in arresting peaceful anti-fascists for merely being in the vicinity of their rally space. It is clear that they have no actual interest in free speech or peaceful engagement.

Around 12-12:30, we began assembling to escort our community members from MAPS and CAIR who were running an “Ask a Muslim” booth at the rally safely to our dispersal point at Occidental Square. As our march departed, the opposite direction from the hate rally, SPD allowed a group of around 20 of them (including the same Proud Boys, Joey Gibson of Patriot Prayer, and “Tiny”, a violent biker) to stalk our march a block away. This group then went to the Central Saloon and began drinking.

We arrived at Occidental Square and had a few more speakers before we began dispersing. While this was happening, a group of about 10 of the fascists attempted to come down and into the park. While this situation was arising, another group of them led by the same assaultive Proud Boys from before came from the other direction, walked by SPD officers, and went straight into the park and began attacking people. During this altercation, 3 members of the General Defense Committee were violently arrested while the SAME INDIVIDUALS WHO HAD ALREADY ASSAULTED PEOPLE EARLIER IN FRONT OF SPD WERE ALLOWED, AGAIN, TO GO FREE”.

SPD needs to be held accountable. The individuals who assaulted our people, who were part of a beautiful, rowdy, yet very peaceful protest need to be held accountable.

Please, if you can, start contacting your city council members, mayor, and police chief demanding accountability for allowing these assaults to happen. Help get the story of what actually happened today out to all of the standard bullshit media outlets. We all need to be strong and support the folks who got hurt and arrested today while taking action against hate in our community by violent thugs from out of town”

Image #1 from the anti-Sharia rally in Seattle on June 10, 2017
Image #2 from the anti-Sharia rally in Seattle on June 10, 2017
Image #3 from the anti-Sharia rally in Seattle on June 10, 2017
Image #4 from the anti-Sharia rally in Seattle on June 10, 2017

Another source, my coworker who said the facebook post was accurate, shared the above pictures from the rally and commented:

After the white supremacist rally dispersed, we marched back to Occidental Park, where we started the last part of our counter-protest, a set of speeches. Soon afterwards, I saw groups of white supremacists coming into Occidental Park, and starting to assault the counter-protestors. They had no business to be there because the counter-protest had obtained a city permit to rally in Occidental Park. The police had no business to let them come there, but they stood by and allowed the white supremacists to approach the park, and actually enter. These guys were definitely looking for trouble, and they knew exactly where to find it. I was busy with the speeches, so I missed the early part of the action, but as soon as the speeches ended, I headed out to where trouble had broken out, and took some pictures, which I’m sending you.

Descriptions for the 4 pictures:

1. Picture of two counter-protestors, who were part of the safety committee, being arrested by Seattle Police

2. On the left you can see the arrests in progress. On the right you can see that the two policemen have removed their pepper spray cans from their holsters, and are ready to use it on counter-protestors if “needed”

3. See how heavily armed the police were. They had 4 magazines each – over 50 rounds – on them, in addition to pepper spray, and they were probably carrying flash bangs in those pouches hanging from their uniforms

4. Seattle Police formed a roman-style phalanx, and literally pushed us back, away from the site where they were making arrests and using pepper spray. Can you believe this s happening in Seattle?

 

On Jim McDermott's Town Hall about Syria

Sunday night Rep. Jim McDermott met with constituents to discuss the situation in Syria. McDermott is “very strongly” leaning against voting for the so-called “limited response,” comparing it to the misguided attack on Iraq. Such adventures have unintended consequences, even if the architects have the noblest of intentions. McDermott is worried about the long-term consequences of the war, which are hard to foresee.

McDermott said that some people say, “We can’t do nothing about the chemical attacks on civilians.” McDermott said it’s a false dichotomy; we can also try diplomacy or other tactics.

McDermott agreed that the “merchants of death” of the miltary-industrial complex benefit from these wars.

Some people say the UN should decide, but Russia in the Security Council will “obstruct” approval for an attack.

I arrived 45 minutes past the start of the event. Most people I heard opposed the war. A few people argued that the war is warranted, comparing it to Kosovo or to Rwanda, where intervention might have done good. Many people distrusted the motivations of the US military state and claimed that humanitarian intervention was not the real motivation and that the war is part of imperialist corporate planning. A few people called for impeachment of Obama (something McDermott rejected).

But Todd Boyle reports:

Unfolding Drama. How big will the Syria War become? How many tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands will die this time? Rep. Jim McDermott held a town hall meeting tonight in Seattle. 500 people came. I shot 1 hour 20 minutes of video. Mike McCormick will probably be online faster, as usual… I will try to get this online by 2am. The right-wingers and war people swarmed the queue and got like 9 of 10 [correction: 3 or 4] first statements. There were at least 5 major media teams there, with the big $50,000 cameras. When the rightwingers finished, half the cameras left. The rest left after 30 minutes. Then there were 20 speakers in a row, against the war. I blame the antiwar movement. We failed to stop the Iraq War. Now, we are failing again to stop the Syria War. Wake the fuck up. Now is your hour. WORK HARDER.

Here is Todd Boyle’s video of the town hall (edited, apparently to remove some of the speakers:).

How to achieve Results through Kingian Nonviolence

A condensed version of Positive Peace Warrior Network’s multi-day training in the principles and methods of Martin Luther King in how to achieve success in social/political change through nonviolent campaigns. This was edited further from 3 hours at a Fellowship of Reconciliation retreat to 1 hour for your convenience.

Independent Report on May Day Critical of Seattle Police

Youtube video of news report here:
MTC FSRN Report_0001

Originally broadcast April 4, 2013 @ Free Speech Radio News on the Pacifica Network.
FSRN broadcasts on 110 stations globally!

Link to news report @ FSRN:
News Report For Free Speech Radio News on the Pacifica Network fsrn.org pacifica.org

Reporter: Mark Taylor-Canfield

“Seattle’s city council questioned the police chief on Wednesday, about his handling of last year’s May Day protests, in which eight people were arrested. An independent review of the protests found that the Seattle Police Department failed to practice adequate crowd control and officers were confused by conflicting orders. FSRN’S Mark Taylor-Canfield has more.”

“Authored by former Los Angeles Police Deputy Chief Michael Hillmann, the review focuses on the policing of a small independent march. On May Day 2012 demonstrators broke off from the main march and damaged property in downtown Seattle. Officers reported that they were given conflicting orders on how to engage protesters and make arrests. Hillman claims that police activity on May Day ‘significantly damaged the credibility of the Police Department’. In particular Hillman found that fellow officers criticized Assistant Police Chief Mike Sanford’s decision to enter a crowd of protesters alone to make an arrest. They told how Sanford then had to be rescued by other police officers.”

“The review also points out that Seattle Police officers have not received any new training on crowd control since demonstrations against the World Trade Organization took place in Seattle in 1999. The department’s handling of those protests was also widely criticized. At the time of the May Day protest the Seattle Police Department was under a US Dept of Justice investigation for use of excessive force. A federal grand jury is also currently investigating the protests.”

“Mark Taylor-Canfield, FSRN, Seattle.”

Rep. Adam Smith and military spending

Washington’s Rep. Adam Smith of the 9th Congressional District is the ranking Democrat on the House Armed Services Committee.  Smith figures prominently in the Jan 28 issue of the The New Yorker, in the article “The Force” about the power and cost of the military-industrial complex and about America’s obsession with violence and militarism.

At a 2011 hearing, the Republican Chairman, Howard P. McKeon, strongly defended the military and spoke out against reductions to the military budget.  His comments were echoed by testimony from two former chairs of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and a former vice-chair. They said, Look at all the threats we face! Etc, etc.

None of this was contested by anyone, including the ranking Democrat, Adam Smith, a lawyer from Bellevue, Washington, who has served on the House Armed Services Committee since 1997 and who agreed that “defense is in an incredibly vulnerable position” because budget cuts, which could lead to force reductions and base closings, would “change the equation of of power projection.”  ….  He asked a question, which was purely rhetorical: “What if, all of a sudden, we don’t have troop in Europe, we don’t have troops in Asia, we are just, frankly, like pretty much every other country in the world?”

The article describes the problem facing the United States. Our country spends more on defense than all the other nations of the world combined. “The United States, a nation founded on opposition to a standing Army, is now a nation engaged in a standing war.” (See, for example, Thomas Jefferson’s opposition to standing armies.)  “The United States, separated from much of the world by two oceans and bordered by allies, is, by dint of geography, among the best-protected countries on earth.  Nevertheless, six decades after V-J Day nearly three hundred thousand American troops are stationed overseas.”  “We have hundreds of military bases all over the world.”   Rather than defending the homeland, “the U.S. military enforces American foreign policy.”

“Lockheed Martin spends fifteen million dollars a year on lobbying efforts and campaign contributions.”  Shouldn’t such spending should be illegal for government contractors?

“The company was the single largest contributor to Buck McKeon’s last campaign. (Lockheed Martin has a major R. & D. center in McKeon’s congressional district.) This patronage hardly distinguishes McKeon from his colleagues….” Lockheed Martin contributed to 51 of the 62 members of the House Armed Services Committee.

Andrew Bacevich, a former colonel in the US Army and now a professor at Boston University, points out that Americans “have fallen prey to militarism, manifesting itself in a romanticized view of soldiers, a tendency to see military power as the truest measure of national greatness, and outsized expectations regarding the efficacy of force.” (quoted in the New Yorker article)

Such views are reinforced by Hollywood movies and by TV programs that glorify righteous violence.

Chairman McKeon’s district is home to a naval weapons station, an Army fort, an Air Force base, and a Marines training area. Adam Smith’s current district, the 9th CD, extends from Tacoma north to Redmond. Prior to redistricting, the district went as far south as Olympia and included several military bases, including McChord Air Force Base and the Army’s Fort Lewis.  Apparently, the northward movement of Smith’s district, into more urban and liberal areas, may be accompanied by a leftward tilt of Smith’s political leanings.

According to Wikipedia, “In 2012, Smith cosponsored the National Defense Authorization Bill that would grant the President of the United States unprecedented powers to wage war freely against persons abroad and detaining and restricting access to the civil court system by persons suspected of terrorism. ”  But more recently, Smith has stated his opposition to the intrusive parts of NDAA.  See this and this and this.

At the beginning of this year, Smith voted against the budget deal, saying, it makes “getting to a reasonable ten-year plan far more difficult by making permanent 90 percent of the Bush Tax Cuts. By not allowing those tax cuts to expire, and then making them permanent, we took $3.5 Trillion of revenue off the table. This will lead to one of two results, both of which I am strongly against. Either our debt will climb over 100 percent of GDP or we will have to make devastating cuts in vital programs like Medicare, Social Security, Medicaid, education, transportation, and more.”

I hope to meet with Congressman Smith, accompanied by like-minded progressives, in an effort to lobby him to help rein in the out-of-control military spending that is bankrupting our nation.  I reside in Smith’s district.

Related article: Revelations about the out-of-control US security state

Violcence-lovers taking over some Occupy groups

The Occupy Wall Street facebook page http://www.facebook.com/OccupyWallSt1 seems to have been hijacked by violence-loving Black Bloc members (or by infiltrators pretending to be such). I often see postings glorifying violence: images of protesters breaking windows or fighting police, with captions like “USA, GET SOME GREEK SPIRIT!” (See this image, for example.)

This is bad news for Occupy.

"The poison must be smashed, each and every way": Trouble on Occupy Facebook pages

Today on the Occupy Wall Street facebook page, I saw a posting with the following ugly image and the caption “(H) The poison must be smashed, each and every way.”

Man kicking in storefront window

Thankfully, most of the comments were critical of the violence:

… Occupy beware of infiltrators and figures of lesser inteligence
2 hours ago · Like · 1
…This should not be celebrated!
Admin (H) must go.
2 hours ago · Like · 8
… Why do this? What a waste of time. That’s like smashing a radio because you don’t like the song being played, it has zero impact on the signal carrying the song.
2 hours ago · Like · 9
…t And curious, as this is posted by the Occupy Wall St. page, does this mean that Occupy Wall St. now condones this sort of behavior? Non-violent, what?
2 hours ago · Like · 8
… Się Wie stupid
2 hours ago · Like · 4
… Many people will be leaving this Facebook page if this continues. A real pity this page isn’t used appropriately and in accordance with the values of Occupy.
2 hours ago · Like · 2
…i ‎(A) !
2 hours ago · Like · 1
… Change Admins please. This is wrong in every way and destroys our small success from different directions. Thats what the opposite wants to see. We dont need this. Where does Ghandi fit in here?
2 hours ago · Like · 5
… this page has become very suspect, i’m outta heeeerrre!
2 hours ago · Like · 4
… ‎*sigh* this is kids anticts, if you’re going to abandon non violence, then do it properly!
The only thing a broken bank window brings is a higher fee for Joe Average (i.e your damn parents).
2 hours ago · Like · 1
… It’s just glass. So many emotions over owned things. It’s insured. Oh corporate storefront, I cry for you. lmao
2 hours ago · Like · 1
… Stupid Anarchists. Don’t destroy my city. go destroy your own
11 minutes ago · Like
…r Someone hack this page?
4 minutes ago · Like

A small minority of people, the Black Bloc, are into violence, as discussed by Chris Hedges in his TruthDig article The Cancer in Occupy, and also here and here, and (from a more accepting point of view) here, here, and here. (I myself am adamantly opposed to Black Bloc tactics.)

Most of the facebook Occupy page is still positive and inspiring.

Just a few days ago I left another Occupy facebook group, because most of the postings were by someone who was portraying Obama as Hitler. (I’m no fan of Obama, but the postings were too extreme.)

I don’t know if these people are agents provocateurs or whether it’s just natural for open forums to devolve.