In California, police yesterday fired rubber bullets, wooden pellets and concussion grenades during an anti-war protest at the Port of Oakland. At least six demonstrators and six longshoremen standing nearby were injured. Longshoremen were pinned against a fence and caught in the line of fire. Police also used sting grenades, which are rubber pellets accompanied by tear gas.
This is believed to be the first use of such force against U.S. protesters since the invasion of Iraq began.
At least 24 people were arrested.
Oakland Mayor Jerry Brown said police acted appropriately because he said protesters wanted to “occupy and take over the port and shut it down.”
Brown claimed “Oakland is second-to-none in its support of peaceful assembly and protest.”
The San Francisco based peace group, Direct Action to Stop the War, announced last week it would stage a series of protests involving civil acts of disobedience. The port was targeted because at least one company there is handling war supplies.
Meanwhile in New York City, police arrested about 100 people for protesting outside the offices of Carlysle Group defense contractor
- Scott Fleming, civil rights attorney from Oakland who was shot five times by Oakland police on Monday.
- Trent Willis, business agent for the International Longshore and Warehouse Union. Present at Oakland protest.
- Joel Kupferman, New York attorney representing activists arrested at yesterday’s demonstration at the offices of Carlyle Group.