33 Years Ago Yesterday, US National Guardsmen Fired Into a Crowd of People at Kent State University Who Were Protesting the Vietnam War, Killing Four

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We’ve just been talking about the Israeli military’s killing of British journalist James Miller. Another British journalist based in the region, Justin Huggler, told Democracy Now! he believes the US military is partly to blame. He said when US soldiers fired on the Palestine Hotel in Baghdad, killing two journalists, it sent a message to armies around the world that it is okay to kill journalists.

Well US forces have also shot and killed protesters–both around the globe and here at home.

On May 4th, 1970–33 years ago yesterday–US National Guardsmen opened fire on a crowd of unarmed student protesters on the campus of Kent State University in Ohio. The guardsmen fired off at least 67 shots in roughly 13 seconds as students protested the war in Vietnam. Four students died and nine others were wounded.

To mark the anniversary, hundreds of people marched at the university yesterday. They were protesting a more current issue: the US invasion and occupation of Iraq. 12 people were arrested.

University spokesman Ron Kirksey said of the protest: “There’s always a group that wants to exploit the day and get attention.”

  • “Kent State: The Day the War Came Home,” an Emmy award-winning documentary produced and directed by Mark Mori for the 30th anniversary of the shootings.
  • Alan Canfora, who was shot by the National Guard at Kent State. He is now the chairperson of the Barbeton Democratic Party.
  • Sri Louise, San Francisco yoga instructor who was shot in the face by Oakland police at an anti-war rally at the Port of Oakland last month. After being shot by a “non-lethal projectile,” photos of her swollen, bloodied profile were beamed around the world.

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