August 24, 2002

The Battle of Portland

Anti-Bush Protesters were clubbed, sprayed with pepper spray and shot with rubber bullets in Portland, Ore., on Friday. (see William Rivers Pitt at

A Portland Police spokesman justified the use of rubber bullets by saying the the crowd didn't follow police commands.

Protests focused on two main issues: Bush's policy to allow more stripping of the forests by the lumber industry; and his plans for war in Iraq.

Vietnam Vet Rob Moitoza is quoted as saying, "I don't think any American boys' lives are worth a barrel of oil."

ABC's report puts the number of protestors at 500. Corporate media usually greatly underestimate numbers of protestors, so that's a very high number of people to come out on a Friday afternoon just to protest the presence of this "president" alleged by these same media to be so popular. William Rivers Pitt said "thousands of peaceful protestors." The ABC report said the protestors were outnumbered by "people waiting at the ends of their driveways who held signs saying 'We love you' and 'We support you.'"

How many of those of the docile majority will cross the line next time after seeing what kind of medicine the Bush oligarchy dishes out to people who try to protect National Forests from the lumber industry? Those riot police in their helmets and face masks and slick black uniforms are reminiscent of the Nazi Germany American boys gave their lives to defeat half a century ago. How much will Americans endure before the canister explodes? The US population is a sleeping giant and if its rage is aroused, the Bushies and all their big corporate tough guy backers had better watch out.

For other coverage of the Battle of Portland, see

  • Portland Indymedia
  • The MailTribune of Southern Oregon
  • The Oregonian
  • World Socialist Web Site
  • For a gallery of photos of the demonstration and police attacking the demonstrators, check out Portland Indymedia Center

    or: Mad As Hell

    Video Clip: Our Popular President Goes to Portland

    Click here for a vivid video-eye view of how ordinary citizens take to the streets when this "president," whom the major media tell us is so popular, comes to town:

    After you've seen this clip, think this over:

    Our friendly corporate media have been telling us since last September (when the "president" became a hero by flying all over the US to "get out of harm's way" after the attacks on the WTC that he did nothing to protect us from though he had ample warning), that he is the most popular president ever, that his approval ratings are the highest since approval ratings have been taken. Yet every time Mr. Popular goes anywhere he is met by crowds of protestors, crowds that are getting bigger and more vociferous all the time.

    Can you remember another president who was ever treated that way?

    The polls, like the rest of the lies the corporate media try to feed us, are crap!

    -- By David Cogswell

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