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Sep 3, 2008
Focus: Freedom of Expression
Action Request: Petition
Location: Minnesota, United States

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St. Paul Police Shut Down Concert, Continue Assault
5,000 Marching Against Poverty Met with Tear Gas, Rubber Bullets


Undeterred by a climate of heavy police repression and threats, over 5,000 protesters took to the streets of St. Paul to march against poverty on Sept. 2, the second day of the Republican National Convention. From the early morning until late into the night, thousands more took part in protest actions all over the city.

 RNC Cops
St. Paul police filled the streets with tear gas The “Poor people’s march for our lives” marched through downtown St. Paul, past the Minnesota State Capitol and to the Xcel Center, site of the RNC.  Made up of thousands of young people, the protest was militant and very multi-national. Vibrant chants of “Education, Not Occupation! Education, Not Incarceration!” echoed strongly throughout the march.

On day two, the police continued their intimidation tactics and brutality. Young people on bikes were targeted. The ANSWER delegation witnessed people being knocked off their bikes by police and arrested. Teams of bicycle cops systematically harassed, surrounded and questioned anyone who was walking to an anti-RNC event.

Police in riot gear shut down a permitted free concert at the State Capitol where thousands of people had gathered to listen to Rage Against the Machine. The police surrounded the band’s trailer and informed them that they were being shut down on the grounds that their concert would “incite a riot.”

Rage Against the Machine defied the order and played a short acoustic set.

In the evening, police fired large amounts of teargas, “anti-crowd” explosives and pepper spray at thousands of protesters who gathered outside the Xcel Center at the end of the big anti-poverty march. The Xcel Center is surrounded by eight foot fencing and heavily guarded at all times.

On Sept. 2, another 10 people were arrested. The broad assault on the protesters has been coordinated at the federal and local level and carried out by the FBI, ICE, the National Guard, state police, local police and the coast guard.

Showing clearly that the arrests are coordinated to intimidate protest of the RNC, local police have announced that they are planning to hold protesters until the end of the convention. Bragging openly about the police plan of repression, Ramsey County Sheriff Bob Fletcher said, "We know we have 200 of the biggest trouble makers in jail from Monday and they're not getting out for some time, so that's a big help."

At the time of this report the majority of the nearly 300 protesters who have been arrested during the RNC continue to be illegally jailed. Minnesota law requires arrestees to be released or officially charged within 36 hours after being arrested. Attorneys from the National Lawyers Guild and other law collective support teams are working to free all those detained during the protest.

Please take a moment and click this link to send a letter to Chris Coleman, the mayor of St. Paul, demanding that all protesters and social justice organizers be released, and that all charged be dropped. The real criminals are the "law enforcement" authorities, who have systematically violated the free speech rights of protesters, and in more than a few cases carried out physical abuse.

Protests are continuing over the next two days with a mass march and rally on Thursday set to coincide with John McCain’s acceptance speech. The Minnesota Anti-war Committee is sponsoring the protest and the ANSWER Coalition along with many other local and national groups have endorsed the action.

A.N.S.W.E.R. Coalition
http://www.answercoalition.org/
info@internationalanswer.org
National Office in Washington DC: 202-544-3389
New York City: 212-694-8720
Los Angeles: 213-251-1025
San Francisco: 415-821-6545
Chicago: 773-463-0311

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Posted: Sep 3, 2008 5:18pm
Aug 15, 2008
Focus: Peace
Action Request: Protest
Location: California, United States

----- Original Message ----
From: A.N.S.W.E.R. Coalition <ANSWER@ANSWERCoalition.org>
To: radthinker@yahoo.com
Sent: Friday, August 15, 2008 2:30:38 AM
Subject: Calendar of upcoming anti-war events

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Calendar of Upcoming Anti-war Events
Aug. 16 in Los Angeles: Demand immediate withdrawal of all troops from Iraq!
Protest at the Republican and Democratic National Conventions
January 20, 2009: Join thousands to demand "Bring the troops home now!"

The ANSWER Coalition will be in the streets on Saturday August 16 in Los Angeles to demand an immediate withdrawal of all occupation forces from Irag and Afghanistan and end to all threats and sanctions against Iran.

The Aug. 16 demonstration will coincide with a presidential forum at Saddleback Church in Orange County. Both McCain and Obama will be speaking there.

This important mobilization marks the start of an intense 5-month period of mass action. After Los Angeles this Saturday, there will be important demonstrations at the Republican and Democratic Party Conventions.

On January 20, 2009, when the next president proceeds up Pennsylvania Avenue he will see thousands of people carrying signs that say US Out of Iraq Now!, US Out of Afghanistan Now!, and Stop the Threats Against Iran! As in Vietnam it will be the people in the streets and not the politicians who can make the difference.

On March 20, 2008, in response to a civil rights lawsuit brought against the National Park Service by the Partnership for Civil Justice on behalf of the ANSWER Coalition, a Federal Court ruled for ANSWER and determined that the government had discriminated against those who brought an anti-war message to the 2005 Inauguration. The court barred the government from continuing its illegal practices on Inauguration Day. 

The Democratic and Republican Parties have made it clear that they intend to maintain the occupation of Iraq, the war in Afghanistan, and threaten a new war against Iran. Both Parties are completely committed to fund Israel’s on-going war against the Palestinian people. Both are committed to spending $600 billion each year so that the Pentagon can maintain 700 military bases in 130 countries. 

On this the third anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, we are helping to build a nationwide movement to support working-class communities that are being devastated while the country’s resources are devoted to war and empire for for the sake of transnational banks and corporations.

Join us in Los Angeles on August 16, in Denver on Aug. 25-28 at the Democratic Convention, in St. Paul at the Republican Convention between Sept. 1 and Sept. 4. And help organize bus and car caravans for January 20, 2009, Inauguration Day, so that whoever is elected president will see on Pennsylvania Avenue that the people want an immediate end to the war in Iraq and Afghanistan and to halt the threats against Iran.

From Iraq to New Orleans, Fund Peoples Needs Not the War Machine! 

Calendar of Events 

-- August 16 in Los Angeles: End the War Now! Click this link for information.
-- August 25-28 in Denver: Protest the Democratic National Convention
-- September 1-4 in St. Paul: Protest the Republican Convention
-- January 20, 2009: Bring the Anti-War Movement to Inauguration Day in D.C. 

We cannot carry out these actions withour your help. Please take a moment right now to make an urgently needed donation by clicking this link.  


A.N.S.W.E.R. Coalition
http://www.answercoalition.org/
info@internationalanswer.org
National Office in Washington DC: 202-544-3389
New York City: 212-694-8720
Los Angeles: 213-251-1025
San Francisco: 415-821-6545
Chicago: 773-463-0311

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Posted: Aug 15, 2008 12:32pm

 

 
 
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