Has It Come To This?

For all of my life, America has considered itself to be the Cradle of Democracy. The Land of The Free, where free speech is ingrained in the Constitution, and even the right to own and carry lethal weapons is supported by ancient rights.

Over the years, harsh treatment of Civil Rights protestors made the news, as did the violent reaction to Vietnam War protestors at times.

But the recent actions of the authorities in Portland has seen a worrying turn of events. Federal officers wearing Army uniforms and carrying Army equipment have arrived in the city to break up protests there. This is against the wishes of the city’s mayor, who did not ask for assistance.

These ‘Feds’ are using unmarked vehicles, wearing no identity tags or serial numbers. They are dragging protestors off the street and taking them away in those same unmarked vehicles. They are not reading them their rights and arresting them, and in many cases they are beating them hard with clubs, or using pepper spray on them.

I am not an American, and I do not know everything there is to know about the actions of the demonstrators.

But this cannot be right. Not anywhere, and certainly not in ‘The Cradle of Democracy’. Those agents involved are little more than ‘Trump’s Stormtroopers’, and if this was happening in Britain, France, or a hundred other countries, the rest of the world would be calling for sanctions to make it stop.

49 comments

  1. Cousin Ian

    Pete,
    So where was the condemnation of ‘masked unaccountable militias’ when the Crimea was occupied by ‘pro-Russian Ukrainians’?
    Oh, that’s right, they were ‘pro-Russian-Russian-pro-Ukrainian-pro-Russian-pro-Ukrainian forces’!
    “These ‘Feds’ are using unmarked vehicles, wearing no identity tags or serial numbers. They are dragging protestors off the street and taking them away in those same unmarked vehicles. They are not reading them their rights and arresting them, and in many cases they are beating them hard with clubs, or using pepper spray on them.”
    “But this cannot be right. Not anywhere, and certainly not in ‘The Cradle of Democracy’. Those agents involved are little more than ‘Trump’s Stormtroopers’, and if this was happening in Britain, France, or a hundred other countries, the rest of the world would be calling for sanctions to make it stop.”
    The French Police use water-cannons against French rioters (eg the ‘Gilets jaunes’).
    The Belgian Police use water-cannons against protesters in Brussels!
    When Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, bought 3 (German-made) water-cannons, for anti-riot scenarios, but he was forced (under the same European Court of Human Rights legislation that the French and Belgians ignored) to get rid of them in case they ‘injured’ any rioters!!
    The only difference is that 95% of the rioters getting wet in London would always be those on the illiberal left, anarchists, nihilists, Remainers and ‘climate change environmentalists’! You could moisten a few ‘fascists’ on a good day!
    Even the ‘CHAZ’ or ‘CHOP’ in Seattle wasn’t a total success, where they did away with the Police, only to appoint their own security forces! Yet, when their new citizens had a problem, the first thing they did was to call for ‘The Police’! You couldn’t make it up!
    When I was a ‘cop’, I had a notebook, a pencil, handcuffs (used twice in 6 years), a ‘truncheon’ (used twice in 6 years), a radio and
    the consent of the public!
    If you want to moan about the way your police arrest criminals, leave your phone number with your local police station, and the next time the Police need to arrest a 6′ 6″, 22 stone, drug-addled, alcoholic, violent individual, who doesn’t want to be arrested, they will phone you to help them out!
    No: let me guess! You have all suddenly lost your enthusiasm! Either do it yourselves, which you won’t, or leave it to the people who will, who you pay too little!
    Either way, you can all fuck off!

    Liked by 1 person

    • beetleypete

      Well said mate. One thing about European cops using water cannons is that they are non-lethal, and the cops using them can be identified. Anyone arrested is taken to a real police station, and processed correctly. My point here is that the US government is reacting to criticism of the police and the ongoing demonstrations by inserting this Federal snatch-squad that is unaccountable.
      As for struggling with 22-stone people, I did a lot of that wearing an ambulance uniform. With no handcuffs, truncheon, or CS gas. 🙂
      Hope all’s well with you and the family. 🙂
      Pete.

      Like

  2. Eddy Winko

    No doubt Trump is getting his forces in place to ensure that the voting process goes according to his plan in the near future.
    It reminded me of the picture we all saw from Crimea when unmarked troops appeared on the street! It wouldn’t surprise me if this is seen as an opportunity by opposing nations to wake up a few ‘sleepers’ to stir things up a bit more.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Doug

    Well, gentlemen… seems I failed to do updates. Should be fine now. But.. the opening images are not going into the email notifications for some reason. Always something.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. GP Cox

    Pete, our freedom of speech was taken away years ago when the powers that be (or should I say, were) allowed the politically correct people to get their way. Some of their complaints were justified, but like anything else, you give people an inch – they want a hundred miles. The rules keep changing, all in accordance with their whims for the day. To top it off, too many of the protesters fail to follow virus guidelines and are just pleased as punch to have America be blamed for spreading it even more. (people from the US are now banned from going to the Bahamas as of today, for eg.) I could go on, but people want to kowtow to every protester, no matter what the cause – I don’t have the energy to debate any more.

    Liked by 1 person

    • beetleypete

      I respect your opnion of course, my friend. But I am sure that you can see that that what is happening in Portland is not the way forward. It is a terrible ‘slippery slope.’
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Doug

        You use whatever critical thinking skills you may have acquired along the way… CNN or FOX. I’m sure my earlier reply to Pete was likely overlooked but in that you will see that I saw the video and listened to the talking heads and I saw an issue to question concerning the authority of those Feds taking action in Portland, and their methods. I didn’t accept the emotional aspect presented in the video and speculated “for me” by news people. I watched other video and some other reporting to confirm or deny accuracy and that’s when I discovered that in fact these guys were indeed labeled as Police… hence an authority was presented (to the level that would be contentious or not in the courts I do not know). So.. with their authority less in doubt we can certainly argue their methods as that was certainly apparent in the video. I watch CNN but I don’t accept everything they spew out as fact. When I watch FOX it’s general news coverage as I DO NOT watch the early morning and evening garbage by the loud people as I would be spending the bulk of my time fact checking them and finding nothing but falsehoods because they are too consumed with hate for Liberals (of which I am not).

        Liked by 2 people

      • GP Cox

        I don’t just watch CNN for certain, they only show one sided opinions. Plus I find any news station to only show the parts of videos they want to make the point of their agenda. What those people were ‘labeled’ as can also be a matter of some reporter’s opinion or they wanted to mislead civilians – I sure don’t know.
        Frankly I don’t think a liberal or a conservative ideology is going to win out – people better start learning to compromise.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Cousin Ian

      GP Cox,
      “our freedom of speech was taken away years ago when the powers that be (or should I say, were) allowed the politically correct people to get their way. I could go on, but people want to kowtow to every protester, no matter what the cause – I don’t have the energy to debate any more”. July 20, 2020, 6.53 PM.
      You’re totally right! That’s exactly what ‘they’ want. The ‘powers that be’ want to suck the ‘energy to debate’ out of you! They, the powers that be, minority activists, and the illiberal left, want nothing more than to deny ordinary people’s voices to be heard! Just wait until ‘they’ want British citizens to give up their petrol cars, stop eating meat, have their gas boilers disconnected, and stop flying abroad on holiday, in order to reduce the UK’s ‘global warming emissions’ by 1.2%! When British citizens realise that they are going to be dragged back into the 17th Century, only for 98.8% of the world’s population to continue to drive their petrol cars, eat meat, have warm houses and ,maybe, to fly away on holiday every 2 years, and then sit there laughing at those ‘British mugs’ who kowtowed to those same powers and activists who got their votes for ‘destroying their futures’, those ‘British mugs’ will rebel, either at the ballot box or on the streets!
      Whether it’s Portland’s ‘Police excess’, or Seattle’s ‘CHAZ or CHOP’ nonsense, it’s obvious that the ILLIBERAL LEFT will never
      face the reality that ‘Socialism is the failed ideology that never dies’!
      PS; CNN is the most biased load of nonsense that I have ever wasted my time watching! However, as Napoleon Bonaparte once said, “Never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake”!

      Liked by 2 people

  5. wilfredbooks

    This is a very worrying development; human rights are being eroded all over the world, and the more regularly violence is used to continue this, the more difficult it becomes to stand up against it. Cheers, Jon.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Doug

    When the first reports of this “enforcement force” in Portland popped on video I had some various concerns that required more than just watching the talking heads on cable news. My initial concern were the reports that allegedly observing/witnessing demonstrators were saying these fellows, dressed up like the 101st Airborne ready for the drop onto Ste. Mere Elgise, had little or no uniform patching to identify them. If that were so, then my question is that it wouldn’t take long for some armed demonstrator to start shooting these guys. Just because you look and dress like the military does not mean one bit that you ARE of military or police authority. They could have been Right Wing thugs (or for you Right Wingers out there, they could have been “Antifa thugs”). As it turned out, the front of the uniforms (shown on your post pics) have a patch marked “Police”. So I suppose given that a potential unruly demonstrator would have a personal choice of surrendering to their authority, as any person would have consider with a regular uniformed cop. Apparently these “military guys” were immigration enforcement…. allegedly. That in itself raises other questions.
    Now, the being “whisked away” in unmarked vehicles as if you were being kidnapped off the street… seems to me that’s another dicey part of this Federal “operation”. Add to that the total abhorrent imagery of what this image implies in America.. it’s no wonder this is presenting a sour taste in any American’s mouth, much less any other country that appreciates democracy. The overriding question then is.. is this legal? Well, we know it’s certainly a Trump move to make this thing happen. One might wonder how these “soldiers” were selected for this operation.. i.e., were they volunteers, hence loved their jobs more than their personal morality, or were they the Trump devoted “looking for anti-Trump Liberals” along the way.. or did some supervisor threaten them with losing their jobs unless they did this?
    The jury is still out (literally) as the lawsuits are already being filed en masse. I have hopes this nonsense will vanish when Trump does.

    Liked by 2 people

    • beetleypete

      Just sticking a POLICE patch on a uniform isn’t sufficient, in my book. They need to have a recordable badge number, so that people can note who is bashing them with a club.
      Thanks, Doug.
      Best wishes, Pete.
      (Have you sorted out your ‘banned blog’ yet?)

      Liked by 1 person

  7. democratizemoney

    The first hit of this tactic was when twitler used unmarked, unnamed forces (turns out some were Bureau of Prison Guards from Texas) to clear a peaceful demonstration in Lafayette Park so he could walk to the Church across the street and hold up a Bible for a photo opp! That occurred on television and we know the protesters at that one were peaceful. Regardless of any violence or destruction of property, it is wrong for a government to use forces that are not identifiable and who can not be held accountable. No, I am not condoning violence, I am condemning the “police state” tactic. The Portland Police and Oregon State Police should arrest these unmarked, unnamed supposedly federal forces for impersonating police kidnapping and carrying weapons without a license. Warmest regards, Theo

    Liked by 3 people

    • beetleypete

      I agree, Theo. If people commit violent acts of protest, they should face arrest. But it should be done by identifiable, accountable police officers using the rules of law. I read on another site that those ‘Military Police’ are in fact U.S. Marshals, drafted in with a free hand to clear the demonstrators. If that’s true, then they should have to wear their badges or I.D. cards. Even combat troops have their names on their uniforms.
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 2 people

    • Cousin Ian

      democratizemoney,
      “Regardless of any violence or destruction of property, it is wrong for a government to use forces that are not identifiable and who can not be held accountable. No, I am not condoning violence, I am condemning the “police state” tactic. The Portland Police and Oregon State Police should arrest these unmarked, unnamed supposedly federal forces for impersonating police kidnapping and carrying weapons without a license.” July 20, 2020, 2.38 PM.
      Here’s an idea! How about you ‘anti-government protesters’ leave your names and addresses and phone numbers, and photos of the clothes you were wearing at the protest, with the local Police Force! Maybe you could help the local Police to identify ‘these unmarked, unnamed supposedly federal forces for impersonating police kidnapping and carrying weapons without a license.”
      No? Didn’t think so! You’re either making the whole thing up, to fit your own agenda, or you’re making the whole thing up to fit your own agenda!
      Yeah, turns out you can’t just get ‘likes’ anymore, just for churning out some old shit! You want your opponents to be accountable, but you don’t want to be accountable!
      No, the protesters at Lafayette Park weren’t ‘peaceful’! They would have ‘kicked off’ if Trump hadn’t had security!
      No, I don’t care if Trump is President!
      No, I’m British, so I couldn’t even vote for Trump!
      Pete doesn’t do this blog to be ‘liked’. He does it because it’s what he believes in.
      And who the fuck is ‘twitler’, Theo’?
      I have followed this blog for years, and I am appalled by all of you who think that this is just some forum for you to ‘fire and forget’ your ‘Ooh, I must just put out some old shit to justify my own existence’ bollox!
      Regards to all in the DPRB.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Maggie

    It is beyond reprehensible, Pete. If we do not see a change in our government in November, I cannot imagine what will become of us. People have be warning about the similarities in early Nazi Germany and what is happening here for months — perhaps now some people will wake up. Sadly, I fear they will see the action as ‘justified’ in some bizarre twisted way.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Cousin Ian

      lobotero,
      “If you were wondering how the cops got the nickname PIGS….now you know. chuq” Jul 20, 2020, 1.49 PM.
      Having been a ‘cop’ in Scotland between 1986 and 1992, we were nicknamed ‘black bastards’, because we wore black uniforms!
      So please enlighten me why we are called ‘PIGS’!

      Liked by 2 people

      • Doug

        Scotland! My only trip to the UK was a three day R&R I took with a buddy when I was stationed at Keflavik, Iceland. Visited the places in Edinburgh.. stayed at a hotel in.. um.. Renfrew, as I recall. Loch Lomond. Rented a VW bug with steering on the “wrong” side.. and drove on the “wrong” side. So cool at the time! That was 1973. The people were gloriously wonderful to us obvious American GI’s. At a local pub a couple locals bought us a round.
        Being from Chicago our police adopted in the mid 60’s the UK checkerboard pattern of police hats… likely a nod to the Irish (sorry) given they were mostly cops at the turn of the 19th century. I like anything UK…. even Pete here.
        Back in the 60’s anti-war hippie days derogatory slang for police was PIGS… to which the cops turned around to mean Pride, Integrity, and Guts. 🙂 Oddly the term seems to have originated in the UK if you do a search. I remember calling the cops… “the fuzz”.. just to fit in, and unknown what that ever came from.

        Liked by 1 person

      • beetleypete

        My cousin isn’t Scottish, he just worked in Scotland as a policeman, and married a Scottish lady. He was also in the Air Force for a long time after that. 🙂

        Like

      • lobotero

        It was 1968, a difficult time in the good old USA and the police were not loved by the kids. They were seen as tools of the oppressive government that sought to take away the rights of Free Speech, Freedom to Assemble, Demonstrate (help the government to understand Vietnam was not a popular enterprise).

        It was the Democratic Convention in Chicago, that toddlin town when the chief nasty, Hubert Humphrey wanted to be nominated to run against Nixon. The Yippies (founded by Hoffman and Rubbin) were doing their anti-war demonstrations carrying a little pig around as their candidate of President. They were long haired and impolite to their elders every chance they got. chuq

        Liked by 1 person

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