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9.11 investigation

U.S. Troops on Portland Waterfront with machine guns!!!!

U.S Troops in Portland!!!
I was crossing the steel bridege from the east bank esplanade today, and upon crossing, noticed the waterfront was sealed with a fence, and several U.S. troops in full camo-atire and helmets. Several of them had big-ass fucking machine guns! There was also a U.S. Coast guard boat near the bridge, also with huge fucking guns pointed up at the bridege (nice to cross the bridge with those pointing at you, huh?).

upon asking what the deal was, the solder said that the navy fleet/boats were in town for the rose fest.

questions:

*why havent i noticed this at previous years rose festivals?
*have they always closed of portions of the waterfront?
*are the machines guns really fucking nessasary?


i found it pretty intimidating and was wondering if material law had broke out.
i urge everyone to go down and take a look at this. i cant believe my eyes! maybe this is what the future holds, i dont know. i just wonder if the guns are really needed (atleast in public view like that)....

peace
Material Law?? 10.Jun.2004 13:23

spellchequer

Should that be "materiel law"? That would be law enforced by force of arms, military apparatus and other equipment.

answers 10.Jun.2004 13:26

answer guy

1. Most likely because you dont pay attention
2. Yes
3. No, but I'm not volunteering to take them away.

do you mean martial? 10.Jun.2004 13:52

Joe

I'm pretty sure its martial law you guys are looking for.

This is easy to understand 10.Jun.2004 13:56

PHH

You have to think like they think before you can understand. They believe that anyone who thinks differently is a communist/radical/terrorist. Portland is considered like a branch office for Bin Laden and the rest of them. They think the ships will be attacked in a Coe like incident so they need the machine guns. They probably are not for crowd control.

Of course they may stage such an incident as a pretext for martial law or whatever their aim is.

Recruiting 10.Jun.2004 13:58

Sean

I think they are recruiting. Forget the draft. Shanghai Charlie style

Is this necessary?? 10.Jun.2004 14:26

tree

It is uncalled for I am sure. Ridiculous! They used to try not to frighten the American People but now they have found that it works for them. Watch the increase of intimidation as the poll numbers go down.

Photo 10.Jun.2004 14:57

Katz

If someone who is downtown could please take a few photos and post them, it would be appreciated.
Thanks
K

As I understand it... 10.Jun.2004 15:05

xyzzy

"Fleet Week" has been a part of the Rose Festival for a long time. However, this year the security is particularly tight. Past Fleet Weeks have included events like sailors being invited into the homes of local families, I've heard that tradition has been shelved this year.

It's something of a pity, actually. Not because I enjoy the glorification of the state and its agents of armed force, but because a Fleet Week of the traditional sort would have been a great opportunity for outreach. Sign up to invite a sailor into your home and ask him how he feels about deployments continually being extended, being asked to fight in an illegal war of aggression, does he want information/help on deserting or applying for CO status, et cetera. Or leafleting of sailors walking through downtown to the same effect.

Portland

Recruiters 10.Jun.2004 15:19

Sean

I would say its 50% for security and 50% for recruiting wannabe gullible kids. They have several recruiting booths on the Waterfront Walkway between the ships and the Festival.

To sean 10.Jun.2004 15:29

tree

That is horrible. Crap crap crap. The guns are a come-on to kids? Not loaded?

Tree 10.Jun.2004 16:31

Sean

I cant tell if theyre loaded from here. Maybe theyre expecting some rioters though.

To xyzzy 10.Jun.2004 18:01

I think you are on to something

Similar to the old Soviet Union, military brass has bought their own paranoia and probably are afraid that sailors in the company of foxy women will spill their guts about how fucked the military is.

Same as last year 10.Jun.2004 18:10

Shocked

Last year or the year before, there were machine guns and military presence and the ships were all blocked off behind barbed wire. If you wanted to go on a tour of the ship you had to get clearance ahead by having a valid ore id ad putting your name on a crew list for reference check and than wait in a long line. I didnt have my id so I was told "no go."
I found the whole scene rather extreme also, but a lot of portlanders acted like it was perfectly normal, while others walked by with "what the hell is going on", written all over their faces. I thought we were being put in stockads when I first saw it. ha, ha.....

Perfectly Understandable 10.Jun.2004 18:34

Seatac Reader

Sorry, but this is standard port security operations in effect. And in view of hightened threat level, the "Machine Guns" as you call them, are in fact fully armed. And make no mistake, if you cross the security perimiter, you will be arrested.

Having been on the armed side before, this is not a joke.

Wanna bet... 11.Jun.2004 04:35

Tony Blair's dog

that the stunt was created to make sure the
people remember to be scared?

Not to worry 11.Jun.2004 07:53

George W.

I've said it before and I'll say it again:

It's a liberation, not an occupation.

Break out your rose petals and strew them at our feet!

Ships a Bother & A Threat 11.Jun.2004 11:34

Civvie

This has been going on, in an ever-heightening state, for the past three years - ever since 9/11. In the 70s, a State Legislator, Wally Priestly, protested the arrival of the fleet during Rose Festival by rafting down the river. He had to be rescued when he got stuck. In today's climate, he would simply be blown out of the water.

This year's "fleet" consists, primarily, of small Canadian vessels with a couple of larger battleships which arrived yesterday. Getting on to one of these vessels for an abbreviated tour has been likened to passing through airport security except that it must be done in a different location under the Burnside Bridge, well ahead of time. If you cannot produce the proper ID you will be turned away.

The Coast Guard is parolling the waterfront, there are security perimeters on the shore and water side and pleasure boaters must hug the east side of the river as they are escorted by, under high security.

The arrival of the fleet used to be something all of Portland participated in. Sailors were invited to stay in the homes of local families, huge lines rotated through the ships constantly, and a great many more of them were present and stayed longer.

Today the arrival of the "fleet" is of benefit chiefly to the sailors who look forward to the shore leave - those sailors fortunate enough to be stationed near to home and not in Iraq or Afghanistan. Their abbreviated numbers don't spell high sales to local merchants.

If there is a real terrorist threat, which is unlikely, the presence of these battleships in the middle of Portland is a danger to our community. If there is no real terrorist threat, then we are being frightened and threatened for no real reason; something that is not in keeping with a community celebration.

So what do we have? A small number of high-security ships that can't be easily accessed, disruption of traffic on the Burnside and Steele Bridges as the fleet comes and goes, and inconvenience to citizens who want to enjoy their river during the Rose Festival. Until the "War On Terror" and the "Patriot Act" are toned down, we should consider eliminating these warships from our Rose Festival.

There might not be an immediate threat 11.Jun.2004 14:10

-

There might not be an immediate threat, but they have to do this. Ships and ports are vulnerable. If they didn't put up this show, maybe something could happen.

The government can certainly use the threat of terrorists to manipulate the public, but that doesn't mean they don't exist, or won't act if you make it easy for them.

A Big Ass Boat is a Sitting Duck in the Willamette 11.Jun.2004 19:41

Civvie

Oh, come on. They're only here for a few days during the Rose Festival and just what could they do to protect us in the event of a terrorist attack? Nothing? That's what I thought.

They're not there to protect us 11.Jun.2004 19:47

-

They're not protecting us. They're protecting their ship.

I wonder..... 29.Jun.2004 21:56

GODBLESSAMERICA

Do I hear the liberal cry? Only to murk the waters of political view does one make the time to query his peers. First off. Relax! It is a simple "pro-action" to prevent a possible "action" against any of the military ships or its members.
You think your panties got all bunched up now? Imagine if you will what would have happened to your city if a terrorist were able to act against the ships. The military wisely chooses to show most of its hand to help prevent any would be troublemakers or terrorist from taking action. Oh, and rest assured. Those men and women train hundreds of hours to do that job and do it well. You were in no danger.
I wonder. Would you have taken the time to query your peers if you had seen protesters preventing a person from getting to the waterfront?