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march 20, 2003 (day x) no war. nobody moves til the war stops.

"on march 20th, 2003 the US government escalated its unjust and immoral imperialist capitalist war on the people of Iraq."

"the people of portland, OR rose up in love and rage."

watch the "Day X" video >>

actions & protests | imperialism & war 10-Mar-2009 12:59

Day X, The Re-Xamination

From the open publishing newswire: Six years ago, the call went out to people; "We march when they start bombing" & "When bombs drop Portland stops". It was simply a matter of time before the United States attacked Iraq and people around the world were prepared to show the US gov't that it wouldn't go unchallenged. In Portland, Oregon, thousands of people set out to 'shut down the city' and succeeded in blocking three interstate highways and as many bridges, as well as occupying a major intersection until far into the night and early morning.

Police were brutal in their response. Independent videographers outnumbered corporate cameramen by a large margin, and 'Day X' is the best coverage of the day & night of resistance. Compiled by Portland Indymedia activists from footage from many different independent media cameras, 'Day X' is the people of Portland's story on how we responded directly after the US invaded Iraq.

Tonight, Portland Anti-Imperialists will be screening this documentary at the Red and Black Cafe, starting at 7pm. After the video, we will have a panel discussion with some of the videoistas from the day and people that organized resistance on that day.


government | human & civil rights | imperialism & war 28-Sep-2004 17:23

PDX Protests - Q&A with Noam Chomsky

From the open publishing newswire: During the height of the Anti-War Protests in PDX, I wrote a letter to Noam Chomsky asking for his opinion on the dilemmas we had been facing locally. The following article is comprised of these letters, beginning with my own so that his appears in context.


VINDICATION 19-Feb-2004 22:28

March 20 charges dropped for critical mass

Photos from Critical Mass From the open publishing newswire: On March 20, 2003, in solidarity with the world community, Portland demonstrators took to the streets and to the highways. Many were arrested and charged with various crimes from disorderly conduct to criminal tresspassing while voicing their first ammendment rights. Charges are now being dropped.

On March 20, 2003, critical mass riders took over the I405 highway to draw attention to the invasion in Iraq. Almost an entire year later, the city is dropping all charges on the mass riders. Those who showed solidarity by not pleading guilty and accepting community service will pay no fine, serve no time and can now file suit against the city for false arrest. This should be a lesson to all; that we need to stick together on these issues and we can and will prevail.

Next time let's shut down the federal building, the court, the injustice center, or city hall or all of them...they are all in close proximity to each other and the people participating in the wicked government, that we are all forced to live under, need to understand that this country is killing the world. Pioneer Square would also be nice to shut down as cronic shoppers need to be woken up! [ READ MORE... ]

[ More Critical Mass March 20th Stories ] [ Day X Action Page ]

breaking news from march 20th: 8:25 pm: Newswire post at 7:50 pm: "Cops cornered bike riders on Morrison bridge and threw them on the ground and beat them. Cops are becoming more violent. They cornered critical mass riders coming back from the i-405 liberation and beat the crap out of several riders. The cops have the riders tied up, face down on the bridge waiting to take them away."


Lawsuit Against City: Update

From the open publishing newswire: From the open publishing newswire: Alan Graf appeared in front of city hall today, along with Miranda May, Randy Lyon, and William Ellis. May and Ellis were both assaulted by Portland police officers while exercising their first amendment rights during an anti-war protest on March 25th, 2003. Lyon was assaulted by Portland police officers on March 20th, 2003, while working as an engineer for KATU.

During the press conference, Alan Graf announced that he and the victims of police aggression are filing federal civil rights lawsuits against the City of Portland, Mayor Vera Katz, police chief Mark Kroeker, officers Mark Kruger and Joe Hanousek, and "several yet-to-be-named police officers." This comes in the wake of several chilling incidents across the city in which police abused their authority and assaulted peaceful anti-war protesters and others after the US began bombing Iraq. In a press release, graf and the National Lawyers Guild ask, "How much is the Bill of Rights worth, Mayor Katz? What dollar amount would you assign to the First Amendment?" [ Read More... ] Press Release Announcing New Law Suits Against the City of Portland | Financial assistance needed for legal support


Transgendered female verbally and physically abused by police, sheriff's office

From the open publishing newswire: From the open publishing newswire: A transgendered female was arrested early Friday morning (3/21) at the Burnside Bridge sit in. She was trying to leave, as the police had informed people they could, but was arrested anyway. After being arrested, she was continually harassed both verbally and physically by the Portland police and sheriff's office. This is a third party eye witness account of the events that took place between her and the authorities. When police arrested protesters at the Burnside Bridge Friday morning (3/21), many levels of deception and harassment ensued. One transgendered female was singled out for unwarranted verbal and physical abuse in front of several witnesses and on multiple occasions.
[ Read More... ]

POETRY REPORTAGE 22-Mar-2003 11:05

One Candle Still Burns

one candle still burns From the open publishing newswire: An original portland poem and report from the protest on March 20th, 2003. It captures the essence and events of the march and its aftermath in poetry. [ Read the Words... ]


One of the Second and Burnside arrestees speaks

From the open publishing newswire: From the open publishing newswire: 24 hours ago, the sum total of what I knew was simply that I couldn't stay home while more civilians died, especially given the privilege of being well-fed, warmly-dressed, healthy, unemployed and childless. Like many, I drifted into the student march somewhere in SW Portland about 3 pm on Thursday, 3/20/03-- and found it a focused, energetic and stirring preview of the evening to follow. I gathered and marched with the folks from Terry Schrunk Plaza around downtown.

I wasn't sure what destination I was headed for as I toured the streets. Collective purpose, okay: channel our outrage and sorrow into concrete and effective action to stop the war. My individual choice was to keep moving, even as others stopped to block traffic on Burnside & Steel bridges. But as hours passed, I gradually decided that I should, non-violently, do what I could to help the Burnside sitters stay safely in place for as long as possible. [ Read More... ]

Props to the people of 2nd and Burnside
This goes out to all the intrepid souls I spent time with last night on 2nd and Burnside. We sat through the day, through the night, we sat through the rain and the cold, we even sat down for the state sponsored censorship as they hauled us away two-by-two. We did it! And we can do it again, jail is nothing compared to the harsh reality of war in your own backyard! [ Read More... ]

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Oregon: As a native Oregonian currently studying at U.C. Berkeley, I write these thoughts on a jail wastebasket paper bag as I sit incarcerated in the Bryant St. Jail, San Fransisco -- thoughts composed with twenty-three other women ages 18 to 64, who now reflect on the grave situation in Iraq and the reasons that led each of us to disrupt "business as usual" in San Fransisco. We joined over 1500 others in arrest today.

Although we vary widely in age and background, our convictions are shared and run deep, manifested by our willingness to put our bodies on the line to freely express ourselves and assemble, and to stand in solidarity with millions of people arould the world against the war on Iraq. [ Read More... ]

M20 Day of War Protests in Portland - all indymedia stories collected

M20 ANTI-WAR PROTEST - ANALYSIS 22-Mar-2003 00:39

Protest is Proof of Effectiveness of Radical Approach

From the open publishing newswire: From the open publishing newswire: After hearing tireless complaints from liberals about radicals and direct action, after hearing insistent pleas that protests must be law abiding, after all the perjoratives about radicals, anarchists, etc, how fucking wonderful it is to see how effective direct action really is!

Portland, you've changed history.

To the liberals, peace be with you. Tonight's protests were almost entirely peaceful. If we could get the attention of the media and majority through legal protests, then that's what we should do. If we could change the government through the legal means that are supposed to be available to us, then that's what we should do.

But, we need to face the facts. We are enemies of the very system that we hope we will change. Our government is not a true democracy as few people participate in or acknowledge the responsibilities of self-governance. Our legal system is classist (lawyers cost money; bail costs money; whites are typically handed less severe sentences for the same crimes as non-whites; money promotes legislators into election). The people who flair 'freedom' and 'liberty' as American rationales for war and consensus are, very unfortunately, products of the mind-numbing, consent manufacturing machine of the corporate system. [ Read More... ]

Are you serious about the revolution?
We really need to think about creating parallel institutions to replace the essential functions provided by the government... The establishment has bitten off more than they can chew. The combination of an anti-tax attitude (thanks to right-wing talk radio) and an increased terrorist threat due to the war has created police forces whose numbers are thinned due to budget cuts and distraceed by anti-terrorism partols to the point where they are unable to control the streets if we show up in sufficient numbers.

That's good, but it also means that martial law is a very real likelihood. How do we deal with that? [ Full story ]

We Can't Stop Now
The question is though, what's next? It is obvious to me that this rally/march was so successful because of its unplanned nature. Without permits, cops don't know where we are going next. Because the march broke up into multiple 1000+ people groups, they were scrambling all over the city to protect several targets at a time. This is what we need. I highly encourage everyone to continue this disruption of the evil capitalist system, because we don't need permits, or even a designated rally. [ Read more... ]

dialogue needed on new tactics
We need to think together about what is most effective in shutting down Portland, if that is our desired action. I have some ideas for more effectively shutting down Portland, but I also want to call a brainstorming session. We need some dialogue on this!

my ideas:
More affinity groups, spread out across the city. Don't argue with the Police, leave immediately on to the next intersection you choose to block. The idea is to keep the Police running around. Some groups will in the end succeed in stopping things long enough. [ Read More... ]

What does the phrase "Diversity of Tactics" mean?
Does the idea of a diversity of tactics mean that every protest must include civil disobedience and disruption, or is mutual respect and solidarity built on respecting the chosen tactics at various events? [ Read More... ]

Suggestions offered
Hello all. Thanks to all who came to the protest on Thursday. I am a lowly supporter, but I appreciate all of you who take to the streets when I cannot. I had some suggestions for future protests which I would like to get some reactions to. I agree that stopping traffic is an effective way to get our message across, but I think that simply lying down in the middle of streets is not the most efficient way to do this. [ Read More... ]

SOLIDARITY 21-Mar-2003 12:53

Many protesters who were arrested last night need your support right now

From the open publishing newswire: From the open publishing newswire: After being arrested around 2 in the morning on the burnside and 2nd intersection, I was released today at 11:30pm, but that is just my story. Many have stayed longer, such as the critical mass members who also took a beating, and many more are upset and worn out by their arrest. I've been talking to them all night, and one thing is clear: your help is needed! Our friends are still in various jails around the city, and they need rides home as well as rides back to the various precincts tht hold their posessions. [ Read More... ]

Jail support is needed
There are people still in jail down at the justice center. Reports indicate about 20 people still in. Many are john and jane does's and a couple people are in isolation. 7 people were arrested this morning around 7am for blocking a bridge. If anyone can go down to the justice center and assist people coming out, offer food, rides to pick up belongings at other locations etc that would be great. [ Read More... ]

DAY OF WAR PROTESTS 21-Mar-2003 09:07

Thousands protest in Portland; Civil disobedience blooms across downtown

From the open publishing newswire:

Reports, photos and video from the Newswire:
Video from blocking of I-5 on M20
3 photos from I-84 shutdown
Cop car almost runs over protester.
geocities M 20 photo gallery
bridges, freeways and pigs
Anti-Peace Driver Attacks Crowd --Incident Report
plate #'s for critical mass hit and runs
woman who lost bike when pepper sprayed on 2nd & Burnside
Steel Bridge photos
Initial shots of March 20, 2003 Protest
Shutting Down I-5
rivertext.com photos of I-5 blockade, rally, march & IMC videographer
rivertext "lying down on I-5" sequential photos
rivertext.com Rally photos
Tear It All Down nighttime photos
ritual communion sacrament and symbolic blood-spilling in front of Federal Building
One Surreal Photo of Some Riot(ing) Cops
Radio Free Santa Cruz sends thanks
Bacon Greece
Eugene Corporate Media Lies
KATU corporate crap and photo sequence of Burnside FreeState circle dispersal"
Black Cross Health Collective offers ongoing support for injured protesters

Reports from the Street:
11:59 People are still sitting at 2nd and Burnside getting arrested. One woman on 3rd street was thrown down to the ground and was pretty shaken. "The cops were being pretty brutal, pointing their guns right at people and shit." The crowd took her off and helped her out.
11:53 From SW 4th and Main, the crowd has almost completely dispersed, riot cops have stopped advancing.
11:27 pm People have regrouped and are going down 3rd Ave w/ Riot cops following behind. A group has split off onto Ash.
11:12 pm "These cops are fucking lunatics... There were around 60 people who sat down and they pushed the rest of us back so we couldn't see what was going on. They fired concussion grenades, rubber bullets and pepperspray. There was a guy on the ground after being peppersprayed and a cop drew his rubber bullet gun on him and was going to shoot at him!" The guy couldn't even see. It appears as though the person being taken away by the ambulance had some respiratory problems. It is thought that when he caught some pepper spray he ended up flat out immobilized. Then the ambulance was called. Those who sat down are thought to have all been arrested.
11:07 pm The crowd has been dispersed. Reports of "beanbags or pellets or some shit" being fired on the crowd and pepperspray. Not any crowd left in the street at this point, some 30 or so have gathered at SW 2nd and Everett, but most have been dispersed down SW 2nd St. 50-100 cops are walking down 2nd. A guy is laying on the ground and an ambulance is preparing to take him away.
10:53 pm off the newswire: Amazing Critical Mass Report French Bicycle Symbolically Run Over By American Monster Truck" Cops beat critical mass riders
10:47 pm The crowd is surrounded on 3 sides and being closed in on. Something was said over a loudspeaker... unintelligible.
10:38 pm The cops appear to be moving in. No report of any warning heard. "They just started going after people."
10:35 pm More than 80 cops , and now more horse cops are arriving. And cars have started arriving. It looks like they are forming into some sort of formation...
10:32 pm Over 60 riot cops at SW 3rd and Ankeny have gathered. There is also an empty bus nearby...
10:25 pm Lots of Riot cops, motorcycle cops, vans, undercovers very close to the protesters at 2nd and Burnside from the west.
9:20 pm About 10 Critical Mass riders were seen being arrested by I-405. from the Newswire: Cops beat critical mass riders
9:02 pm Callout for support from those at the Free State occupation: Folks want to stay the night at the newly created Free State and are asking for people to come down to 2nd and W. Burnside and bring blankets, food and water and sleeping bags to help make this possible! They are calling for folks to come down and join in the fun!
8:50 pm 2nd & Burnside FreeState drum circle and candlelight vigil is still going strong! Numbers of people remain about the same.
8:40 pm from the newswire, photos
8:25 pm: Newswire post at 7:50 pm: "Cops cornered bike riders on Morrison bridge and threw them on the ground and beat them. Cops are becoming more violent. They cornered critical mass riders coming back from the i-405 liberation and beat the crap out of several riders. The cops have the riders tied up, face down on the bridge waiting to take them away."
8:20 pm The bicycle cops have retreated from 2nd and Burnside. Riot cops have amassed and are standing midway across the Burnside Bridge.
8:18 pm The marches have joined together at the 2nd and Burnside FreeState. This diverse group is sitting in the road and milling around. Three times today people have been physically assaulted by corporate media for attempting to block their cameras. Nobody ever touched the cameras, people were only standing in front of them to block them from filming.
8:04 pm The group of around a thousand on Grand St has liberated the Broadway Bridge and are heading south toward Burnside.
7:57 pm From the 2nd & Burnside FreeState. Hundreds are still at this intersection. A very diverse group of people are sitting in the intersection have surrounded a few who are locked down in the center. They are determined to sit there all night or until they are arrested. Riot cops dispersed after one of their vans hit a 13yr old girl. Black Cross jumped in and protected her from the other cops who were pushing and shoving people and treated the other who was peppersprayed. Now riot cops are approaching that intersection coming from the east over the Burnside Bridge.
7:49 pm KBOO: I - 405 is now shut down! Newswire Post: "Critical Mass has blocked the diverted 1-5 traffic. I-5 traffic was diverted to 1-405. Critical mass blocked the diversion and have stopped traffic on I-5 South bound and I-405. Critcal Mass rocks!"
7:41 pm KBOO: Critical Mass has stopped traffic... somewhere...Candlelight vigil has started at 3rd and W. Burnside..... Morrison and Burnside Bridges are completely shut down!
7:26 pm From Burnside Bridge above I-5. East end is blocked. Around 1/2 hour ago, first the entrance, then the entire Southbound lane of I-5 was blocked by around 80 people at it's peak. When police arrived many left, but 8 sat down and refused to leave. 3 are still sitting cross-legged in the middle island, not clear why. Police were rough with 3 of them. People were on the Esplanade watching through the fence and the police fired 2 pellets upward toward the onlookers. About 50 people are watching the arrests now. One activist was hit by a car that went speeding through the line of people. The activist was knocked to the ground and was sitting very shaken when the reporter talked with him. He seemed okay a minute later, but very shaken. Activists on the scene got the license plate of the speeding car.
7:22 pm I-84 is cleared, there were no arrests, just pushed people off the highway. That/those groups are walking north on Grand now. Rumours that people are being arrested on Burnside Bridge now.
7:16 pm posted to the newswire:"There are two groups of people on I-84 - outbound lanes of the freeway. People sitting down on the freeway. People in their cars are getting out of their cars and walking toward the liberators. Cops are trying to drag people off the freeway. The traffic is stopped on I-84 and very slow on I-5. Another group of liberators are walking up Grand Ave going North on Grand. Cops are diverting all traffic on I-5 South bound diverted to I-405 to isolate the liberators. One liberator hit by car as Morrison bridge enters I-84."
7:13 pm KBOO: At the I-5 Esplanade around 35 riot crops holding 6-8 protesters. 5-6 shots of tear gas were shot, 50-60 protesters remian on Esplanade, around 100 on Bridge above,
7:06 pm riot cops have arrived at the I-84 on-ramp.
7:05 pm Another report that I-5 S was stopped for 20 minutes and that the riot cops have arrived and have arrested around 10 there so far. Not clear whether anyone was hurt there yet.
7:02 p.m. The march reached Grand St. and I-84 and a couple hundred people are blocking the on ramp. no police in sight.
7 pm An ambulance has pulled up to the area on I-5 that was blocked. not clear if anyone has been hurt.
6:59 pm I-5 has been cleared, more and more people are gathering on the Esplanade!
6: 56 pm KBOO report 75-100 people and more heading down East side of Esplanade below Burnside Bridge jumping fence separating the Esplanade and I-5. All of I-5 S is BLOCKED! people sitting down... Riot cops dispersing people ..
6:53 pm Front of the march has turned north after leaving Burnside Bridge heading up Grand St.
6:51 pm KBOO report: people have taken down police barricades on the east side of the Burnside bridge. The barricades are now blocking MLK. "It looked like there was some police violence earlier, but that seems to have settled down." People are now walking calmly off the Burnside bridge across MLK.
6 41 pm KBOO report: 2 people are standing on the Max Tracks stopping the train waving the peace sign...left when they were asked to move off the tracks.
6: 38 pm Marchers are going east over the Burnside bridge.
6:35 pm There's a "really groovy" sit-in with drumming still going on at the intersection of SW 2nd and Burnside. A truck driver was very upset that he couldn't get through. People tried to calm him down, and a few video cameras were on him. One Indymedia volunteer told the truck driver he was videotaping and to chill out... After that, the truck driver rammed his truck into people and drove away quickly. That license number will be posted later.
6:27 pm Around 80 cops have dispersed the crowd and the march is around 4 blocks away now.
6:23 pm Someone on the Steel Bridge says that cops started beating people with their sticks and the people started fighting back, with the result of one cop having a bloody face. Cops broke out the pepperspray, started pushing people off the ramp, when 25-30 people sat down on the ramp for around 10 minutes, and now are gone.
6:20 pm KBOO reports that Ch 2 news reported that SWAT team was deployed from East side of Steele Bridge.
6:18 pm Looking at the Steele Bridge from the Waterfront, protesters are leaving the onramps to the Steele Bridge and seem to be regrouping and marching away. Lots of people were peppersprayed and the cops were hitting protesters through their banner, and there were some hitting them back! A sad sight of a deaf man who started screaming and who was then peppersprayed.
6:14 pm KBOO report SW 1st & Everett near the Steele Bridge. "A couple hundred are trying to cross the bridge" and 50-100 cops are trying to prevent this. The smell of pepperspray is in the air. Sights of people who have been sprayed... A fire truck has obstructed the view. Much of the crowd is now heading toward the waterfront
6:05 pm Around 12 horse cops and 16-18 riot cops are advancing on the smaller crowd.
6:03 pm At the Steel Bridge 75-100 protestors are being cut off by police from the rest of the march.
5:42 pm KBOO reporter saying there is a group of around 200-300 who stopped in the intersection of SW 2nd and Burnside, blocking traffic in all directions. 20-30 are now sitting down, and the larger crowd is dispersing to join the rest of the march, heading up SW 3rd. No sign of police nearby.
5:25 pm KBOO reporter says there are 20-30 riot cops waiting at the west end of the Morrison Bridge and the tail end of the unpermitted march has crossed SW 2nd and SW Washington. She reports there are 3 airplanes overhead and 5 helecopters.
5:02 pm: The entire crowd (reportedly around 7,000- 10,000) has left the Park with the feeder march and is heading north on 4th toward the 1st blockade
4:30 pm: Thousands have gathered in Terry Shrunk Park and speakers voice their opposition to war in Iraq


Thank You from South Carolina, Keep it Up!

From the open publishing newswire: From the open publishing newswire: To the Courageous Citizens of Portland-
My name is Jenni and I attend a small university in Rock Hill,SC. It has been a long week of protesting here. Sometimes I am the only person to show up (but, then, no one ever shows up to formally protest in support of the war.)Fortunately, I am beginning to find some solidarity with my close neighbors in Charlotte, NC. Still our numbers are small in comparison to other parts of the country and as I talked to many of my new friends tonight as we gathered on a sidewalk in downtown Charlotte, I found that we all have often felt discouraged by low turnouts and lack of interest in organization. But then I thought about Portland and I told them of my visit to the city last week (specifically March 15.) To talk about holding down a bridge, blocking traffic, or being able to view marches for blocks and blocks ahead and behind, enlivened us all.
[ Read More... ]

FIRST ARREST STORY 21-Mar-2003 01:22

Do I Win the Prize for Earliest and Most Absurd Arrest?

From the open publishing newswire: From the open publishing newswire:
Do I Win the Prize for Earliest and Most Absurd Arrest?

I was cycling along NE Broadway about 4:30 toward downtown PLANNING to ride Critical Mass. As I passed the military recruiting office (war pimps), I hopped onto the sidewalk to look in the window at their vast array of beautiful propaganda. One of the war pimps had apparently gone to subway for a sammy and walked back toward me. "How's it goin'?" I asked (seriously). Noticing the bullhorn strapped across my back, he apparently knew where I was heading and shot me an evil look as he walked into the building.

Thinking he was rude, I flipped him off through the window as well as the other war pimps inside right as a cop pulled up beside me in the street. The chickenhawk war pimp gestured to the cop, giving me a smug look, and I flipped him off again.

Apparently the war pimps got their feelings hurt and I was arrested for harassment. [ Read More... ]


Downtown Ashland Shut Down!

From the open publishing newswire: Following the beginning of the invasion of Iraq, Ashlanders gathered in the plaza downtown to express their sorrow and rage and to stand in solidarity with anti-war activists across the globe.

A street theater performance at an Exxon gas station drew the condemnation of Ashland Mayor Alan DeBoer, who attempted to disrupt the expression of dissent in his community. Earlier in the day, many activists received an e-mail from DeBoer, encouraging Ashlanders to gather in the park and "pray for the world in this controversial time."

After holding an intersection adjacent to the Exxon for about 30 minutes, the crowd moved back into downtown, and held another intersection for nearly 2 hours. Police diverted all traffic around downtown, causing backups and confusion for motorists. Under the watchful eye of the Mayor and APD, armed with digital cameras, drummers and skateboarders, children and teens, city councilors and anarchists, street performers and artists, business owners and concerned citizens convened a meeting to discuss future actions against the invasion in Iraq, in the middle of Main Street.

A call has been made to continue to build momentum in Ashland. The Women in Black are inviting all to their vigil in the Plaza, Friday at 12:00 noon. A vigil is planned for Senator Smith's office in Medford, Friday from 3:00 to 7:00 pm. People are encouraged to organize into affinity groups to plan civil disobedience until this war ends.

For updates and more reporting, check out www.rogueimc.org

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