Thursday, September 20, 2007

Gathering of Eagles, Part III

Protest on the Mall

Last Saturday, anti-war protesters under the umbrella of the Answer Coalition gathered on the Mall in downtown Washington DC to oppose American involvement in Iraq and push for the impeachment of George W. Bush and Dick Cheney. Fortunately for rest of us, military veterans and other loyal Americans were there under the umbrella of Gathering of Eagles.

I wasn’t able to attend this time, but our Flemish-American correspondent ProFlandria was there, and he took a lot of photographs and sent us a written account of what happened.

One of the things I noticed in these photos — as I did in person when I attended the GOE event last March — was that the Answer Coalition is obviously very well funded, with expensive signs, materials, and equipment much in evidence. The organizers spared no expense in their effort to fight global capitalism.

There’s a large photo spread below the jump alongside ProFlandria’s account. If the “link” icon is visible when you pass your mouse pointer over an image, that image may be clicked to show a larger version of the photo.

Counter-protest on the Mall

Gathering of Eagles, Part III
by ProFlandria


The event started with a rally on the National Mall, with a bright sky and a gentle breeze. It was a little slow starting up — it didn’t really kick off until about 09:30. Lucky for me though; I could stroll around, get my bearings, and pick up a T-shirt from the March 17 event which I also attended. The mood was boisterous; a group of American University students proved very popular with the crowd. Maybe academia isn’t quite as lost as it sometimes appears...
- - - - - - - - -

By about 10:15 the crowd was at its maximum, I would guess anywhere between 1,000 and 1,500. Of course, perception is everything — a higher vantage point would have helped!. By that time I noticed the press doing the rounds through the crowd as well (there was also a static platform for the press right across the podium, behind the crowd).

I was off on the northern side of the mall, so they likely started at the South side and worked their way through the crowd. We had some outstanding inspirational speakers and very talented singers; the crowd responded enthousiastically. All in all, the three hours of standing up just flew by. I do hope someone will make some kind video record (DVD?) of the event available some time in the near future...

Of course we couldn’t have everything our way. By about 10:45 one of the organizers got on the podium to direct the stewards towards a commotion in the back, where some counter-protesters were getting too close. He asked the crowd not to interfere, but a sizeble number of basically did an about-face — mostly out of curiosity — but it must have made an impression because our “guests” ran off, I believe even before the stewards could get there.

Right after that we did get a successful infitration — one lady with a small sign got almost halfway through the crowd. Her attire was business-casual, which is probably how she slipped through without getting noticed. Once she was spotted, though, people around her engaged her in “spirited conversation” which attracted the attention of the stewards and a little later, one cop.

With the “virus” properly encased in a protective cocoon, she was basically neutralized, and as far as I know, stood there for quite a while. She did loose her sign though; one of the people on the podium tore it into little pieces and scattered it to the breeze — the crowd went wild!

The rally broke shortly after noon; we were advised that the anti-war crowd would not be marching until 13:30, which gave us all some time to get some food. I quickly made my way to Hard Rock because it was several blocks away from our assigned spot between 7th and 9th Streets on Pennsylvania. By 13:30 I was at the Navy Memorial — ready for the next event!

At about 14:30 Code Pink operatives suddenly materialized on the intersection of Pennsylvania and 7th. What the...? They certainly didn’t march up Pennsylvania to get there like they were supposed to! If they were trying to avoid the gauntlet, they failed — within less than a minute they were on the side of the street being “debated” by the GOE people.

Several cops showed up to extricate them... and we were still waiting on the main crowd. The only thing to stare at was a large bus straight out of the Sixties — garishly painted and festooned with people on the roof, treating everyone to what I would charitable describe as “performance art”. Frankly, my four-year-old grand-niece could run circles around these people.

Between 14:30 and 15:00 we got isolated dribbles of protesters wandering up and down the Avenue. Quite a few of them were walking right alongside the barriers even though they had the whole Avenue, which led to quite a bit of taunting back and forth. In the meantime police cruisers and bicycle cops were converging toward the West end of the Avenue, so we know the herd is approaching!

And there they finally came, just after 15:00 — but wait, who are those people with the large banner saying “DANGER! Leftist protesters trying to demoralize our troops?” They’re right up front, surely this crowd didn’t just have a mass reconversion to sanity? Oh, wait — look at the rest of them! I suspect the guys with the cautionary banner were Protest Warriors. Awesome!

I stayed around for another half hour to get a feel fior the crowd. They sounded (and acted) a little more subdued than last March, and the cookie-cutter yellow-and-black signs were not as massively in evidence. I had to get back home before the die-in, so unfortunately I missed all the excitement there. I guess there’s always next time...
       
The Answer Coalition
The Answer Coalition

These Smelly People?
These Smelly People?

Peace Marchers
Peace Marchers

The People’s Cube
The People’s Cube

The Moonbat Bus
The Moonbat Bus

Peace is for…
Peace is for…

Flying the Flag
Flying the Flag

The Press
The Press

 Counter-protest on the Mall

5 comments:

jillosophy said...

I was there - and it was a great day (I spotted myself in the crowd in one of your photos). Go to my blog to see my pics from that day.
http://jillosophy.blogspot.com/2007/09/wahington-dc-patriot-counter-protest.html

Lauri Olavi said...

Well, you warmongering neocons, with your "invade the world - invite the world" strategy, can destroy Western Civilization any way you like. As Whittaker Chambers once said, we true conservatives are on the losing side of history. I'm sort of resigned to that by now.

David M said...

Trackbacked by The Thunder Run - Web Reconnaissance for 09/20/2007
A short recon of what’s out there that might draw your attention updated throughout the day…so check back often.

Conservative Swede said...

Lauri Olavi,

If you refer to people such as ProFlandria and Baron Bodissey they are clearly not neocons, but rather kafircons as myself. There is no "invite the world" among kafircons for obvious reasons. Nevertheless, a kafircon doesn't need to have a problem in participating in counter-demos against the loony anti-war left. We must not be so obsessed by the neocons that we become anti-American and anti-Israel paleocons.

Come join the kafircons!

Nolph said...

Ill prefer a neocon over a PC or Islamo - Fascist any day of the week. But as Conservative swede already pointed out. We are really more the *Evil* *please don't let them invade us* group.

kafircons comes in many shapes an colors. How may we help you ? :-)