antifa

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CW: Literal Nazis and what comes with it.
Originally Posted on June 10, 2019
Update 6/12/19: Features account and video footage of an NSM member assaulting a woman in front of multiple DPD officers.

An oral history of Antifascist action in Detroit, collected and synthesized from accounts with on-site participants. 

Preparations, Confrontations, and Mutual Aid

On April 16th Burt Colucci, alleged "Commander" of the National Socialist Movement [NSM], levied a threat against Motor City Pride, stating they would be holding an armed demonstration to intimidate and harm Detroit’s LGBTQIA community. Word of the threat spread among leftist circles, and LGBTQIA rights organizers were rapidly alerted. When Motor City Pride was informed, they asked concerned residents to leave it to the Detroit Police Department.

image_transcoder.php?o=bx_froala_image&h=131&dpx=1&t=1589042113The initial threat, from his Facebook profile. 

Food Not Class (FNC), which routinely serves a free buffet and clothing/toiletries share for vulnerable community members twice a week, called in as many volunteers as they could for a special serving on the first day of Motor City Pride. They set up along an apropos wall of stone on Jefferson and Bates, having just produced a “History of Pride” zine, celebrating the 50th Anniversary of Stonewall. Their spread was complete with 11 cases of bottled water, lasagna, vegan chili, stuffed peppers, pizza and a veritable mountain of cornbread, delighting the houseless community and passersby alike, wetting whistles and sating appetites. Mitten Medics were on hand to make sure anyone who got hurt could get patched up, and keep folks hydrated on an 80 degree day.

Red Orchestra (RO) and the youth cadre of Communist Workers League (CWL) of Detroit provided the direct action and community defense portions of the proceedings, with Antifascists garbed in tie-dye and rainbow bandanas, alternately dubbed the “Rainbow Warriors” or “Rainbow Bloc” by onlookers and social media accounts.

image_transcoder.php?o=bx_froala_image&h=132&dpx=1&t=1589042150The FNC serve, and they still fed State Fair the same day. 

While Burt Colucci’s threat was copied onto Stormfront and NSM’s homepage, they were no-shows for the proposed 1 PM start time for their acts of hatred, effectively removing the most common defense of fascism: getting the trains to run on time.

Instead of the literal Nazis, 1 PM’s entertainment came in the form of a Christian bigot trundling down Jefferson, condemning LGBTQIA individuals to hell through his microphone at each step. Once he arrived within earshot of the FNC table, Antifascists sprang into action, forcing him away from MC Pride with an ersatz blockade on the sidewalk, while others harangued him through megaphones along the stone wall. His cries of homosexuality being a mortal sin were drowned out by commands to take his bigotry elsewhere, and multiple suggestions for therapy interspersed with everyone's favorite expletives.

image_transcoder.php?o=bx_froala_image&h=133&dpx=1&t=1589042196Like many bigoted Christians, this one was also not blessed with reading comprehension. 

Finding himself in front of the Renaissance Center, the hateful zealot attempted to give antifascists the slip, heading back down the sidewalk and got as far as the parking garage elevator before running into another ersatz blockade. This time, his choices were a packed sidewalk and the oncoming traffic of Jefferson, he chose the latter and rabbited to the median where Woodward and Jefferson intersect. From there, his declaration that transgender people were a crime against god was met with protesters blasting Pride anthems, such as "Born this Way" by Lady Gaga and "I'm Coming Out" by Diana Ross, through a portable speaker. He found himself at a loss for words as the protesters started grinding and twerking in front of him. Emboldened future MC Pride attendees took care of the rest, verbally dissolving his life's philosophy on their way to the entrance line, and he sheepishly skittered away.

Meanwhile, Food Not Class' serving was going so well, they were in danger of running out of everything but cornbread by 3 PM. Two houseless folks who enjoyed the spread elected to stick around and serenade foot traffic with punk rock and classic pop standards on their ukelele, while hanging out with FNC volunteers. Thanks to the generosity of those who enjoyed the serving earlier, they had enough for seven large pizzas and six cases of water.

 Not ten minutes after the pizza order was placed, a Swastika flag was spotted in front of Cobo Hall, headed directly for Hart Plaza.


The Smallest Blitzkrieg

Walking on the North side of Jefferson, in front of the Scientology building, a lone antifascist tried to halt their march. She was shoved down by an NSM shield in full view of DPD, who neither arrested, nor charged the Nazi with assault. (video)

image_transcoder.php?o=bx_froala_image&h=134&dpx=1&t=1589042228Photo source: Herman Davis 

A second antifascist later bolted to the scene once they crossed the street, heading towards the end of the Pride entry line. They ran into a wall of no less than thirty DPD officers, some in riot gear, acting as a phalanx for ten members of NSM. The Nazis were sporting the clearance aisle of their local Army-Navy surplus, only one had a replica SS uniform. Amid the black tacticool, one woman with a Macklemore haircut stuck out in a Mormonesque khakis and white polo ensemble. The antifascist attempted to darted around and tail the group before it could reach the entry line. DPD made grabs for the protester, amid the Nazis shouting "White Power" and "Fuck You F******" to the Metro-Detroit LGBTQIA community. The police were unsuccessful, as the first Rainbow Warrior darted across the street, flipping the guardians of National Socialism the bird. 

Reinforcements arrived as the Rainbow Warriors confronted the NSM and DPD head-on (video). They rallied some of the entry line of Motor City Pride in a chant of "Nazis Fuck Off" to counter the hate speech, and were aided by three members of the houseless community, who joined the front line in trying to stop the march. It was to no avail, shoved aside by DPD riot shields, the bloc took to tailing the demonstration and were joined by a furious crowd confronting a symbol of their genocide. 

image_transcoder.php?o=bx_froala_image&h=135&dpx=1&t=1589042256Aren't you a little short to be a stormtrooper? 

A crowd growing behind them, the Nazis quickened their pace as they crossed in front of Hart Plaza, a raucous uproar of "No Nazis, No KKK, No Fascist USA" behind them, and Pride attendees banging on the fences. Near the MC Pride Bicycle Valet, an Arab Rainbow Warrior was called "Sand N*****" and told "go back to your country" by a white officer. A couple brave and agile antifascists were able to briefly slip by the police bubble to get clear photos. NSM was losing ground on the Jefferson sidewalk as it crossed Bates.

DPD elected to close down Eastbound Jefferson and escort Nazis to the median and up Randolph St. The sidewalk was taken up by a fuming unified bloc of Antifascists and Pride goers shouting "Class traitor!" and a thunderous chorus of "Who do you serve, who do you protect?"

image_transcoder.php?o=bx_froala_image&h=136&dpx=1&t=1589042287Nice pins. 

The antifascist who was assaulted at the beginning of the march was accosted by DPD. The officer grabbed her hard enough to leave bruises, and attempted to detain her because she was carrying two water bottles. The officer was quickly surrounded by protesters and let her go.

The Rainbow Bloc grew in number and overwhelmed the Southeast corner of Jefferson and Randolph and began shouting "Queer Power!" in response to NSM taunting with "White Power!" while scurrying away under heavy police guard. Then "Trans Power!" was added, later "Black Power!" and "People Power!" echoed off the walls of the Millinder Center as the Nazis retreated to Larned and Randolph.

There they lingered as the chants died. A small detachment of the bloc circled around to Woodward and Larned, rallying Pride goers at street crossings along the way to confront them from the West. Marching in, the bloc used a megaphone to undress the NSM from their odious viewpoints, to the likely origins of their lack of self-esteem. DPD reinforced the Nazis by pushing the Antifascists back and drawing a crowd of onlookers from a nearby parking garage. 

image_transcoder.php?o=bx_froala_image&h=137&dpx=1&t=1589042321New ReichGuard Extreme, by Just For Manchildren. 

At one point, possibly Bert Colucci, it was difficult to tell the men apart with twelve inches of hair between them, tore up and peed on an Israeli flag. Perhaps he was mock peeing, but no arrest attempt was made. The bloc laughed, responding "We're leftists, we don't like Israel 'cause they act like you!"

Each attempt for the National Socialist Mormon to speak through her megaphone was shouted down, sometimes with clever jabs, a Queer Power reprisal or simply "Shut up, just shut the fuck up". Eventually, this drew more attention from Pride goers and Detroit visitors alike, and the "Nazis Are Scared" chant caught on. Curiously, they stopped attempting to spew hate at Randolph and Larned, and walked West. Masked members of the bloc eschewed them out with a spirited but off key "Na Na Hey Hey" by Steam and Ray Charles' "Hit the Road, Jack". Sadly, a voluminous DPD presence allowed "White Power" to echo through the Millinder Center tunnel as they skulked away. 

The Rainbow Warriors regrouped and cut around to Larned and Beaubien via Jefferson, and were greeted with cheers from early bar goers, chasing the NSM into a parking lot on Larned and St. Antoine. Another section of the bloc marched up to the other entrance of the parking lot and was halted by a suffocating array of DPD officers and cruisers. The Warriors remained undaunted, bringing a reprise of "Nazis Are Scared" as the police escorted the National Socialist Movement away in a rented catering van.

From the start of the MC Pride line to the parking lot retreat, the National Socialist Movement only managed to disrupt Pride proper for 10 minutes and Detroit proper for 20, 5 spent cowering in a van. 

Meanwhile, the Mitten Medics held it down at the Food Not Class table, but their consumable supplies dwindled to cornbread and coffee. Fortunately, they had plenty of literature from FNC and Communist Workers League, plus radical stickers.

Post-Action Mutual Aid

image_transcoder.php?o=bx_froala_image&h=138&dpx=1&t=1589042365

After taking a half hour to regroup, FNC realized they completely forgot about the pizza. The resupply run lasted 45 minutes and everyone had to make due apologizing for only having coffee, clothes, cornbread and literature. Once the 8 large pizzas arrived, it was passed out to hungry Pride attendees in roughly 5 minutes. Many people lingered, dancing to 105.9 on the portable speaker, and/or talking radical theory. 

The Mitten Medics patched up a young Pride-goer who suffered a leg injury, keeping her comfortable and well hydrated with bandage wraps and assistance on an impromptu medical evacuation. Red Orchestra and Communist Workers League squads walked the streets around Pride, checking to ensure no white supremacists lingered. Along the way, they encountered a man catcalling women waiting in line from his car. Blocking his view, he stopped yelling and got out of his car, frustrated. Unpleasant words were exchanged at low volume, but it was made clear his behavior was out of line and it was also the least logical place to try anyway. He stormed off, but bothered Pride no further.

FNC was confronted by an undercover officer, upset about the organization's rule of refusing service to law enforcement and fascists. He took a piece of anti-police literature and interrogated the organization over its permit status for the stone wall on Jefferson and Bates. Eventually, he left, thoroughly unsatisfied with his lack of service.

The sun went down, and Pride came to a close Nazi-free. All in a day's work for Antifa.

    #communitydefense #directaction 

Added a post  to  , antifa

An oral history chronicling the Antifascist actions in Charlottesville/DC the weekend of August 10-12, 2018.

August 10th, 2018

As Antifa chapters convened across the country, so too did the Abolish ICE Network gather in the humid and ordinarily friendly confines of Charlottesville, VA. A city besieged by white supremacist violence just a year ago, culminating in the savage beating of DeAndre Harris and murder of Heather Heyer, found itself in the grip of an oppressive police state. State Trooper vehicles lined the entrances to the historic campus, formations focused around the college's numerous monuments, and frequent patrols skulked through the downtown streets. 

Nevertheless, it was Friday, and the Abolish ICE team was committed to continuing their tradition of a One Million Flames solidarity vigil, for victims of the pogrom against immigrants (including the child who died from a respiratory infection contracted while imprisoned by ICE), mass incarceration, and especially Heather Heyer. Candles lined the sidewalk of the Charlottesville Federal Courthouse, the abolitionists forced off the premises proper by local police. 

They fanned out, enveloping the street corner in candlelight as cars passed by, honking supportively. A few glared at the gathering, furtively taking cell phone pictures of the demonstrators. As the abolitionists were singing "Solidarity Forever", passersby walked up to the courthouse to join them. With the local support, this One Million Flames vigil was officially a success.

image_transcoder.php?o=bx_froala_image&h=100&dpx=1&t=1588540418Abolish ICE Camps Represented: Portland, Tacoma (NWDC), Tampa Bay, Detroit. 

The Antifa/Abolitionist collective concluded their ceremony thanking the bystanders who joined the movement, however briefly, and quietly returned home to prepare for Charlottesville's defense.

August 11th, 2018 - Downtown Charlottesville - 1 PM

Fueled by pancakes, scrambled eggs and a demand for social justice, the Antifa collective set to work planning their memorial service for Heather Heyer at the site of her murder. Despite the peaceful objective, Virginia Police had walled off the downtown plaza but for one entrance, heavily guarded with a security checkpoint and a banned items list that grew longer with each query. 

Upon arrival to the parking lot, Virginia State police immediately made a show of running license plates of cars whose occupants dressed in all black with hats and sunglasses. An armored vehicle crept closer in the lot towards the Antifa gathering, but peeled off after some comrades began taking selfies in front of it.

image_transcoder.php?o=bx_froala_image&h=101&dpx=1&t=1588540470All that plate deterred by a cellphone camera. 

Undeterred by the show of intimidation by state authorities, Antifa strolled to the security checkpoint. While most cleared it without incident, one of the medics was forced to discard a CPR mask as part of the "no masks" policy. Given that the heat index was in the upper 90s, the group was dressed in all black and packed into narrow alleyways, such a decision was patently unsafe on the part of Virginia State Police. 

Once inside the downtown plaza, the collective marched solemnly and silently to the Heather Heyer memorial. While the police presence was oppressive, the people of Charlottesville were overwhelmingly supportive. Affirmations like "thank you for being here" punctuated the silent march, along with an accordion player plying his trade. As Antifa approached the fateful alley, time slowed and sound dissipated.

image_transcoder.php?o=bx_froala_image&h=102&dpx=1&t=1588540521The march to the memorial. 

Flower bundles dotted the sidewalk along the site. The building's owner taped memorial flyers to the windows and a sprawling chalk mural covered the red brick, "Gone But Not Forgotten" its centerpiece. Some members of the collective knelt to write their own chalk messages in the pavement, others stood respectfully in silence. 

image_transcoder.php?o=bx_froala_image&h=103&dpx=1&t=1588540560Gone, but not forgotten. 

A solemn, respectful service was the goal, but a horde of photographers had other plans. Several comrades asked the press politely for ten minutes to mourn without interference. That request was denied, as shutters continued to click and the Antifa collective was left with their grief and a side of gawkers. In addition to wanting a respectful ceremony, the request for no pictures is also for personal safety reasons, as both the fascist street movement and the state want to doxx the identities of Antifa for nefarious purposes. 

With both pressure and grief mounting, one comrade broke down at the scene and was covered by their closest friends. A fourth spread wings of revolution to allow them at least some semblance of privacy, with help from a fifth. 

image_transcoder.php?o=bx_froala_image&h=104&dpx=1&t=1588540601Antifa supports each other. 

Their service concluded, the collective gathered themselves and returned to the plaza. The accordion player struck up "This Little Light of Mine" and the 40+ strong black parade joined in. As the shine of those verses faded, it was replaced by a reprise of "Solidarity Forever" from the previous evening as they exited through the security checkpoint. 

August 11th, 2018 - UVA Brooks Hall - 7 PM

With the previous two actions, this collective mourned the dead. Now the time came to fight like hell for the living. Black Lives Matter Charlottesville (BLM) and UVA Students United (UVASU) organized and led rally to protest the white supremacy terrorizing their community and the oppressive police state that descended on the town this weekend, in the name of overcompensation for last year. Antifa's role was to follow their lead and protect vulnerable students in attendance.

While initially planned as a rally at the Rotunda, local police demanded only students with ID be permitted to enter, and everyone was subject to a search and metal detectors. The organizing team promptly rejected that notion and announced that they were holding the rally at Brooks Hall, where all could attend. Several hundred gathered at the scene.

A crescendo of cheers quickly rose from the crowd as the banner emerged, a poignant message of "Last year they came with torches, this year they come with badges," emblazoned on the canvas. 


Other banners, such as "200 Years of White Supremacy", "Cville Fights Back" and "We Keep Us Safe" joined it in sentiment. The introductory speaker put UVA on blast, profiting off the misery of the campus following the violence against Heyer and Harris. The speaker called out Virginia police for their inappropriate and oppressive deployment, pointing out that so far all the additional police action has done is harm members of the local community, while making no effort to identify or arrest fascist agitators. 

At that point, roughly twenty state troopers fanned out in a straight line along the west side of the demonstration. The show of forcimage_transcoder.php?o=bx_froala_image&h=105&dpx=1&t=1588540640Photo credit: UVA Students United e was noted, and under UVASU/BLM's direction, Antifa quickly mobilized to help guide the protest to a location less hemmed in. Fortunately, that location was a hop, skip, and jump away at the steps of Brooks Hall. Two more of the UVASU/BLM organizers were able to speak their truth atop the balcony of Brooks Hall, but law enforcement had other ideas.

Without warning or provocation, forty police garbed in riot gear streamed onto the South side of the lawn. Their line was held back by a greater number of clergy and student demonstrators. Meanwhile, Antifa fanned out and formed a protective wall of black around the main crowd. "Not one riot cop is to lay their hands on any student!" was the edict passed down.

image_transcoder.php?o=bx_froala_image&h=106&dpx=1&t=1588540686Photo credit: The clergywoman pictured. 

"Why are you in riot gear? We don't see no riot here!" was the chant from an entirely non-violent crowd, expressing their disgust at the show of force. 

For a moment, it appeared the rally would be able to continue at Brooks Hall. Before the speaking program could really gain steam, a shout came from the student front opposite the riot cops. "We have been declared an unlawful assembly!" echoed through each line of people. Charlottesville and VA Police have yet to provide evidence as to why this order was declared, unless the 1st Amendment no longer applies to protests against white supremacy. 

Nevertheless, it was clear the police state would not tolerate a protest so close to the historic UVA campus properties, so the rally transformed into a march, growing to over 1000 demonstrators, and UVASU led the taking back of Charlottesville's streets.

image_transcoder.php?o=bx_froala_image&h=107&dpx=1&t=1588540754The March. Bloc guards the left, BLM/UVASU guards the right. 

Winding through the hilly streets of Charlottesville, the emotional support team deployed affirmations to the marchers. Marchers were reminded that they're a good looking group, the best the speaker has seen. They were also told they were loved, not just in the general community sense, but by the speaker in specific. Other support teams went to work passing out water and checking for heat exhaustion, scrapes, and other common maladies that can occur when in close proximity to the hooved, snouted, and badged sliver of the population.

Out-maneuvering the forces of oppression for a time, the march transformed back into a rally on the colosseum stands overlooking the Lambeth Field soccer pitch. 

image_transcoder.php?o=bx_froala_image&h=108&dpx=1&t=1588540805Image Photo Credit: Paul Salerno. GLA bloc center-left in location, far-left in ideology. Caption

Chants of "We are powerful" echoed through the colosseum steps. Initially, only a small pack of police were present on the north side of the colosseum, and UVASU was able to continue more of its program. The power of direct action and mass movement was readily apparent as a fervor whipped through the crowd. Truth eschewed from megaphones on the pitch. One speaker even taught a new song to the audience, of which two verses were very successful in taking root.

image_transcoder.php?o=bx_froala_image&h=109&dpx=1&t=1588540910"We Are Powerful" 

Sadly, this non-violent expression of community organizing was not to be tolerated for long. Thirty police offers flooded onto the back of the soccer pitch, walling off one of two major exits. Then, another pack blocked off the other side of the colosseum. With only one opening left, UVASU/BLM gave the order to move. Antifa swiftly mobilized to assist with escaping the second kettling attempt of the evening. Activists hopped, lunged, and crawled up the Shaquille O'Neal-sized steps to deliver a speedy and safe exit for the demonstration.

At the behest of the local organizers, the Antifa collective peeled off from the main demonstration in an effort to draw away the heavy police presence, as the march was entering a marginalized neighborhood. 

Sweaty, but energized, the Antifa collective was able to safely return to their vehicles and leave police-occupied Charlottesville. Their mission was successful, all students and demonstrators were unharmed for the duration of the security detail. Freedom of expression was preserved.

image_transcoder.php?o=bx_froala_image&h=110&dpx=1&t=1588540949Welcome to the Black Parade. 

-right #heatherheyer 

Added a post  to  , antifa

Originally Posted on August 24, 2018

Update: 2/13/2020, a certain story involving tangerines and masochism surfaced from this day and had to be included.

A compiled oral history of Antifascist action the weekend of August 10-12, 2018 in Charlottesville, VA and Washington DC.

August 11th, 11 PM

Though their means of acquisition is unknown, this Antifa collective possessed a large pile of confederate flags by the evening of the 11th. Their safehouse also had a fire pit, which left only one logical conclusion for what to do with them. Joining the pile of cloth from failed attempts at white supremacist states was a Blue Lives Matter flag, its movement begging to join the Stars and Bars in the past tense. 

Once the logs ignited, the ritual began. Curses shouted to the heavens for centuries of brutality and persecution at the hands of the state and its lapdogs, while the racist banners were lowered into the conflagration. The collective cheered as flames licked at the fabric, igniting and melting it. Then, someone said "anyone who doesn't jump over the fire at least once is a cop", and all seriousness dissipated as the collective lined up to leap over the blazing pit.

image_transcoder.php?o=bx_froala_image&h=142&dpx=1&t=1589129836General Sherman was right about one thing... 

With the daunting task of obliterating Jason Kessler's "Unite the Right 2" rally ahead, the collective cut loose. Tables were danced on, pasta feasts consumed and sing-alongs conducted, ranging from Eric Clapton's "Before You Accuse Me" to Britney Spears' "Oops, I Did It Again". Good times in community are precious when living in the grip of a fascist regime, as it makes the looming threat of Nazis and their state protectors seem smaller, at least for a short while. 

August 12th, 11 AM

Word of Kessler moving his Nazi rally start time up several hours engulfed the collective's communication networks as they swiftly mobilized to ensure black bloc's presence was felt outside the White House. The fascist's gambit failed, as scores of black bloc flooded the streets of DC just in time to convene with the locally organized demonstrations already in full swing. It is one of the largest Antifascist specific gatherings in the country's history.

image_transcoder.php?o=bx_froala_image&h=143&dpx=1&t=1589129888While many started at Franklin square, collectives joined the unified bloc from all corners of the city center. 

The vote was made at Franklin square to join the action organized and led by Black Lives Matter DC (BLM), which took on the toughest assignment: directly confronting Kessler's band of white supremacist goons. The black parade took over I St. and later Vermont Ave, and when rounding the corner of Vermont and H, a symbiosis occurred. Cheers erupted from the front of the line of antifascists as they made jubilant contact with Black Lives Matter. Members of both groups ran to embrace, high five and root each other on as this newly unified bloc took back the streets of DC from the Nazis set to arrive in minutes. 

Despite the DC Metro Union refusing to provide private transit cars for Kessler's rally, WMATA went behind their worker's backs to roll out the red carpet with a private train under heavy police guard. This did little to deter Black Lives Matter, who led the bloc directly along their path as soon as the Kessler Klan-reserved Metro car pulled into the station. Instead of the several hundred white supremacists that attended the first Unite the Right, Kessler emerged with less than 30 minions. Sadly, this numerical advantage was countered by over 100 law enforcement officers acting as an escort to the thoroughly kowtowed racists. 

image_transcoder.php?o=bx_froala_image&h=144&dpx=1&t=1589129927You're welcome here, whether short or tall, together we make the fascists fall. 

Every step the Nazis took was met with fury and resistance. Unified shouts of "Whose Streets? Our Streets!" and "No Trump, No KKK, No Fascist USA" boomed through the roads and alleyways overlooking Lafayette Square. Hundreds lined the edge of the square as BLM/Black bloc asserted their control over H street.

This was not the only territory antifascists would reclaim, as the march turned South on 17th street before settling on the intersection of 17th and Pennsylvania. Word spread from the lead organizers that this position is crucial and must be held, for it was Kessler's designated escape route. The unified bloc, now numbering well over one thousand, sent vicious verbal barrages at the 25 fascists huddled just a few hundred feet away in Lafayette Square.

The sky grew dark as the 17th/Penn occupation continued. Rain poured down, lightning rent the horizon and the rumble of thunder was indistinguishable from chants of "in the sun and in the rain, antifascists bring the pain!" A couple comrades set off smoke bombs ("don't worry, its not tear gas" they reassured) and roman candles for ambience. Medic teams established a back line for treating injuries, and friends, separated by the burgeoning crowd, reunited amidst the mass demonstration. 

It was abundantly clear that Kessler and cronies would be unable to accomplish any of their rally's program. Their highest profile speakers, David Duke (Ku Klux Klan) and Simon Roche (Suidlander, a South African pro-Apartheid cult), were no-shows, and the entire potential audience couldn't even fill a school bus. As they were readying to leave, Black Lives Matter and Antifa prepared for a barrage of state violence, distributing aid for tear gas, pepper spray and dehydration.

image_transcoder.php?o=bx_froala_image&h=145&dpx=1&t=1589129968Mutual Aid: A core tenet of leftist philosophy. 

As word of a resounding defeat of Unite the Right 2 spead, the police parked two white 15-seat vans at the South end of the bloc, behind a barricade. However, those only served as a decoy, as the police surrounded the Nazis in a protective formation and ushered them into two different vans, then escorted the white supremacists around the reclaimed streets and out of the city. There is no historical evidence that leftist activists such as Rosa Parks, Angela Davis or Dolores Huerta ever received such care and protection by law enforcement. 

In concert with the Nazi escort, a line of bike cops fanned out to wall off 17th and H street, barricading the unified bloc on all sides. Half of the bloc made moves to confront the police line along H, but cooler heads prevailed as organizers from BLM relayed an optimal escape route from the first kettling attempt of the afternoon. 

Pennsylvania Avenue was blocked off by two dump trucks East of 17th, but a wide sidewalk allowed the unified bloc to squeeze through and march Northeast on Penn. Tension grew in the corridor of 17th/Penn/H St. street as four police cars blocked the road. The raucous chatter of the bloc ceased as their lines split to weave through the squad cars. An exhale of relief rippled through the march as it passed the police line unscathed.

The bloc took I St, marching west and later South along 14th until a decision was made by BLM to finish the demonstration with an impromptu rally at the Department of Justice. From 14th, the bloc headed East down G street, only to meet a fleet of police on motorcycles blocking their way. The order to disperse was given by Kessler's de-facto bodyguards. A counter order from the bloc was given to push through. The front of the line inched forward, and the cops shot them with pepper spray.

The unified bloc held firm, and in one notable example, an anti-fascist took a shot of pepper spray square in the face without flinching. In response to the puzzled expressions by the police, the anti-fascist stated "I like pain" and flung a tangerine directly at the shooting officer's face.

image_transcoder.php?o=bx_froala_image&h=146&dpx=1&t=1589130022"This is America" - Donald Glover 

A flashbang grenade exploded overhead while the worst hit by the spray fell to the ground and vomited. The bloc surged and busted through the riot line together, gathering fallen comrades along the way. BLM led the bloc through a construction site adjacent to the Wells Fargo building, shoving down a fence to gain access. Weaving through a forest of steel beams and scrap, they were left with limited options for an exit. 

At this point, the bloc split into three groups to frustrate police pursuit. One group dashed into a nearby parking garage and wound their way into a corner, with no clear way out. Still, there was no active pursuit, which gave the medic team time to provide aid to those hit hardest by the pepper spray. Along the back wall were two 8 ft. sections of chain link on the ground floor. One antifascist threw her body against it to see if it would give, but to no avail. Suddenly, a pair of bolt cutters entered her field of vision, produced by a well-prepared comrade.

The thick gauged chain link proved a difficult task, but between two people they were able to cut enough away for everyone to slip through, de-bloc (remove masks, black outerwear). Once in civilian gear, they strolled back to their cars and exited DC safely.

When asked later why the comrade had bolt cutters, he responded "I was packing my bag, saw they were there. I was going to leave them at the house, but something made me keep them."

image_transcoder.php?o=bx_froala_image&h=147&dpx=1&t=1589130071Let it be known that Black Lives Matter DC were the heroes keeping everyone safe on August 12th. 

A second group dashed up 14th, one comrade running so hard he split his shoe in half along the sole. They found temporary sanctuary in a church along New York Avenue, but bike cops circled the building like vultures, waiting for protesters to leave so they could capture them and throw them in a holding cell. Some Antifa escaped the kettle unscathed and were in contact with those hiding in the church. A quick recon team was whipped up, darting through the alleys near the church, probing for breaks in the bike cop patrols. 

After a time, the patrols backed off, and the trapped comrades touched base with their collectives and escaped individually. The split shoe antifascist was joined by a recon team, given some civilian outerwear and escorted to the getaway car in an exit worthy of a straight-to-video heist film.

image_transcoder.php?o=bx_froala_image&h=148&dpx=1&t=1589130133BLM DC making their stand at the site of the kettle. 


A third group found themselves in a service corridor that had doors leading to a french bakery, and hastily negotiated with the owner to allow protesters to de-bloc in the backroom, which led to a sight of shields and black shirts shed in haste, hiding behind microwaves and mixers. In addition to the mugs, a large bread knife also joined the list of casualties in the quick-change fracas. Many customers cheered at the sight, while one old man stood around looking very confused.

Nevertheless, through the kindness of strangers, BLM and Antifa stepped onto the rain-soaked streets of DC as free people.

image_transcoder.php?o=bx_froala_image&h=149&dpx=1&t=15891301781312

The greatest honor of the afternoon goes to Black Lives Matter DC, for their organization and leadership throughout the entire demonstration. Their knowledge and skill allowed the unified bloc to escape two kettles by the police, almost entirely unscathed. Thank you for working with us on August 12th, and here's to more unified blocs banding together to grind fascist movement into dust, both on the street and in seats of power across the land.

#counterprotest #nazi

Added a post  to  , antifa

CW: Literal Nazis and what comes with it.
Originally Posted on June 10, 2019
Update 6/12/19: Features account and video footage of an NSM member assaulting a woman in front of multiple DPD officers.

An oral history of Antifascist action in Detroit, collected and synthesized from accounts with on-site participants. 

Preparations, Confrontations, and Mutual Aid

On April 16th Burt Colucci, alleged "Commander" of the National Socialist Movement [NSM], levied a threat against Motor City Pride, stating they would be holding an armed demonstration to intimidate and harm Detroit’s LGBTQIA community. Word of the threat spread among leftist circles, and LGBTQIA rights organizers were rapidly alerted. When Motor City Pride was informed, they asked concerned residents to leave it to the Detroit Police Department.

The initial threat, from his Facebook profile. 

Food Not Class (FNC), which routinely serves a free buffet and clothing/toiletries share for vulnerable community members twice a week, called in as many volunteers as they could for a special serving on the first day of Motor City Pride. They set up along an apropos wall of stone on Jefferson and Bates, having just produced a “History of Pride” zine, celebrating the 50th Anniversary of Stonewall. Their spread was complete with 11 cases of bottled water, lasagna, vegan chili, stuffed peppers, pizza and a veritable mountain of cornbread, delighting the houseless community and passersby alike, wetting whistles and sating appetites. Mitten Medics were on hand to make sure anyone who got hurt could get patched up, and keep folks hydrated on an 80 degree day.

Red Orchestra (RO) and the Communist Workers League (CWL) of Detroit provided the direct action and community defense portions of the proceedings, with Antifascists garbed in tie-dye and rainbow bandanas, alternately dubbed the “Rainbow Warriors” or “Rainbow Bloc” by onlookers and social media accounts.

The FNC serve, and they still fed State Fair the same day. 

While Burt Colucci’s threat was copied onto Stormfront and NSM’s homepage, they were no-shows for the proposed 1 PM start time for their acts of hatred, effectively removing the most common defense of fascism: getting the trains to run on time.

Instead of the literal Nazis, 1 PM’s entertainment came in the form of a Christian bigot trundling down Jefferson, condemning LGBTQIA individuals to hell through his microphone at each step. Once he arrived within earshot of the FNC table, Antifascists sprang into action, forcing him away from MC Pride with an ersatz blockade on the sidewalk, while others harangued him through megaphones along the stone wall. His cries of homosexuality being a mortal sin were drowned out by commands to take his bigotry elsewhere, and multiple suggestions for therapy interspersed with everyone's favorite expletives.

Like many bigoted Christians, this one was also not blessed with reading comprehension. 

Finding himself in front of the Renaissance Center, the hateful zealot attempted to give antifascists the slip, heading back down the sidewalk and got as far as the parking garage elevator before running into another ersatz blockade. This time, his choices were a packed sidewalk and the oncoming traffic of Jefferson, he chose the latter and rabbited to the median where Woodward and Jefferson intersect. From there, his declaration that transgender people were a crime against god was met with protesters blasting Pride anthems, such as "Born this Way" by Lady Gaga and "I'm Coming Out" by Diana Ross, through a portable speaker. He found himself at a loss for words as the protesters started grinding and twerking in front of him. Emboldened future MC Pride attendees took care of the rest, verbally dissolving his life's philosophy on their way to the entrance line, and he sheepishly skittered away.

Meanwhile, Food Not Class' serving was going so well, they were in danger of running out of everything but cornbread by 3 PM. Two houseless folks who enjoyed the spread elected to stick around and serenade foot traffic with punk rock and classic pop standards on their ukelele, while hanging out with FNC volunteers. Thanks to the generosity of those who enjoyed the serving earlier, they had enough for seven large pizzas and six cases of water.

 Not ten minutes after the pizza order was placed, a Swastika flag was spotted in front of Cobo Hall, headed directly for Hart Plaza.


The Smallest Blitzkrieg

Walking on the North side of Jefferson, in front of the Scientology building, a lone antifascist tried to halt their march. She was shoved down by an NSM shield in full view of DPD, who neither arrested, nor charged the Nazi with assault. (video)

Photo source: Herman Davis 

A second antifascist later bolted to the scene once they crossed the street, heading towards the end of the Pride entry line. They ran into a wall of no less than thirty DPD officers, some in riot gear, acting as a phalanx for ten members of NSM. The Nazis were sporting the clearance aisle of their local Army-Navy surplus, only one had a replica SS uniform. Amid the black tacticool, one woman with a Macklemore haircut stuck out in a Mormonesque khakis and white polo ensemble. The antifascist attempted to darted around and tail the group before it could reach the entry line. DPD made grabs for the protester, amid the Nazis shouting "White Power" and "Fuck You F******" to the Metro-Detroit LGBTQIA community. The police were unsuccessful, as the first Rainbow Warrior darted across the street, flipping the guardians of National Socialism the bird. 

Reinforcements arrived as the Rainbow Warriors confronted the NSM and DPD head-on (video). They rallied some of the entry line of Motor City Pride in a chant of "Nazis Fuck Off" to counter the hate speech, and were aided by three members of the houseless community, who joined the front line in trying to stop the march. It was to no avail, shoved aside by DPD riot shields, the bloc took to tailing the demonstration and were joined by a furious crowd confronting a symbol of their genocide. 

Aren't you a little short to be a stormtrooper? 

A crowd growing behind them, the Nazis quickened their pace as they crossed in front of Hart Plaza, a raucous uproar of "No Nazis, No KKK, No Fascist USA" behind them, and Pride attendees banging on the fences. Near the MC Pride Bicycle Valet, an Arab Rainbow Warrior was called "Sand N*****" and told "go back to your country" by a white officer. A couple brave and agile antifascists were able to briefly slip by the police bubble to get clear photos. NSM was losing ground on the Jefferson sidewalk as it crossed Bates.

DPD elected to close down Eastbound Jefferson and escort Nazis to the median and up Randolph St. The sidewalk was taken up by a fuming unified bloc of Antifascists and Pride goers shouting "Class traitor!" and a thunderous chorus of "Who do you serve, who do you protect?"

Nice pins. 

The antifascist who was assaulted at the beginning of the march was accosted by DPD. The officer grabbed her hard enough to leave bruises, and attempted to detain her because she was carrying two water bottles. The officer was quickly surrounded by protesters and let her go.

The Rainbow Bloc grew in number and overwhelmed the Southeast corner of Jefferson and Randolph and began shouting "Queer Power!" in response to NSM taunting with "White Power!" while scurrying away under heavy police guard. Then "Trans Power!" was added, later "Black Power!" and "People Power!" echoed off the walls of the Millinder Center as the Nazis retreated to Larned and Randolph.

There they lingered as the chants died. A small detachment of the bloc circled around to Woodward and Larned, rallying Pride goers at street crossings along the way to confront them from the West. Marching in, the bloc used a megaphone to undress the NSM from their odious viewpoints, to the likely origins of their lack of self-esteem. DPD reinforced the Nazis by pushing the Antifascists back and drawing a crowd of onlookers from a nearby parking garage. 

New ReichGuard Extreme, by Just For Manchildren. 

At one point, possibly Bert Colucci, it was difficult to tell the men apart with twelve inches of hair between them, tore up and peed on an Israeli flag. Perhaps he was mock peeing, but no arrest attempt was made. The bloc laughed, responding "We're leftists, we don't like Israel 'cause they act like you!"

Each attempt for the National Socialist Mormon to speak through her megaphone was shouted down, sometimes with clever jabs, a Queer Power reprisal or simply "Shut up, just shut the fuck up". Eventually, this drew more attention from Pride goers and Detroit visitors alike, and the "Nazis Are Scared" chant caught on. Curiously, they stopped attempting to spew hate at Randolph and Larned, and walked West. Masked members of the bloc eschewed them out with a spirited but off key "Na Na Hey Hey" by Steam and Ray Charles' "Hit the Road, Jack". Sadly, a voluminous DPD presence allowed "White Power" to echo through the Millinder Center tunnel as they skulked away. 

The Rainbow Warriors regrouped and cut around to Larned and Beaubien via Jefferson, and were greeted with cheers from early bar goers, chasing the NSM into a parking lot on Larned and St. Antoine. Another section of the bloc marched up to the other entrance of the parking lot and was halted by a suffocating array of DPD officers and cruisers. The Warriors remained undaunted, bringing a reprise of "Nazis Are Scared" as the police escorted the National Socialist Movement away in a rented catering van.

From the start of the MC Pride line to the parking lot retreat, the National Socialist Movement only managed to disrupt Pride proper for 10 minutes and Detroit proper for 20, 5 spent cowering in a van. 

Meanwhile, the Mitten Medics held it down at the Food Not Class table, but their consumable supplies dwindled to cornbread and coffee. Fortunately, they had plenty of literature from FNC and Communist Workers League, plus radical stickers.

Post-Action Mutual Aid

After taking a half hour to regroup, FNC realized they completely forgot about the pizza. The resupply run lasted 45 minutes and everyone had to make due apologizing for only having coffee, clothes, cornbread and literature. Once the 8 large pizzas arrived, it was passed out to hungry Pride attendees in roughly 5 minutes. Many people lingered, dancing to 105.9 on the portable speaker, and/or talking radical theory. 

The Mitten Medics patched up a young Pride-goer who suffered a leg injury, keeping her comfortable and well hydrated with bandage wraps and assistance on an impromptu medical evacuation. Red Orchestra and Communist Workers League squads walked the streets around Pride, checking to ensure no white supremacists lingered. Along the way, they encountered a man catcalling women waiting in line from his car. Blocking his view, he stopped yelling and got out of his car, frustrated. Unpleasant words were exchanged at low volume, but it was made clear his behavior was out of line and it was also the least logical place to try anyway. He stormed off, but bothered Pride no further.

FNC was confronted by an undercover officer, upset about the organization's rule of refusing service to law enforcement and fascists. He took a piece of anti-police literature and interrogated the organization over its permit status for the stone wall on Jefferson and Bates. Eventually, he left, thoroughly unsatisfied with his lack of service.

The sun went down, and Pride came to a close Nazi-free. All in a day's work for Antifa.

Disclaimer: While MDPAN is an ardent supporter of Antifa, it is not an Anti-fascist or Anti-racist collective, please refer all inquiries on white supremacist activity to Red Orchestra, interest in mutual aid to Food Not Class and information on medical training to Mitten Medics. Communist Workers League is a great source for general community organizing. 

    #communitydefense #directaction 

Added a post  to  , antifa

Originally Posted on August 6, 2018

As the street sweepers cleared and the sun peaked out from the horizon line the morning of July 27, an intrepid crew of Occupants, numbering 15, rose from their tents and went to work shutting down the Detroit ICE Field office. Eschewing most physical barricades that enveloped the gates in June, this team did most of the work with just their bodies.

Prior to the blockade, two groups of two Occupants each faced a frightening encounter. At 1:30 AM, a black Ford F-250 SuperDuty pickup barreled through the Larned/Mt. Elliott intersection on a bee-line for protesters biking away. It swerved at the last moment, snaked up Mt. Elliott to restablize, then ran a red light on a right turn from the middle lane on Lafayette. This exact pattern was later repeated at 3:30 AM towards two protesters on foot.

A little after 5 AM, several vehicles tried to enter the facility through the Jefferson gate. A line of people formed in front, shouts of "Shame!" drowning out their cries of frustration, already muted by their car windows. The cars were turned away, but pulled into an adjacent parking lot to stew over a thwarted attempt to continue the work of genocide. Two of the cars bounced between the Jefferson and Mt. Elliott gates, probing for an opening. They found none.

Portion of the Deadline Day encampment, 7/26. 

Not long after 7 AM, a DHS agent arrived in response to employee calls about not being able to come to work. Occupy ICE Detroit began picketing in front of the gates in a roving circle formation. The DHS Agent, who shall henceforth be referred to as Agent (Donald) Glover, began repeatedly shouting "This is America!" in response to the protest, and later "you got me trippin' on some bike locks at 7 in the morning" in reference to the reason why none of the gates could open. The authorities' plea to not block vehicles from entering the facility was summarily ignored. After a half hour of huffing and puffing with channel locks and sledgehammer, the bike lock was removed from Mt. Elliott gate, but the blockade remain intact. Meanwhile, disgruntled ICE employees looked on from their perch in the Walgreen's parking lot, kitty-corner to the facility. 

Agent Glover pulled around to go to work on the Jefferson gate bike lock. A chorus of "Shame" erupted as he emerged, but he clapped back with "Shame don't work no more". 

To prove his point, a woman unaffiliated with Occupy ICE pulled into the parking lot adjacent Jefferson gate. She opened the door to her car, clearly distraught, with tears streaming down her face. "I just spent 20 minutes looking for a police officer, please help me, someone broke into my house!" she pleaded, but her bid for assistance was ignored by Agent Glover. Several Occupants went over to console her and direct her to an entity that actually helps people.

After the bike lock was removed, DHS was largely uninterested in testing Jefferson gate, instead focusing their efforts on bullying those blockading Mt. Elliott's. In this video you can see threats and intimidation from DHS, who now have five SUVs on the scene, such as the psychological warfare tactics of flashing emergency lights and sirens to disorient the protesters. This tactic is also not allowed in numerous law enforcement agencies, since its using emergency equipment for non-emergency reasons. Repeated threats of arrest were issued, as the morning crept on through 9 AM. One DHS agent took to the time to lay flex cuff zipties one by one on the pavement for each protester. 

People who should be chained, according to DHS. From the 7/26 Deadline Day Rally. 

An ICE employee tried to enter the facility, despite most of their coworkers skulking at Walgreens. A DHS agent told them "you were told not to come in, please go home and wait for a call." So Occupy ICE Detroit officially canceled the early bird shift. Later, a Fedex employee arrived on scene, stated "Trying to deliver a package, but ain't no one in there! Oops, not supposed to say that," and promptly left.

However, the most damning incident occurred at the hands of a Centerra security employee, hired by DHS. This video shows the driver backing up a foot from where the protester is standing, then stepping on the gas to hit her. Fortunately, no severe injuries were sustained in the vehicular assault. 

While the blockade stretched into the 10 AM hour, and ICE's vultures dispersed from the Walgreens, important work was carried out by the Outreach team, as a crowd of ten+ families waited outside for an ICE check-in to see whether they would be deported. Occupants walked through the involuntary gathering, offering water, snacks, and chalk for the kids, while asking how they felt about the protests and whether it helped. Almost universally there was appreciation, with one exception. One man needed to drive from Grand Rapids for his check-in, an expensive journey, and didn't want to have to repeat it due to a shutdown. ICE is forcing people to drive across the entire state of Michigan just for the privilege of finding out whether or not they would be exiled. Occupy ICE Detroit will be launching an additional fundraiser to provide relief for immigrant communities directly in the near future, especially as it relates to the deportation process.

By 11 AM, the Mt. Elliott blockade was completely surrounded, with DHS agents outnumbering protesters. A final warning was issued and the blockade ended, but not before canceling the entire first shift and observing a deportation free day while protesters were on site. Occupants were given only a half hour to strike camp or face arrest/personal property destruction.

No arrests were made, and Occupy ICE Detroit stayed out front for the remainder of the day, to much jubilation from onlookers driving by on Jefferson.

Several days later, a black Ford F-250 SuperDuty was seen exiting the ICE facility.

  #abolishice 

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