Peace rally in San Francisco's civic center turns into angry confrontation. Activists scream hatred at Jews. Angry Lakota Sioux radical spouts racist rant, finishes by bad drumming and unintelligible chanting. Dick Becker has a fit. Speaker at microphone calls the police mothe***88ers and accuses them of wanting to kill people. Arab bites cop. Palestinians attack Jews in metro.
Saturday March 21st, one PM to about three PM.DEMONSTRATING FOR PEACE... AND THE DESTRUCTION OF ISRAEL!
There had been nearly two thousand people at Justin Herman Plaza earlier, but by the time the marchers reached Civic Center there were only seven hundred of them left - over half of them angry Arab teenagers, anxious to prove to their kinfolk overseas that they had NOT gone native in the US, but in fact despised the country where they lived, and were against everything American. Especially the despicable liberties that allowed other people to express opposing points of view.
Such as the seventy of us who had gathered on Polk Street in front of SF City Hall to counterdemonstrate the anti-Israel message of International ANSWER and their co-conspirators.CONFRONTATION
As soon as the crowd reached Civic Center, about two hundred Keffiyeh-wearing young persons headed towards us intent on mayhem, but the presence of the police forced them instead to scream insults and threats, at one point starting a lively chant of "ba ruh, ba dam, nafdeek ya Filistin
" ('with our soul, with our blood, we will redeem you oh Palestine'), which follows the traditional formula for swearing a bloody cleansing in service of some Islamic cause or other. And as usual, their non-Arab sympathisers stood there smiling their approval.
Having learned that hate-slogans in Arabic are bad public relations, the organizers of the event stilled the chant, and got them instead to scream something more acceptable, which was the promise to ethnically cleanse the area between the Jordan river and the Mediterranean sea.
The police eventually gently persuaded all of them to return to the proper side of the street for uttering death threats, that being the area designated by the permit for the peace rally.
As only one of them had a megaphone, this tempered the noise considerably. Shaking fists and giving the one-fingered salute is, on the whole, a rather impotent display.PALESTINIAN YOUTHS
Not that one should consider the San Francisco Palestinian youth impotent. In fact, that might very well be the problem - there is probably massive sexual frustration in their ranks. It really is hard to get laid when you despise people outside your own community, violently disapprove of relations before marriage, and treat the weaker sex like dirt.
Despite the dimwitted blondes who are attracted by Arab machismo, and the revolutionaries who are willing to do anything, anything! to prove their devotion to the cause, well, when you don't have a place of your own AND all of your praeconceptions are going full-tilt, humping just isn't a solution.
Of course, if you are female, the likely prospect of sexual brutalization by a cousin isn't very appealing either.A TWELVE-YEAR OLD WITH A ROCK
True to cultural trope, at least one of the Palestinian-Americans wished to throw rocks. Unfortunately he did so at the SFPD, who were not amused by this charming display of traditional self-expression and wished to arrest him. The crowd then waxed belligerent at the SFPD's insensitivity, chanting and screaming at the police - several of them needed to be restrained.
I believe the police eventually decided not to arrest the twelve-year old, who was blubbering like an infant by then. Instead they chose some of the more violently inclined older individuals who attacked them.
One of whom, we now know, has teeth.
Attacking the police is not a wise thing to do - neither is calling them motherf****s, as one of the ANSWER speakers on the podium did - his words were clear, distinct, and amplified. He was urging people to stay away from 'tha po-lees, do not provoke tha po-lees, don't get tha po-lees angry, man, you can't win against tha po-lees, they be jest wanting to put you six feet under, man, tha po-lees'.
The twelve year old who was nearly arrested is the son of a Palestinian-American family that runs a liquor store. I shall not say anything negative about them, as Palestinian store owners are hardworking people making an honest living in some interesting parts of town. Once you get to know them, you discover that they are very genuine people, with big hearts, who care about the community in which they live.
Some of their children, on the other hand.... Well, many of the kids are typical urban American teenagers. Meaning that they have horrible taste in music, chips on their shoulders, attitude problems, and are desperate for someone to hate.
Oh, and frustrated. Very, very frustrated. That doesn't help.POLICE PROVOKE CONFRONTATION BY REMAINING CALM AND ACTING IN A MATURE FASHION
That was the strident message of one of International Answer's speakers. While the pro-Palestinians were screaming insults at the police on the southwest corner of the plaza, this speaker was demanding loudly into the microphone that the police leave civic center, insisting that their being there was enough to cause trouble, the mere presence of police was a disruptive influence on the peaceful natures of the peace demonstrators, who had no choice but to bay for the blood of the officers.
Actually, the seventy of us who were there standing for Israel's right to exist were the disruptive influence - if the police were not there, they would've bayed for our blood. As they had repeatedly clarified.
And most of the time, they did in fact bay for our blood.
It was rather dreary, and very unimaginative. Though very much appreciated by the union members and older radicals from Berkeley who attended (heck, those delicious youth could've danced the rumba and the Berkeleyites would've been appreciative).VIOLENCE IN THE UNDERGROUND
Some of the Palestinian youth were so frustrated by the police maintaining order that they gave vent to their fury in the Civic Center Bart Station. From all accounts, they ganged up on a group of four people who had left the protest in disgust. What might have turned into bloodshed was prevented by the judicious application of pepper spray and the arrival of the police, who arrested the most criminally inclined of the mob.
Quick action by the SFPD prevented assault and battery from becoming a visit to the emergency room.ATTENDANCE
Altogether, about a dozen violent peace activists ended the day in handcuffs. The police acted with remarkable restraint, and succeeded in maintaining order despite the provocative behaviour displayed by a violence-prone mob.
This did not please the organizers of the peace protest. Several of their speakers foamed incomprehensibly into the microphone, upset at this peaceful turn of events.
I'm still not sure what the Lakota drumming and chanting was for (that speaker had called the Arabs, Chicanos, and Philippinos his bruthas, and angrily damned all white people without reservation), and the hysterical Arab hatemongstress had bored even her own side, who preferred to stand facing the Israel supporters, screaming about Jew-Nazi-Kikes and promising to kill our families.
Standing proudly alongside the Israel-haters were the American Postal Workers Union, the Communications Workers of America, Code Pink, Black Block and other anarchists, various individual members of Bay Area Women in Black, Students for Justice in Palestine, JVP, and several other groups who do not object to anti-Semitic rhetoric for peace, as well as numerous adherents of conspiracy theories about nine-eleven. Conspiracy theories, by the way, proved incredibly popular - second only to the cheerleading for Jew-death at the front of the crowd.RICHARD BECKER
It must have been immensely frustrating for Dick Becker of International ANSWER that only several hundred people stayed with the rally all the way to Civic Center. His speech to the crowd (completely ignored by the Arab Jugend trying to provoke the police) asserted that San Francisco Voice for Israel was a racist group that existed only to harass him.
Sorry, Richard, that just isn't so. You are actually irrelevant. We know that you do not wish the annihilation of Israel, and the Arab youth also know that. It wouldn't make you happy at all.
You probably prefer that anti-Semitism survive at the present near-boil, so that you may surround yourself with all those delicious young Levantines, eh?
Richard, are you upset at the low turn-out? Was it disappointing? Do you feel, somehow, inadequate? You should, you really should!
It really is you - you're too old, Richard.
Karmicly you are losing hair, and your aura is nearly invisible.
Again, for us in SF Voice for Israel, it ain't about you. Don't flatter yourself.
You're an egomaniac, but most people will never even know who the heck you are. You are totally unimportant.
Several of the other elderly white people from Berkeley who were at the rally were also there for the frisson provided by angry radical teenagers. But unlike the teenagers and mister Becker, they probably weren't nearly so frustrated, having developed coping mechanisms for their various urges long ago.
Still, angry young people can be so exciting!SAD BORING END
Sometime after three o'clock the peace demonstration petered out, the crowd's enthusiasm for bloodshed having waned. The weather and the calm behaviour by the police had made clear to even the most delusional people that no Jews were going to die that day, though as the events at the BART Station subsequently proved, several stupid teenagers would end up in jail because of their violent tendencies.
This was the smallest International ANSWER peace demonstration in years. It is unlikely that Richard Becker will be able to pull together another event in March of next year. I just hope he manages to keep some of his young acolytes......
It is so sad when a manly man's vigour fades.
Labels: Arabs, Berkeley cossacks, ESAU'S FAN CLUB, International ANSWER, Palestinian, Pro-Israel action, San Francisco voice for Israel, Street Zionism 2009