Cross-posted by Gary Fouse
"Death to Fousesquawk!"
Today, I had the pleaure of hooking up with a few other conservative bloggers (Shane from Political Vindication, Eric from Tygrrrr Express, Doug from Political Pistachio Radio and a couple others whose names I don't recall because I am getting too old. What did we do? We charged off to the Federal Building in Westwood to show the colors for Israel in the big anti-Israel rally. It was the first time I had actually participated in a demonstration other than just watching and perhaps commenting. My son even put together a big poster on a stick that showed the Israeli flag for me to carry.
To say we were outnumbered would be an understatement. As we arrived at the federal building, we were met by a sea of Palestinian flags. All in all, there were about 20 pro-Israel folks versus 1-2,000 of the "bad guys". Who were the demonstrators? Overwhelmingly Middle Eastern folks of all ages. Many families brought their kids with them to get them a head start in their future lives of jihad and hate. As I stated, Palestinian flags were everywhere as were kaffiyas (those are the white scarves with the black doo-dads that Palestinians wear.) There was also one young gentleman who carried a Venezuelan flag (in honor of Hugo Chavez, perhaps) while wearing the kaffiya in a sign of solidarity with all of America's enemies.
Our sudden presence drew the immediate attention of the bad guys, the media and the LAPD. The cops (who did a great job today) immediately asked us to stay together in a group, and they directed us a few yards back down Wilshire Blvd. From that point, we had a constant escort of about 15 cops. We cooperated with them in every way. The cops were virtually everywhere, on foot, bike, motorcycle and horseback.
Anyway, a few Middle Eastern men who were old enough to know better, came forward as a couple of our people were being interviewed by the media. While one of our group was being interviewed three older Middle Eastern men stood and chanted loudly ("Palestine will be free"-or something like that) in an attempt to drown out our guy's words. A few minutes later, another Middle aged Middle Eastern man came up to the interviewer while he was interviewing one of our group and asked, "Why are you talking to him?"
(Because in our country, we have free speech, something that moron would not know about.)
I was interviewed by an Asian reporter who asked me in broken English about my "judgement" in coming to this demonstration. He also asked if I felt threatened. I told him that I was there as an American who supported Israel, and no, I didn't feel threatened because I would never let those people intimidate me in my own country. (Somewhat jingoistic answer, I realize. I know I'll hear from Lance and Bryan on that.)
So we stood in our designated spot on Wilshire Blvd with our flags, a line of police separating us from the angry mob who kept chanting, and chanting, and chanting at us.
Actually, these people spent the entire afternoon chanting slogans-something the far left has always done because they cannot engage in intelligent dialogue. That was certainly the case today. I would venture that the guys and gals with bullhorns were professional agitators, you know, the "Socialist Coalition Against the Suppression of the Oppresed Peoples of the World" or something like that. (The event was sponsored by ANSWER-LA and the Free Palestine Alliance-whoever they are.)
On one occasion, as a Middle Eastern family was passing us on the sidewalk, Eric (who is Jewish), asked a toddler in the family to shake his hand. The confused youngster gave his hand to Eric and shook it until his father pulled him away giving a dirty look to Eric.
"Do not shake the hand of that Jew!" (He didn't say that, but if you can read faces, it was obvious.)
Also part of the party were the motorists who were passing by on the street most of whom were circling the block so they could honk their horns some more. Many of them were Middle Eastern and waving flags out the window. Some gave us the finger as they passed, and we laughed at them. Some shouted obscenities. One middle-aged Middle Eastern man rolled down his window and shouted, "F--- you!", and we laughed at him. Other motorists waved the peace sign and others gave us thumbs up. I did not witness this myself, but a lady in our group reported that at some point in the day, a Middle Eastern motorist yelled, "Go Hitler!" out the window.
(He's already gone, meathead.)
Meanwhile, Shane from Political Vindication had wandered away from us before the police herded us together and had made his way alone to the speaking stage, where he listened to one vile Middle Eastern speaker talking about the American weapons we had given Israel, and that "We" would never stop fighting "until the last Jew is out of Palestine". A few of the demonstrators were puzzled by Shane's t-shirt that read something about an infidel, but no real problems. I'll let Shane explain that part on Political Vindication. There were also cries of "Intifada" (Uprising). Nice.
Shortly before the grand march down Wilshire Blvd and into Westwood Village began, one doof actually scaled a light pole and climbed to the overhanging part over the street to try and hang his flag. He was arrested when he came down, which caused the crowd to chant, "Let him go. Let him go." According to a news report a couple of objects were thrown at police (I did not witness this), but "calm" was restored.
As the march started, the LAPD gathered us on the north side of Wilshire and had to block a mob of bad guys who tried to approach us. They began chanting at us (or should I say continued chanting because I don't know when they ever stopped.) We were directed to walk about 100 yards ahead of the demonstrators, which we did. However, about half-way through Westwood Village, it was obvious that we had been effectively removed from the demonstration. Great police tactics, but as bloggers, we wanted not only to show our support for Israel, but also to observe the march and report.
So being the old DEA agent that I am (was), I decided it was time to melt into the general public. I turned over my poster with the Israeli flag to one of the others and with another blogger, we wandered into a souvenir store and then a restaurant until the police had escorted our group on. We then sat and watched and filmed (I tried to film with my cellular, but I am just learning-nothing came out.)
I walked along the sidewalk as the crowd proceeded back to the original spot at the federal building. Unable to continue on Wilshire Blvd, your fearless reporter then relied on his detailed knowledge of the area. (I grew up there.) I took a side street that led into the rear of the federal building and before I knew it, I was directly behind the police line as the crowd tried to get to the entrance and were blocked by the police. It appeared that I was the only civilian there aside from a few plainclothes cops who paid me no heed. Just as I arrived, One young mope had been arrested, so the mob again began chanting, "Let him go", "Let him go". "No justice-no peace". "No justice, no peace." About 50 cops formed a line, nightsticks in hand. It looked like the cops were going to get in some "stick time" as we used to say in the MPs. But some of the marchers calmed down their hotheads, and order was restored as the crowd backed up and began to drift off as a few speakers finsihed off the days festivities.
Kudos to the LAPD for doing thir job well today and protecting us well. There was a total of three arrests (none of our guys, of course).
Tomorrow, the good guys have their day. There will be a pro-Israel rally at the federal building. I must say, however, that I wished more of them had turned out today.
On the other hand, being so few in number, we got so much attention.