Police in Portland, Oregon arrested at least 13 people on Saturday as a right-wing group marched to a downtown waterfront park and anti-fascist counterprotesters scuffled with officers who tried to keep the two sides apart.
A rally by hundreds of supporters of the right-wing Proud Boys organization was met by a similar number of “antifa” opponents, and isolated clashes broke out between both sides and between antifa and police as the gathering wrapped up.
At least six people suffered minor injuries, according to police. One person was taken to a hospital. Officers said they seized weapons including chemical sprays, shields, metal and wooden poles, knives, and a stun gun from multiple groups.
At the peak of the demonstrations there were an estimated 1,200 protesters on the streets of the downtown district, said Portland Police Chief Danielle Outlaw.
Charges against those in custody would include disorderly conduct, interfering with police, resisting arrest, and unlawful use of a weapon, she said at a news conference.
Right-wing and anti-fascist factions have clashed in Portland several times in recent months, including a rally that turned violent in July last year.
Hours ahead of Saturday’s competing demonstrations, U.S. President Donald Trump said “major consideration” was being given to designating antifa as a terrorist organization.
“Portland is being watched very closely. Hopefully the Mayor will be able to properly do his job!” Trump wrote on Twitter.
Ted Wheeler, Portland’s mayor, said he was not concerning himself with tweets from Washington, and he praised the response by law enforcement.
Are Antifa terrorists?
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“I’m grateful that this was largely a peaceful event,” Wheeler told reporters at the news conference.
“Police did an exemplary job of de-escalating the situation, keeping the extremists on both sides separated for the most part, and preventing people who wanted to engage in acts of violence from confronting each other.”
More video has emerged of Antifa’s activities in Portland, Oregon and this one is more brutal than the previous videos.
In this one, shown by journalist Andy Ngo, an elderly man is maced and beaten unconscious as crowd of Antifa surrounds him.
Middle-age man was maced and beaten by an antifa mob. He was knocked unconscious to the ground. His partner or spouse was trying to protect him as mob still surrounded them. No police. #PortlandProtests pic.twitter.com/eAhrMSEKU1
— Andy Ngo (@MrAndyNgo) August 17, 2019
As the members of the pro-President Donald Trump protesters got on the bus and the bus started to drive the chased and hit the bus.
One man hit the back of the bus with a fire extinguisher that bounced and hit him in the head and another fell as he hit the bus.
When the buses left, antifa chased it down and broke windows. One antifa guy fell down. pic.twitter.com/ySyfIzO7ii
— Julio Rosas (@Julio_Rosas11) August 17, 2019
heres a gif pic.twitter.com/xpudTNOE55
— racist bone not-haver (@GuyBeinDude) August 17, 2019
Antifa in the teal shirt bonks himself in the head with a fire extinguisher. Doubt he had that many brain cells to lose to begin with. pic.twitter.com/ZEKtabghM8
— Ian Miles Cheong (@stillgray) August 17, 2019
Andy Ngo, who was attacked at the last event Antifa had in Portland, documented what happened to one journalist.
A white woman, marching against white supremacy, in the video attempts to step in and bring calm to the situation and by the end has to apologize for being white.
“Independent journalist @Muffinpan503 was attacked & pepper sprayed. A woman tries to calm the angry shirtless man following him but is told to mind her own business as a white person,” Ngo said.
Independent journalist @Muffinpan503 was attacked & pepper sprayed. A woman tries to calm the angry shirtless man following him but is told to mind her own business as a white person. pic.twitter.com/SeQb2A2gTX
— Andy Ngo (@MrAndyNgo) August 17, 2019
In another encounter a black man was saying a prayer on a loudspeaker when a black man started screaming at him.
“A black man praises Jesus on a bullhorn. The shirtless protester yells at him: ‘Ain’t no f—ing white Jesus going to save the black man from the white man’s oppression, uncle Tom,’” Ngo said.
A black man praises Jesus on a bullhorn. The shirtless protester yells at him: “Ain’t no f—ing white Jesus going to save the black man from the white man’s oppression, uncle Tom.” pic.twitter.com/CRMuxFF41p
— Andy Ngo (@MrAndyNgo) August 17, 2019
In another video, journalist Elijah Schaffer captured a group of Antifa protesters attacking a man with a hammer.
“BREAKING. Antifa has major CLASH with Proud Boys on Portland bridge in traffic,” he said in a tweet with the video.
“A serious assault took place on PB’s after they busted the door of the bus, they also threw a metal hammer at them. I also got pepper sprayed in the face with many others. Sorry for language,” he said.
🚨 BREAKING 🚨 Antifa has major CLASH with Proud Boys on Portland bridge in traffic
A serious assault took place on PB’s after they busted the door of the bus, they also threw a metal hammer at them.
I also got pepper sprayed in the face with many others. Sorry for language pic.twitter.com/UwRsY4qq6G
— Elijah Schaffer S.O. (@ElijahSchaffer) August 17, 2019
It came on the same day when a CNN reporters questioned a Latino Proud Boys member about why he was at the protest.
CNN and other news agencies have attempted to portray Antifa as a group of anti-fascists defending American values.
This is in spite of their record of attacking journalists and counter protesters with their fists and with weapons.
She confronted one of the members of the Proud Boys, Enrique Tarrio, on Saturday and asked him why he decided to come to the event, as if the First Amendment is not a reason.
SIDNER: Before that in May, there was another melee, if you will, and some of the members of a right group that follows you guys and that tends to show up for these things, Patriot Prayer, one of their people got arrested, turned himself in, Joey Gibbs. Is this something that the groups bring to the fore?
TARRIO: Absolutely not, especially in Oregon. Patriot Prayer went to practice their First Amendment rights. Joey was spit on, pepper sprayed.
I think Ted wheeler needs an axe to grind and we’re not going to be that group. That’s why we came here today —
SIDNER: Explain to me. I don’t understand why you’re showing up? To antagonize the Merritt or the city?
There are people here, people of color in particular, that feel like they’re being terrorized because of language used by groups like yours against them.
And you all have a history also in Manhattan. There’s a case now where there’s videos out there was ten members of your group or people that are around your group who —
TARRIO: I’ve had an open dialogue with Portland P.D. For the past month. And then here we are, there was two different stories, there was Portland P.D’s story and Ted Wheeler’s story. And again, Ted Wheeler needed an axe to grind.
What we did is we came, our message was bold today. Our message wasn’t ,we didn’t stay there, we didn’t antagonize anybody, we — we held our hands in prayer, we bent a knee, and then we went ahead and left. We said our message with zero violence.
SIDNER: What is the message that you are trying to send? Because a lot of people see the message as one of intolerance, xenophobia, racism. What is the message that you are trying to actually send?
TARRIO: You mentioned people of color, right? I’m a person of color, I’m Cuban, right. My family, two of my family members got killed in Castro’s regime. It’s a difference of opinion of people of color, white, message of race. Our message has never been about
When you join our ranks, we don’t ask you what race you are, what religion you are. We just accept you for who you are.
We have liberals in — a lot of liberals. There’s actually one prominent liberal that’s here that’s part of our ranks.
SIDNER: Liberals will probably dispute that and say you have a lot of liberals. You call yourself a male chauvinist.
TARRIO: No, it’s not…
SIDNER: Yes it is.
TARRIO: It’s not male chauvinist. It’s western chauvinist.
SIDNER: What does that mean? What does that mean?
TARRIO: It’s somebody who’s patriotic and extremely proud of their country. You tried to twist my words and say that my group is male chauvinist … There’s a big difference.
SIDNER: People hear chauvinist and think of male chauvinist. And what you’ve heard from the creator of the group this is only for people with penises, that’s what’s been said. Isn’t that male off chauvinist?
TARRIO: Women’s rights groups that are all women, they sexist, too? The women’s club, they a sexist group?
Sidner said there were women’s groups that allow men to join but did not address the ones that do not, then she went back to attacking President Donald Trump, one of CNN’s favorite things to do.
Reuters contributed to this report.
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