Move America Forward and friends commenced picketing the City Council Chambers at 5:00 a.m. w.s.t., in time for the morning news cameras.
You can check the Move America Forward website throughout the day for photos, videos, and updates.
Michelle Malkin reports on some Senate shenanigans that took place last night as Dingy Harry pulled a fast one:
As you’ll recall, Sen. Jim DeMint moved to deny Berkeley millions of dollars worth of earmarks to the troop-bashing city. This would have put Democrats on record: For the moonbats or for the troops?
Well, Harry Reid managed to stymie movement on DeMint’s measure. He used a rare maneuver to delay the vote until later today–giving the council a chance to backtrack and giving cover to the Dems. A Senate staffer told me: “It’s truly incredible that they went to such great lengths to avoid having to deal with this.”
Where was John McCain?
THIRDWAVEDAVE left for Berkeley last night in this:
The San Francisco Chronicle reports that the crowd is expected to get big and rowdy today:
The city also is setting up barricades so staff can get in and out of the building safely and is beefing up police, fire and paramedic services throughout the day.
Code Pink activists got an early start on the demonstration by camping out Monday night on the lawn at City Hall. About 60 activists, including a few of the tree-sitters from UC Berkeley’s Oak Grove, danced, sang, listened to jazz and drank carrot juice as they pitched their tents for the night.
“This is a great gift to us to be able to ignite a national debate,” said Medea Benjamin, Code Pink spokeswoman. “We’re drawing a line in the sand on Shattuck Avenue and saying the war stops here.”
What a maroon.
See also Jamie Colby of Fox News
The Radio Patriot who has a live thread of the events. Things are already getting heated:
6:21 am – Daylight dawning on a crowd getting more heated in its vitriol. Code Pink is nose to nose with the patriots, but the police will not separate them. There are 30 police officers with riot gear, standing in a line waiting for something to happen, which will. Radio show host Melanie Morgan of Move America Forward is now on scene, making phone call to someone, insisting they separate the Code Pinkos from the patriots before someone gets hurt. Code Pinkos already are at fever pitch and it’s only now just dawn….More to come from our man on the scene…
The police have separated the groups. The Radio Patriot’s man on the ground reports that there are about 100 Code Pinkos and 150 patriots.
By noon the number has swelled to about a thousand pinkos and patriots evenly split. Many on the pinko side turned out to be teenagers playing hookie. When a blue star mom explains to some of them that Code Pink and International A.N.S.W.E.R are commies, the teens leave, significantly diminishing the pinko numbers.
Michelle Malkin has more on the confrontation between the Pinkos and the MAF patriots:
Berkeley erupted in violence Tuesday morning when the Communist, terrorist-supporting anti-war group crossed into Martin Luther King Park and assaulted pro-troop individuals. Riot police stood by, but did not stop the assaults. Police agencies did not respond to calls for help.
Move America Forward, the nation’s largest pro-troop organization, received permits from the City of Berkeley to hold a daylong demonstration in MLK park against the City Council who passed three outrageous resolutions calling U.S. Marines “unwanted intruders.”
“It is mayhem on here,” MAF communications director Danny Gonzalez said from the park early Tuesday morning.
Code Pink was permitted for across the street. The two sides were to stay separated, according to rules laid down by the city. But the city has a history of giving Code Pink special preference.
You just know the Pinkos were acting bold because they know they’re on safe turf. They were hoping to goad the patriots to react violently so they could watch them get arrested, as they themselves often are in less friendly territory. The MAF forces are to be commended for their show of restraint, as the urge to bust some heads must have been simply overwhelming.
MAF Exeutive Director Catherine Moy attempted to get help from the Berkeley police as the mayhem unfolded, but an officer hung up on Moy. Moy asked the California Highway Patrol to help in the emergency, but the CHP refused. “I have never in my life experienced such inaction in the face of an emergency, “Moy said. “I will ask the Federal Government to investigate, as well as the State Attorney General.
Meanwhile, the Berkeley City Council’s actions have embarrassed even some liberal peace activists, as CNN reports:
Kriss Worthington, a progressive Berkeley activist and council member for 11 years, believes the council overreached.
“The inflammatory language in the City Council item is really outrageous — not just to right-wing people, but to mainstream liberal people and even to some peace activists who have said they’re insulted that the city would have such language,” Worthington said.
“When you make a colossal blunder, you can’t just sort of ignore the mistake and go about your way. You have to do something to fix it,” Worthington said.
The CNN website also has a slide show as well as a stomach churning video of some code pinkos singing a ditty that manages to be both anti-military and anti-religion.
Here are some almost live pictures from the MAF website. (Be patient, it’s takes a few seconds to load).
UPDATE (FEB 13):