Democrats in Chicago planning the 2024 Democratic National Convention next summer are getting worried following a pro-Palestinian protest at the Democratic National Committee headquarters in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday night.
“We have to anticipate that there’s a lot of tension and very passionate positions,” mayoral Chief of Staff Rich Guidice told Politico. “There’s ongoing training already taking place, specifically in de-escalation training. There will be many, many workshops, and conversations on how to handle large crowds.”
U.S. Capitol Police said in a press release Thursday that a crowd of around 200 pro-Palestinian protesters gathered in front of DNC headquarters and turned violent after officers asked them to leave.
“We have handled hundreds of peaceful protests, but last night’s group was not peaceful. The crowd failed to obey our lawful orders to move back from the DNC, where members of Congress were in the building,” Capitol Police said. “When the group moved dumpsters in front of the exits, pepper sprayed our officers and attempted to pick up the bike rack, our teams quickly introduced consequences — pulling people off the building, pushing them back, and clearing them from the area, so we could safely evacuate the [Congressional] members and staff.”
USCP said six officers were injured during the incident.
The fear comes from the recent increasing protests due to the events in Israel and Gaza, reminding Democrats of the infamous 1968 DNC convention in Chicago that saw massive anti-Vietnam War riots during the August event, CBS News reported.
“It really was a group of organizers and antiwar activists who wanted to come to the Democratic Party to create a public that could be heard, with a message that we thought had tremendous moral urgency — and I think we were right. I mean, I still think that we were right about that,” Bill Ayers, a member of Students for a Democratic Society and a founder of the Weather Underground, said in 1988. “And there really was a Mayor [Richard] Daley who wanted to show that in the face of what he perceived to be anarchy and the breakdown of everything he believed in, was really going to stand firm — and really going to represent what he thought was the best in kind of the American tradition. And so those things really did clash.”
Kobi Guillory, co-chair of the Chicago Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression, which plans to protest at the convention over Israel’s actions in Gaza, said his group of 1,000 won’t be looking for a fight.
“It’s up to the police. Look at what happened in 1968,” he told Politico. “We are planning to keep things family friendly, but we don’t know what the police are planning. We aren’t going to get into fistfights with police. We are going to air our grievances.”
Charles Kim | email@example.com
Charles Kim, a Newsmax general assignment writer, is an award-winning journalist with more than 30 years in reporting on news and politics.
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