A quick field report from our comrades in Northern CA:
Since last Monday evening, Oakland has been on fire, both figuratively and literally.
Since Occupy Oakland’s birth, I’ve taken note of how marches and groups move, the strategies (or lack of) they employ, and the organic maneuvering that happens within both large and small demos. In years past, with the exception of a few accidental successes, there has been little in the way of consistent, calculated victory in actions here. We have numbers, guts and chaos on our side here.
Not so this week. What I’m now seeing is as if our more “active” supporters had gone to tactical boot camp in the past few years and come back a well oiled machine. Minute by minute, hour by hour, night after night, something has consistently changed. Oakland has out-numbered, out-smarted, out-flanked, and outmaneuvered OPD, Alameda Sheriff’s Dept and The Mighty CHP.
Some have argued that the police have their hands tied, and they’re “letting” protesters take freeways.
What I see is a MASSIVE, well-equipped, aggressive police force showing en masse anytime a freeway is approached, a large portion of the march keeping them on guard, as an even larger portion of marchers outflank police and pour over indefensible barriers and scramble over 7-8 ft walls to the freeway. Walls and barriers these cops cant follow us over due to being decked out like robocop. This has happened in varying forms repeatedly, and for the most part, in massive support from motorists and citizens.
Chinks in armor are being found and effectively used as advantages.
We have learned from our down time and failures and its showing.