Socialist Worker

Occupy movement faces repression across US

by Dave Sewell
Issue No. 2278

A wave of repression came down on the Occupy movement across the US last weekend. Police evicted Occupy Denver in Colorado.

One of the largest Occupy protests outside New York is Portland, Oregon. Some 8,000 people rallied to defend it from police on Saturday, but the camp was cleared out on Sunday.

But Occupy Rochester, in New York state, won the right to stay after intervention by the local labour movement and the New York Civil Liberties Union.

On Monday a pre-dawn raid evicted Occupy Oakland in northern California. Senior city officials including the deputy mayor resigned in protest. By 4pm, 2,000 people had reoccupied the space in front of City Hall.

Police previously attacked Occupy Oakland on 25 October with rubber bullets and teargas. This hospitalised Iraq War veteran Scott Olsen with brain injuries.

Protesters reoccupied the following evening, and called for a general strike on 2 November. Protests across the city culminated in a 15,000-strong march that successfully stopped work at one of the largest ports in the US. Oakland showed that the way to respond to repression is with escalation.

As Socialist Worker went to press, activists in Oakland, Portland and other cities were building for the national day of action this Thursday called by Occupy Wall Street—as well as student strikes on Wednesday of this week.

The Occupy protests have given new life to the student movement in the US, where many graduates are lumped with debts running into the tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars.


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