September 19, 2008

Rove Confronted by Claremont Citizens

Reading these reports makes it clear the people of Clairmont were willing to take risks to present Mr. Rove with the legacy of his Bush years. May he realize the damage he's done and do something useful. Bravo, citizens!

Rove speech greeted with protests, bomb threat, claims of pepper spray

Wes Woods II, Staff Writer

Article Created: 09/16/2008 12:32:27 AM PDT

CLAREMONT - Karl Rove, the former Deputy Chief of Staff and senior advisor to President George W. Bush, discussed presidential candidates John McCain and Barack Obama and gave his take on the legacy of the current president.

But hundreds of protesters greeted Rove before, during and after his speech.

When Rove tried to leave the Marian Miner Cook Athenaeum, at least two people and possibly a third claimed they were pepper sprayed while campus officials said they were not.

A bomb threat was also determined to be unfounded, campus officials added.

Rove's speech took place from 6:45 p.m. to 8 p.m. Monday inside the Claremont McKenna College Athenaeum at 385 8th St.

One of the most important resources is time," Rove said about the 2008 presidential election.

Rove said Obama had not seized the narrowing election days to "advance his case."

For instance, Obama linked the country's economic problems to Bush and McCain instead of showing "he's up to the job" with a specific proposal.

Rove said he felt Bush was a "successful" president but they had "done a lousy job of explaining" why he was.

Rove listed the million dollar AIDS relief fund for Africa, the accountability of the No Child Left Behind performance program, large amounts of money invested in alternative energy and privatizing social security.

After the speech, Todd Logan, 21, of Pomona College, said he saw two people get hit by pepper spray when Rove was led out by security while other students reported three.

Some students said they were hit by the vehicle Rove was drove off campus in but officials denied their claims.

Henry Watkins, consultant for Claremont McKenna College, said no students were hit with pepper spray or hit by a vehicle.

A bomb was reported at 7:31 p.m. inside of nearby Collins dining hall but was later found to not be true, Watkins said.

You can go to LA IndyMedia’s coverage [link below] for all the photos, but here’s a couple along with excerpts:

Karl Rove detained for crimes against humanity in Claremont
by Rockero Wednesday, Sep. 17, 2008 at 3:10 AM

16 September 2008
CLAREMONT - Over 300 justice activists detained Republican mastermind Karl Rove for over an hour yesterday in Claremont, demanding he be brought to justice for crimes against humanity, democracy, and general moral sensibility. Despite fervent efforts, they were unsuccessful in executing a citizen's arrest.

[...] The drums were beating and the chants were flowing. Someone or a group of someones had spiked the fountain outside the Claremont McKenna College's venerable Marian Miner Cook Athenaeum so that the waters ran as red as the blood that flows in the streets of Iraq. Participants, some of them masked, carried signs reading "Karl Rove I Want You [with a picture of Uncle Sam] Tried for War Crimes," "KKKarl Rove

[...] One of the most beautiful actions of the night was a song, inspired by Bush's reference to Rove as the "architect" of his 2004 "re-election"1 springing seemingly spontaneously from the crowd:
"Architect of terror
architect of hate
throw the man in jail
lock his ass away"

[...] We realized our only chance for action was at Rove's egress, so we decided to cover every exit, ostensibly to issue a citizen's arrest. A large crowd gathered in front of a limo parked in back of the Athenaeum just beside the rear exit. A small group kept its eyes on a small side entrance guarded by two nervous security guards. The largest remained outside the north entrance, although for some reason, most of us remained within the confines of our partial plastic-chain enclosure of a "free speech zone." There we used a combination of approaches, from reaching out to heckling, on the shameless fascists exiting the event. These tie-choked, starched-collar, spiked hair white fraternity boys foamed at the mouth to see such an energetic group daring to peacably assemble and demand redress of greivances. Perhaps they felt they were protecting their rich parents and Claremont's conservative elite when they yelled at us, calling us "hippies" Most of the demonstrators yelled "Arrest Karl Rove!," but some near the front had more interesting messages for the [... error in original text]
Then, a large group mobilized toward the south entrance of the building. It seemed that they had been attracted by a police mobilization and the fact that cars had pulled up at a small roundabout there. Lines formed, and police brought out their riot gear. I saw them pull out a large, red-colored weapon. Some of the p
rotestors said it was used for pepper spray. A confrontation seemed imminent. I saw one cop pushing one protestor away from a car. But nothing really happened.
At various times, organizer
s requested that people cover one exit or another when it appeared (based on cop activity) that Rove may be leaving. How do we know, I wondered, that the cops aren't going to take advantage of this to smuggle this guy out?
Which is what happened. A rumor circulated that Rove had made to another (yet somehow connected) building and was attempting to es
cape from a distant side door. Nonetheless, people went running. The paper today claimed that a bomb threat caused the shift in manpower that distracted a number of protesters. But we knew the real reason the cops claimed there was a bomb.
People who refused to be tricked stuck to where they knew Rove was. There, some of them were maced, which allowed Rove's driver to exit, plowing through the few remaining activists without regard for their safety in the midst of the confusion.[...]

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