Far-right-police connection in Portland, Oregon, USA


This 14 February 2019 TV video from the USA is called Portland police release Patriot Prayer texts.

By Kayla Costa in the USA:

Connections exposed between far-right group and police in Portland, Oregon

18 February 2019

A report from a local news publication reveals close connections between the far-right group Patriot Prayer and the police department in Portland, Oregon. The latest ties confirm the support provided to Patriot Prayer by the Portland Police Bureau (PPB), which has been a regular feature of the provocations between the far-right group and Antifa-linked forces in recent months and years.

Through a public records request, Willamette Week journalists acquired hundreds of texts between Portland Police Bureau Lieutenant Jeff Niiya and leader Joey Gibson of Patriot Prayer, a right-wing chauvinist group based in the Pacific Northwest. Their communications included amiable and detailed discussions about upcoming demonstration plans, legal advice for Patriot Prayer members, and known individuals among the counter-demonstrations.

In an exchange of texts in December 2017, Gibson asked Niiya about the status of an active arrest warrant for another prominent Patriot Prayer member, Tusitala “Tiny” Toese. Lt. Niiya counseled Gibson, explaining that Toese would likely not be arrested, based on officers ignoring his warrant at previous events. “Just make sure he doesn’t do anything which may draw our attention,” the officer advised. “I don’t see a need to arrest on the warrant unless there is a reason.”

One month later, they discussed a frequent attendee at the anti-fascist protests, Luis Enrique Marquez, who had received violent threats from Patriot Prayer members. When Gibson complained about the activist after one of the clashes, Niiya responded on January 2, 2018, “Wow, when will others realize Luis is … involved in so much.” Gibson replied, “He’s a bad dude. He threw Gia under the bus while at the same time claiming PPD is taking advantage of minorities. Every single problem we run into it goes back to him.”

In another exchange, Gibson told Niiya about his coming election campaign, “The hate against me will multiply because I am running for office, so when I come into Portland and Seattle the energy will be high. I know it’s a pain in the ass for you guys, but I will do the best I can to work with you.” Niiya responded enthusiastically, “Your [sic] running for office?!! Good for you. County level?”

Niiya frequently gave advice to Gibson about the logistics of planned demonstrations, hinting at plans and attendance levels of Antifa, and explaining how to avoid conditions that require police get involved. For example, at a demonstration on June 4, 2017, he texted Gibson, “Nows [sic] a great time to break down the rally and be able to leave. We have a large group of antifa to flank us and you. We are stopping them for now … but not sure how long.”

They frequently shared information that they acknowledged should not be publicly announced, implying a highly-trusted and mutual relationship. At one point, Gibson apologized to Niiya for letting slip the statement “the Portland police has our back” in a pre-event video.

Lieutenant Jeff Niiya became a PPB police officer in 1996, and held management-level positions for “neighborhood response units” and campus policing at Oregon Health and Sciences University prior to becoming a lieutenant in February of 2018.

He has been the head of a police committee that oversees protest activity, and he attends all of the often-violent clashes of Patriot Prayer and anti-fascists. Holding this position, Niiya says the text exchanges should be considered intelligence collecting. In June of 2017, he recruited an obscure Antifa demonstrator named Tan to become an informant. Tan texted Niiya with information about protests and the group, a relationship that other Antifa members exposed in October.

Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler has called for a “thorough investigation” into the exchanges, which he called “disturbing.” He explained that the messages “appear to cross several boundaries. They also raise questions about whether warrants are being enforced consistently and what information is being shared with individuals who may be subject to arrest.”

While supporting the call for an investigation, PPB officials have been quick to justify Niiya’s actions. “It is not uncommon for officers to provide guidance for someone to turn themselves in on a warrant if the subject is not present. In crowd management situations, it may not be safe or prudent to arrest a person right at that time,” said Lt. Tina Jones, regarding certain texts in the published collection.

The Portland chapter of the Democratic Socialists of America responded to the leaks by demanding the role of Police Commissioner be transferred from Mayor Wheeler to a recent city council-elect, Jo Ann Hardesty, a “progressive” Democrat who they claim can enact “comprehensive police reform.” The official DSA statement says, “ Hardesty has shown that she is capable of making the changes that Mayor Wheeler has only pretended he cares about. On police issues, Commissioner Hardesty is more experienced, knowledgeable, and actually willing to institute change.”

The DSA and the International Socialist Organization chapters in Portland have been the targets of recent acts of police censorship at Portland State University and Portland Community College. Nonetheless, the DSA has promoted the false hope of reforming the police in alliance with the “progressive” wing of the Portland political establishment. Portland Police Chief Danielle Outlaw, who was praised because she is an African-American woman and expresses criticisms of “racist” police activity, wrote in the wake of recent events, “We would like for the public to have the opportunity to share with the Portland Police Bureau their ideas for how to move forward.”

Despite all the efforts of reforming the city police to curb police violence and corruption, even after a 2012 Department of Justice investigation concluded PPB regularly used excessive force against people with mental illness, the problems are only getting worse. Police brutality and far-right connections://dearkitty1.wordpress.com/2018/11/12/new-film-on-police-brutality-in-the-usa/”>Police brutality and far-right connections are not due to the lack of “good” politicians in office, but a product of the objective role of the police within capitalist society.

As the ruling class turn sharply to far-right politics to defend their interests in a period of immense crisis, the police arms of the state serve as a crucial component to maintain bourgeois rule. The ties between the far-right and police forces are not an issue isolated to Portland, but rather an international trend, where fascism is being promoted from above. Police in California and Baltimore, Maryland came under investigation for charges of collusion with the far-right last year. In Germany, recent reports have documented a large underground fascist network within the army and the police.

What has been exposed of the direct communications between police and the far-right is surely just the tip of the iceberg. Like the PPB, police departments across the United States have engaged in the protection of right-wing tendencies at major protests, keeping a distance from the violent clashes to give free reign to the far-right while cracking down on the anti-fascist protesters.

The most tragic example of this conscious police support occurred in Charlottesville, Virginia on August 12, 2017. While fascist militiamen carried out an armed riot, beating counter-demonstrators and shouting Nazi phrases, police stood to the side. As a result, 19 people were injured and 32-year-old Heather Heyer died when a fascist activist deliberately drove his car into a crowd.

The ties between the PPB and Patriot Prayer carry dangerous implications. As the working class comes into broader and more independent struggle, the ruling class will intensify its drive to promote fascism in the highest levels of the state apparatus, attacking democratic rights and left-wing politics in order to crush the growing threat of a revolutionary workers movement.

Portland, USA police helps armed neofascists


This video from the USA says about itself:

6 August 2016

Portland Police Under Investigation For Use Of Rubber Bullets And Stun Grenades On Protesters

By Alec Andersen in the USA:

Portland police attack anti-fascist counter-protesters at neo-fascist rally

7 August 2018

The violent intervention by city police against peaceful counter-demonstrators protesting a far-right rally in Portland, Oregon, on Saturday has provoked widespread public outrage. The protesters attacked by the police were marching in opposition to armed, neo-fascist provocateurs assembled under the leadership of Joey Gibson and his “Patriot Prayer” group.

Some 400 far-right demonstrators convened at Portland’s Riverside Park Saturday, wearing black shirts with fascist slogans

One of the ‘Patriot Prayer’ neofascists had a shirt on with ‘[Chilean murderous dictator] Pinochet did nothing wrong‘ on it.

and carrying signs denouncing immigrants and promoting “white nationalism”. The group was primarily comprised of members of Patriot Prayer and the Proud Boys, but represented a number of “alt-right” and other neo-fascist organizations.

The neo-fascist rally drew about 1,000 counter-protesters from a variety of anti-fascist, labor, clergy and other organizations, including the anarchist Antifa group. The counter-protesters chanted “We remember Charlottesville”, referring to the neo-fascist riot in Charlottesville, Virginia, last year that ended with a neo-Nazi driving his car into a crowd of anti-fascist protesters, killing Heather Heyer and wounding 19 others.

Demonstrators at the Saturday rally held up signs recounting a slew of assaults and murders by the far-right over recent years, including the stabbing to death of Ricky Best and Taliesin Myrddin Namkai-Meche by a white supremacist affiliated with Patriot Prayer onboard a public light rail train in Portland last year. Scattered scuffles broke out between members of the two groups, but the event remained relatively peaceful for several hours.

Dozens of local police in full riot gear stood between the two groups for several hours before police, without warning, declared the counter-demonstration a “civil disturbance” and began lobbing “flash bang” stun grenades into the crowd. Over a loudspeaker mounted on a truck, police claimed they had observed rocks and bottles thrown at officers and commanded the counter-demonstrators to disperse.

Simultaneously, police charged at the crowd with batons. They chased the retreating crowd through the streets, beating protesters and journalists with their batons while firing volleys of flashbangs and tear gas at them.

At least two people suffered major injuries from the police rampage and had to be rushed to the hospital after exploding flashbang grenades broke one woman’s arm and sent shrapnel flying through a man’s helmet and into his skull. Hospital staff told the man he would have died had he not been wearing a helmet. Several others suffered bruises from police batons and there were other minor injuries. The police actions drew vociferous praise from the fascist demonstrators, one of whom noted approvingly that the police did “a nice job”.

Police arrested four people, all anti-fascist demonstrators, on charges ranging from misdemeanor disorderly conduct to felonies, including “unlawful use of a weapon” (a slingshot), “attempted assault” and “assaulting a police officer”.

While Antifa protesters were reported to have thrown rocks and water bottles at police during the assault, the Portland Police Bureau’s claim that the police attack came in response to “projectiles” thrown at officers by anti-fascist protesters is directly contradicted by video and witnesses. Photographer Doug Jones told the Guardian that “the first missile I saw and heard came from the Patriot Prayer side.”

Willamette Week reporter Katy Shepherd wrote on Twitter: “Standing at the police line, I did not see anything thrown prior to crowd control being deployed. There may have been. My impression was that things were settling down before the first flashbang exploded.”

Patriot Prayer was founded by Gibson, who is presently running against Democratic Senator Maria Cantwell in the midterm elections, in 2016 as a far-right organization inspired by the skirmishes between pro-Trump and anti-fascist elements during the election. His group advances an extreme nationalist and xenophobic perspective under the guise of defending “free speech”. It has held numerous rallies along the West Coast, most of them in Portland due to its location just across the Columbia River from the group’s headquarters in Vancouver, Washington.

Patriot Prayer rallies are characterized by provocations designed to trigger violent clashes with counter-demonstrators, which Gibson then holds up as evidence of the supposed “intolerance” of the left and to portray the far-right as persecuted for its political beliefs. The group’s ideology, though somewhat vague, is an amalgam of extreme nationalism and racism that attracts a cross-section of the most backward and fascistic social layers, including the openly white supremacist and xenophobic Proud Boys.

These provocations escalate until skirmishes break out between Gibson’s far-right supporters and counter-protesters. On Saturday, as at previous events, Gibson and his body guards charged into the crowd of protesters, setting off clashes before he was pulled away.

Saturday’s rally was the largest yet for the group, which has carried out similar actions in Seattle, Berkeley and elsewhere. A police rampage on behalf of fascist demonstrators has become a pattern at such events.

At a Savannah, Georgia, event held by an assortment of armed, far-right and neo-Nazi groups earlier this year, thousands of police violently attacked counter-demonstrators and arrested several of them for violating a 1951 anti-Ku Klux Klan law against wearing masks during demonstrations. …

Major media outlets have since celebrated the police crackdown as having prevented greater violence from emerging, justifying the assault as necessary given the supposed danger the counter-protesters posed.

Berkeley police encourage harassment of anti-fascist protesters: here.

Extreme right violence in Portland, USA


This video from Oregon in the USA says about itself:

Far-right Groups Claim ‘Freedom’ Through Violence

5 August 2018

Rivals [racist] Patriot Prayer and Antifa clash at Freedom March in Portland

One of the ‘Patriot Prayer’ neofascists in the video has a T-shirt on with ‘[Chilean murderous dictator] Pinochet did nothing wrong‘.

After Portland, USA racist murder, extreme right provocation


This video from the USA says about itself:

Portland White Supremacist, Accused Murderer Shouts About Antifa & Free Speech at His Arraignment

31 May 2017

Majority Report Contributor Michael Brooks is hosting the show for Sam Seder today. In this clip, journalist Corey Pein joins the show to discuss his previous interactions with Jeremy Joseph Christian, the man accused of stabbing three men on a train in Portland as they attempted to intervene while he harassed two girls.

Another video from the USA which used to be on YouTube used to say about itself:

4 June 2017

Clashes erupt in Portland at far-right, anti-Trump rallies

Several people have been arrested in the US city of Portland after scuffles between police and far-right protesters, as well as those opposing US President Donald Trump.

The demonstrations took place days after a white supremacist stabbed to death two men who rushed to help girls being abused on a train.

This racist murderer had participated in earlier marches in Portland by these extreme rightists.

Al Jazeera’s Alan Fisher reports from Portland.

In the Trump camp, which had planned its rally days before the recent attack, alt-righters … stood among people with Nazi symbolism tattooed on their arms and civilian “peacekeepers” in military gear: here.

Georgia state senator under fire for photo with armed anti-government militia: here.

The Proud Boys, a violent misogynistic and homophobic street gang of proto-fascists, assaulted protesters over the weekend on the East Coast and West Coast.

MAN CONVICTED OF KILLING 2 WHO TRIED TO STOP RACIST TIRADE Jeremy Christian, 37, who was accused of fatally stabbing two people who prosecutors say tried to stop his racist tirade against two young black women on a Portland, Oregon, commuter train was convicted of murder after an emotional trial that featured testimony from both women and the sole survivor of the attack nearly three years ago. [AP]

Portland, USA anti-racist murder survivor meets harassed girl


This video from Portland, USA says about itself:

Family of MAX attack victim says his heart was ‘as big as the world’

27 May 2017

Taliesin Myrddin Namkai Meche was stabbed to death after defending a young woman who was being harassed on the MAX.

By Antonia Blumberg in the USA:

06/01/2017 05:25 pm ET

Portland Hero Meets With Teenage Girl He Stood Up For

In a statement, Micah Fletcher also told the city’s Muslim community they “are loved.”

Micah Fletcher survived a stab wound to the neck last week when he stood up to an attacker who was harassing two teenage girls on a train in Portland, Oregon.

Two other men, Ricky John Best and Taliesin Myrddin Namkai-Meche, who also came to the girls’ aid, were stabbed and killed.

Fletcher has said he is still trying to make sense of what happened.

On Wednesday, the 21-year-old got the chance to meet with Destinee Mangum, one of the girls he was injured defending, and her family. Mangum’s mother, Dyjuana Hudson, posted about the experience on Facebook, calling Fletcher an “angel” and a “hero.”

“Finally got a chance to meet one of the angels that saved my daughter’s life,” she wrote. “Micah is one of the best genuine hearted people you will ever meet.”

In an emotional interview, Mangum told Fox affiliate KPTV this weekend that she wanted “to say thank you to the people who put their life on the line for me, because they didn’t even know me.”

“They lost their lives because of me and my friend and the way we looked,” Mangum continued. “I just want to say thank you to them and their family, and I appreciate them, because without them we probably would be dead right now.”

Fletcher was one of three people stabbed after confronting a man on a MAX train for verbally attacking Mangum, 16, and her 17-year-old-friend, who is Muslim and was wearing a hijab. Police arrested Jeremy Christian, who has ties to white supremacist groups, soon afterward.

Fletcher, a student at Portland State University, told USA Today on Tuesday that he’s still “healing” from the May 26 attack. “I got stabbed in the neck on my way to work, randomly, by a stranger I don’t know, for trying to just be a nice person,” he said.

On Wednesday, Fletcher released a video on Facebook thanking supporters for an outpouring of kindness and money, but adding that there’s a problem that needs addressing.

“We need to remember that this is about those little girls,” he said. “I want you to imagine that for a second being a little girl on that MAX. This man is screaming at you. His face is a pile of knives. His body is a gun. Everything about him is cocked, loaded and ready to kill you.”

He noted that there’s a “white savior complex” present in society that has placed all the focus on the three men who stood up to Christian, rather than addressing the daily, lived experience of racism and Islamophobia that young people like Destinee and her friend face.

In a statement during Christian’s court hearing on Tuesday, Fletcher said: “I want the Muslim community to know that they have a home here in Portland and are loved.”

The 21-year-old is also a poet and has written pieces about Islamophobia in the past. Oregon Live reported that Fletcher won a 2013 poetry competition for two pieces of work: one that dealt with the blame rape victims face and another focused on the prejudice leveled at Muslims in America after the attacks on September 11, 2001.

Jeremy Joseph Christian made his first court appearance in Portland, Oregon on Tuesday after being arrested for stabbing three individuals with a knife last Friday, killing two. The violent assault took place after the victims intervened to defend two girls who had been the target of an Islamophobic and racist tirade from Christian while traveling on a Portland MAX train: here.

From the Stranger site in Seattle, USA:

Princeton University professor of African-American studies, Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor, was scheduled to speak at Town Hall Seattle this evening about her latest book, From #BlackLivesMatter to Black Liberation.

But on Sunday, Fox News aired a brief clip of her 20-minute-long commencement speech to Hampshire College’s graduating class of 2017, during which she said what anyone with two eyes, a pulse, and more than three chapter books on their shelf would say about the President of the United States, namely that he’s a “racist, sexist, megalomaniac.” The media arm of the Republican party showed the clip with the headline: “Anti-POTUS Tirade: Princeton Prof Slams Pres During Speech.”

Then, according to a statement Taylor’s publishers released on Facebook, like cowards, a number of Fox News viewers felt compelled to send racist, sexist, megalomaniacal messages to Taylor from the relative safety of their own computers.

United States nazi terrorists not terrorists?


This video from the USA says about itself:

Neo-Nazis explain why they like Donald Trump

8 November 2016

Four days before the US presidential election, white supremacists gathered for a rally in Pennsylvania.

On November 4, 2016, the National Socialist Movement gathered for a rally in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. The event was four days before the US presidential election and featured speeches given by NSM commander Jeff Schoep and National commander of the America First Committee, Arthur J. Jones Jr. At the rally, leaders discussed how Donald Trump’s presidential campaign has brought white supremacism into the mainstream and legitimized their beliefs. Mark Potok from the Southern Poverty Law Center contextualizes the event with his discussion of how Trump has created political space for extremists by courting the support and validating the beliefs of groups on the alt-right. The rally closed with discussion of how the neo-Nazi groups plan to organize a show of force on Election Day.

By Mehdi Hasan in The Intercept:

The Numbers Don’t Lie: White Far-Right Terrorists Pose a Clear Danger to Us All

May 31 2017, 7:34 p.m.

O Sean Duffy, where art thou?

Back in February, the Republican congressman from Wisconsin told CNN’s Alysyn Camerota that white terrorists of the far-right variety did not pose the same level of danger to Americans as so-called “Islamist” or “jihadist” terrorists. Why? “I don’t know, but I would just tell you there’s a difference,” proclaimed Duffy, who went on to dismiss as a “one-off” the attack on a mosque in Quebec by a Trump-supporting white nationalist, in which six Muslim worshippers were killed.

This problem is hardly just one Republican Congressman. It is Donald Trump’s Republican administration.

One-off? Seriously? Has Duffy been reading the news in recent days? On May 20, Richard Collins III, a black, 23-year-old U.S. Army second lieutenant, was murdered while visiting the University of Maryland by a member of a Facebook group called “Alt-Reich: Nation.” According to University of Maryland police chief David Mitchell, the group promotes “despicable” prejudice against minorities “and especially African-Americans.”

On May 26, 53-year-old U.S. Army veteran Rick Best and 23-year-old recent university graduate Taliesin Myrddin Namkai-Meche were murdered, while 21-year-old poet Micah David-Cole Fletcher was severely injured, by a knife-wielding white supremacist when the three of them tried to prevent him from harassing a Muslim woman in a headscarf on their commuter train in Portland, Oregon.

Why isn’t Duffy back on CNN decrying the threat posed by such vile domestic terrorists? Why aren’t the Republican political and media establishments loudly alerting voters to the white-skinned far-right menace in their midst?

Can you imagine the tweetstorm from President Donald Trump if two U.S. soldiers — one serving, one a veteran — had been killed on U.S. soil by Islamist terrorists in the space of a single week? Can you imagine the rolling coverage on Fox News if it had been a ranting Muslim man who had slashed the throats of three Good Samaritans trying to protect two women on a train in Portland?

For far too long, those of us who have warned of the threat from far-right, white supremacist terrorists have been accused of trying to shift attention away from the threat of ISIS and Al Qaeda — of acting as Muslim apologists.

For far too long, a veritable industry of politicians, pundits, and self-styled security “experts” have strived to minimize the domestic terror threat from far-right groups while inflating the threat from foreign jihadists.

Compare and contrast: Islamist terrorists are depicted as wild-eyed fanatics driven to kill by their religious faith or ideology, while far-right terrorists — be it the shooter of two Hindus in a bar in Kansas in February, or the killer of nine black worshippers in a church in Charleston, South Carolina, in 2015, or the murderer of six Sikh worshippers in a temple in Duffy’s own state of Wisconsin in 2012 — are almost always “mentally ill.” After the recent double murder in Oregon, it didn’t take long for Portland police spokesperson Pete Simpson to announce: “We don’t know if [the suspect] has mental health issues.” (Isn’t it weird how we Muslims seem somehow immune to “mental health issues”? Mashallah.)

‘ONE OFFICIAL TRIED TO WARN US ABOUT THE ATTACKS LIKE PORTLAND. HE WAS PUSHED OUT.’ “Eight years ago, working in the department’s now-defunct Extremism and Radicalization Branch, Daryl Johnson authored a memo intended to warn law enforcement about the threat posed by right-wing extremists… Under political pressure, the administration backed away from the memo. They dismantled Johnson’s team. He left the government.” [HuffPost]

NOOSE FOUND IN D.C. AFRICAN-AMERICAN HISTORY MUSEUM EXHIBIT It’s the second time in a week that a noose has been found on the grounds of a Smithsonian museum. [HuffPost]

5 People Were Just Shot To Death In Florida. But Don’t Worry, It Wasn’t Terrorism. One of the deadliest mass shootings of 2017 happened on Monday, and you might not have even heard about it: here.

From Trump rhetoric to Portland train murders


This video from the USA says about itself:

Did Trump Campaign Rhetoric Empower the White Extremist Who Killed Two Bystanders on Portland Train?

30 May 2017

For the second time in a week, a military man was killed by a white extremist. On Friday, 53-year-old Ricky Best, a retired Army veteran, and 23-year-old Taliesin Myrddin Namkai Meche were fatally stabbed, with a third man critically injured, as they tried to defend two teenage girls against an attack by a man going on an anti-Muslim rant. The two young women, one of whom wore a Muslim hijab, were riding a commuter train when, according to witnesses, Jeremy Joseph Christian started shouting ethnic and religious slurs.

Police arrested Christian, a convicted felon, soon after the attack. “In many ways, I think his rhetoric has more to do with the campaign and the ideas unleashed in the campaign over the last 16, 18 months by the Trump folks than it does with hardcore neo-Nazism. Or at least it’s a mix of the two sets of ideas,” says our guest Heidi Beirich, Intelligence Project director of the Southern Poverty Law Center.