This is especially for TarheelDem; sorry if it brings back too many wretched memories. Let this stand as ‘Spring Police State, Pt. II’
From wsws.org, April 8: ‘Chicago mayor’s choice to head police oversaw crackdown on anti-NATO protesters’
“Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel last week announced the appointment of veteran officer Eddie Johnson as interim head of the Chicago Police Department. Emanuel’s endorsement of Johnson is part of an effort to make the police force a more effective instrument for suppressing political and social opposition.
Johnson’s chief accomplishment in the police department was the major role he played in the crackdown of anti-NATO protestors in 2012. Three protestors were arrested in the aftermath on trumped-up charges of “terrorism.”
(Note: at least six more were charged, more arrested, three remain in prison, iirc.)
“After entering the Chicago Police Department (CPD) more than 27 years ago, Johnson rose the ranks from a beat patrolman to become a deputy chief of patrol in 2012. According to the Chicago Sun-Times, Johnson has been offered a $260,044 salary in his interim role as the police superintendent.
Emanuel awarded the interim superintendent position to Johnson after the mayor rejected the Chicago Police Board’s initial suggestions for candidates. Johnson, a veteran of the police force, was advanced to head the CPD partly as an effort to placate African-American aldermen. The appointment has also been used to appease civil rights establishment figures such as Jesse Jackson, layers of the pseudo-left, and groups like Black Lives Matter that have been leading the protests against police brutality.”
(I’m not sure which like-BLM groups the author means have given Johnson their approval, but my guess is that Rahmbo sees Johnson as someone he can control more readily)
“Far from ushering in a new era of “reform” or an end to police brutality, Johnson has a record that entirely explodes Emanuel’s pretenses of reforming the police. According to a police department statement, “Chief Johnson has significant experience managing large-scale special events and was instrumental in the operational planning and response of the 2012 NATO Summit” that was held in Chicago.
During those protests, the Chicago police, then headed by Garry McCarthy, injured over 25 people, including reporters, and arrested numerous others. The CPD engaged in widespread surveillance and infiltration of activist groups. Three young men were arrested and jailed on trumped-up charges of “terrorism” as part of the mobilization of state resources against protest and dissent.” [snip]
“Last fall, a court ordered that the Emanuel administration release the video of the police murder of Laquan McDonald by officer Jason Van Dyke. The video, suppressed by the Emanuel administration and the CPD for over a year, showed officer Van Dyke shooting the unarmed McDonald 16 times, including multiple shots as the youth lay on the ground.
With the release of the video, Emanuel faced protests and widespread calls for his resignation. The murder of McDonald implicated all layers of the political establishment. Emails from 2014 to 2015 that were released by the Emanuel administration revealed the depth of collaboration between the mayor’s office, police officials, the Independent Police Review Association, political leaders in the city and others who were responsible for handling the information on McDonald’s death.
The first attempt at damage control by Emanuel was to fire Police Commissioner Garry McCarthy. He had played a leading role in the cover-up directed by the Emanuel administration, but ended up the fall guy. After firing McCarthy, Emanuel proclaimed that he would usher in an era of “transparency” and police “reform” with the aid of the federal Justice Department.” (much more at the link)
One of Rahm’s vaunted reforms is the promise that now dashcam videos will be released…sooner. Given that Johnson never applied for the job, getting the job permanently will require all sorts of fancy paper footwork…
Allow me to paste in this from the freethoughtproject.com; I’d grabbed it for what would have been Part II Police State:
“Chicago, IL — Last year, in only a matter of weeks, the Chicago police were forced to release three videos showing them kill people.
(The first was of Laquan McDonald being executed by Jason VanDyke, and no, the dasham didn’t reflect the testilying of the cops, nor did the autopsy. But wait:
‘Chicago Officer Awaiting Trial for Killing Laquan McDonald Hired by Police Union as Janitor’, Slate, March 31. They had a goFundMe account for his defense, as well.
“Then, only days after that, Chicago police quietly slipped out another video of officer George Hernandez murdering Ronald Johnson, by shooting him in the back as he ran away. According to Dorothy Holmes, Johnson’s mother, the officer who fired the fatal rounds into her son was officer George Hernandez. This information was kept secret by the Chicago police until now, as officials have announced that no charges will be filed against this killer cop.
Because of her relentless drive to bring Hernandez to justice, the Chicago police have finally released the dashcam of that fateful night.
As police were interviewing the driver of a car in which Johnson was in the back seat, he got out and ran – this decision was answered with a death sentence.
When police called Holmes to tell her they had killed her son, they released the official lie that stated Johnson pointed a gun at officers and they were forced to return fire. Holmes never believed this lie and had her own medical examination conducted which showed that her son was, indeed, shot in the back.
In the Dashcam video released on Monday, Holmes and the medical examiner are clearly proven to be correct.
What the video shows is Ronald Johnson rounding a corner with officers in pursuit. As Johnson begins to cross the street, he is gunned down in the back by officer Hernandez.
“Shortly after that, a video was released from an incident in the Far South Side police lockup which shows officers repeatedly tasering University of Chicago graduate Philip Coleman and then dragging his limp body from the cell. On Monday, the city of Chicago agreed to pay Coleman’s family $4.9 million for the brutal actions of Chicago’s finest which left Coleman dead.
Coleman was not a criminal, but he was experiencing an apparent mental crisis when he began to attack his mother in December of 2012. When police arrested him, Coleman was brought to a hospital where he was given a drug to make him calm down.
According to officials, Coleman’s death was the result of his reaction to that antipsychotic drug, which certainly can kill people. However, an autopsy showed that Coleman experienced ‘severe trauma’ while in custody. His body was covered in bruises and cuts, from the top of his head to his lower legs and there is video showing him being repeatedly tasered.
As the video begins, it shows that the drug was actually working when police came into Coleman’s cell and began their assault. He was merely laying on the bed when the first taser hit. Moments later, his lifeless body is being dragged down the hallway like an animal.” (Watch at your own risk; even Rahmbo found it ‘unacceptable’.)
But wait! Sterling Interim (for now) CPD Chief Johnson, of whom insiders have said ‘doesn’t drink, doesn’t womanize, and has had no citizen complaints against him’, yada, yada:
As for Johnson’s being lauded for his stellar job as “instrumental in the operational planning and response of the 2012 NATO Summit”, let’s take a look at that; for instance:
TarheelDem’s exceptional and personal narration: ‘Report from Chicago Spring: Thank You for Returning My Shoelaces and Belt. Now Can You Please Find My Drivers License and Computer? – My Experience Being Detained Prior to the NATO Summit’
(He now knows that he was held incommunicado in the now-infamous, still open, Homan Square dark-site prison.)
Spencer Ackerman’s chilling 2016 ‘The disappeared: Chicago police detain Americans at abuse-laden ‘black site’ Homan Square
The Guardian yesterday: Moar Attackerman: ‘Documents disclosed in Guardian lawsuit reveal for first time how Chicago police used punches, baton blows and Tasers at the off-the-books interrogation site’
“Internal documents from the Chicago police department show that officers used physical force on at least 14 men already in custody at the warehouse known as Homan Square.
Police used punches, knee strikes, elbow strikes, slaps, wrist twists, baton blows and Tasers at Homan Square, according to documents released to the Guardian in the course of its transparency lawsuit about the warehouse. The new information contradicts an official denial about treatment of prisoners at the facility.
The injured men are among at least 7,351 people – more than 6,000 of them black – who, police documents show, have been detained and interrogated at Homan Square without a public notice of their whereabouts or access to an attorney.
None of the men identified in these newest documents had fled custody or were injured in the course of a lawful arrest. All were subject to force by Chicago police officers after they were already in custody at Homan Square. According to depositions with officers and more than two dozen first-hand accounts, handcuffing is standard. Police applied force to some arrestees sufficient enough to warrant hospitalization.” (much, much, much more)
Yes, but Johnson never even saw any bad apples™, not one! Ever!
Aaaaand…it looks like ‘Chicago’s Mayor‘ is tryin’ to stop the bleedin’ of his epic unpopularity…ha.ha. Bike trails, funding black youth summer programs, 450 body cams!!!!
No, Chi-town is not Baltimore, but close enough. You may like Prince’s homage to the police state fukkery in that town. (Okay, mebbe it’s a bit of a paean to himself, a well, but still…I like it. Will the Freddie Gray killer kop trials ever yield any ort of justice?
The one remaining NATO 3 prisoner, Jared “Jay” Chase, was sentenced yesterday to an additional two years in prison for flinging poo at a guard. Chase pleaded guilty and hoped for the mercy of the court on a minimum six month charge for assault on a corrections officer. Chase has Huntington’s disease, which is reported to affect his judgement in certain situations. Solitary confinement seems to be one of those situations.
I figured that Rahm had reasons for short-circuiting the appointment process. The Chicago police unions at last report were still segregated at last report with the African-American Patrolmen’s Association and the Chicago Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) still being seriously at odds. The FOPs generally don’t like Rahm.
It’s coming up on four years ago that all this went down. Now, look at the state of NATO. Quite a wrong turn all around certainly since 1989 and possibly since its founding. More and more the 1946 election looks like the culprit that sent us down the tubes of sanity. Given Truman’s decision about nuclear weapons, possibly insanity goes back to August of 1945. Quite an astounding realization at one’s 70th birthday.
jared chase is the last? i didn’t know that, given what i thought i’d read last. well, solitary is one sure road to insanity, although some who’ve survived it say ‘not always’ [On edit: albert woodfox, for one]. the poor man.
why the 46 election? i’d thought you’d meant ’48, and was about to ask if dewey might not have dropped the bomb/s.
was that the defining moment for demonstrating that the US would be the sole superpower, do you mean?
well, i’m not entirely sure that rahm’s stated reason is the sole one, myownself, as i said above.
you’d always said that nato was a cold war relic, and watch out for it’s re-purposing itself. it seems to feed on itself without reason, and its epic overgrowth may mean its own death, or more likely, the death of the planet.
happy, happy 70th birthday, thd. oddly enough, it’s out 43rd (good grief) anniversary today.
i was taken aback that it’s going on four years from chicago NATO, too.
sweet dreams; i’m out for the night. hester prynne’s calling…
In 1946, Harry Truman and James F. Byrnes were first coping (as the rest of were in a different way) with nuclear fallout. It was the mid-term election that restored Republican control of Congress after 14 years of the New Deal and they started out then pounding on the anti-communism drum. That scared Harry Truman and stampeded him into “tougher than thou” positions that resulted in a Red Scare, the National Security Act of 1947 (which created the National Security Council, the Department of Defense, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and the Central Intelligence Agency), the creation of NATO. After Truman victory in 1948, he sent forward additional legislation that shrouded the intelligence community (then primarily the CIA) from Congressional scrutiny (the Central Intelligence Act of 1949). And he still couldn’t race to authoritarianism faster than Joe McCarthy and the Republicans. That partisan competition set the the frame of the narrative of a growing and dangerous Soviet Union even before they detonated their first atom bomb and Congress went wild speculating about how they found out and who were traitors (forgetting that the Soviet Union was nominally an ally in World War II). NATO sought to stabilize Europe through polite imperialism; the US would be the “nuclear umbrella” and deciding military factor for all European countries. Neither the UK nor France (the other two main allies) bought the narrative and insisted on their own nuclear forces, at least giving some illusions of not being pushed around by a supposed co-equal ally. But once in place, with Germany stabilized and beginning to be prosperous again, Jean Monnet promoted the idea of European Unity, building on an iron and coal trade pact that made European militaries dependent on each other for key military materials and transforming it into a common market and a common monetary zone.
If the Eurozone is fracturing, so is the so-called “common market”, and so is NATO except to the extent that European military officers adopt a NATO identity superior to their national identities. But to hold Europe together through austerity, NATO has to have a unifying enemy. The consequences of NATO’s search for that patsy seemed to me then and still does to be destabilizing of Europe, which was the core of stability of the American empire. In fact the rot continues and the conflict over how to relate to Russia and China, won for the moment by the Nuland-Pyatt faction.
The US’s post-World War II national security institutions, now so grandiose, don’t seem to work any more. Nor are there new ideas for stable national defense. Moreover, “humble foreign policy” is a warmonger’s rhetorical sucker punch.
Yes, my birthday caused me to look over the arc of my life so far in context of my times. It turns out that for most of us the atomic cloud of Trinity still hangs over us. A while ago we though we were better than to have that still with us.
Many happy returns to you and Mr. WD.
argh, yes: nagasaki and hiroshima had already been bombed in ’45. i id look at the electoral charts of the ’46 election, which wiki said paved the way for hoover, as well. much, but not all (monnet, for instance) of what you’ve said here you’ve explained before, but it’s very hard for me now to remember new things. so thank you for your patience.
and ‘destabilizing europe’ as a nato strategy works how? to create more enemies for nato to ‘take care of’?
while (ahem) trying to clear up this table to begin the taxes, i took too many breaks this morning. a different type of tax avoidance… ;-) but i began a telesur video on congo, just 7 minutes, but it reminded me that i might do a ‘the world according to africom’ piece, too. tried and failed to find anything new by nick turse on the africa desk, as well, but when i peeked into africom on twitter, they seem to be going great guns training and equipping different sub-saharan nations. sigh, and of course there’s competition growing from china. how many pivots?
well, i started reading this mile-long piece at counterpunch, backed out quickly for now, but with an intriguing title: ‘The End of the American Empire’, by Amb. Chas W. Freeman, whoever he was.
he sees china a the big pivot, scanning toward the bottom. anyhoo, you might like to peek in; you seem to be a fast reader, any others of you, as well. the essay was said to have been: ‘Remarks to East Bay Citizens for Peace, the Barrington Congregational Church, and the American Friends Service Committee on April 2, 2016 in Barrington, Rhode Island’, which boded somewhat well.
and welcome for the happy returns. ‘sho makes us feel even more ‘old and in the way’.
“Charles W. (“Chas”) Freeman, Jr., (born March 2, 1943) is an American diplomat, author, and writer. He served in the United States Foreign Service, the State and Defense Departments in many different capacities over the course of thirty years, with the Washington Report on Middle East Affairs calling his career “remarkably varied”. Most notably, he worked as the main interpreter for Richard Nixon during his 1972 China visit and served as the U.S. Ambassador to Saudi Arabia from 1989 to 1992, where he dealt with the Persian Gulf War.
He is a past president of the Middle East Policy Council, co-chair of the U.S. China Policy Foundation and a Lifetime Director of the Atlantic Council. In February 2009, unnamed sources leaked that Freeman was Director of National Intelligence Dennis C. Blair’s choice to chair the National Intelligence Council in the Obama administration. After several weeks of criticisms from prominent supporters of Israeli policy, he withdrew his name from consideration and charged that he had been the victim of a concerted campaign by what he called “the Israel lobby”.…”,
‘destabilizing europe’ as a nato strategy works how?
just a thought: as an economic rival, the EU must have some Kaos. forced migration via war as US economic policy, in addition to austerity, etc., etc. but as a platform for force projection against Russia, NATO must be maintained.
these two objectives are in conflict w/each other.
the sad & scary part is that Cameron, Merkel, Hollande, etc., know this. they know what’s going on & they are on board w/the plan. in my opinion. they are ready to sacrifice the staggering, unbelievable levels of prosperity & the resources of Europe in order to play war games w/Washington.
macedonia is now in play.
yeah, i wasn’t thinking well; too distracted by these evil mofo taxes…so thank you, jason.
given that nato tweet i brought earlier about their navy ‘preventing human trafficking as per the eu’s, gerany’s, and turkey’s wishes: read: help their plan to send them back to turkey, syria, wherever, allow 1 new on who has enough skills to aid the gdp, whatever. and you’re so right about ‘blame russia for the crisis’, plus now: ‘migs just purposely flew over the uss bumfuck!!!’
kerry publicly didn’t credit russia for diminishing the isis threat (or was it obama?), but lavrov and kerry have met again to discuss joint stra=te=geries. but don’t look now: (click tweet for larger)
macedonia in refugee play? tear down those fences? oy, some of those photos…
pepe escobar’s recent piece on the EU as walking dead echoes a lot of what you’ve written here. again, there are a few things i wasn’t able to grasp, but i do love his colorful language.
Cpd killed a 16-yr-old kid near homan square yesterday, and boy, howdy, it’s a mess of conflicting narratives, especially the tribune’s coverage.
Happy Anniversary mr&mrswd
so kind of you, marym.
we were married in the town park in steamboat springs, co, by a hippie universal free life church ministry card. it was hastily arranged on a lunch hour; he was dressed in kneesocks and lederhosen, our BiL ate his lunch sandwich during the ceremony, during which…the train chugged and hoo-hooed by. ;-)
the party was in our cabin in hahn’s peak 30 mile north, still four feet of soft snow. as it turned out, we had separate honeymoons, me with my girlfriends going to carbondale, co, for some reason or other, he and his male friends skiing to a cabin in the mount zirkel wilderness. it seemed to have set the tone for the many years afterward as rather unconventional. ha; we were seldom in even the same state for most of our anniversaries. ;-) but then, it was always close to tax time, grrrrr, so…we forgot.
Happy Birthday TarheelDem
Thank you, marym.
Happy Birthday, TD, if I read you correctly. More than a few grains of truth in your realization I do think. It puzzles me how folk can justify a vote when the votee is carrying such a burden. It isn’t kind to him/her or to us.
happy birthday & anniversary to thd & the wd clan.
I couldn’t bring myself to watch the videos. if we include under the name of “cop” prison & parole officials & guards, front line members herding bodies for the incarceral state, i wonder if the following statement is true:
the type of person most likely to rob you, assault you, taze you, shoot you, or rape or otherwise sexually assault you is…a cop.
if we include rent-a-cops? i may be fudging categories a bit, but i’d bet not by much.
as for truman: let’s take a look at the carnage of ww2….and get ready to do it all over again! w/nukes! we all know stalin was no….saint, but the gross, even unimaginable disparities in power b/n the USSR & US at the end of the ww2…well, truman (& co) gets more blame. a lot more. for, after the morning light came streaking, he said, let’s get up & do it again.
ta, jason. and i’ve seen that same wondered-calculation/question on twitter more than once. i only read the blow-by-blow description of the jail video, myself. after compiling all these cases, it leaves my stomach just sick about some class of humanity, accompanied sometimes with a rage that burns like fire.
i was telling mr. wd that in some ways, torture and murder ‘in custody’ bothers me even more than abject murder on the street. maybe because it’s so hidden but prevalent, and sometimes…death might be preferable to long-term inescapable tortures. i dunno.
the russians were not at all pleased that in the recent WWII commemorations…they were entirely left out. how many million russians died helping ‘win the war’? jayzus; da wiki says: disputed, but post glasnost, figures both military and civilian, plus missing, presumed dead were in the neighborhood of ‘as high as 40 million’. (maybe i’ve fumbled the numbers and categories). good gawd all-friday.
SCOTUSblog email just came in with a notice that a petition has been filed to re-hear Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association, no surprise. er…i guess friedrichs, et. al. imagine there will be a ninth justice after the elections?
chief johnson is now the non-interim chief; i guess the aldermen/women voted to change the rules. one wag on twitter had said that no, johnson never witnessed police misconduct over his 27 years on the force, “and he ain’t about to start now!”