A showdown between so-called antifascist protesters and various right-leaning groups later this week in Portland is primed to blow, and police are now taking measures to keep the protests as contained as possible.
Both far-right and far-left activists plan to flood the streets of Portland on Saturday, and the expected attendance numbers have police worried.
According to The Associated Press, not a single officer from the Portland Police Bureau will have the day off. This means there will be nearly 1,000 police officers on hand to confront any unrest, make arrests and patrol the rest of the city.
The Oregon State Police and the FBI will also be providing assistance.
Despite the mass of security and the best efforts of local, state and federal forces, the event is still expected to be dangerous. Portland Police issued a warning about the protests, urging those who want to view the events to simply stay away for fear of making law enforcement in the area more difficult.
As part of the warning, Portland Police released a map of the affected area, shading red the zone that will most likely be impacted by the protests.
In lieu of watching modern political activism, the warning encourages residents to visit one of the other events taking place in Portland on the same day.
Although the list of exhilarating events includes a hot sauce expo and the Oregon Bigfoot Festival, it’s unlikely too many people will be persuaded away from watching the potentially violent demonstrations.
As evidenced by previous incidents at antifa rallies, those unprepared for violence would be wise to give this area a wide berth.
In June, for instance, journalist Andy Ngo was the victim of a brutal assault. For the crime of documenting a rally where antifa was present, Ngo was robbed, humiliated and brutalized so violently that he needed to go to a hospital.
“There still hasn’t been a single arrest by @PortlandPolice,” Ngo noted last week on Twitter.
Unfortunately, this kind of violence is inherent to antifa. The leftist group’s favorite protesting method, the black bloc, lends itself to a particularly heinous form of mob thinking and brutality.
The tactic is deceptively simple: Antifa activists cover themselves in black clothing, often with a mask over their face, hat and sunglasses.
Even if a group from the main “bloc” is caught on camera committing a crime, the obscured faces and black mass of clothing makes it virtually impossible to identify suspects.
Police officials have already floated the possibility of mass arrests on the day of the protests, although they may not be able to arrest their way out of a dangerous situation if this primed powder keg finally blows.
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