Seattle: 2011 in Photos from the Seattle Social War

Here is a Seattle style 2011 recap of the social war in the Puget Sound area. Seattle makes me want to write hella zines, throw them off buildings, and then hella occupy the buildings. too Let’s make a 2012 forecast or something. Also it isn’t too late for a Portland-area 2011 photo recap. Probably some news about the noise demos soon. – Anon.

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From Anarchistnews.org. Dec 31st, 2011:

2011 in Photos from the Social War in Seattle

“Western countries’ ability to jump-start their economies and get debts under control will help determine whether 2011 will be remembered as the nadir-or the beginning of something much worse”

– Excerpt from Newsweek’s Crisis section of the 2011 Pictures of the Year

Looking back on 2011 as social rebels and revolutionaries we can only hope that this year will become known as the beginning of something much worse, as a foreshadowing of the revolts to come. Time will only tell. As we review the victories and losses of this past year in Seattle (and beyond) we can be proud that as a city we have learned how to fight. Where 2010 saw few demonstrations that made it off the sidewalk, 2011 was the year of demonstrations that widened much more than just the streets we marched through. As 2012 approaches, let us reflect and prepare for what is to come, whether stagnation or contagious revolt, we will be there.

February 12th: An anarchist smashes out the window to a Seattle Police Department car at a anti-police protest called in response to the murder of John T. Williams.

February 16th: Hundreds gather to march in response to the King County prosecutor’s decision to not file charges against killer cop Ian Birk.

February 18th: Small street battles take place as the protests against the police murder of John T. Williams continue.

February 18th: A drop-in police center is a target of an attemped fire after a night of long anti-police protests. A police substation is a target of a similar attack in Olympia later that week. The Seattle police center is forced to shut down three months later.

March 30th: Thousands of fliers, two banners, a few flares, and a smoke bomb are set off in Capitol Hill in solidarity with a Greek anarchist accused of robbing a bank who faced trial in Athens that day. The bottom of the banner reads, “Anyone who defends a bank is either a fool or a cop”.

April 21st: An unknown number of people destroy several windows at a Chase Bank on Capitol Hill in front of several strangers and open businesses. The action is claimed in solidarity with Chilean anarchist prisoners and non-cooperating Green Scare prisoners.

May 1st: An anarchist and anti-capitalist bloc are held at the annual May Day march. It is the first significant grouping in years.

June 9th: The Olympian newspaper van and building is vandalized in reference to the Olympian journalist, Tony Overman, who gave photos to the police that were later used to convict and imprison anarchists. Overman’s house was vandalized the same night in Tumwater, WA.

June 25th: A rowdy crowd of queers and friends run riot on Capitol Hill smashing cop cars, an ATM, and American Apparel in an anti-assimilation induced fever during Pride weekend.

July 20th:: A banner is dropped as thousands of fliers and a huge smoke bomb are let loose into downtown Seattle. The action is done in solidarity with the Pelican Bay prisoner hunger strike in California. Earlier that month a noise demonstration was held at the local juvenile detention center, also in solidarity with the California prisoners.

Late August/Early September: After weeks of pressure and harassment from local gentrification advocates, the City, and the SPD, the anarchist social center Autonomia is forced to close its doors. The space was an important fixture in emerging anarchist and radical milieus as well as a force against the gentrification and pacification of the Central district neighborhood.

September: Longshoremen in Longview, WA battle the police and stand their ground against the multinational grain company EGT who are attempting to displace union workers.

October 5th: Occupiers attempt to protect their tents at Occupy Seattle in Westlake Park as the police try to clear them. The small battles for tents and a camp at Westlake Park continued for weeks.

October 28th: Three anarchists stand in front of a “Capital Hell Commune” banner on the first night of the new Occupy Seattle location on Capitol Hill at Seattle Central Community College. Later that night three Nazis were violently expelled from the camp causing a rift in the traditional nonviolence vs. violence dichotomy for many occupiers.

November 2nd: A protestor jumps on an SPD car after several occupiers locked down and were arrested inside the most targeted Chase Bank on Capitol Hill. After witnessing the arrests, the angry supporters engaged in a street battle in which they won back the streets and chased the police away.

November 19th: The first Occupy Seattle squat is established after dozens march to an abandoned house in the Central District and take it over. The house is currently still occupied.

December 2nd: Hundreds occupy an abandoned warehouse on Capitol Hill. The occupation was crushed by a SWAT team and police only 10 hours later.

December 12th: A protestor stands with a flare in front of a barricade set up to block entry to Goldman Sach’s Terminal 18 at the Port of Seattle. Hours later the police storm the protestors, trampling and arresting many, few police are injured. The protestors then moved to Terminal 5 successfully shutting it down as well.

Mid-December: “Gentrification Kills”. Graffiti outside one of many new developments in the rapidly gentrifying Central District neighborhood.

December 20th: Justin Solondz takes a non-cooperating plea deal for his part in the 2001 University of Washington ELF arson. Solondz was free until he was caught in China earlier this year. He is expected to serve 7 years.

Thanks to the San Francisco Bay Area’s Bay of Rage for the idea. Check out ‘2011 in Photos from the Frontlines of the Bay’ at BayofRage.com.

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