Tips for Countering Anti War Demonstrators from an experienced Freeper

I’ve been contacted by a few people who are planning to attend the Gathering of Eagles Denver event that I have been organizing through Free Republic and the Eagles Web Site.

One of the men who sent an email yesterday, Dale from Littleton, said this:

“Hi Jenny,

I plan on being there with you on March 17th. Really wanted to go to
Washington DC because I believe in this so much, but at this time, just
can’t make the trip there. Glad to see that something was going to happen
locally that I could participate in.

I am a Vietnam veteran (1963-1966 US Navy) and have never done anything like
this before. So, just tell me what to do and I’m a fast learner.

I took the Purple Finger picture (attached) with one my son and three
grandkids, on 15-Dec-05 when the Iraq’s voted, and submitted it to some site
who displayed them at the time.”

Since Dale asked “what to do” around this Counter Demo, I thought it might be a good idea to share a couple of simple ideas to make the rally more effective.
1. Wear Patriotic Clothing, Eagles arm bands, and bring your American Flags. Some people like to write out home made signs and those are great, but one of the things that becomes immediately apparent when going to an anti-war rally is that the last thing you see is any American Flags or patriotic clothing. You will see UN Flags, lots of tye dye clothing, and pale blue UN colored clothing, and the broken cross anti christ so-called “Peace” symbol everywhere, but you will never see the US flag, and so I believe it is the most important symbol to bring to define who you are and what you believe.

2. Keep a smile on your face and be friendly and pleasant to those around you.

3. Be aware that some or even many of the people who are demonstrating have been paid to be there and have absolutely no investment in the anti-war cause. This is especially true for local demonstrations that are organized by various communist groups – they actually pay for rent a mobs to show up, just to up the numbers.

4. Listen to and obey any police instructions about where you can stand, how you can interact with the anti-war demonstrators, and what the local terms of engagement are. The various police have different things they want to emphasize for crowd control and sometimes it changes from event to event. The police have been trained to keep everyone safe and they just want to do their job.

At one event a local Denver cop told me I had to keep walking on the sidewalk and could not stay stationary in one place. He felt this was a better way for me to stay safe and get my message across, and I honored his request. At another event I felt safest demonstrating directly in front of 2 SUV’s filled with Denver Police dressed in riot gear, and they did not ask me to keep moving. I think they knew I was safest in front of them and they did not interfear with my efforts while I stayed in one location to conduct my street theatre of stomping on the un flag and blowing my nose in UN flag handkerchiefs.

5. The best forms of street theatre are saying the Pledge of Allegiance and Singing the Star Spangled Banner. I was at a Freep in Longmont the first year of the war, and the Anti-War people were shouting all sorts of anti american rhyming chants while they were demonstrating.

That was a funny freep, and the reason why is because the Anti-War group was a bunch of pasty white liberals from Boulder carrying their UN flags and dressed all hippie-ish, and our side was a bunch of veterans, dressed in military garb, carrying american flags and the diversity of our group made for a very exciting rally.

One older man looked like a Native American Chief and he was dressed with multiple military medals and took charge of our group. It was his idea to lead our small contingent of mostly minority male and female veterans in the pledge. After that we simply sang patriotic hymns and the other side became so agitated and angry that I felt sorry for them.

6. Prepare a variety of flyers to share with the media, the anti-war folks, and others defining who you are and what you believe, so that should you be interviewed by anyone you have the means to quickly share your identifying information as well as why you are at the event counter demonstrating.

Here are some links to flyers that can be printed out:

Gathering of Eagles Flyer in PDF

Gathering of Eagles web site for Rally Merchandise

Protest Warrior for flyers, posters, and T-Shirts (I ordered some things from Protest Warrior last week and the box came three days later, so you still have time to order)

Those Shirts

I’ll be wearing my favorite Anti Hillary/Anti Communism T Shirt to this particular rally.

I printed out ten each of the Eagles flyer and a couple of flyers from the protest warrior site, and plan to make a large poster with Gathering of Eagles etched on it to identify our group. I also plan to put purple shoe polish on my right index finger to show support for the Iraqi people and the Mission of our Military, and as always I will stand on the UN Flag, which has been fully desecrated by me and my kids.

I will be in front of the capitol at noon, right at the same gate that you see pictured here at the bottom of the steps:

Jenny Hatch

UPDATE:


When I opened up the thread at Free Republic on this post, a conversation was started by fellow freepers, and one man, Doctor Raoul said in post #13 “Just for the record, the other points are good. I mainly am discounting the idea that the other side is paid.”

So, for those interested, here is a primer on Rent A Mob tactics, which both the democrats and the republicans have screamed about for years during various political campaigns. It’s true, both sides have claimed that rent a mobs are part of the various demonstrations, elections, and street theatre of world wide politics.

Do I think that the left uses these tactics more than the right? Yes I do. I know for a fact they stage all sorts of garbage, paid for by one worlders, communists, and socialists.

Here is some food for thought:

World Net Daily:

Behind the anti-war movement

Front Page Magazine:

Who Pays For These Demonstrations?

Telegraph:

We think we’re special, but she is seeing someone else – “The anti-war rent-a-mob stood on the sidelines chanting their equally threadbare slogans. Snore.”

Front Page:
Tracking Down A Fifth Column Front

Redeem the Vote:
How U.S. Citizens Mysteriously March For Kremlin Causes

I’ll quote from this article extensively because it contains the most damning information and is the most recent:

“Russian Émigrés Pay Them To Flail Chechen Rebels As TV Moscow Films It All
By ALAN CULLISON and JAMES BANDLER
June 24, 2006

NEW YORK — Hoisting signs and American flags, hundreds of demonstrators gathered in a park here for a noisy protest. An organizer explained the sponsors’ eclectic mission: “We are fighting against terrorism, hunger and inequality,” he said.

Demonstrators had a simpler goal: getting paid. “Where’s the moneyman?” shouted one of them, Pat Bradley.

Mr. Bradley said he and his wife, Kellie, recovering heroin addicts, had run into a rally organizer that morning outside their methadone clinic and were promised $15 each if they would ride a bus to a park in the Queens borough of New York City and chant slogans for 15 minutes. Mr. Bradley says he alternated shouts of “Stop the terrorism!” with a more mercantile cry: “Show me the money!”

The rally last December was one of nearly a dozen paid-for protests organized by Russian émigrés in the U.S. in the past two years. They spent $150,000 to $200,000 in some months, accounting records indicate, to rally thousands of demonstrators near spots such as United Nations headquarters and the World Trade Center site. State-controlled Russian television, whose content is closely guided by Kremlin handlers, covered some of the events, often as the only news organ present, showing video of them on the evening news back home.

Boris Barshevsky at a pay-for-protest rally in Queens, N.Y., last year.
Organizers said the effort was funded by private individuals they declined to name. Some former insiders of the campaign told a different story: that both its instructions and its funding came from Moscow. Specifically, they said it came from the Russian founder of a youth group that staunchly supports the Kremlin and has gotten lavish support from the Kremlin in return. This account was supported by emails and other documents reviewed by The Wall Street Journal.

A member of the Russian youth group disputed the account, and it remains impossible to say who was behind the campaign. It coincided with efforts by Russian officials to mold opinion both at home and abroad on issues such as Chechnya, where a breakaway movement has been put down violently by the Putin government. The Kremlin argues that Chechen separatists, responsible for a bloody siege at an elementary school in southern Russia in 2004, are no different from al Qaeda terrorists. Some of the rallies demanded that Washington extradite alleged Chechen terrorists living in America.

The U.S. organizers were led by a Russian-born man in the Boston area, formerly a taxi driver, who recruited fellow émigrés. There are indications the organizers paid a New Yorker to present a local face for the movement. But the script for the campaign began to unravel after one of the Russian émigrés contacted U.S. authorities, as well as the Journal.

That man is Yuri Levintoff, a 31-year-old Massachusetts resident. He said he grew concerned about the ethics and legality of paying people to protest. “As I learned more and more, I realized this was not only something I didn’t want to be involved with but something that should be made public,” said Mr. Levintoff, who provided access to what he said were financial records, emails and other documents detailing the demonstration campaign’s activities.

Mr. Levintoff said he was recruited in 2004 by the Boston-area taxi driver, Boris Barshevsky. Approached outside his home there, Mr. Barshevsky at first denied involvement but then said that he was, in fact, the top organizer of the demonstrations. He said he financed them himself and received no funding from Russia. Told of emails and documents suggesting otherwise, Mr. Barshevsky asserted these had been forged by Mr. Levintoff. He provided no substantiation. Mr. Levintoff denied forging anything.

Russian state television, called First Channel, has portrayed the U.S. demonstrators as part of an international movement in support of extraditing militant Chechens to Russia. A person familiar with the state television channel’s operations said that influential people within Russia had ordered it to cover the U.S. demonstration movement, even though “at First Channel, everyone knows it is a fake.” This person said officials of the channel were told the first U.S. rally was organized by a Russian youth group called Walking Together.

Walking Together’s founder is Vasily Yakemenko, an ardent foe of Chechen militants. Visitors to the office of a second youth group he manages, Nashi (“Our Guys” in Russian), must step on a doormat with a picture of a Chechen rebel. Mr. Yakemenko has told a Russian newspaper he visits the Kremlin every two weeks and the presidential office more often. Last month, President Vladimir Putin played host to him and 34 “commissars” of one of his youth groups at the president’s Black Sea retreat. State-controlled TV covered the event heavily.

Mr. Yakemenko didn’t respond to questions or requests for an interview. The Kremlin declined to comment. Sergei Belokonev, a leader of one of Mr. Yakemenko’s groups, which has bused thousands of people to Moscow for flag-waving rallies, called the idea of Russian-financed demonstrations in the U.S. “complete nonsense.”

Flurry of Emails

Mr. Levintoff, the Russian émigré who quit the campaign of U.S. demonstrations, asserts that Mr. Yakemenko kicked it off in the summer of 2004 with a flurry of emails to Mr. Barshevsky, the Boston-area taxi driver. Mr. Levintoff says Mr. Barshevsky shared these emails with him and other recruits. The first email, dated July 2004, said its writer had been “active in organizing demonstrations and protest meetings and the like. Now it’s been proposed that I do the same in your part of the world.”

Paid protestors rally at Ground Zero in June 2005.

Another email said there was plenty of cash and the budget could be big — $25,000, $200,000 or $20 million — as long as the campaign showed results.

Paul Nissan, a Los Angeles activist and co-founder of an antiterrorism group, said Mr. Barshevsky phoned him in 2004 offering “unlimited” funding for demonstrations that would spotlight Chechen terrorism. Mr. Nissan said he organized one rally on Sept. 11, 2004, in Los Angeles, but later fell out with the Russian émigrés. “They were interested in a rent-a-mob kind of thing, and we kind of explained that we don’t do that sort of thing here,” Mr. Nissan said.

Organizers created scripts to keep everyone on-message. If asked whether protesters are being paid, said one sheet, state that “you have been disinformed.” Explain that protesters are “plain and simple folks” who are united by “desires to dispose the world of terror” — and who have no phone number or office.

According to Mr. Levintoff, organizers tried to conceal Russian involvement by using as a front man Curtis Bryant, a New York resident who calls himself a “guerrilla marketer.” Mr. Levintoff showed an email to rally organizers requesting that someone explain to Mr. Bryant “once more [that] he is leader of the movement and its founder…. Explain that we simply joined him.”

Mr. Bryant said he organized demonstrations on his own, motivated because he nearly lost a friend on Sept. 11, 2001. Nobody was paid to protest, Mr. Bryant stated in an interview at the December rally in Queens. However, after the rally an organizer was seen paying demonstrators, and numerous protesters told the Journal that the only reason they attended was to be paid.

At that December demonstration, organizers tried out a new theme: the flawed U.S. government response to hurricane Katrina. On a blustery day, school buses stopped in front of Rufus King Park in Queens and dropped off demonstrators. Mr. Barshevsky and other Russian émigrés huddled nearby, smoking and talking on cellphones

.

A camera crew videotaped the rally and several short speeches by organizers, who said they were from a group called Unite the World Against Terrorism. Their message: The U.S. failed New Orleans and it will abandon us, too. After some desultory cheers, the crowd was dismissed and sent back to the buses.

On one bus, filled with men from a homeless shelter on Wards Island in the East River, some grew impatient. “Get my money, mother-f-!” shouted one man as an organizer passed. As tensions rose, an organizer stepped aboard and peeled off $20 bills from a thick wad.

Fuming Over Pay

The payment left some on the bus fuming, saying they thought the promised $20 an hour would cover travel time, too. George Pantera, who said he sometimes stays in homeless shelters, complained of a wasted morning. He easily could have made the same $20 “in the ‘hood,” he said. He called the rally “a scam.”

Pat and Kellie Bradley, the self-described recovering heroin addicts, weren’t complaining. They said they had been down to their last $8 before the rally. The cash would help pay a debt for cigarettes.

All the same, Mr. Bradley found the rally puzzling. “Strikes me as funny that this guy buys his protests,” Mr. Bradley said. “I mean, what good is that?”

Early on, the campaign got a boost when Mr. Barshevsky, the Boston-area taxi driver, befriended two Russian-émigré merchants in New York who sell jewelry online. The two merchants had started a nonprofit organization after Sept. 11, 2001, which they called the International Fund for Protection of Victims of Crimes and Terrorist Activity. Mr. Barshevsky became this fund’s finance chief, and the merchants’ two-room office in the diamond district of midtown Manhattan became a center of the campaign, Mr. Levintoff said.

Nicholas Fiore, an accountant who has done work for the fund, said that “tens of thousands” of dollars flowed into its bank accounts in 2004 and 2005, money that he said he was told came from Mr. Barshevsky. One of the merchants, Denis Stepansky, said he helped Mr. Barshevsky organize rallies. He declined to discuss their financial dealings.

An exchange of emails shown to the Journal by Mr. Levintoff stated that as much as $400,000 was needed to kick off the campaign. One note, which Mr. Levintoff said had been sent to Moscow, asked that a first installment of $80,000 be wired to the International Fund.

Mr. Levintoff said organizers took pains to hide the involvement of backers in Moscow. He said he was forwarded one email that originated with Sergei Belokonev, a top official in Mr. Yakemenko’s Nashi youth group in Russia. The email asked that someone outside Russia register some Web sites that could help promote the U.S. demonstrations. “The hand of Moscow, if it comes to light, will only weaken our position,” said this email. Mr. Belokonev didn’t respond to questions about the email.

The first rally organized with the help of the jewelry merchants’ International Fund was on Sept. 11, 2004, near the World Trade Center site in New York, with several hundred demonstrators. At later rallies, hundreds of residents of the Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens and Manhattan, most of them African-American, marched alongside Russian-born pensioners bused in from Brighton Beach, an ethnic-Russian enclave in Brooklyn.

Some rallies included elderly Russian émigrés from Brooklyn Jewish centers. Costs discussed in one email about the campaign referred to $40,000 to hire 200 activists for three hours, as well as $30,000 for “Jews and other extras.”

Mr. Levintoff said that one 2005 rally in Harlem drew police attention when the crowd of demonstrators gathered for a “photo op” and were spotted giving gang hand signals.

A reporter for a Russian-language newspaper said he was tipped last spring that someone was “putting T-shirts on pensioners and paying them to go protest” near the World Trade Center site. The reporter, Vladimir Chernomorsky, said he went to the site and saw hundreds of people carrying pictures of Chechen extremists and posing for a photo. He said the only news organization there besides himself was Russian state television.

He wrote a piece for his newspaper, the New Russian Word, questioning who had paid the demonstrators and saying that payment varied from person to person. Russian pensioners from Brooklyn got $35, he wrote, but African-Americans and Hispanics only $20. Mr. Chernomorsky later wrote in his newspaper that when he attended a rally near the U.N. last June, one of the organizers smashed his tape recorder.

Soon, the organizers had a bigger problem: Mr. Levintoff.

He said he grew concerned that the paid-protest campaign might violate U.S. tax or money-laundering laws. His worries grew, he said, after Russian state TV interviewed him at a rally near the World Trade Center site in June 2005 and identified him as a protest leader. Mr. Levintoff said that last August he told Mr. Barshevsky, the former Boston-area taxi driver, that he was bowing out.

Mr. Stepansky, the jewelry merchant, alleged that Mr. Levintoff stole from the International Fund, forged financial documents and sent “fabrications” to the media and law enforcement. He declined repeated requests to substantiate his allegations, which Mr. Levintoff denied.

Mr. Levintoff said he sent a final note to the International Fund and its lawyers. “I am no longer willing to be associated or involved in any way, with a so-called International Fund for Protection of Victims of Crimes and Terrorist Activity, or a fake ‘social movement’ called Unite the World Against Terror,” Mr. Levintoff wrote. He then contacted U.S. law-enforcement officials. Authorities have taken no action.”

Here is a link to a site spoofing rent a mobs: Go Here

And the awesome Amir Taheri had this to say about the commonality of rent a mob activities in the Arab Street and

Europe: PESTS IN FREEDOM’S WAY
The Australian
March 15, 2005

“THROUGHOUT the debate that preceded the liberation of Iraq two years ago, supporters of Saddam Hussein claimed that any attempt at removing him from power by force would trigger an explosion in “the Arab street”. As it turned out, the explosion they had predicted did take place, but only in Western streets, where anti-Americans of all denominations, their numbers inflated by the usual “useful idiots”, marched to keep the Baathist butcher in power.

More than two years later, however, the Arab street seems to be heading for an explosion. From North Africa to the Persian Gulf and passing by the Levant, people have been coming together in various “Arab streets” to make their feelings and opinions known. These demonstrations, some big, some small, have several features in common.

Unlike the rent-a-mob marches concocted by the Mukhabarat secret services, this latest spate of demonstrations was largely spontaneous. Nor are the demonstrations controlled by the traditional elites, including established opposition groups and personalities.

In almost every case, we are witnessing a new kind of citizens’ movement, an Arab version of people power in action. But the most important feature of these demonstrations is that they are concerned not with imagined external enemies – be they Israel or the US – but with the real deficiencies of contemporary Arab societies. In almost every case the key demand is for a greater say for the people in deciding the affairs of the nation.

It is, of course, far too early to speak of an “Arab spring”.

It is not at all certain that the ruling elites will have the intelligence to manage the difficult transition from autocracy to pluralism. Nor is it certain that the budding democratic movement would produce a leadership capable of mixing resolve with moderation. The deep-rooted Arab tradition of political extremism may prove harder to dissipate than one imagines.

What is interesting is that there are, as yet, no signs that the “Western street” may, at some point, come out in support of the new “Arab street”.

Over the past two weeks several Western capitals, including London and Paris, have witnessed feverish activity by more than two dozen groups organising meetings and marches to mark the second anniversary of the liberation of Iraq. The aim is not to celebrate the event and express solidarity with the emerging Iraqi democracy, but to vilify George W. Bush and Tony Blair, thus lamenting the demise of Saddam Hussein.

I spent part of last week ringing up the organisers of the anti-war events with a couple of questions. The first: Would they allow anyone from the newly elected Iraqi parliament to address the gatherings? The second: Would the marches include expressions of support for the democracy movements in Arab and other Muslim countries, notably Iraq, Lebanon and Syria?

In both cases the answer was a categorical no, accompanied by a torrent of abuse about “all those who try to justify American aggression against Iraq”.

But was it not possible to condemn “American aggression” and then express support for the democratic movement in Iraq and the rest of the Arab world? In most cases we were not even allowed to ask the question. In one or two cases we received mini-lectures on how democracy cannot be imposed by force. The answer to that, of course, is that in Iraq no one tried to impose democracy by force. In Iraq force was used to remove the enemies of democracy from power so as to allow its friends to come to the fore.

That remnants of the totalitarian Left and various brands of fascism should march to condemn the liberation of Iraq is no surprise. What is surprising is that some mainstream groups, such as the British Liberal-Democrat Party and even some former members of Tony Blair’s Labour Government, should join these marches of shame.”

The fact is that Rent A Mob tactics are common, and based on my own activism in Colorado and talking with those who show up for the demonstrations, perhaps this will peg me as a judgemental and bigoted person, but many of these people LOOK like they are heroin addicts who just arrived on the bus from the homeless shelter.
I remember talking to one woman who asked me why I had dyed my finger purple. I explained to her that I was in solidarity with the people of Iraq and their fight for freedom and self determination. She did not say anything to me, but I could tell that she was surprised that someone had showed up who was against the peacenik useful idiots. Anyway, I don’t know how much rent a mob stuff will be a part of the March 17th anti war activity, but to just dismiss it as impossible is naive at best and dangerously manipulative at worst as the media seeks to inflate numbers and paint the movement as some grass roots spontaneous snowballing of how Americans really think.

Jenny Hatch

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