Berkeley, California, was marred by violent protests on Sunday that resulted in the arrest of approximately 17 persons. According to Berkeley police, about 500 protesters representing various groups turned out on a sunny afternoon. By 4 p.m., police made about 17 arrests, mostly for possession of banned weapons. However, the violence observed by police was not nearly that experienced in the past. 

An amateur videographer recorded how radicals smashed the windshields of city vehicles and set one on fire. The videographer was threatened by the protesters who, dressed in black, resembled typical antifa protesters.

Leftist radical antifa protesters vastly outnumbered their alt-right opponents at Civic Center, some of whom wore red “Make America Great Again” caps. Police worked to keep the contending groups apart. None of the groups had a permit. Masks were prohibited by police.

Before the protests, police published a long list of prohibited items, which included knives, daggers, slingshots, shields, glass bottles, ice picks, dynamite, baseball bats, flags on poles, and other items that can be used as weapons. There were reports of fireworks being detonated by protesters. 

A rally organized by Amber Gwen Cummings and dubbed “No to Marxism in America 2 / Exposing Communism” was a follow-up to a similar protest organized on year ago. Cummings called on supporters not to show up. However, some did attend and were arrested and others wounded. 

Leftists put on a “Stop the Hate” rally and a “Sweep out the Fascists” march there were endorsed by SAFEBay (Solidarity Against Fascism East Bay and Refuse Fascism Bay Area) — and several other antifa organizations.

Police confiscated weapons that included rocks, a hammer, dowels, pepper spray, metal poles, iron pipes and other objects while making arrests. Amateur video recorded members of an extremist group that damaged 21 city vehicles, smashing windshields and setting one vehicle on fire. Fires were also set in trash receptacles. These fires were quickly extinguished. 

As of Sunday evening, 16 of the arrested protesters had been identified. There are: Jason Wallach, 41, and Kate Brenner, 69, Andres Gonzalez, 35, Jeffrey Garten, 28, Kristen Edith Koster, 50, Maria Lewis, 29, Thomas Parker, 22, Caitlin Boyle, 27, Blake Griffith, 29, Sarena Perez, 39, David Chou, 26, Freddy Martinez, 31, Ericka Sokolower-Shain, 28, Javier Cruz-O'Connell, 22, Jamie Hill, 30, Bella Podolsky, 27. Most were charged with possession of banned weapons. of San Francisco. All of the above live in the region. No police or firefighters were injured.

Conservative pundit and filmmaker Dinesh D'Souza, who recently released his film "Death of a Nation" has likened alt-right supporters to anti-fa leftists. In a recent tweet, D'Souza wrote: "Why alt right is actually left. Let's recognize that white supremacy is today -- just as it was for Hitler -- socialism for white people."




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Spero News writer Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat, who also worked as a democracy advocate and election observer in Latin America. His first novel 'Shaken Earth', is available at Amazon.

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