Since the G8 Summit in late July, more and more details of the melee have emerged, and many of these concerns have found their way to Portland. In the days immediately following the fatal shooting of an Italian protester, Carlo Giuliani, about 200 marchers gathered in Pioneer Square chanting the victim's name.
But Giuliani was not the only person plagued by the brutality of the Italian police. Morgan Hager, a junior at the University of Oregon whose mother is a Portland resident, was among a score of Americans arrested and deported. In the wee hours following a march against the G8 meetings, Italian police stormed a dormitory where some of the protesters were living. Ninety-two students were clubbed and dragged from their beds.
"They used black shirts and black underwear--anything black--as evidence to connect the students to the Black Bloc," explained Kristin Pittenger, a Lane Community College student currently in Genoa, who had traveled with Hager, the deported UO student. The so-called "Black Bloc" is an anarchist group identified by black clothing, who are believed to have been the core organizers for the G8 protests.
Recent film footage has surfaced that was taken at the dorm, hours after the raid. It shows puddles of blood and teeth. It was days before Morgan's parents were assured their daughter was not in a coma.
In an interview with the Mercury, Pittenger also explained the chilling scene at the Genoa police station. "The cops had swastikas drawn on the palms of their hands and they were playing Wagner when they brought people in," claimed Pittenger. "They threatened to beat and rape some of the women."
The steady dribble of reports and details about police misconduct coming from Italy have sustained anger and motivation for protests in Portland. Most recently, sketchy plans for a clandestine, post-midnight protest were announced, but have since been postponed twice. For details and location about upcoming G-8 protests, contact 287-7498.