Over 500 protesters militantly opposed Urban Shield, a four-day weapons exposition for law enforcement, on Sept. 9. The exposition, mounted at the Alameda County Fairgrounds, draws police forces from around the U.S.
Protesters chained themselves together and locked down three different entry gates to the event. Twenty-three protesters were arrested, cited and released. The action was organized by the Stop Urban Shield Coalition.
The protests were focused against the increasing militarization of police forces in the U.S. and globally.
According to the organizers: “Urban Shield is an annual SWAT team policing training and weapons expo that brings together local, regional, and international police-military units — including those from the Apartheid State of Israel — to collaborate on new forms of surveillance, state repression, and state violence. It consists of extremely militarized policing trainings and war games that only seek to expand the power of law enforcement over our communities. As we continue to face and witness increased militarization and the violence of policing, we must resist programs like Urban Shield, and demand the resources that build our self-determination.”
Coalition member organizations include the Arab Resource and Organizing Committee, Critical Resistance, BAYAN USA, Xicana Moratorium, the Black Alliance for Just Immigration, the Anti Police-Terror Project, the Haiti Action Committee and the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement.