After Violent Attack by Anarchists, Times Strains to Note Occupy Protests 'Largely Devoid of Property Damage'

More downplaying of violence and vandalism in the Occupy Wall Street movement from the New York Times. Joseph Goldstein and Colin Moynihan reported for Monday's Metro section: "3 Arrested in Manhattan as March Turns Into a Melee."

A group of people who had attended an anarchist book fair in Manhattan later marched to a nearby Starbucks on Saturday night and began swinging at the windows with metal pipes, as frightened customers hid under tables, the police said.


When they arrived at the Starbucks, about five blocks east at Astor Place and Lafayette Street, about 8:45 p.m., some in the group began to swing at the windows with long metal pipes, the police said, although on Sunday there was no evident damage to the windows. In a statement, the police said that patrons hid under tables afraid “that they would be hit by flying glass.” Two witnesses said that the group had tried to enter the coffeehouse, but were locked out by those inside.

When a police sergeant and several officers tried to arrest those who were swinging the pipes, about 25 of the demonstrators fought back with the pipes and bottles, the police said; a sergeant and a lieutenant were hurt.

Even after describing the nihilist violence of the anarchists, the Times couldn't help straining to offer a backhanded defense of the related Occupy Wall Street movement, which began as a leftist sit-in at Zuccotti Park in Lower Manhattan.

The demonstration, which, according to the police and witnesses, left in its path a trail of graffiti and tipped garbage cans, had more in common with anarchist actions at events like the Group of 20 meeting in Pittsburgh in 2009 than with the Occupy Wall Street demonstrations in New York, which have been largely devoid of property damage.

That's an interesting formulation, used only when there's been criminal behavior during left-wing marches. An April 24, 2010 story on an illegal immigration rally made the silly claim that "hundreds of demonstrators massed, mostly peacefully" in Arizona, while leaving off the attacks on police. And the Times for some reason skipped right over the massive vandalism and violence of Occupy Oakland.