The Wall St. movement has gained momentum nationally and now, globally. Hundreds of arrests have taken place in New York City and Boston. Several other states have joined in the cry for much-needed change and that cry is now echoed around the globe.
Saturday saw Occupy Wall St. occupy 42nd St. Times Square in NYC as the protest swelled to one of the biggest crowds since it started Sept. 17. Thousands are still gathered with 20 arrests reported so far for disrupting a Citi Bank. Police are out in force wearing riot gear, and the surrounding streets were closed off. Washington Square park is currently filled with hundreds of demonstrators.
Although there have been hundreds of arrests and one man hurt on Friday when he fell under a police bike in New York, the protests have remained, for the most part, non-violent. Friday's anticipated clash between Ocupy Wall St. protesters and police because of the mandated evacuation of Zuccotti Park was averted when the clean-up was postponed. Later in the day, 11 people were arrested because of what the NYPD called "some civil disobedience."
In Rome, however, that cry has turned violent as Saturday's Global Day of Rage against bankers and politicians erupted into protesters burning cars, attacking police with rocks and whatever else they could get their hands on. Reports say the demonstration was peaceful until a group of hooded anarchists started smashing shop windows and setting cars on fire.
Rome's streets between the Colosseum and St. John's Basilica looked like a war zone, with smoke billowing and the out-of-control mob raging against the police outfitted in riot gear--who seemed outmanned and overwhelmed. The police response of tear gas and water hose did not stop the riots.
According to MSNBC, 70 people were injured in the riots, including a man who tried to stop protesters from throwing bottles.
Italians are still angry at the 60 billion Euros or $83 billion in austerity measures levied because of the stark economic crisis now gripping that country.
Several other cities around the globe participated in the Day of Rage, including Frankfurt, Sydney, London, Taiwan, Manila, Seoul, Toronto and Tokyo, sparked by a website called 15october.net which called for everyone worldwide "to rise up and claim their rights and demand a true democracy."
In Frankfurt, a reported 5,000 people demonstrated in front of the European Central Bank while in Tokyo, about 200 joined in the global protest outside Tokyo Electric Power Co. That company is tied to the tsunami nuclear disaster in Japan. In Sydney that number was reportedly 2,000 Australians, including Aborigines, showed their dissatisfaction by protesting in front of the Reserve Bank of Australian.
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