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Indybay FeatureRelated Categories: Police State and Prisons
Oakland Police Killed: "Change" Has Come
Anyone who did not yet realize that there is a full-fledged war waging in US city streets needed to look no further than the front page of every major Bay Area daily on Saturday: flag-draped coffins, military salutes, talk of "fallen heroes", speeches from top officials - and a letter from the President. But all this also signaled that CHANGE has come to that war...
Anyone who did not yet realize that there is a full-fledged war waging in US city streets needed to look no further than the front page of every major Bay Area daily on Saturday: flag-draped coffins, military salutes, talk of "fallen heroes", speeches from top officials - and a letter from the President.
"I was deeply saddened to learn of the tragic loss of Sgt. Mark Dunakin, Officer John Hege, Sgt. Ervin Romans, and Sgt. Daniel Sakai. Michelle and I hold their families and your community in our thoughts and prayers.
Our Nation is grateful for the men and women of law enforcement who work tirelessly to ensure the safety of our citizens and our neighborhoods. They risk their lives each day on our behalf and ask little in return. And although the danger of their work is well known, words still fail to explain the senseless violence that claims so many of them.
Sgt. Dunakin, Officer Hege, Sgt. Romans and Sgt. Sakai were taken from us far too soon, and their loss reminds us that the work to which they dedicated their lives remains undone.
As we honor their memories, I hope each of you will take comfort in knowing that their commitment to their fellow man will never be forgotten. We will always carry them in our hearts, and their legacy of service will inspire us as we work together toward a better Oakland, a better world.
Michelle and I offer our heartfelt sympathy. May their sacrifices be rewarded with eternal peace."
Perhaps not one of the thousands of US soldiers killed in Iraq/Afghanistan received such honors. But this was a Change.
As with most wars, the war on US city streets has diverse warring factions, yet the major casualties are not among combatants but the "collateral damage": folks who merely want to avoid the war and eke out a life. Their loved ones are left grieving, with no flag-draped coffins, talk of "fallen heroes", or condolences from the President. If the casualties are caused by police, then the grief is compounded by suffering through a character assassination of the victim.
But this was a Change: this time, all but one of the five casualties were police. And Obama responded with Change:
- When Israel used US funds and equipment to massacre over 1300 Palestinians, plus massive injury and destruction of Gaza: Obama silent.
- When the world witnessed unarmed Oscar Grant executed by BART police (who then attempted to cover up by stealing cameras), and then were amazed at official inaction for two weeks (until fear of LA 1992 set in): Obama silent.
- When US "security" agents end up on the receiving end of their firepower: Obama saddened, praying, and writing.
After experiencing the unthinkable - a humiliating loss despite massive firepower, CHANGE has even come to SWAT:
"Following last Saturday's ill-fated SWAT entry in Oakland where two police officers were killed, the San Jose police remain patient about entering a house where there are reportedly, 'quite a few guns' inside."
This battle will likely heat up the war, bringing more harassment, torture, executions, and "collateral damage" - and maybe more dead police. If their historical record is an accurate predictor, you can bet that Oakland police will learn virtually nothing from this incident.