Saturday, October 29, 2011


If you haven't heard about the OCW (OCCUPY WALL STREET/OAKLAND-Tuesday night), a peaceful protester, Scott Olsen was hit in the head with a rubber bullet projectile when police forcibly removed protesters setting up camp in the city of Oakland, California. The OWS/Oakland protesters were unarmed as the Oakland police used tear gas, rubber bullets to disperse the protesters. Scott Olsen is awake, but is suffering brain damage as he can't speak. Scott Olsen is an Iraq war U.S. Marine veteran.
EDITORS NOTE: All the best in health to Scott Olsen, and thank him for serving our country, and his courage supporting OWS, we sure hope to make it better for Scott and everyone.Police shooting and using leathal force towards unnarmed civilians=BULLSHIT!!
But the mood turned somber when Moore asked the crowd for 30 seconds of silence for Scott Olsen, the Iraq war veteran who was critically injured at the Oakland protests on Tuesday. "We are all Scott Olsen," said Moore. "Someone asked me who the leader of this organization was, and I said, 'we all are.'"
FROM GLOGAL GRIND.COM: Scott Olsen, the 24-year-old Iraq War veteran and Occupy Oakland activist who sustained a fractured skull after being shot in the head with a rubber bullet by Oakland riot police, has regained consciousness but "cannot talk" according to friends and family.

STORY: Scott Olsen, Iraq War Veteran Shot By Oakland Police, Has A Fractured Skull

Keith Shannon, Olsen's roommate and fellow Iraq war veteran told reporters:

"He cannot talk right now, and that is because the fracture is right on the speech center of his brain, however, they are expecting he will get that back."

Shannon added that Olsen's "spelling is not near what it used to be and the doctors expect that he will have a full recovery, however, it is going to be a long road ahead for him."

Olsen's family flew in from Wisconsin to be at his bedside as he recovers from his injuries.

STORY: Occupy Oakland Spreads Love The Brooklyn Way To Scott Olsen

Last night, a vigil was held in his honor at Occupy Oakland's original encampment, Oscar Grant Park. Many demonstrators held up signs in support of the injured Iraq war veteran.

It’s a long road to recovery and we continue to send our thoughts and prayers to Scott and his family.

Read more:
WASHINGTON -- The Oakland Police Department fired tear gas on Occupy Oakland demonstrators Tuesday night as they marched through downtown, determined to reclaim the camp that officers destroyed that morning. As the marchers zigged and zagged in search of safe ground, authorities bombarded and barricaded the activists into a drawn-out stalemate that resulted in further arrests.

The local police's use of force seriously injured an Occupy activist and Iraq War veteran.

Scott Olsen, 24, remains sedated on a respirator, in stable but critical condition at Oakland’s Highland Hospital after being hit in the head with a police projectile.

Olsen's roommate, Keith Shannon, 24, told The Huffington Post that Olsen is still in the emergency room.

"Right now, he's under sedation," Shannon said. "He walked into the hospital." But soon after his arrival, Shannon said, doctors found that there was swelling in Olsen's brain and put him under. He did not get a chance to talk to his friend. "They are waiting for a neurosurgeon to examine him to see if he needs surgery or not," Shannon said. If he doesn't need an operation, he'll be moved to the intensive care unit.

Activists staged Tuesday night’s march through downtown Oakland in response to a violent police raid on the Occupy Oakland encampment earlier that day, during which officers rained tear gas and rubber bullets on the activists in an effort to clear the camp. Police arrested scores of protesters during the eviction.

When reached at her Wisconsin home, Sandra Olsen, Scott's mother, told HuffPost that her son's condition was serious. "He has a head injury," she said. "They are still trying to figure it out with him. I don't want to tie up the phone line. He's not in the best shape."

According to Shannon, Olsen had been attending Occupy San Francisco events and had answered the call to join Occupy Oakland in solidarity.

"He doesn't agree with the way the banks aren't regulated, the way they drove the economy in the ground. He wants there to be regulation of the banks," Shannon said.

Shannon, 24, says his friend was simply one of the marchers. "He was just hit by a projectile," said Shannon, who did not attend the march but heard about the incident from eyewitnesses. "He wasn't near a police officer when it happened."

Dottie Guy, a veteran of the Iraq War and a friend of Olsen, found out about her friend's injury through Twitter and Facebook. She has maintained an overnight vigil at the hospital. "He always had a smile on his face," she said. "He's really into the movement."

YouTube video of the incident shows Olsen, wearing his Marine jacket without his nametape, being carted through a cloud of tear-gas smoke to the sounds of shrieking activists. In a close up, his forehead appears bruised and bloodied. He stares up at his ad-hoc triage in a daze. When asked, “What's your name?” he can’t answer. Someone screams, "Medic!"

Shannon first got to know Olsen serving in Iraq from August 2006 to May 2007, when the two worked tactical communications as part of the Marines' 3rd Battalion. Olsen subsequently served a second tour. "We both came out against the war," Shannon said.

Olsen was never injured during his two tours in Iraq.

UPDATE: 8:55 p.m. -- Sandra Olsen, Scott's mother, told HuffPost that her son remains sedated and still suffers brain swelling. She also reported that the left side of his skull was fractured. Olsen plans to fly to Oakland tomorrow to be at her son's side.

UPDATE: 4:20 p.m. -- New video posted to YouTube suggests that Olsen was hit at close range with a tear-gas canister. After demonstrators rush to Olsen's aid, an Oakland cop waits a few beats before lobbing a second explosive device at the crowd. They are attending to Olsen when the canister explodes, sending smoke everywhere.
Scott Olsen, a member of Veterans for Peace and of Iraq Veterans against the War, who was seriously injured during Occupy Oakland protest, was hit while standing still and showed no signs of aggression­, his friend Emily Yates told RT.

“We definitely haven’t gotten any real apology from any particular police officer,” said Yates, a friend of the wounded corporal and herself a war veteran...­....

......“The fracture in his scull is impacting a part of his brain, a speech center in his brain,” she explained. “So he is able to recognize people, and write, although he can’t spell as well as he could before. And he can’t speak. But his family is with him.” ......

........Th­e incident has sent shockwaves across America, with some war veterans saying the police brutality violates basic human rights.

“It’s a peaceful protest,” said Iraq war veteran Dottie Guy. “It just blows my mind that his First Amendment rights are just being violated this way. And we can only hope that this tragedy has brought light to the movement. And I think Scott would’ve wanted people to be able to understand what we were like.”

Sergeant Shamar Thomas said it was shocking to see that an American patriot who decided to go out and stand up for the people he chose to protect in Iraq was treated this way by police.
On Thursday night, Occupy Oakland hosted a candlelight vigil in honor of Scott Olsen, the 24-year-old Iraq war veteran who was critically wounded at Tuesday night's violent protest.

About 2,000 participants lit candles and held pictures of Olsen, while speakers, including members of Iraq Veterans Against the War, addressed the crowd.


Oakland Mayor Jean Quan, who has been aggressively trying to regain the city's trust since the incident on Tuesday, was also scheduled to speak, but, according to a statement from Quan, her 6 p.m. address was cancelled. "I had hoped to speak directly to you tonight," she wrote. "I was told that I could speak at the Speak Out at 6 p.m., but that was cancelled. So I apologize for providing these remarks in written form." She continued, explaining the she was "deeply saddened" by the incident. "When there's violence, there are no winners -- it polarizes us and opens old wounds rather than brings us together, which is the aim of Occupy Wall Street and uniting the 99 percent."

Later, Quan visited the plaza, but was booed upon arrival, and was mobbed by protesters chanting "go home," calling her a killer and screaming for her to step down. KTVU captured raw footage the protesters mobbing her as she arrived. (Click here for footage.)

Since Tuesday, Quan has reopened the plaza to the protesters, and visited Olsen in the hospital, apologizing and promising an investigation.

As of Thursday, the tent city was resurrected in Frank Ogawa Plaza, complete with a kitchen, electricity and a children's tent. "There were about 30 tents up and people were putting up more as I left," said Steve Leibel, a photographer who attended the vigil. Leibel was also present at the violent Tuesday night protest, where he was tear gassed. On Thursday, he took photos of the Tully's coffee shot at Broadway and 14th street, the epicenter of Tuesday's protest and "a downtown Oakland landmark that will never look the same to me," he said. "It was impossible to believe it was the same place as forty-eight hours ago."

Several other cities also held vigils for Olsen, in solidarity with Oakland. USA Today reported that several police officers attended the Las Vegas vigil. Protesters then invited them to the camp for a potluck dinner.

Meanwhile, Olsen has been at Oakland's Highland General Hospital since Tuesday night when he was struck in the head with a police projectile. Olsen suffered a fractured skull and brain swelling, but his condition has since improved. On Friday, Olsen was conscious, aware and able to write, but was still unable to speak. His parents, who flew to Oakland from Wisconsin, were by his side.

Olsen, a Marine, had served two tours in Iraq and was living in San Francisco at the time of the protest. According to USA Today, he was working as a network engineer and had an apartment overlooking the Bay, but had been camping at the Occupy San Francisco camp as a show of solidarity. Fellow veteran Josh Shepard, who was standing nearby when Olsen was injured called it a cruel irony that Olsen is fighting an injury in the country that he fought to protect.

See pictures and footage from the vigil at Occupy Oakland in the slideshow and video below:

Thanks-Stay Metal, Stay Brutal-GET WELL SOON SCOTT-\m/ -l-