Amy Goodman reports on Democracy Now! “thousands of people reclaimed the Occupy Oakland encampment in front of City Hall” last night calling for a general strike on the city of Oakland. Violence inflicted on protestors by police Tuesday night resulted in Iraq War Veteran Scott Olsen being hospitalized with a fractured skull after being shot by police. The footage in this broadcast shows a projectile shot directly into the crowd of people running to the rescue of Olsen, already fallen and wounded. Goodman interviews Olsen’s close friend Aaron Hinde and Jesse Palmer, the man who carried Olsen to safety.
At last night’s general assembly, the Occupy Oakland encampment voted almost unanimously to call for a general strike on November 2nd, saying, quote, “Instead of workers going to work and students going to school, the people will converge on downtown Oakland to shut down the city. All banks and corporations should close down for the day or we will march on them,” the statement said.
Also in Oakland, an independent police review body will examine the clashes between riot police and protesters Tuesday that left an Iraq war veteran in critical condition. Scott Olsen is a 24-year-old Iraq war vet. He was struck in the head by a police projectile. Video footage posted to YouTube shows a man identified as Scott Olsen lying motionless and unresponsive in front of a police line after apparently having been hit by a tear gas canister. Several protesters gather around him, but a police officer can be seen throwing a device close to the group which then explodes with a bright flash and loud bang, dispersing the protesters. The video then cuts to footage of protesters carrying Olsen away as blood streams down his face.
A spokesperson for Highland Hospital in East Oakland has confirmed that Scott Olsen remains in critical condition. He suffered from a fractured skull and brain swelling. One of Olsen’s friends, Adele Carpenter, told Reuters, “The irony is not lost on anyone here that this is someone who survived two tours in Iraq and is now seriously injured by the Oakland police force.” Olsen served in Iraq from 2006 to 2010 with the 3rd Battalion, 4th Marine Regiment.
Acting Oakland Police Chief Howard Jordan told a news conference his department is investigating the injury to Olsen as a “level one” incident, the highest level for an internal police inquiry. He declined to confirm whether Olsen was struck with a projectile fired by police.