George Floyd — Trump Threatens to Send Troops to Quell Protests

  • Curfews were imposed in 40 cities on Monday.
  • Trump says the protests are being supported by "professional anarchists," and the anti-fascist movement Antifa.
  • Meanwhile, after the autopsy of George Floyd's body, his death has been officially declared as homicide.

US President Donald Trump threatened Monday night to send the military to disperse protests which have taken place across the country. He said if the city authorities failed to control the protests or refused to take action, he would quickly resolve the issue on their behalf. Trump made his threats Monday night at the White House Rose Garden.

The George Floyd protests, and riots, are an ongoing series of violent uprisings in the United States that initially started in the Minneapolis–Saint Paul metropolitan area of Minnesota before spreading nationwide. As of May 31, there were simultaneous protests in over 100 other cities in the United States and internationally supporting those seeking justice for Floyd as well as speaking out against excessive police brutality.

“If a city or state refuses to take the actions that are necessary to defend the life and property of their residents, then I will deploy United States military and quickly solve the problem for them,” Trump said. While he was giving this speech, the sound of protest was coming. At the end of the speech, standing in front of St. John’s Episcopal Church, Lafayette Square, Mr. Trump took pictures.

The protests and demonstrations that have been going on in the United States for a week have also become among the most violent and destructive of the last few decades. Protests have so far taken place in 65 cities across the country. At its center is the death of an unarmed black man in police custody named George Floyd.

Floyd, a 48-year-old black man, was knocked to his knees by a white police officer. The release of a video of Floyd saying, “I can’t breathe” sparked protests across the United States, which rolled on beyond its seventh day. Many of these have become violent and destructive riots.

Curfews were imposed in 40 cities on Monday. In New York City, the lockdown continues until 5 AM local time on Tuesday. The curfew has been extended for two more nights in Washington. Despite the curfew in the big cities, the protests are not going to be suppressed. Donald Trump is under pressure to quell the protests.

Police in riot gear stormed a rally on Friday, removing hundreds of protesters by truck. On Saturday, Trump tweeted, “liberal Governors and Mayors must get MUCH tougher or the Federal Government will step in and do what has to be done, and that includes using the unlimited power of our Military and many arrests.”

Protesters set fire to St. John’s Episcopal Church on Sunday. Protests are expected to continue despite curfews and other restrictions.

Antifa (United States) is a conglomeration of left-wing groups, including anarchists, communists, and socialists, which engage in direct action against those they deem fascist, racist, or far-right. Tactics include digital activism, property damage, physical violence, and harassment. Members typically wear black and cover their faces with masks, bandanas, or helmets.

Trump described the incidents of looting and vandalism by the protesters as scandalous. He says the protests are being supported by “professional anarchists,” and the anti-fascist movement Antifa. He identified the Antifa group as a terrorist organization. He said supporters of the protests “must be punished for serious crimes.”

Meanwhile, after the autopsy of George Floyd’s body, his death has been officially declared as homicide. The autopsy report said that he had suffered a ‘heart attack’ due to excessive force applied to his neck at the time of his arrest.

Derek Chauvin, one of the fired police officers involved in the incident, has been charged with manslaughter. He is scheduled to go to court next week. There have been several black deaths in the United States over the past few years at the hands of white police officers. There have been similar incidents in the United States before.

“These protests aren’t combat and shouldn’t be viewed through the same prism,” a US Air Force officer said, speaking on the condition of anonymity. “Expecting a military response is myopic on the part of the administration, tone-deaf in light of yet another intolerable and unacceptable killing, and a misuse of the military.”

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Joyce Davis

My history goes back to 2002 and I  worked as a reporter, interviewer, news editor, copy editor, managing editor, newsletter founder, almanac profiler, and news radio broadcaster.

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