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Anti I-69 Protesters Storm Cato Institute

Guest Silent Activist

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Guest Silent Activist



On Monday, July 28, SDS, backed by activsts from both Potomac Earth First and Roadblock Earth First, staged the "Funk I-69" protest, treating the CATO institute, an office of I-69's surveyor, and the dual target(I-69 and ICC) Washington Post they way SDS normally treats military recruiters.


The first target on the menu was the Cato Institue, one of the think tanks responsable for NAFTA. I-69 is being built as one of several "NAFTA superhighways."


The glass-enclosed lobby of CATO was stormed by protesters before the cops were able to respond, sparking a pushing and shoving match, but no injuries.


The second target was the DC office of HNTB, the surveyors who are working on I-69(already they had another office smashed up by presumed Elvish warriors in another city). Cops expected an attack here and wall-to-wall cops were lined up to defend it, so only a street protest was possible here.


The third and final target was the Washington Post. The Washington Post is a dual target supporting the locally devastating Inter-County Connector as well as I-69 and any other "infrastructure" deemed essential for NAFTA and other trade treaties.


At the Washington Post, SDS and Earth First! had the advantage of surprise again, storming up the steps to the enclosed alcove and the doors, but cops rushed up quickly and were not blocked form approach by the rear of the crowd. In the ensuing events one protester was grabbed around the NECK and thrown down the steps of that bastion of "Free Speech,' the Washington post. Another received a foot injury from the heavy boots of the police-literally.


No arrests resulted, and injuries have not sent anyone to the hospital as this is being reported.


At the end of the event, speakers from Potomac Earth First spoke on the local/continental connection,linking the local fight against the ICC to the national mobilization to shut down construction of I-69.


Many states are still zero-budgeting I-69, and if just ONE state refuses to build their segment, the entire highway would likely be stopped as states further down refuse to build a segment that cannot be connected to the rest of the road. This would work much like the way Montgomery County and Fairfax County have each been prevented by the other from building another bridge and another highway over the Potomac River.


My guess is that a portion longer than the entire ICC of I-69 will get built, but most of it can and will be stopped. This is just the beginning, and the foolish decision of Indiana cops to rub poison ivy in the faces of arrested treesitters is now having national repercussions!




Interstate 69 (I-69) is an Interstate Highway in the United States. It exists in two parts: a completed highway from Indianapolis, Indiana, northeast to the Canadian border in Port Huron, Michigan, and a mostly-proposed extension southwest to the Mexican border in Texas. Of this extension, nicknamed the NAFTA Superhighway, since it would help trade with Canada and Mexico spurred by the North American Free Trade Agreement, only a short piece in northwestern Mississippi has been built and signed as I-69 (see Interstate 69 in Mississippi). Other sections, such as those in Kentucky and Tennessee, exist but are yet to be signed.


The southern terminus of the existing portion is at Interstate 465, the beltway around Indianapolis, on the northeast side of that city. I-69 heads northeast, past Anderson, Muncie, Marion, and Fort Wayne, Indiana; the latter city is served by Interstate 469, I-69's only current signed auxiliary route. After crossing the Indiana Toll Road (I-80/I-90) near Angola, I-69 enters Michigan, crossing I-94 east of Battle Creek and joining with I-96 for an overlap west of Lansing. Where it splits from I-96, I-69 turns east, both in compass direction and in signed direction, and heads north of Lansing and through Flint (where it crosses I-75) to a junction with I-94 in Port Huron. The last bit of I-69 overlaps I-94 to the Blue Water Bridge across the St. Clair River, where traffic continues on Highway 402 in the Canadian province of Ontario.


In addition to the main line of I-69, the overall project – known as Corridors 18 and 20 of the National Highway System – also includes Interstate 94 between Chicago and Port Huron, and several spurs from I-69. Among these proposed spurs are an extension of Interstate 530 from Pine Bluff, Arkansas, an upgrade of U.S. Route 59 from Texarkana, Texas, and a split in southern Texas to serve three border crossings at Laredo, Pharr, and Brownsville. In August 2007 I-69 was selected by the USDOT as one of six Corridors of the Future, making it eligible for additional federal funding and streamlined planning and review.



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