NOW:53214:USA01012
http://widgets.journalinteractive.com/cache/JIResponseCacher.ashx?duration=5&url=http%3A%2F%2Fdata.wp.myweather.net%2FeWxII%2F%3Fdata%3D*USA01012
36°
H 37° L 32°
Rain | 9MPH

5 arrested at neo-Nazi rally

30 supremacists, 100 police officers, 2,000 counterprotesters

Tempers flared during a neo-Nazi rally Saturday in West Allis. A group of young black men chanting "Peace" argued with other protesters (foreground) over the cause of violence outside State Fair last month. Across the street, neo-Nazis rallied behind barricades.

Tempers flared during a neo-Nazi rally Saturday in West Allis. A group of young black men chanting "Peace" argued with other protesters (foreground) over the cause of violence outside State Fair last month. Across the street, neo-Nazis rallied behind barricades. Photo By Rick Wood

Sept. 3, 2011

West Allis - Five people were arrested but no one was injured Saturday at a neo-Nazi rally where participants were vastly outnumbered by counterprotesters.

Two people were arrested on weapons violation charges and three for disorderly conduct during the 90-minute rally on W. Greenfield Ave. between S. 75th and S. 76th streets in front of City Hall.

There were a few tense moments when a separate group of neo-Nazi sympathizers in the crowd were confronted by a group of angry protesters. Insults were hurled. Then someone threw a metal object, and the crowd backed off.

Police dressed in riot gear moved in quickly, surrounding the area and forming a barrier with their batons.

The rally was organized by the National Socialist Movement, a neo-Nazi group out of Detroit, to call attention to incidents of violence this summer. Those include so-called flash mobs involving groups of young African-Americans attacking white adults. One of the incidents occurred on the first night of the State Fair in West Allis, and another after the July 3 fireworks in Milwaukee's Riverwest neighborhood.

The neo-Nazis numbered 25 to 30. About 2,000 people attended a counter-rally an hour earlier, according to police. The counterprotest featured drumming, chanting and a rendition of "Kumbaya." Speakers invoked Martin Luther King Jr., Gandhi and the lyrics of the Broadway classic "South Pacific" ("You've got to be taught to hate and fear.")

People strolled the rain-soaked streets with harmonicas and tambourines. One sign read: "I dislike your hate!"

Sister Charlotte Smits, 69, of Milwaukee, showed up lugging an oxygen tank.

"Nothing is going to stop me," the nun said.

She dismissed the notion that racially motivated crimes are a problem.

"These were a bunch of stupid kids with bad parents," she said.

More than 100 police officers provided security. Officers were from the West Allis, Greenfield, Milwaukee and Wauwatosa and State Fair police departments; the Milwaukee County sheriff's office; and State Patrol.

Police barricades kept the neo-Nazis and the counterprotesters more than 20 yards apart.

Chanting from the much larger crowd drowned out the neo-Nazis, who could barely be heard.

"I love being black!" Devote Richards, 18, a senior at Nathan Hale High School in West Allis, shouted into a bullhorn.

Darryl Nitsch, 49, and his wife, Laura, 42, live four blocks from where the rally was held. They said they were nervous about what might have happened and pleased that no one was injured.

"I'm pretty proud of West Allis today," Darryl Nitsch said.

The rally was originally scheduled to go until 4 p.m., but the neo-Nazis wrapped it up early, finishing their speeches about 3:30 p.m. They posed for a photograph in front of City Hall and then were ferried away in a yellow school bus.

This site uses Facebook comments to make it easier for you to contribute. If you see a comment you would like to flag for spam or abuse, click the "x" in the upper right of it. By posting, you agree to our Terms of Use.

Suburban News Roundup

E-mail Newsletter

Your link to the biggest stories in the suburbs delivered Thursday mornings.


Enter your e-mail address above and click "Sign Up Now!" to begin receiving your e-mail newsletter
Get the Newsletter!

Login or Register to manage all your newsletter preferences.

Community Watch

» Crash closes 2 left lanes of eastbound I-894 at S. 60th St. 12:33 PM

» Westbound I-94 near Miller Park to close for 31 hours beginning Friday night 12/18

» Central wrestlers take control of GMC race with 29-27 win over Falls 12/17

» Whitnall School Board closer to facilities referendum decision 12/16

» Blocked sewer leads to sewage spill into Honey Creek 12/12

» Greenfield St. Vincent de Paul store opening soon, accepting donations 12/11

» West Allis-West Milwaukee Chamber of Commerce fundraiser does OK 12/10

» West Allis man sentenced for voting twice in 2012 presidential election 12/10

» Proposed Meijer's aesthetics, driveway concern Greenfield commission 12/10

» Large car show moving to State Fair Park 12/10

» Whitnall survey shows support for new school, other projects 12/9

» West Allis takes stronger control of pawn shops 12/8

» Greenfield Christmas lights contest in full swing 12/8

» Heroin dealer convicted of 2 overdose deaths in 2012 12/5

» Resident input wanted for two Greenfield road projects 12/4

» Mequon lawyer indicted on 33 counts related to fraud, money laundering Updated:  12/3

» Barrett against freeway double deck; West Allis open to idea 12/3

» Crews clear crash that closed 2 NB lanes of Highway 45 at West Allis Updated:  11/29

» Greenfield School Board nixes funding to explore charter school idea 11/25

» Layton Avenue entrance to Greenfield High School among road proposals 11/25

» Whitnall School District makes AP honor roll 11/24

» Hearings next week on I-94 ramps deemed critical to West Allis 11/24

» West Allis residents to name qualities needed in new superintendent 11/24

» Greenfield council approves 2015 budget after no one speaks at hearing 11/19

» Draft report admits economic harm to West Allis of likely ramp closure 11/19

View All Posts Got a tip? Welcome rss
Deal Watch - Milwaukee

Milwaukee's Best Discounts & Deals

Advertisement

Local Business Directory

CONNECT