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
64°
H 64° L 61°
Partly Cloudy | 0MPH

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

» Johnson Controls may lay off up to 197 people 8/28

» Get interesting prep football tidbits and insights with 'First and Short' blog 8/28

» Updated weekly rankings of area prep football teams and players 8/27

» 2 charged with attempted carjacking in Greenfield Updated:  8/26

» Initial Reaction Podcast: What stood out on the first week of high-school football? 8/25

» Speakers say new fees would endanger Scouting, hamper PTAs and others 8/25

» West Allis-West Milwaukee approves tax decrease preliminary budget 8/25

» The 2015 Suburban Milwaukee Prep Football Guide 8/19

» Greenfield pickup driver killed in one-vehicle Mequon crash 8/18

» The project SHOW has chosen to sample Greenfield as part of its statewide survey that has been going 8/18

» Hartland girl wins big at the Governor's livestock auction at Wisconsin State Fair 8/13

» SUV driver sought in hit-and-run that seriously injured man in West Milwaukee 8/13

» 2015 All-Suburban baseball: Turchin of Oak Creek repeats as player of the year 8/12

» Whitnall School Board chooses facilities advisory committee 8/12

» West Allis hotel on Greenfield Avenue sets later grand opening 8/10

» Greenfield officer involved in shooting 8/6

» West Allis-West Milwaukee high schoolers go after college credit 8/3

» West Allis Health Department nurse wins state award 8/3

» Public being asked about proposed Highway 100 changes in Greenfield 8/3

» Goodwill drops bid to open on 76th Street in Greenfield 7/30

» 84th Street ramps at I-94 to be open for the Wisconsin State Fair 7/30

» West Allis superintendent named to school advocacy group leadership 7/28

» Educator from Anchorage likely to take reins of West Allis school 7/28

» 'Milwaukee lion' spotted in Glendale Updated:  7/28

» The Suburban 16 Power Rankings: Watt, Niebrugge, and others on the next level 7/22

View All Posts Got a tip? Welcome rss

Advertisement

Advertisement

Local Business Directory

CONNECT