Portland riot police forcefully muscled antifascist protesters out of Chapman Square this afternoon as an alt-right rally continued across the street.
Citing "criminal activity" among the crowd of at least 500 antifa protesters, Portland police deployed stun grenades to disperse the crowd. Riot cops formed a line to press antifa out of the park, using "flash bangs" when the crowd wouldn't move.
Police said they cleared the square because people in the crowd were throwing bricks and mortars at officers.
Police fired rubber bullets into a group of protesters holding a banner reading, "Mourn the Dead." At least one person could be seen limping away from the melee, holding her leg and saying she had been hit by a police projectile.
Across the street in Terry Schrunk Plaza, the assembly of nationalists known as the "alt-right" whooped in delight. "Na na na na, na na na na," they sang to antifa. "Hey hey hey, goodbye."
The speakers at the alt-right rally, where crowds grew to about 280 people, encouraged their group to continue with their event. "The police are getting rid of the vermin," said one speaker, who gave his name as David.
Minutes earlier, alt-right celebrity Kyle Chapman, aka Based Stickman, regaled the crowd with tales his confrontations with antifa in Berkeley, Calif.
"I cracked the skulls of some commies who were attacking us," Chapman said. "If that republic is going to stay free, you have to be willing to bleed."
Chapman gave shout-outs to the Oath Keepers and Proud Boys, far-right extremist groups he said were in attendance. Like other speakers, he described Portland as a bastion of progressive authoritarians who must be challenged.
"People with conservative beliefs are being oppressed," he said. "We're bringing this shit to an end. We're done. We've had enough of it."
God and communism were recurring themes in the alt-right speeches on Sunday.
Chapman told the cheering crowd that religion was the key to a strong country.
"Countries like Russia, which have continue to embrace God have stayed strong," Chapman said. "Secular nations that have abandoned god are facing terroristic threats."
A street preacher identified only as "Joel" took the stage to praise Trump.
"I'm so grateful that Donald Trump came down from his tower and saved us," Joel said. "He didn't have to run, but he loved America too much."
Rally organizer Joey Gibson called antifa "the strong arm of the mayor," meaning Ted Wheeler, and called for the alt-right to get out from behind their keyboards and onto the streets.
"Get out there, look them in the eyes and say, son, America is the best nation in the world," Gibson said.
Another speaker identified only by first name, Amber, said communism is the major threat facing our country. Amber called on Trump to investigate Mayor Wheeler's "fascist crap."
"If they want communism, there's a place for them," Amber told the crowd. "It's called Gitmo."