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As Occupy Wall Street Swells, Bloomberg Blinks, March Heads to City Hall & Banks

By Matthew Russell Lee

WALL STREET, October 14 -- With the threat of at least partial eviction hanging over the Occupy Wall Street protest in Zuccotti Park, supporters and the Press gathered at 6 am on Friday morning, to wait for the police. Video here, and below.

Park occupiers and volunteers scrubbed the west side of the park, which in any event has been cleaner than many parks in, for example, the South Bronx. But Brookfield Office Properties, which owns the park which is supposed to be open 24 hours a day, had claimed a need to clean, and to prohibit sleeping bags and thus the occupation.

The crowd in the park swelled as the sun began to rise through the mist. A chant began: We are too big to jail, a play on the Too Big To Fail status of at least four, and prospectively five, US banks.

A long time wire service photographer who sometimes covers the UN approached Inner City Press with tears in his eyes. "This is beautiful," he said. "Twenty years I'm in this city and I've never seen anything like this."

People filming with their cell phones surrounded two men in military fatigues, thanking them for coming. "Now let's occupy Wall Street," one of the veterans said, to cheers.

But after the eviction / clean up was postponed, the march that tried to go south to Wall Street itself was diverted north, up to City Hall. There riot police with visors defended Mayor Bloomberg's office and the Boss Tweed courthouse, landmark of a previous era of corruption.

On the way the march passed branches of the Too Big to Fail -- Bank of America, Citibank, Wells Fargo and JPMorgan Chase -- as well as the prospective fifth, Capital One. Each got chanted at in turn, with different degrees of volume.

Riot police in front of City Hall Oct 14 (c) MRLee

On the return south, police prepared orange netting of the kind used to arrest 700 marchers on the Brooklyn Bridge on October 1. The crowd remained peaceful, kept moving. An elderly woman counter chanted, "get a job." Inner City Press heard two marchers laugh, "I have a job, I have to be there in half an hour."

On Park Row, orange netting just in view Oct 14 (c) MRLee

Inner City Press, too, had to cover the UN Security Council at 10 am. Its invitation to Libyan Transitional National Council ambassador Ibrahim Dabbashi to visit Occupy Wall Street has yet to be acted on -- but now the park remains open.

Back down on Wall Street, police blocked the entrance on Nassau Street, allowing in some but not others. And so it is in today's New York. Watch this site.

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Click here for Sept 23, '11 about UN General Assembly

Click for Mar 1, '11 re Libya, Sri Lanka, UN Corruption

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These reports are usually also available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis.

Click here for a Reuters AlertNet piece by this correspondent about Uganda's Lord's Resistance Army. Click here for an earlier Reuters AlertNet piece about the Somali National Reconciliation Congress, and the UN's $200,000 contribution from an undefined trust fund.  Video Analysis here

Click here for Sept 26, 2011 New Yorker on Inner City Press at UN

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