PHOTOS: At least 45 arrests, some injuries in Chicago anti-NATO clashes

Protesters and police clashed this weekend.

Four police officers were injured and 45 demonstrators arrested after baton-wielding police clashed with anti-war protesters marching on the NATO summit in Chicago on Sunday, police said.

A lawyer’s group assisting protesters challenged police figures, saying at least 12 protesters were hurt, some with head wounds from police batons, and more than 60 people detained.

The confrontation began after a 2 1/2 mile march from a Chicago park to near the site of the summit, where leaders of the NATO alliance are discussing the war in Afghanistan.

Chicago Police Chief Garry McCarthy defended police tactics.

“I know that picture (of officers in riot gear pushing and hitting protesters) is going to be what people are going to run away here with,” McCarthy told reporters. “But cops are not here to be assaulted.”

Most of the officers sustained minor injuries, but one was stabbed in the leg, McCarthy said.

While the melee at the end of the rally received the most attention, the situation had calmed down by dark.

The size of the protests over the last week fell short of expectations. Police estimated about 3,000 people attended on Sunday, although many participants thought the crowd was larger. Organizers did not get the 10,000 people they had hoped for, or the 40,000 the anti-Wall Street Occupy movement boasted it would attract.

On Sunday afternoon, police ordered the protesters to disperse or risk arrest. Most of the demonstrators did, but several hundred ignored the order and police moved in.

Hundreds of demonstrators, reporters and photographers were hemmed in by lines of blue-helmeted police, pushing them back with plastic shields.

One young man sat at the side of the street, the back of his head streaming blood. His friends said he was hit by riot police.

“This is what police brutality looks like,” said Ryan Zielinski, 23, a protester who said he was hit in the chest with a baton as police pushed protesters back. “All we’re trying to do is protest and the police are attacking us.”

McCarthy said officers had endured numerous profane taunts and showed restraint. But he said police would not tolerate assaults by black-clad anarchists.

“What we saw is these guys rally their courage and say, ‘OK, let’s go. That’s what we came here for.’ And I have to say to myself, what are you thinking?” McCarthy said.

The march included people in festive costumes, a few parents pushing strollers and veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan wars.

Demonstrators had little chance of being seen by the world leaders and representatives from 60 countries at the meeting of the military alliance. The summit site, the McCormick Place convention center, is inside a security zone guarded by high fences. Protesters were kept blocks away.

President Barack Obama, who is hosting the summit in his hometown, convened the summit to chart a path out of the unpopular war in Afghanistan.

The Coalition Against NATO-G8, the group organizing Sunday’s march, wants an immediate end to the U.S. role in the Afghan war. Other protesters decried U.S. defense spending and economic inequality.

Matt Howard, a former U.S. Marine who served in Iraq, was one of nearly 50 veterans who threw service medals into the street near the summit site in protest.

Vietnam War veteran Ron McSheffery, 61, said, “I’m in total support of stopping NATO and stopping the slaughter of innocent civilians. If we took the money we spent on bombs and put it into green energy, we wouldn’t need to keep the sea lanes open” for oil transport.

Before the summit began, five men were arrested on terrorism-related or bomb-making charges. Three of those charged were plotting to attack Obama’s campaign headquarters, police stations and other targets, according to court documents. Defense lawyers said the three were entrapped by police informants.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
International

Hurricane Odile batters Mexico's Baja resorts, sparks looting

Hurricane Odile injured dozens of people, forced the evacuation of thousands and smashed shops open to looters in the popular tourist area of Baja, Mexico.

National

Apple iPhone 6 pre-orders hit record 4 million…

By Lehar Maan(Reuters) - Apple Inc said many customers will need to wait until next month for their new iPhones after a record 4 million…

National

LAPD investigates complaint from detained 'Django' actress

The LAPD is investigating after "Django Unchained" actress Daniele Watts accused police of violating her rights when they detained her.

Local

Number of New York City smokers increase, topping…

For the first time since 2007, there are  more than one million smokers in New York City, according to the New York City Department of…

Movies

Newsflash: Corey Stoll is still not a man

In director Shaun Levy's "This Is Where I Leave You," Corey Stoll stars as the oldest of four adult children (the others are played by…

Movies

If you don't like Simon Pegg's new film,…

Simon Pegg goes all out in "Hector and the Search for Happiness" as the titular psychiatrist stymied by modern life who embarks on a globetrotting…

Arts

Art in Chelsea: Don't miss these 3 galleries

We selected three sure bets for seeing cool art in the galleries of Chelsea.

Music

Robin Thicke blurs lines further with new 'Blurred…

"The reality is," said Robin Thicke about "Blurred Lines" in a court deposition, "Pharrell had the beat and he wrote almost every single part of the song."

NFL

Tom Coughlin says Giants 'beat themselves' against Cardinals

Head coach Tom Coughlin, who had a day to cool off and reflect, still sounded like he had a gnawing feeling in his gut.

NFL

Marty Mornhinweg accepts blame for Jets timeout fiasco

Jets fans looking for a scapegoat for Sunday’s timeout fiasco found a willing party on Monday: Marty Mornhinweg.

NFL

3 things we learned in Jets loss to…

The wheels came off for the Jets, who gave up 21 unanswered points after a brilliant first 20 minutes in a 31-24 loss at the Packers.

NFL

Victor Cruz catches case of the drops in…

The Giants dropped a tough, 25-14, decision to the undermanned Cardinals Sunday in their home opener. And drop was the operative word of the day,…

Travel

World's most hipster cities: Top 5

Travel blogger Adam Groffman tells us his picks for the Top 5 most hipster cities in the world.

Education

The top 5 regrets recent high school grads…

College application season can seem like a blur for many students - as test prep, campus visits and filling out a seemingly endless stream of…

Parenting

Tech execs tend to limit their kids' screen…

You probably got your iPad before Bill Gates's kids did.

Wellbeing

Wellbeing: Daybreaker returns, Ray Rice jersey trade, Sweet…

  Now that Ray Rice is no longer with the Baltimore Ravens — or any other NFL team — after video footage surfaced showing him…