Thousands stage a strike and reestablish encampment at UC Berkeley
Around 10,000 students staged a strike at the University of California Berkeley campus. Students voted overwhelmingly to reestablish an encampment which had been torn down last week. Berkeley, USA. November 15th 2011
November 15, 8:00 pm – Sproul Plaza was packed with an estimated 10,000 students and others. . Minutes earlier the general assembly of Occupy Cal had voted overwhelmingly to defy the University and set up the encampment. There was no room to move and students were standing on the roof of a campus dining facility. Tents were set up in the midst of this massive general assembly. Occupy Cal was reestablished.
As the tents were being set up words from Mario Savio, a leader of the 1964 Free Speech Movement at UC Berkeley were being read: “There is a time when the operation of the machine becomes so odious, makes you so sick at heart, that you can't take part; you can't even passively take part, and you've got to put your bodies upon the gears and upon the wheels, upon the levers, upon all the apparatus, and you've got to make it stop. And you've got to indicate to the people who run it, to the people who own it, that unless you're free, the machine will be prevented from working at all!”
During the night the police made a number of warnings to the students saying that they were subject to arrest if they remained. As of 9:00 am on Wednesday November 16 there had been no arrests and more than 20 tents remained on the steps of the administration building.
Less than a week earlier, the first attempt to create an Occupy encampment on the UC Berkley Campus a Day of Action with protests by 3,000 to 4,000 was met with a violent attack on students by police who viciously struck students with batons and ripped down tents. The UC Berkeley Chancellor defended the action of the police and declared that no tents would be allowed on campus. In response Occupy Cal called for the General Strike.