A Report Back on the 20 July 2019 Yellow Vest Rally in Ottawa
This past Saturday comrades came together to successfully confront fascists who planned three days of rallies on Parliament Hill. The Canadians for Canada -“Breaking Chains” Yellow Vest rally called for convoys to arrive from all over so-called Canada to reach Ottawa. Despite their call for 10,000 motorbikes or more to come from all over the country, only about 40-50 people showed up – and not a single motorbike with them.
Originally having planned to have their rallies on Parliament Hill, their permits were pulled a week and a half before their planned rallies due to military events taking place. As a result, they were forced to hold their rally at a nearby park downtown, Garden of Provinces and Territories. However, in coordination with the Ottawa IWW GDC Local 6 and Anakbayan Ottawa, antifascists and the supporting community took over the space in the park to hold an event countering the fascist demonstration.
We set up tables with food and water, as well as antifascist literature explaining why the hateful presence like that of Yellow Vests and their supporters should not be tolerated by the community. This showing of the community standing together forced the fascist event to be relocated to a field behind the park, out of sight of the passerby’s and the Wellington traffic. There were barricades set by the Ottawa police, who are no strangers to protecting fascist groups. Upon seeing the Yellow Vests get escorted to their pen, the majority of the antifascists had followed to the barricaded area.
Once the Yellow Vesters had begun with their list of speakers, the counter protesters set up the sound system near the barricades to drown out any speeches by the fascists. What was appalling was that fascists had used vulnerable people as props to their cause, having a young child speak, a man with a visual disability, and a person whom they referred to as “a transgender”.
So, which fascists did show up anyway?
On notable fascists that attended the rally, there are a few key members that spearheaded the events and propaganda spread between each other. Derek Storie: presumed to be a Northern Guard member, also present at the Hamilton violent attacks on pride. Chris Pan Man (Chris Vanderweide), the violent, attacker at Hamilton pride jailed for weeks). Dan Dubois and Dunn Ryan McLean, a C3 member and national president, the child speaking most likely one of their kin, they work closely with Derek Storie, (Close to Chris, Derek, and Justin Long) Northern Guard and other fascist groups. Kevin Goudreau, a member of Wolves of Odin and the founder of the Canadian Nationalist Party. He is known to have a sizable chest tattoo of a swastika and is currently under investigation in connection with the Christchurch terrorist attack in New Zealand. Kevin J Johnston was also in attendance, a formal mayoral candidate that has for years put out anti-Muslim propaganda. In 2017 he was charged with a hate crime and has been successfully sued $2.5 million.
Members of C3 had multiple speakers, 4 of which have now started a Canadian Truth Tour. They are also known to spread fascist propaganda and earn money from other fascists. This group held the majority of the speeches this past Saturday.
All in all, while their event had still taken place, their capacity to organize had still been affected by the resistance of the local community. Folks diligently stood their ground for hours in what was 40 degree weather with humidity. We would like to thank everyone who came out to confront hateful and xenophobic ideologies.
This reportback was put together by several diligent comrades. We would like to acknowledge that this act of resistance took place on the traditional, unceded, and unsurrendered territories of the Algonquin Nation. Our resistance against fascist violence is tied inherently to deconstructing and dismantling the settler-colonial systems which repress all colonized peoples on Turtle Island. All fascists found across Turtle Island are an extension of the ideology of settler-colonial power–all of which we must defeat.