By David Futrelle
Yesterday, at an alt-right “Patriot Prayer” rally in Vancouver, Washington, the driver of a Confederate-flag-bedecked truck sped backwards into a group of AntiFa counterprotesters; luckily those in his path were able to jump out of the way.
Here’s how Willamette Week described the incident:
A black Chevy Silverado with Oregon plates and two large American flags and several small flags hanging from its windows (along with a Confederate flag decal displayed on the back window of the cab) drove up to the marchers. It was driving slowly down a street flanked by people dressed in black bloc clothing.
As the crowd parted to clear the way for the truck to move forward, protesters filled the street behind it and started throwing rocks and water bottles at the truck.
The driver suddenly put his vehicle in reverse and accelerated toward the protesters. As he sped up, people jumped out of the street.
The driver continued to drive in reverse for nearly a block, stopping at the next intersection and revving his engine.
The incident was captured on video by journalist Mike Bivins; unfortunately the camera angle makes it hard to see what was going on behind the truck as it backed up.
Whoa, dangerous stuff. People throwing stuff at this truck pic.twitter.com/9PJvK31euB
— Mike Bivins (@itsmikebivins) September 10, 2017
Shortly afterwards the truck was pulled over by police, the driver was briefly detained, then released without charges.
The driver was apparently quite pleased to remain a free man, posting a brief video of himself literally wrapped in the American flag and shouting out “no arrest for this proud [unintelligible] patriot!” His brother went on to praise his actions on Facebook, as Mother Jones journalist Shane Bauer noted in a tweet.
— Shane Bauer (@shane_bauer) September 11, 2017
Despite the obvious similarity to the car attack in Charlottesville that left antifascist activist Heather Heyer dead, this incident has gotten almost no coverage in the media. Given that Wilson faced essentially no repercussions for what he did, I suspect it won’t be long before we see this terroristic tactic used again by someone else on the far right.