The Spark

the Voice of
The Communist League of Revolutionary Workers–Internationalist

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.”
— Karl Marx

N.Y. Firefighters Arrested at Protest

Nov 5, 2001

A dozen New York City fire fighters were arrested at a protest on Thursday, November 1. The charges were quickly dropped.

What caused the protest was that on Wednesday City Hall had announced the number of fire fighters allowed into the World Trade Center site to search the rubble would be reduced from 64 to 25. Almost a thousand fire fighters showed up in front of City Hall, and when some began to push past the barricades set up to go in the direction of the World Trade Center, a fight broke out between some firemen and some policemen.

The crowd, co-workers of the 343 fire fighters lost on September 11, were outraged that their effort to find more remains of the dead was being cut back. They shouted, “Bring our brothers home.”

Some also shouted, “They took out the gold.” They referred to a large rescue operation from vaults located in the basement area underneath the collapsed towers, an area so large it has twice the space of the Empire State Building. Among other treasures down there was almost two MILLION pounds of gold and silver. When the latest vault full of gold was brought out, the “rescue” operation was scaled back almost to nothing.

Nothing more cynically illustrates what is really going on among those ruins in New York. The powers that be wanted to use the firemen for what? Only to be sure their gold and silver was transported to safety.

As we have been reminded by the media and the politicians, the fire fighters were among the heroes of that horrible day. And of course, it’s true, just as they often are every day.

But every politician from Bush on down, trying to win support for their rotten policies, rushed to New York to have their pictures taken at Ground Zero with these same heroes. Ready to use the fight fighters to promote their own revolting policies, it’s no surprise they were ready to use them to find their gold.