Ferguson coffee shop was tear-gassed by armored vehicle
2. In particular, there was an incident where several of our Amnesty observers were at MoKaBe’s coffee shop, a designated safe house for activists, which was tear gassed by the police. Amnesty staff were inside MoKaBe’s coffeehouse along with several dozen other protesters and community members. The coffee shop was distributing free coffee and hot chocolate to those who needed a quiet and welcoming place to gather or refresh themselves. It was staffed by community volunteers and clergy. There was a small protest taking place in the street outside, but it was peaceful. At approximately 1:00am, a large militarized police vehicle sped around the corner and fired tear gas and undetermined projectiles at the people running from the protests, hitting one in the back. The police then turned to MoKaBe’s and fired on the building. Amnesty International staff inside MoKaBe directly observed the entire interaction.
The police again fired tear gas several minutes later, despite the presence of two Amnesty monitors clearly marked with bright yellow “human rights observer” T-shirts. The patrons, including people who came outside to recover from the initial tear gas and some children, were overcome with gas. There was no evident provocation for this action and no prior warning to disperse. One Amnesty observer was struck with three or four projectiles of unknown composition. Meanwhile, a column of police in riot gear lined up in a column outside, preventing anyone from leaving or entering the coffee shop for approximately 20 minutes.
Well now, that's interesting, isn't it?
I guess I'm less interested in the part where the armored vehicle tear gases small children -- that sort of thing happens every day -- then again why the armored vehicle (whose?) targeted MoKaBe's cafe.
Because when I think of a cafe, I think first of power, and then of WiFi; in other words, of communication.
So, speculating freely, perhaps the cops -- or whoever -- thought they were taking out an enemy command post (as indeed they may have been, for some definition of enemy). And then the question would become, how did they know to target MoKaBe's? Just on general principles, or something more specific, like an IP address or a cellphone inside the cafe? If so, how would they have gotten it?