BREAKING: G-8 Summit Moved from Chicago to Camp David; Fear of Occupy Protests, Perhaps?

 The Chicago Tribune is reporting that the White House has announced that the G-8 summit, scheduled to be in Chicago May 18-19, will take place at Camp David rather than the city, where protests have been planned for months. 

In May, the United States looks forward to hosting the G-8 and NATO Summits. To facilitate a free-flowing discussion with our close G-8 partners, the president is inviting his fellow G-8 leaders to Camp David on May 18-19 for the G-8 Summit, which will address a broad range of economic, political and security issues.

The NATO summit, right after the G-8, will remain in Chicago.

Occupy Chicago responded quickly, tweeting an invite to their General Assembly to discuss how plans will change. Thousands of protesters were expected to converge on the city to get their message in front of the broadest possible audience. 

Earlier today, the Morris Daily Herald in Illinois reported on the preparations the Chicago Police Department had been undergoing in order to be ready for the crowds of activists expected. "At least two major demonstrations are planned for downtown and organizers of both want to send crowds of marchers down Michigan Avenue in the middle of the day. And those are just the ones police know about because demonstration leaders sought city permits," the Herald said.

As far as prep, the Herald reported: 

The department would not provide numbers, but police sources familiar with the planning said the department has so far sent about 8,400 of its roughly 12,000 officers through some form of crowd-control training.

About 2,400 officers drawn mostly from tactical and gang units have completed the training designed to prepare them for the front lines of crowd control. Those officers are likely to wear the black body armor that police call “turtle suits.” 

We'll update as more information comes in.

AlterNet / By Sarah Jaffe

Posted at March 5, 2012, 10:16am

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