NATO Protesters Poised To Accept New March Route ‘Grudgingly’

UPDATED 03/30/12 1:24 p.m.

CHICAGO (CBS) — Anti-war protesters appear ready to compromise with the City of Chicago about a march during the NATO summit.

As WBBM Newsradio’s Nancy Harty reports, a day after losing their second round against the city before an administrative judge, protesters are making some concessions.

LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s Nancy Harty reports

Organizer Andy Thayer says demonstrators will agree to a route that skirts the Loop, as suggested by the city, if officials formalize their offers.

He said if the city is “willing to put on paper that the Petrillo Band Shell will indeed be offered for free; will indeed be offered with no insurance requirement, we will accept that, grudgingly.”

Protesters also want the city to commit to backing them if the Secret Service puts a perimeter around McCormick Place so large that NATO members can’t see them. The protesters have set a deadline for that commitment for Wednesday, and if it is not met, they are threatening to go to federal court.

On Thursday, an administrative law judge ruled against the protesters’ request march through the Loop, saying such a march on the first day of the summit would strain city streets and police.

The city suggested the alternate path to the summit meetings at McCormick Place — starting at the in Grant Park instead of Daley Plaza — but protesters initially said it was too hard to get to on mass transit and too long of a route.

Meanwhile, the U.S. ambassador to NATO continues to see Chicago as the ideal place to hold the summit.

“Chicago, in many ways, represents a city that is very much like NATO. NATO’s a microcosm of Chicago. One third of the people who live in this city have roots in countries that are NATO countries,” Ivo Daalder tells CBS 2 Chief Correspondent Jay Levine.

Ambassador Daalder traveled to Chicago from Brussels the week after hosting Chicago’s first lady at a reception for other NATO ambassadors. He says he would welcome protestors exercising their First Amendment rights.

Thayer counters the First Amendment doesn’t mean anything unless protesters have an audience.

  • Cliff

    F**k these Loser, limp d**k anti-war protesters!!!

  • zatso

    The mayor might as well say that a permit will be issued if they accept 1500 east Adams street as a starting point.

    Everybody come downtown and watch the police stand around and not know where the flash mob of protesters will STRIKE!

    Mayor, who are you going to have on your BLUE RIBBON COMMITTEE that investigates what we COULD have done to prevent the disaster that occurred?


  • the rapture

    too far to walk – is that your only wimpy complaint – you NATO chasers are making it really hard for those who have to listen to your dribble – there are more important things and groups – a true Chicagoan would tell you – Do Not Mess with the Crosstown Showdown – world peace – %#$%#% – It’s all about Southside vs Northside

  • “Days Of Discontent And Disconnect” | Living History

    […] Wall Street impunityOccupy AustinAs Wall Street Points Fingers at Groupon; Three Fingers Point Back.NATO Protesters Poised To Accept New March Route ‘Grudgingly’NATO Protesters Poised To Accept New March Route […]

blog comments powered by Disqus
Daily Weather Reports Delivered To You!SIGN UP NOW: Get daily weather reports every morning from meteorologist Steve Baskerville!
CBS Sports Radio RoundupGet your latest sports talk from across the country.

Listen Live