Sunday, January 25, 2009

No Way Out

Some three million people had crowded the Washington Mall. Advisories flashed on the Jumbotron screens urging people to exit by way of 7th and 14th Streets. 

Tens of thousands of people began moving in the direction of 14th Street.
And how did the army, police, and secret service respond?   They closed 14th Street. Completely. They gated it up. 

In effect, after the ceremony was over, security forces prevented half a million shivering, hungry, tired people from leaving the Washington Mall. 

Nevertheless the crowd continued moving towards 14th Street.

I think it was only good luck nobody was crushed to death.  This video  shows what it was like trying to find out where to go -- how to get off the Mall.

As it happened, Journalist James Fallows was also caught up in the crowd of spectators-- in the same area of the Mall at about the same time -- and has blogged about his own (similar) experience.

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