federal agents riot control portland antifa
© REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs
A federal law enforcement official fires teargas at protesters in Portland, Oregon, on July 19, 2020.
Antifa members and their new reinforcements from parent groups faced off against federal agents in Portland, Oregon, once again, employing shield walls and flanks in tactics reminiscent of the ancient Greeks or Romans.

As midnight approached on Monday, more than 1,000 protesters had gathered outside the federal courthouse. Some among the crowd attempted to tear down barricades outside the courthouse and gain entry, taunting the police inside. Others in the group formed a shield wall to fend off any non-lethal munitions which might be fired at them.

The friendly, public face of the protests in the form of parent groups Wall of Moms and PDXDadPod had begun marching earlier on Monday night, amid calls for the dads to bring leaf blowers to help disperse expected tear gas later in the evening.

The combined crowd of parents groups, protesters and agitators eventually numbered over 2,000 according to local media reports.

The crowd bellowed various "Black lives matter!" chants while parents carried signs that read: "Hey feds, you need to think about your sad choices - Mom."

A "wall of moms" was also deployed to the front lines for a short time, to prevent federal agents from opening fire on the protesters with non-lethal munitions, as they had done in the 50-plus days since the Portland protests began in the wake of the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis police custody on May 26.

Some protesters, using their bare fists and various tools, beat the plywood hoarding which protected the courthouse's shattered windows and doors, eventually breaking through after multiple failed attempts in the past few days.

Meanwhile, protesters intervened and rescued one of their own from being arrested by an agent outside the courthouse.

Police warned the public to avoid the area as there were people "throwing projectiles... armed with clubs, hammers and other weapons."

Authorities then deployed tear gas and other crowd dispersal devices and federal agents emerged and opened fire with impact munitions a short time later to clear the area, in what has become a nightly routine, though the agitation continued largely unabated.

Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Chad Wolf has condemned the violence in Portland, as tensions escalate between government and the citizenry, saying that the "attempted arson is not a peaceful protest."

"Physically attacking law enforcement is not freedom of speech. Destruction of property is not peaceful assembly. Criminals perpetrating these crimes are being arrested...not law abiding protestors," he added.