An Anti-Racist Action group has taken credit for a bizarre attack on a suburban Chicagoland eatery Saturday afternoon. At least ten people meeting inside the Ashford House Restaurant on W. 159th St. in Tinley Park were injured when a group of up to 18 attackers wearing black hoodies and carrying hammers and bats entered and assaulted them.
On AntiRacistAction.org, the group stated the alleged motivation behind the incident:
On Saturday, May 19th a group of 30 anti-fascists descended upon Ashford House restaurant in the Chicago suburb of Tinley Park where the 5th annual White Nationalist Economic Summit and Illinois White Nationalist Meet-and-Greet was taking place. The White Nationalists were targeted inside the restaurant and physically attacked, causing several injuries and completely shutting down their meeting. The anti-fascist group was privy to anonymous inside information. This fascist event had been in secret planning for six months. The attendees have attempted to cover up the true intent of the event with mainstream media reports initially reporting the white nationalist conference as a wedding party and then as an Irish heritage meeting. The event was advertised on http://www.stormfront.org, an established white nationalist fascist internet forum.
The apparent other side of this story developed in the comments section of an article by the Tinley Park Patch, one of AOL’s subsidiary websites devoted to “hyper-local” news. The attack was reported there (and elsewhere) as a strange, random incident possibly linked to the Occupy-associated anti-N.A.T.O. protests that have been revving up in downtown Chicago since mid-week.
A message thread at Stormfront.org dating back to April matches Anti-Racist Action’s statements regarding the date and nature of the meeting. User “Sgathaich” posted about the event on April 3 and added, “If you are a business owner/self employed bring your info. All ideas are welcome. White’s working for White’s [sic]. White’s supporting White’s [sic]. We are taking back what is ours.”
Tinley Park Mayor Ed Zabrocki told the Chicago Tribune late Saturday that authorities were not certain about connections between the groups or the attackers’ motivations.
The Tribune reported three of the injured were taken to the hospital. Others refused medical attention.
The Chicago paper also reported that one of the three vehicles that fled the scene was pulled over on W. 159th and five people were taken into custody.
Tinley Park’s Patch quoted an employee inside Ashford House when the attack took place. “Tables were being thrown and chairs were broken,” said the employee. Unknown words were also spray-painted on a wall during the melee.
The same unnamed employee told Patch that the woman who made reservations for the group that was attacked claimed they travel the country touring ‘Irish festivals.’