For over a year, the radical group Code Pink has been protesting in front of the Marine Corps recruiting office in Berkeley. Today, April 19, a group of Marine Corps veterans turned the tables and protested in front of Code Pink‘s recruiting center just a few miles away in the adjacent town of Albany.

The Marines Motorcycle Club had gotten a protest permit from the Albany Police Department (protests are an extreme rarity in Albany, which is a quiet little city on the north edge of Berkeley). Barricades, banners and signs were set up in front of the Code Pink office, which is in a commercially-zoned single-family home on Solano Ave., Albany’s main shopping street.

About 50 or 60 veterans showed up to protest against Code Pink on their own turf — taking the battle to the enemy, in typical Marines style.

And yes, the Code Pink office does count as a recruiting center of a sorts, since they hold “Working group meetings” for potential volunteers at the office.

But wait! Code Pink wasn’t even at home during the protest, having instead decamped for the Earth Day celebration in Berkeley. Was this missed connection by design, or just a bit of bad timing for both sides, who might have enjoyed a good political confrontation?

The veterans’ motorcycles filled the nearby streets.

An advertisement for the aggressively anti-war film Rendition adorned an adjacent bus stop; part of the protest is visible in the background.

Political rallies happen so infrequently in Albany that even the Mayor of Albany, Robert Lieber, showed up to give interviews to the few media outlets that were on hand. I listened in on his interview for a while — he took a sort of middle position: he was against the war, and against the recruiting center in Berkeley, but as a veteran himself supported the Marines’ right to protest. Politicians are the same wherever you go, aren’t they?

But poor Code Pink! For the first time ever, TV crews showed up at their home office, and here they are, five miles away in Berkeley, stranded at a back corner of the Earth Day celebration. What a tragedy. All that camera time and they weren’t even on hand to take advantage of it.

They looked balefully at the Earth Day festival in the distance — few people hung around this part of the event.

Instead they crowded around the more popular booths, like the Cannabis Action Network, always a Berkeley favorite on Earth Day.

Even the Truthers had a more centrally located booth.

Oh well! Ms. Chicken says goodbye from Berkeley!