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Ferguson (United States) (AFP) — The governor of the U.S. state of Missouri on Thursday ordered National Guard troops to withdraw from a town gripped by nearly two weeks of protests over a police shooting.

Governor Jay Nixon said the soldiers were no longer needed and that state police would handle security in Ferguson, a St Louis suburb where on August 9 a local officer killed an unarmed black teenager.

The deployment of the guards on Monday had been widely seen as a sign that state and local police were struggling to keep a lid on the situation after hundreds took to the streets to protest the shooting.

But Nixon said that they had had the strictly limited role of protecting a police command center, allowing law enforcement personnel to deal directly with protesters and outbreaks of rioting.

“As we continue to see improvement, I have ordered the Missouri National Guard to begin a systematic process of withdrawing from the City of Ferguson,” he said.

A funeral for the slain student, 18-year-old Michael Brown, is to be held on Monday, and more protests are expected over the weekend.

Some witnesses have said that the young man was shot while he had his hands up in surrender, while others and police sources allege that he had tussled with the white officer and tried to grab his gun.

AFP Photo/Michael B. Thomas

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Danziger Draws

Jeff Danziger lives in New York City. He is represented by CWS Syndicate and the Washington Post Writers Group. He is the recipient of the Herblock Prize and the Thomas Nast (Landau) Prize. He served in the US Army in Vietnam and was awarded the Bronze Star and the Air Medal. He has published eleven books of cartoons, a novel, and a memoir.

Cruel as this may sound, I'm having a hard time cringing at the internet trolls now going after noisy right-wingers who propagandized against the coronavirus vaccine and then succumbed to the deadly disease.

One was Nick Bledsoe, a car mechanic in Opelika, Alabama. Bledsoe achieved minor celebrity opposing public efforts to contain COVID-19. He petitioned against school mask mandates and turned refusal to get shots into a political statement, negatively linking them to President Joe Biden. Bledsoe died of COVID at age 41, leaving a wife and four children.

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