Wearing Darth Vader masks, they went on to substitute the Municipal flag with the old Portuguese flag up until 1910, when a bunch of republicans, carrying the red and green flag of the Republican Party, proclaimed the Republic from the same balcony.
These lads made a video of it and post it on the web. It was meant as a joke - a publicity stunt, to call attention to a number of issues. An obvious one, was the lack of security which allowed them to succeed on their peaceful plan.
There were other issues. One probably not on their list was to embellish the Town Hall, but they made that happen as well. :D
There was the issue of lack of discussion on the Portuguese society about the coming celebrations of the 100 years of the Republic, where the State is ready to spend a bundle; the lack of democratic legitimacy of the said Republic which subverted a Lawful State, not to mention the assassination of the Head of State and his oldest son...
Anyways, this kind of public protest in a humoristic way, is not really common is Portugal - a Country that takes it self too seriously.
Taking that in consideration, there was a surprisingly positive reaction from many people, even some who aren't monarchists; but eventually, we had those, who don't bat an eye-lid when reminded of the bloody days of the Republic, foaming at the cheek of those boys.
In a perfect example of how this incipient democracy works - guess what - the authorities didn't like it one bit, and when one of the "Dart Vaders" went voluntarily to return the flag, he was taken by the cops, questioned and made an Arguido - a term you may recall from the McCann case.
Like the Police has no real criminals to chase and nothing better to do...
I don't think this was what George Lucas had in mind when in Star Wars they say "use the force" or "may the force be with you"...
Anyhow, it was the most fun this country had in years!
Just to think of those old republican farts foaming in disbelief, ranting like mad ayatollahs, yes, it was totally worth it!
Obrigado Darth Vaders do 31 da Armada!
To show my solidarity with those brave boys, I am raising the most beautiful flag, here on Bloguistan!