LOS ANGELES — As locked-out dock workers picketed, chanted and shook signs bearing slogans like "Fight Terrorism, not American Jobs," the scene at West Coast ports Monday was equally chaotic, but eerily silent.

Behind locked terminal gates, roughly 60 cargo ships sat at berth in various stages of unloading. In the waters beyond, motorboats idled in a seaward "picket," a friendly suggestion to tug boat operators, members of the sympathetic International Boatman’s Union, to refrain from moving empty ships out of their berths.

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