Thousands marched today in New York City and in many hundreds of locations across this land. These are the true patriots of our land - the ones who refuse to be silent in the face of the atrocity that is the brutal occupation of Iraq.
In this historic election year, when the fate of our country and the entire world hangs in the balance, we must not and cannot be silent. Up against a rigidly controlled corporate media that keeps the real and hideously ugly truth of this war from the American people, we must redouble our efforts to raise the issue of the war and its connection to the failing economy. The war and its effects must be the central and overarching question of this election. We must thrust it to the center stage of this election year.
As a people and as a nation we cannot move forward until this war has ended. Questions of health care, education, the environment, loss of homes and jobs cannot be solved as long as trillions of dollars are diverted to Iraq and Afghanistan (and, perhaps, Iran?)and as long as spending for arms and the bloated Pentagon budget are allowed to suffocate expenditures for human needs.
Even though two-thirds of the American people are opposed to the war and 70 percent believe the war has hurt the economy, the opinion of U.S. citizens matters not to King George and the power behind his throne, Dick Cheney. Like two swaggering bullies, they brag that their wars are bringing democracy to the world. But when asked recently, on ABC TV, abut the majority of Americans who are opposed to the war, Cheney snapped back arrogantly: "So?"
"CHENEY: On the security front, I think there’s a general consensus that we’ve made major progress, that the surge has worked. That’s been a major success.
ABC-TV's RADDATZ: Two-third of Americans say it’s not worth fighting.
RADDATZ So? You don’t care what the American people think?
CHENEY: No. I think you cannot be blown off course by the fluctuations in the public opinion polls.
With five years of war as the backdrop and under the banner of United For Peace and Justice, New Yorkers lined 14th Street with a human chain, linking arms and holding signs aloft demanding peace and a change in national priorites. The streets echoed with chants of "peace now" and "money for schools, not for war" as the marchers headed inwards from both ends of 14th Street for Union Square where a brief and solemn commemoration of those who have fallen victim to the Bush war and occupaton was held.
Thousands of New Yorkers lined 14th Street demanding an end to the war.
Brooklyn For Peace was well represented.
The two folks flew in from London and joined us on 14th Street.
We reached Union Square along with thousands of others.
This sign said it all.
Not one more death. Not one more dollar.
Speakers urged the assembly to follow up today's demonstration with a pledge to reach out to new people in their communities and broaden the peace movement. A larger peace movement could force Congress to cut the funding and finally end this brual war. To which I say -- Amen!
People want peace!