Thousands across U.S. march for peace Bay Area: Largest war protest since conflict started in 2003

Kathleen Sullivan, Christopher Heredia and Todd Wallack, Chronicle Staff Writers

Sunday, September 25, 2005


It was a sunny day in the Bay Area, a picture-perfect day to cheer for the A's, enjoy a blues festival, take part in a parade celebrating electronic music, or join peace marches in San Francisco and Walnut Creek.

Patti Breitman of Fairfax chose to march in San Francisco in support of ending the war in Iraq. A sense of determination united with grief on Saturday, as she happened upon a display of 40 posters, set up on the grassy median strip on Dolores Street, showing pictures of Americans and Iraqis felled in the war.

The posters contained 2,400 images, including photographs of American soldiers, each identified by name, and drawings representing Iraqi men, women and children, also identified by name.

"I think it's the most poignant sign in the entire demonstration," said Breitman, 51.

The march began at 12:30 p.m. at Dolores Park and ended about two hours later at Jefferson Square Park.

The event drew about 20,000 people, according to police. Organizers put the figure at closer to 50,000. Either way, it was one of the region's largest anti-war demonstrations since the United States invaded Iraq more than two years ago.

Though San Francisco police Sgt. Neville Gittens said the protest overall was peaceful, 24 arrests were made. Twenty-three of those arrested, he said, were members of the anarchist group Black Bloc and were taken into custody several blocks from the park -- near the intersection of Fulton and Hyde streets -- at 4:30 p.m., after most of the protesters had gone home.

One suspect had two daggers and faces felony concealed weapons charges, but Gittens said the 22 others were arrested for failing to obey a traffic officer. They were all pedestrians disrupting traffic, he said.

One other person not connected with that group was arrested on a misdemeanor charge of assaulting a police officer near Jefferson Park, Gittens said. No one was injured.

In Walnut Creek, 250 to 300 people marched from the city's BART station to Heather Farms Park in a protest that began at 11 a.m. and ended around 2 p.m.

Protesters on both sides of the bay called on the United States to withdraw its troops from Iraq. In San Francisco, people carried signs expressing outrage at a variety of issues, including the war in Iraq, the policies of President Bush and the treatment of Palestinians.

"Military Recruiters Lie, Our Children Die," said one sign. "Make Levees, Not War," said another, referring to the devastation wrought by Hurricane Katrina.

A sixth-grader from San Jose held a handmade sign that said "No war ever more" on one side and "No war anymore" on the other.

"I am going to be a conscientious objector,'' said Dominic Dello Buono, 11, who was there with his father and younger sister. "I vote for peace not war."

Maryjane Jota, a 20-year-old student from Laney College in Oakland, prepared to help carry a procession of black coffins, built to represent Iraqi children who have died in the conflict.

Jota said she is frustrated that the war hasn't ended, despite numerous protests over the years.

At least a half-dozen counter-protesters, including a group of college Republicans from San Francisco State University, turned out to support the military effort in Iraq. One held a handmade sign that said "Hey, losers. Stop demoralizing the troops."

Another said he thinks the U.S. military will need to remain in Iraq for years to help the country establish a democracy. He said he thought most of the protesters were radicals who wanted to overthrow the U.S. government.

"There is a different way to peace,'' said Leigh Wolf, 19, a broadcast major. "This war can come to an end with patriotism instead of a socialist revolution."

For Julie Stevens Manson of Novato, the way to peace was folding red, white and blue cranes, using the Japanese paper-folding technique known as origami, then stringing them on fishing wire, hanging them from plastic crossbars, and taking to the streets.

Manson, 64, was one of several people taking turns carrying the 10 heavy crossbars, from which streamers of cranes dangled and danced. Each crane contained the name of an American soldier killed in Iraq.

In Walnut Creek, the anti-war march also drew a wide range of people -- kids to seniors -- holding peace signs. Many drivers honked noisily as they drove by marchers on Ygnacio Valley Road, though some gave a thumbs-down sign or a middle finger.

A 52-year-old lawyer said she joined the protest because of her outrage at the federal government's sluggish response to Hurricane Katrina. Faith Brewer said she thought the problem was exacerbated because too many resources were diverted to Iraq.

"Too many people died in New Orleans because of the war in Iraq,'' she said. "People tend to think that nobody here is against the war in Iraq -- that all the leftist, peaceniks are in San Francisco,'' she said.

Others held signs supporting peace and a pullout of Iraq. One said "Moms against the War." Another said "Peace is Patriotic."

Sondra Runyan, who has a daughter in the Coast Guard, said she worried that Americans have become inured to the news of soldiers dying in Iraq.

"It seems when you turn on the radio, they mention we lost two or three soldiers, and then they're off to the sports scores,'' said Runyan, 47, of Martinez. "People are immune to the pain these families are going through."

Contra Costa County Supervisor Mark DeSaulnier, who attended the rally, said he plans to propose a resolution next month in support of congressional legislation to set a deadline to withdraw U.S. forces from Iraq.

"I don't see this as being out of mainstream,'' DeSaulnier said, as he looked over the crowd. "It may be the tip of the iceberg." He added: "If enough local electeds speak out, we could be saving lives.''

Informant: Steven L. Robinson

From ufpj-news


User Status

Du bist nicht angemeldet.




September 2005

Aktuelle Beiträge

Wenn das Telefon krank...
//groups.google.com/g roup/mobilfunk_newsletter/ t/6f73cb93cafc5207   htt p://omega.twoday.net/searc h?q=elektromagnetische+Str ahlen //omega.twoday. net/search?q=Strahlenschut z //omega.twoday.net/ search?q=elektrosensibel h ttp://omega.twoday.net/sea rch?q=Funkloch //omeg a.twoday.net/search?q=Alzh eimer //freepage.twod ay.net/search?q=Alzheimer //omega.twoday.net/se arch?q=Joachim+Mutter
Starmail - 8. Apr, 08:39
Familie Lange aus Bonn...
//twitter.com/WILABon n/status/97313783480574361 6
Starmail - 15. Mär, 14:10
Dänische Studie findet...
//omega.twoday.net/st ories/3035537/ -------- HLV...
Starmail - 12. Mär, 22:48
Schwere Menschenrechtsverletzungen ...
Bitte schenken Sie uns Beachtung: Interessengemeinschaft...
Starmail - 12. Mär, 22:01
Effects of cellular phone...
//www.buergerwelle.de /pdf/effects_of_cellular_p hone_emissions_on_sperm_mo tility_in_rats.htm [...
Starmail - 27. Nov, 11:08


Online seit 6742 Tagen
Zuletzt aktualisiert: 8. Apr, 08:39