Hollywood saw in the 8th anniversary of the official start of the Iraq war with a demonstration numbering in the mid thousands against the the Bush led American invasion. The action was organized by the ANSWER Coalition of Los Angeles and it was joined by groups as diverse as 911 truth advocates, CODEPINK, Iraq and Afghanistan Vets Against the War, Ron Kovich, Military Families Speak Out, Gold Star Families for Peace, California Wellness Centers, Los Angeles Jews for Peace and a wide swath of Los Angeles Social Justice groups.
The police were restrained with bike cops being the main presence.
There was a camaraderie in the air as the old and new guard came together to stand up for human rights and the ending of the 8 year war.
One person pointed out to this photographer that the protests were in danger of becoming an annual festival as opposed to a desperate and firmly enunciated mass response to the Bush and Obama foreign policies. 8 years is far more than the American public bargained for at the start of the war.
Perhaps it is old news now.
Public polling however as of late shows that the American public is against continuing these wars.
The day was overcast and that can always be a factor in lower outdoor public turnouts.
Overall the energy of the day was high for the the core of the protesters but after having witnessed florid and highly kinetic demonstrations such as the march through Silverlake /Hollywood that occurred on the eve of the Proposition 8 Marriage law vote; this was tame by comparison.
It begs the question as to just what is needed to evince mass reaction to our foreign misadventures. Does the public really care anymore ? Has the war lost it's relevance to our everyday lives even though it is probably bankrupting the country ?
Although speakers such as Blaise Fontaine of KPFK cited the then commencing Libyan involvement very few if any signs among the protesters reflected any awareness of it.
A civil resistance "sit in" action was taken on the property of the Manns Chinese Theater by what appeared to be families of soldiers.
There was a fragmented quality to the Saturday actions. Under the banner of war cessation there was a plethora of other issues such as school cutbacks, union protection, immigration issues, children's rights, animal rights, chem trails, 911 truthers, christian proselytizers, marriage rights, aid for Japan and many more.
All in all, there was however a call throughout the crowd for all of our wars to end.
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