Socialist Worker

Anti-war protest against Western intervention in Iran and Syria

by Siân Ruddick
Issue No. 2287

Protesters at the US embassy in London had a simple message - Don

Protesters at the US embassy in London had a simple message - Don't attack Iran (Pic: Kelvin Williams)

Some 400 people rallied outside the US embassy in London today, Saturday, against any attack and sanctions on Iran and Syria.

The protest drew together long-time peace activists, Iranian and Syrian people living in Britain and people from the Anonymous “hacktivism” group.

People chanted, “We don’t want another war” and “Freedom”.

Speakers from the stage made two key points. The first was that Western military intervention has been a disaster. The second was that sanctions only serve to damage and threaten the lives of ordinary people inside the countries targeted.

The West’s new threats against Iran are drawing new people into the movement.

Andy, a student from south London, came to the protest with some friends. He told Socialist Worker, “I’ve never been involved in anti-war activity but I feel like I have to be now.

“How many wars does the US have to fight to make the world a more dangerous place?

“I find the prospect of war with Iran quite scary, and as people have said here dozens of Western countries are involved at this stage. It won’t achieve anything.”

Labour MP John McDonnell addressed the rally. He said, “This is a dangerous situation. We must not allow them to get away with starting more wars of destruction across the globe. We stand in solidarity with the people struggling for justice in these countries.”

Shirin, an Iranian activist and student at Soas, spoke during the rally about the double standards of the US. “Why are we here? To make sure that history is not repeated.

“We do not want another war anywhere in the world. Let’s think about double standards – the US has the world’s biggest supply of nuclear warheads. It does not care about democracy.”

The Stop the War Coalition called the protest. It is organising a day of action on 11 February to highlight the threats against Syria and Iran and to put pressure on the British government.

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Sat 28 Jan 2012, 20:17 GMT
Issue No. 2287
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