SOME 240 people packed into Willesden Library, north west London, on Thursday of last week to hear George Galloway and others slam the occupation of Iraq. The meeting, called by Brent Stop the War, drew people who had attended protests during the war and newer forces.
Galloway received a tremendous response as he described the rising resistance within Iraq to the occupation, and when he turned his fire on New Labour and the media forces behind the smear campaign against him.
Those who were not already part of the Stop the War group signed up to be kept in contact. There was a sense that the movement has to continue, opposing the occupation, providing solidarity for the Palestinians and opposing the drive for further wars.
A collection raised over £500. Yvonne Ridley, the anti-war journalist, also spoke alongside Sabah Jawad, an Iraqi oppositionist who wants an end to the occupation.
There were also speakers from the Palestine Solidarity Campaign and the International Solidarity Movement which sends international peace activists to support the Palestinian people.
Speakers from the floor emphasised the unity developed by the anti-war movement and the need to build on that and develop it into a political challenge to New Labour.