Around 900 people attended a public meeting organised by Merseyside Stop the War Coalition in Liverpool on Monday of last week.
Tony Benn, Mohammed Anara from the Palestinian TUC, and John Rees spoke at the event.
It was the largest meeting of its kind in Liverpool since Merseyside Stop the War held a rally with George Galloway three years ago at the height of the Iraq war.
There was a wide variety of people in the audience, including trade unionists, Labour Party members, Respect members, as well university students new to activism.
During the day Mohammed Anara had visited trade union branches with PCS representatives to raise money in virtue of economic sanctions imposed on Palestine. Over £2,100 was raised in total at the meeting.
Tony Benn described the strength of the anti-war movement in Merseyside and nationwide, and affirmed that resistance to war is as right as it ever has been.
John Rees spoke of the hypocrisy of David Cameron’s remarks about “Muslim ghettoes”.
Indeed, activists at the meeting began to make moves to organise a protest outside Eton – the ghetto of the rich and privileged!
There was a palpable sense of optimism and unity among activists at the meeting, with many wanting to help build the movement, especially given the crisis facing Bush and Blair.
It was stressed how the failure of the occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan has led to increased Islamophobia, and Stop the War’s People’s Assembly on 18 November was highlighted as a vital date for the movement.