Tens of thousands march against Blair's wars

Issue 

On February 24, 60,000 anti-war protesters took to the streets of central London in a demonstration against the US-led occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan, and against the threat of military action now hanging over Iran. On the same day, thousands of protesters marched through the streets of Glasgow, demonstrating against the Labour Party's plans to upgrade the Trident nuclear weapons facilities based in the Clyde estuary.

The February 26 Morning Star reported that "More than 60,000 people marched from Hyde Park to Trafalgar Square, blowing whistles and banging drums, while chanting 'Tony Blair — Terrorist!' and 'Troops Out Now!' as part of the national demonstration organised by the Stop the War Coalition [StWC], CND [Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament] and the British Muslim Initiative".

The Star reported that veteran left-winger and peace campaigner Tony Benn told the protesters: "We represent the majority of the British population and the majority of people around the world. We are the voice of tomorrow, and the size of this demonstration shows that our voice cannot be ignored."

The demonstrations in London and Glasgow coincided with further protests by relatives of soldiers killed in Iraq. The February 24 BBC News reported: "Relatives of soldiers killed or serving in Iraq set up a camp outside Downing Street on Friday February 23 to coincide with the StWC protest. They handed in a letter to Mr Blair calling for all British troops to be withdrawn immediately and demanding a meeting with him. Rose Gentle, whose 19-year-old son Gordon, a Royal Highland Fusilier from Glasgow, was killed by a bomb in Basra in June 2004, was among those sleeping in a tent in Whitehall until Sunday morning."

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