Tepid war protest draws two dozen

About two dozen people gathered on four downtown Palo Alto street corners at noon today to protest the war in Iraq, which began five years ago today.

Several people held a large banner, "Out of Iraq Now" at Emerson Street and University Avenue. Others held signs at the three other corners at Emerson and University, prompting supportive motorists to loudly honk as they drove by.

One man yelled an obscenity from a passing truck, but many drivers and their passengers waved at the demonstrators.

Not only people carried signs. Marley, a small, black poodle, had a sign on his back, "Peace, Please." He was accompanied by his owner, Nora Kruzic.

"I didn't want to think it would be five years when it started, but I did (think that)," Paul George, director of the Peninsula Peace and Justice Center in Palo Alto, said.

George said he started using the word "quagmire" but others claimed, "No, it will be quick." He noted that almost 4,000 Americans have been killed in Iraq and there is "no end in sight" for the war.

George handed out leaflets to passersby while others held signs and waved to motorists who honked and waved back in support. The leaflets urged people to call their congressman or congresswoman to ask to stop funding the war effort.

"I want to protest this horrid war," Hershey Julien of Palo Alto said while holding a sign. "Why the Congress keeps passing funding for it, I don't know."

A candlelight vigil marking the fifth anniversary of the start of the war will be held at 7 p.m. tonight in King Plaza, 250 Hamilton Ave.

Demonstrations across the country also marked the fifth anniversary of the war. In San Francisco, 115 protestors had been arrested by mid-afternoon as demonstrations continue there.


Like this comment
Posted by Wondering
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Mar 20, 2008 at 4:39 am

And why is this "news"?

Like this comment
Posted by perspective
a resident of Midtown
on Mar 20, 2008 at 6:18 am

I suspect most folks now understand that a protest about Iraq is a protest against democracy for Iraqis, that a precipitous leave now means more Iraqis die than if we stay and the likelihood of a return to a dictatorship increases, that if we had never gone in the Iraqis would still be dying at an average death rate FROM SADDAM of 60-70,000 per year, and the Middle East, world and us would still be at high risk from Saddam's determination to support terrorism, through all means possible, not the least of which was paying $25,000 to the families of homicidal bombers who killed Israelis.

Kind of the wrong side of the argument to be on for people who live in the USA with all its freedoms and security.

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