I got these two
pics of the veteran campaigning journalist
Pilger (he made his name within the pages of the 'Daily Mirror', back
in the days when it was a newspaper) while he spoke. As well as slating
the BBC and CNN for their coverage of the war, he mentioned that the biggest
compliment he'd been paid
recently was being called a "traitor" by 'The Sun' (owned by everyone's
favourite press baron, Rupert Murdoch) which earned him a huge cheer.
He also warned of the 'hawks' on Capitol Hill like Dick Cheney, who'd happily send B-52's over Iraq to carpet bomb Baghdad, thus clearing up business left unfinished in 1991 at the end of the Gulf War (a point all to chillingly raised and hinted at by George W. Bush in a speech to US soldiers) and ultimately creating a new generation of fanatical terrorists in the process.
I had hoped to get
onto the main platform to get a snap of the throng assembled, but the steward
guarding the steps wouldn't let me through. So I got
this pic of some other stewards sharing a
laugh as they saw an old friend of theirs.
If I'd have gotten the focus right, the pic below might have been a minor classic. I noticed four muslim women and one girl listening intently toa Palestinian speaker who said that the US andthe UK should bomb Israel for atrocities carried out by its army in the Gaza Strip (somehow, I just can't see that happening just yet).
Away from the main
crowd, I snapped a couple
in the middle of a heated discussion concerning
what should be done in Afghanistan. The lady was
against the bombing, the bloke in favour of it.
They were both startled by my flash going off,
and then carried on arguing as before.
Despite the cold,
there were still those determined
to enjoy themselves. Here's one of two ladies
I saw juggling in the 'Square to keep warm.
It only it could,
would be a lot different.
Is it one of Daft Punk on a bike? No, it's just a lady protestor wearing a futuristic fireman's helmet.
An unexploded 'daisy
cutter' (capable of incerating any
object within a half-mile radius) left within the 'Square? No, just a cardboard
fascimile perched on a
pile of discarded placards.
The M.P. for Islington North (Jeremy Corbyn) said in a speech earlier that just because the vast majority of Afghans didn't have mobile 'phones and answer machines to record their last messages to their loved ones, it didn't make the grief of losing their loved ones from allied bombing any less than those who grieved for their loved ones lost from the tragic events of September 11th, 2001 (a point casually ignored by the media).
I took this last
pic as I headed back to where I'd chained up
'Red Nev', it sums up what the vast majority
of people assembled feel about what's going on right now.
Watching the news later that evening, I felt disgusted by the miniscule time given to the rally (perhaps if there'd been some aggro there, then it'd been more newsworthy, I guess) and the woefully low figure of just 15,000 (yeah right! I'd say a figure of around 50,000 - minimum - would be a much fairer and accurate estimation in my opinion) given by the police was wheeled out as the gospel truth. Time will tell how this war will turn out. All I know is that far too many families will be grieving as a result of it.
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