Boston–On August 31, 2013, approximately 200 people from very divergent political persuasions gathered at Boston Common to rally against a US military strike on Syria. The Boston demonstration was one of many “nationwide demonstrations opposing military strikes against the Syrian government as President Barack Obama announced he would seek congressional approval for such a move,” according to FOX News.
The event, organized by United for Peace and Justice, made a very strong statement against adding another foreign war to the US repertoire:
The demonstration brought together left wingers, right wingers and the undecided, secular Assad supporters as well as Muslims who weren’t speaking – by their own choice – as the microphone was given to anyone who wanted to make a statement. In spite of all the political confusion and attempts to sort out fact from fiction in the media as well as in alternative media, the people of Massachusetts who converged on Boston all agreed that escalation of war is not in anyone’s best interest.“We the People do not accept another illegitimate War of aggression in our name! We the People do not believe that bombing Syria, or any other overt Act of War, will help the people of Syria. We are demanding that the Nobel Peace Prize-winning Commander-in-Chief, President Barack Obama, cease all threats of aggression against Syria. We are demanding that the People of the United States are not strapped with the burden of another War, a burden that that we bear through our taxes and blood.”
Garret Kirkland, founder of the Massachusetts Pirate Party told TMO, “Does bombing Syria do anything to help the Syrians, when regime change isn’t even on the table? This is punishment, not aid. The people always take the brunt. For the sake of the Syrian people, we need to back off until the international community has come to the table.”
When asked about the Pirate Party platform, Kirkland responded: “We are concerned with 4th Amendment, Freedom of Information, and Transparency in Government.”
Protesters chanted ‘Don’t Bomb Syria! Don’t bomb Syria! Don’t bomb Syria!’ during breaks between speeches that included Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein.
The original plan was to march directly to Fanueil Hall but “everything is fluid on the battlefield,” said Kirkland. Marchers spontaneously redirected their route towards Secretary of State John Kerry’s home on Beacon Hill, knocked on the door and left a handwritten sign that said ‘Stay Out of Syria.’ Kerry was not at that particular property of his many properties, at that time, but photos were taken of protesters from the window.
The anti-war demonstrators then marched on to Faneuil Hall and concluded with a vibrant peace rally.
It was a major victory for anti-war activists that FOX News even covered their event, to the effect that there is a feeling like they actually saved the world. Let’s hope so! It is so important for other people of Massachusetts to realize how important it is to come to Boston Common to express their political opinion every Saturday at Park Street Station, because whatever happens here, whatever YOU want, will be looked upon by the general public as whatever the Founding Fathers would want.
This author was present at the rally. I felt very uncomfortable with some of the Islamophobic language that was used during the rally in support of Assad, including a Syrian flag with Assad’s face on it. One speaker went so far as to say that there are Chechen al Qaeda terrorists in Syria that are connected with the Boston bomber (who has yet to have any evidence demonstrated against him and has not yet been tried).
Luckily the rally represented many different opposing factions that just all agreed to agree we don’t need bombs to solve anything, and they let anyone speak.
Someone should step forward to explain to the Americans about the Syrian resistance against Assad that has been going on for decades. I hope that some Syrians who are part of the Muslim majority will dare to speak in future rallies. The Americans that I spoke to on the sidelines of the demonstration seemed genuinely interested in understanding world politics, but at the same time they also seemed very confused. The good thing was that they have decided to keep their focus on the positive, which means peace on earth and respect for the earth and each other.
We should support political freedom for Syrians without bombing Syria. US bombs are known to be radioactive and cause hideous birth defects as we are seeing in Iraq.
Assad is busy completely obliterating any trace that Syrian history ever existed, to the service of Israel, which views Syria as a suburb, claiming that he is pushing out foreign fighters. The CIA has brought in criminals they call al Qaeda to commit atrocities to undermine the Syrian people’s legitimate struggle for political freedom, not to weaken Assad. Yet it is really ridiculous to refer to a Syrian fighter as al Qaeda and use this slur to dehumanize the majority Syrian population. That some volunteers (and who are they calling foreign?) have come to help defend their cousins, or that CIA mercenaries exist, does not negate the people’s genuine struggle for representational governance.
But we can work that all out later. Right now, we need to counteract those political “experts” like Chandler Atwood and Michael Knights, who are pushing the US to declare war for Israel. Binyamin Netanyahu is the one who is funneling “intelligence” at Obama. “Israel has its own agenda. Should they be trusted here?” writes Kevin Zeese.
163 members of Congress wrote letters to President Obama in order to stall the pending US bombing of Syria. This letter, drafted by Rep. Scott Rigel (R-VA) got 140 signatures, 119 Republicans and 21 Democrats. Rep. Barbara Lee of California also got 53 signers to a letter that calls on the president to seek congressional approval.
The Rigel letter warns Obama that engaging in military action “would violate the Separation of Powers Clause that is clearly delineated in the Constitution.” They also note that the justification for war in Libya also violated the Constitution. The Lee letter warns that “we all swore to uphold and defend” the Constitution; and that we should not engage in an “unwise war – especially without adhering to our own Constitutional requirements.” In their concluding paragraph they warn “Before weighing the use of military force, Congress must fully debate and consider the facts and every alternative.”