Austin Against This War
- Texans For Peace Austin links http://www.texansforpeace.org/links_Austin.htm
In the place of last known employment for US Prez Bush whose previous job
was Texas Governor:
Austin Passes AntiWar Resolution
Thousands of protesters gathered in Austin on the front steps of the Capitol
building for a rally called "Our World, Their War."
The scene was diverse, just like Austin. Children, students, professionals,
Republicans, and Democrats were all united in their desire for peace.
Thousands Gather at Capitol for Anti-War Rally
About 10,000 Austinites took part in an unprecedented day of worldwide
protest. Millions of people in over 500 cities demonstrated Saturday against
plans for a war on Iraq. Local organizers are expecting the turnout was
larger even than that of recent demonstrations. In just the last 3 weeks,
two Austin anti-war rallies have numbered over 2,000 -- January 28th at the
Congress Avenue bridge, as well as the February 12th student walk out at the
University of Texas. Poll numbers released in the New York Times demonstrate
the growing apprehension with the Bush Administration's push for an attack
that will result in the deaths of tens of thousands of innocent Iraqis and
increase the likelihood of terrorism targeting Americans. Saturday's rally
was emceed by UT Journalism Professor Robert Jensen. Main speakers will
include Congressman Lloyd Doggett, Gulf War veteran Captain Paul Farris,
author and activist Rahul Mahajan, and other representatives of community
and faith-based groups. A coalition of Austin groups working against a war
in Iraq planned Saturday's rally, including Austin Against War, Campus
Coalition for Peace and Justice, and Peace in Austin.
CBS TV Austin Affiliate http://www.keyetv.com/morenews.shtml
Thousands in Austin rally against war
Rally is one of the largest political demonstrations in Austin history
By Dick Stanley and Monica Polanco
Saturday, February 15, 2003
Thousands of people gathered Saturday on the south lawn of the Texas Capitol
for a 90-minute rally in one of the largest political demonstrations in
Then they capped the afternoon protest against a possible U.S. attack to
disarm Iraqi President Saddam Hussein by marching south down Congress
Avenue, under American and Texas flags emblazoned with peace symbols, until
they stretched more than 13 blocks from 11th Street to Barton Springs Road.
Organizers claimed a turnout of more than 10,000 people despite a chilly
wind that was brisk at times. Capitol police declined to estimate or
characterize the crowd, which included both young people and the
middle-aged. But Austin police estimated their number between 8,000 and
10,000 and said they seemed to be a cross-section of area residents. There
were no disturbances or arrests.
"It was an incredible turnout," said University of Texas journalism
professor Robert Jensen, the rally's emcee and one of the organizers of the
event which was timed to match similar ones by millions of people in scores
of cities around the world. "It was a multifaceted group."
Principal among a long list of rally speakers was U.S. Rep. Lloyd Doggett,
D-Austin, who drew cheers when he criticized President Bush.
"Mr. President, the policies you are pursuing in the name of our security
are wrongheaded," Doggett said.
He said there was "no evidence" that Iraq would use weapons of mass
destruction to attack the United States, and that the Bush administration's
policy of first strikes against rogue states in the war on terrorism "is a
formula for international anarchy."
There were similar but smaller rallies in Houston and Dallas. An estimated
3,000 turned out in Houston and between 2,000 and 5,000 in Dallas.
Some of Saturday's protestors in Austin said they were against a war with
Iraq because civilians as well as soldiers could be killed. They said they
didn't think there was enough evidence of Iraqi wrongdoing. But many either
said or carried signs showing that they simply didn't trust the Bush
"It's a war to avenge Daddy," said Amy Lambert, 36, of Austin, referring to
President Bush's father, the former president, who led the nation into the
Persian Gulf War in 1991 to punish Iraq for seizing Kuwait. Iraq was later
linked to a plot to kill the senior Bush during a visit to Kuwait.
Many people brought their children, some only a few months old pushed in
"I want him to learn very young that he needs to participate in public
policy," said Laura Colwell of her 4-year-old son, Julian.
The rally crowd was so large and noisy that, from within its ranks, it was
often impossible to hear the speakers.
There were many homemade signs, as well as professionally printed ones. The
latter included the red and white "American for Peace" signs which have
sprouted in some Austin neighborhoods. Among the homemade signs were: "Draft
SUV drivers to fight," "Disarm the Bush regime," "Relax George," and "Viva
La France," a reference to French opposition to American aims in the U.N.
Many who turned out for earlier, smaller Austin anti-war rallies were there,
such as members of the Green Party, and www.international- socialist.org who
handed out copies of the tabloid "Socialist Worker." A group of young men
with nose rings carried black flags of anarchy and a red and black banner
for the Industrial Workers of the World. Black Muslims handed out fliers
touting an upcoming anti-war speech by Minister Lewis Farrakan.
Some signs turned the S in Bush's name to a Nazi swastika. There were a few
Palestinian kafeyah, or scarves, but the Iraqi and Palestinian flags evident
at a rally in October were missing.
When Saturday's rally ended and the march down Congress Avenue got underway,
the crowd stretched for many blocks. Some banged on drums, rattled gourds
and danced their way south to Barton Springs Road, which was blocked by
police. The Congresss Avenue bridge vibrated under the pressure of the
Deb Eckols, of Austin, said she was encouraged by the large turnout.
"This is awesome," she said. "It looks like the 60's when we protested
against Vietnam." Some of the marchers took over the Congress Avenue Bridge
for about 30 minutes, until they were dispersed by police on motorcycles.
"At the bridge most disbanded," said police spokesman Kevin Buchman. "A few
hundred marched back to the Capitol. We were prepared for trouble, but it
was a very peaceful event."
Small groups of counter protestors gathered on the periphery of the larger
"3,000 Lives Forgotten?," a reference to the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, was
a homemade sign held by a man in a Longhorns shirt and cap. Another man
carrying a "Liberate Iraq" sign was engaged in argument by several
demonstrators. The man, who declined to give his name, said he was there to
"support the president."
Dottie Barnes, 50, of San Marcos said backing President Bush also was her
aim and that of her friends from www.freerepublic.org.
"We're here supporting America," she said.
Terry Liberty Parker
Find 21st Century 'War & Peace' via 'Search'
on my name at: http://www.austin.indymedia.org
Confer at: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/LibertyProspects
WATCH LibertyTV at the 'Links' area of that site
Also, In Austin Every Sunday 6:30pm - ?
I host informal discussion to which all are welcome
who want to talk about ideas & issues of freedom
and Reciprocal Individual Physical Autonomy
at Hickory St Grill on 8th St & Congress Ave
Please consider signing petitions