March 20th, 2010
05:49 PM ET
5 years ago

Anti-war protesters rally near White House; 5 arrested

Anti-war protesters took to the streets of Washington on Saturday.
Anti-war protesters took to the streets of Washington on Saturday.

Washington (CNN) - Chanting "We are the change," hundreds of anti-war protesters gathered across from the White House on Saturday, the seventh anniversary of the war in Iraq.

More than a dozen speakers, including politician Ralph Nader and anti-war activist Cindy Sheehan, addressed the crowd before the group marched through Washington. Protesters delivered symbolic coffins draped with international flags to the offices of Halliburton - a controversial energy services company once helmed by former Vice President Dick Cheney - and the White House.

Police arrested five people after they laid down by the coffins in front of the White House.

"Is the honeymoon over with that war criminal in the Oval Office?" yelled Sheehan during the rally before the march, to shouts of agreement from the crowd. "Why are we giving him a free pass when he didn't deserve it?"

Sheehan, whose son was killed in Iraq, became a household name in August 2005 for protesting outside of former President George W. Bush's Texas ranch. She is now camping out on the grounds of the Washington Monument in an effort to draw attention to her cause.

Saturday's crowd carried signs including "Indict Bush now" and "We need jobs and schools not war."

An Iraq war veteran burned a small American flag on stage while shouting "this is not my country."

Nader called Bush and Cheney "fugitives from justice," while arguing that military action in Iraq and Afghanistan was creating a new generation of enemies against the United States.

Some called for greater funding for education and other priorities, echoed by those attending the rally.

"War is bankrupting this country," said marcher Lisa Savage, who had traveled from Maine where she says her local school district is more than $1 million short on its budget.

"Just a few minutes of the war could pay for that," she said.


Filed under: Cindy Sheehan • Popular Posts
soundoff (104 Responses)
  1. 2z

    Wish I were there. Went to one 2 years ago. They never report the true number of marchers.

    March 20, 2010 07:29 pm at 7:29 pm |
  2. frank

    Seven years with no end in sight. Time to get out. Declare victory and leave.

    Get out of Afghanistan also. $6billion for police and they are as corrupt as ever? Time to go. Its a waste of taxpayer's money.

    Whole war as been a waste. Lives were wasted just like they were in Vietnam.

    March 20, 2010 07:29 pm at 7:29 pm |
  3. Tom in Delaware

    Hey, none of the 40,000 Tea Party protesters got arrested on Capitol Hill today...but I guess since CNN wasn't there they wouldn't know to report it.

    No wonder the Cartoon Network gets higher ratings.

    Go Sponge-Bob Go!

    March 20, 2010 07:29 pm at 7:29 pm |
  4. AG

    scumbag left wing traitors–all of them should be hung.

    March 20, 2010 07:31 pm at 7:31 pm |
  5. Snappy21

    Wow, I did not know Al Qaida has so many supporters in our own back yard.

    March 20, 2010 07:32 pm at 7:32 pm |
  6. sifto77

    As for Dana Bash lying about the racial epitaths from the tea partiers–where is the proof? and where is the video? CNN seems to have videos of everything else they want to prove. If it was there, it would have been a democrat plant, for sure. The CBC has done this on many occasions and tried to blame tea partiers. Anything to get their unconstitutional bill passed. Most sane people do not believe a word of that lie. The CBC still tries to blame whites for the sins of ancestors.

    March 20, 2010 07:34 pm at 7:34 pm |
  7. sifto77

    BTW–it seems like Sheehan is blaming the wrong Pres–did she miss the last election where Obama is Pres?

    March 20, 2010 07:36 pm at 7:36 pm |
  8. Cindy

    I don't disagree with them; war is a heck of a lot more costly than Health Care.

    Let's bring our troops home... in a responsible manner.

    March 20, 2010 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
  9. Kai

    The ludicrous amount of money going to war could easily bail out the country's educational system, and who knows how much of the national deficit. These protesters are right, this war has bankrupted America; before Bush declared war, the US had a surplus and now we're trillions of dollars in debt.

    March 20, 2010 07:44 pm at 7:44 pm |
  10. sherry

    I wonder why the tea baggers who were spitting on one Congressman, spewed out a racial term at Congressman Lewis and a disgusting comment to Congressman Frank were not charged with anything?

    Dana Bash said that the police stood between the baggers and the Congressman, but that they made no arrests in the spitting incident.

    March 20, 2010 07:44 pm at 7:44 pm |
  11. axelve c

    The protestors are right, there was no connection between 9/11 and Iraq and no WMD, the only weapons found, the old chemical artillery shells, were supplied by Rumsfield in the 80s under the direction of Reagan. This is a known fact, we aided Saddam against Iran in the 10 yr war. Iraq became a problem when Saddam used some of the shells on the Kurds in the north as an act of ethnic cleansing.

    So Iraq was a lie and the war there has not made us safer, its been a rallying cry for AQ.

    In total at a minimum these two wars will have cost us $2-3 trillion by the time we pull out. We are already in the hole $1 trillion and that doesn't even include the future cost of replacing equipment lost to war, the medical care for the tens of thousands injured troops, construction of the largest fortress/embassy in the world in Baghdad and the economic cost this war caused by dramatically decreasing oil supplies to the world market. To this day Iraq is still only producing at most 1/3rd of what it was under Saddam.

    We spend close 25% of our budget on the military every year, and our total military spend is equivalent to the total spend of the next 40 countries combined. This is plainly stupid and irrational.

    March 20, 2010 07:45 pm at 7:45 pm |
  12. Anonymous

    Jews are bankrupting this country. Madoff and his kind.

    We are fighting wars to protect Israel.

    March 20, 2010 07:46 pm at 7:46 pm |
  13. rblaz

    This war was based on the lies of the Bush-Cheney gang. I wonder how many billions Halliburton has made off of the blood of American soldiers and Iraqis.

    March 20, 2010 07:48 pm at 7:48 pm |
  14. Steve

    Wow, hundreds of protesters? Why does this story get a front page link while the health care monstrosity protesters are almost ignored despite numbering in the thousands if not tens of thousands? Slanted much, CNN?

    March 20, 2010 07:48 pm at 7:48 pm |
  15. suedatajo

    If seeking peace is an offense , Bush was right for fighting war .Why politicians rant about Bush 's war?The new government promised to pull soldiers as soon as possible and broke the promise . Following the same path as the previous government, sending more troops .Where is the justice!!!!How can citizens trust politicians?.Who gave them right to arrest the freedom of speech>

    March 20, 2010 07:52 pm at 7:52 pm |
  16. jerseylou

    The free past was set in stone at lease a year before the new administration came in.Cheney and Bush did not vote for the wars by them selfs,even though they lied to the counrty why every body should follow their lead. Some body should be held accountable but this Government is not going to let it happen!

    March 20, 2010 07:54 pm at 7:54 pm |
  17. Phil Muse

    This sort of protest is long overdue. Unfortunately, it's not likely to make a big wave. Ever since the armed forces became all-volunteer, wars have been fought by people no one knows on Mainstreet USA. Other people's sons, other people's fathers, other people's husbands have been doing the fighting and the dying. It's harder to generate effective anti-war protest, no matter how unjust or ill-considered that war may be, than it would have been in an era when there were millions of inductees abdeveryone knew someone in uniform.

    March 20, 2010 07:55 pm at 7:55 pm |
  18. Scott

    "Impeach Bush, yada yada yada". If he is to be impeached, then all the other DEMOCRATS that voted to go to war should be tried as well, because they saw the same intelligence that President Bush saw. BTW, I don't know of any cold-hearted tyrants that spend hours alone (except for Secret Service of course) with families of those killed in a war they started. I personally saw President Bush do just that during a visit to Camp Pendleton, so he's either satan himself or a sensitive human being who wanted to understand the pain of families who lost loved ones in a war that he ordered. I don't think you'll find many tyrants who do that. Since this is a forum on CNN, I don't expect any lucid responses to this, but I just thought I would point that out to the world in general. I don't think President Bush is Abraham Lincoln, but I can't help but see some parallels between their Presidency's. Both engaged in unpopular wars that involved freeing people who were enslaved in terrible situations. Both were vilified and ridiculed in the press and popular culture. Both didn't like the idea of war, but saw it as a necessity to preserve freedom in the United States.

    March 20, 2010 08:05 pm at 8:05 pm |
  19. Nobody

    He's out of office. Aren't they happy already?!?

    March 20, 2010 08:09 pm at 8:09 pm |
  20. ronvan

    I am so tired of these "non-americans" always trying to push their own personal agenda on everyone else! Put all of them in jail with a stiff fine for their stupidity!

    March 20, 2010 08:10 pm at 8:10 pm |
  21. polly

    Obama wanted your vote.

    March 20, 2010 08:11 pm at 8:11 pm |
  22. Dale O'Bryant

    You did not mention the number of people at the protest. Any special reason for that?

    March 20, 2010 08:11 pm at 8:11 pm |
  23. wafufu

    To the true patriots ,,,, not the tea baggers.... Revolt against the war is a beautiful cause.....I salute you

    March 20, 2010 08:12 pm at 8:12 pm |
  24. Jackie

    I know what is bankrupting this country fighting wars on behalf of Israeli interests. Even if Saddam did have WMD's he was no threat.
    Israeli lobbyists pushed the war on Iraq feeding our politicans with bogus intelligence. Now thousands of kids are dying and the region is destablized. Now what is next the same lobbyists are pushing for a war against Iran. Far more democratic than apherteid Israel who discriminates and kills Palestinians daily.

    March 20, 2010 08:12 pm at 8:12 pm |
  25. gopwhiners

    Cindy [Sheehan],

    I'm proud of you; I admire you; and my heart & soul go to you!

    And if there were heaven, Pat is there waiting for you!

    March 20, 2010 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
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