March 20th, 2010
05:49 PM ET
10 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. Denna

    And where were you when Bush started these wars. Oh, I know, you were making fun of the French because they would not follow us into Iraq for no good reason. Remember "freedom fries"? You can't just wind down a war, pack up your tent and go. We will get out as soon as possible. If you could be patient for what, 5 years, you can be patient a little longer.

    As to the war bankrupting this country – we never had the money to fight either war, but hey, that was okay because we are the 'Mighty U.S.". And it was kind of Cheney and Bush to hide the cost of the war so that we wouldn't be upset. Poor President Obama, trying to be honest, put the costs out there for us to see. Maybe he should be lying to us too.

    March 20, 2010 08:14 pm at 8:14 pm |
  2. cspurgeon

    Everybody needs to settle down and support instead of tear down. I want out of those wars too but this kind of stuff is just fedding hate and bad feelings. Will the middle please step up and take back the country back to sanity.

    March 20, 2010 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  3. M J

    Why do only anit-war protesters get arrested while Teabaggers get a free pass?

    March 20, 2010 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  4. Right and wrong...

    She is right and wrong... The war has bankrupted the country, caused thousands of casualties and created enemies... But.. We didnt start this war! Saddam Hussain did when he harbored terrorists and defied numerous UN resolutions after he tried to annex a country.

    Can we sit back after the monstrousity of 9/11 and let countries like Iraq and Iran commit crimes against humanity by commiting genocide against their own people and eventually allow sub groups to dominate their country and create terror in other parts of the world? Although I feel for Sheehan, this war and the war in Afganistan are completely justified. We cant sit back anymore and allow countries to harbour and plan attacks against free countries. No more can we allow another 9/11.. Iran must now be the next country that the UN completely cleans up....

    March 20, 2010 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  5. Change

    Did you think things would get better with the current President? Think again! Until we curb all spending the economy will not pick up. War spending is not making things any better. The trillion dollars that the health care bill will cost is also a problem. Cut government spending in half and give debit cards to everyone who pays taxes. Let the people decide how to spend their money. It makes no sense that 47% of households do not pay taxes. Everyone should pay something. If you make $1 you should pay some tax.

    March 20, 2010 08:19 pm at 8:19 pm |
  6. brandon

    All those protesters are out there because they are racists! They dont like president barack obama because he is black.

    March 20, 2010 08:20 pm at 8:20 pm |
  7. bill

    where were these protesters.when bush chaney dumsfeld invaded iraq its their right to protest but PUT BLAME FOR THIS FIEASCO ON BUSH.

    March 20, 2010 08:22 pm at 8:22 pm |
  8. Jax

    I'm tired of this country's BS! It makes me sick to think of all the lives and money wasted in Iraq and Afghanistan! They can't give people good health care or give school's the funding they need. They aren't doing anything about people in this country needing jobs and so on and so on. But they sure can go to war and spend billions of dollars putting us in debt... complete BS! Something has to change.

    March 20, 2010 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
  9. whatmeworry

    'Indict Bush'?? Obama could have pulled out the second he took office. Oh that's right, blame him for everything.

    March 20, 2010 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
  10. LIP

    Halliburton...once helmed by Dick Cheney, but started way back with Bill your research. It only became Cheney's when everyone had forgotten where it originated. Bill brought them on board first.

    March 20, 2010 08:30 pm at 8:30 pm |
  11. Fred

    These people are wacked... They balk at soldiers dying in Iraq, yet they support abortion that kills 100 times the americans that have died in all the Gulf conflicts combined....

    March 20, 2010 08:40 pm at 8:40 pm |
  12. Doris V

    I am against the wars but I can't understand the remark by Cindy Sheehan. Obama inherited this mess. Yes, I'm upset about the sennding of more troops to Afghanistan but if they are truly trying to befriend the people and get them some help other than military stuff, I think we are going in the right directionin. Attended a war protest today in Albuquerque, NM. Despite the fact that it snowed and was still rather cold, we had a few hundred hardier folks. We need to let the administration know that we are not happy about the wars continuing. Want health care, clean energy, jobs, good education for all and many other things for the USA and all the Earth's peoples.

    March 20, 2010 08:45 pm at 8:45 pm |
  13. Anonymous

    Obama a war criminal?? seems about right..impeachment now

    March 20, 2010 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
  14. obama is a loser

    obama a war criminal?? seems about right..impeachment now!!

    March 20, 2010 08:51 pm at 8:51 pm |
  15. dholden

    Hundreds of anti-war protesters?????

    How many tea party participants were up at the capitol??

    March 20, 2010 08:57 pm at 8:57 pm |
  16. rupp

    There are 30,000 people in Washington, DC today protesting the health care bill right now. It’s not a headline. A couple of hundred show up for this poorly attended war protest and its covered. No wonder the cartoon network pulls more ratings than CNN.

    March 20, 2010 08:58 pm at 8:58 pm |
  17. Blow hards

    What a waste of human skin. Take that Iraq veteran and shoot him. I also am a veteran of that war. Look what has happened there. Democracy. Sheehan should be ashamed of herself.

    March 20, 2010 08:59 pm at 8:59 pm |
  18. AtlanticCoast

    Someone needs to put Cindy Sheehan out of her misery!

    March 20, 2010 09:03 pm at 9:03 pm |
  19. LCaps

    The Maine woman has no idea how the education system works. The States are responsible for education, but in an effort to improve national education, Bush increased school funding over 1100%!! Why do people try to lay all blames at teh feet of the Federal government? Do they not realise that the problems often lay at the feet of the States? Do they not realise that we MUST defend our foriegn investment and the 4 Trillion dollars that it contributes to our economy? Don't they not realise that War creates jobs, and is the leading cause of technological change in this nation? Just a little effort focused on research and understanding goes a lot further than the same effort put into protesting. As far as being there. . . after they have built a school, found chemical weapons, fed starving children, and done their best to stop the violence that is culturally bound to the region, then they have EARNED the rights they have been given.

    March 20, 2010 09:03 pm at 9:03 pm |
  20. usualone

    If Cindy Sheehan had any credibility, she lost it at this demonstration. Her anger at the loss of her son is not providing fruit; it just shows her bitterness. Ralph Nader has always been this type of individual too. Their ranting is useless.

    March 20, 2010 09:06 pm at 9:06 pm |
  21. Greg F.

    Cindy Sheehan makes me sick. I've heard so much about how she has 'utilitzed' her son's honorable death on the field of battle to support the anti-war cause. She dishonors him by acting like a complete idiot.

    March 20, 2010 09:09 pm at 9:09 pm |
  22. UNIDOC

    What is war good for? (Other than bankrupting the country, polarizing the masses, and being inhumanly cruel)

    March 20, 2010 09:17 pm at 9:17 pm |
  23. Bob in Pa

    Thank you Mr. Rokus. I needed a good laugh today.

    March 20, 2010 09:18 pm at 9:18 pm |
  24. pete the truth

    These people don't have a clue. Iraq had 16 resolutions that were passed by the UN and Saddam and his cronies just blew it off. They violated the No Fly Zone, tortured, killed 100's of thousands and were a threat to stability in the Middle East. Didn't Iraq start the Iraq-Iran War and invade Kuwait? Then Afghanistan! The world was all up in arms when the Taliban was blowing up Buddhas and torturing and subjecting women to dog like status! If the world was a perfect place with fuzzy little animals and pretty flowers we wouldn't have to go to war! But since the dawn of civilization there has always been wars, just like there will always be criminals. It's Good against Evil! Remember what General T. Sherman said "War is hell"!

    March 20, 2010 09:19 pm at 9:19 pm |
  25. Jerry

    This just what the bad guys want. Like Vietnam. Turn Americans into a bunch of peacenuts and we will lose the war.

    March 20, 2010 09:27 pm at 9:27 pm |
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