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Hundreds march against NATO

By staff |
April 1, 2019
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March against NATO in Washington DC.
March against NATO in Washington DC. (Fight Back! News/Staff)

Washington DC – Hundreds of people gathered in Lafayette Square, a park opposite the White House, March 30, to respond to the call to action against NATO, racism and war. The organizers also strongly emphasized the slogan “Hands off Venezuela” to protest the Trump administration and NATO’s attempts to overthrow the democratically-elected government of Nicolás Maduro.

The park was full of banners, signs and flags held by protesters who loudly cheered and chanted throughout the program. The chants ranged from, “Hands off Venezuela” to “How do you spell racist? N-A-T-O!”

The speakers each masterfully highlighted the importance of opposing NATO and U.S. intervention from the lens of the struggle their group was taking on. Groups represented movements from labor, national liberation, queer rights, student activism and more.

Elizabeth Kramer, a member of Tampa Bay Students for a Democratic Society, spoke on how young people can be and should be involved in the anti-imperialist movement. She also touched upon why displaced people move to the United States, “The domestic and foreign policy of the U.S. reflect each other: the internal war of the U.S. against immigrants and working people is reflected outside of the U.S. and vice versa. Many people immigrate because the United States and other NATO powers bomb or starve them to end progressive governments and exploit their resources and labor.”

Cassia Laham, a member of the Freedom Road Socialist Organization and a leading member of UNAC, began her speech by having the crowd face the White House and chant, “1-2-3-4 we won’t fight a rich man’s war!” She continued by telling the crowd of her experience marching against the war and occupation in Iraq when she was 17, and the lesson she learned from her years organizing against imperialism. “Building the anti-war movement is only half of our job. The other half requires us to build toward a system in which the people are in power, not the one percent. The one percent are the only ones who profit from wars of exploitation, and so they'll continue to wage war. But the people have nothing to gain. So we must strive for a government controlled by the working people. And that is why we stand in solidarity with the Bolivarian revolution in Venezuela, because the working people there are taking power there and are creating the society we strike for. And that scares the crap out of the politicians in D.C.!" You can see her full speech here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5LNNn7rO5rk

The march took the hundreds that gathered in the park and set them into the streets of D.C. The protesters loudly chanted as they passed onlookers. The route had the protesters stop by different prominent buildings that were connected to NATO, imperialism, and other symbols of oppression. Once they got back to the starting location, there were a few more speeches to close a militant and successful day.

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