Monday, December 29, 2008

Gaza protests

Two quick observations. First of all, there is another protest today between 4 and 6pm, opposite the Israeli embassy at Palace Greens (nearest tube High Street Kensington). I am told that yesterday's was extremely impressive, the successful street occupation resulting in riot cops having to physically remove people from the road. Secondly, the protests across the country yesterday, called at extremely short notice in a holiday, demonstrate the continuing urgency and necessity of the antiwar movement. Granted, it has not had the centrality it once had as the recession has taken hold. But, clearly, the 'war on terror' isn't going anywhere, and neither is Israeli aggression. Obama's signals during this attack clearly indicate that he backs it and will continue to back such aggression once in office. Indeed, it has to be said that he is one of the more extreme supporters of Israel to have entered the White House. So, the antiwar movement still plays a significant role as the major force for humanitarian intervention in British politics. The fact that thousands could be mobilised across the country within 24 hours (pics here, footage here) shows that the lessons that were learned over Afghanistan, Iraq and the Second Intifada, and then again over Lebanon, have not been forgotten.