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Mass Protests Mark Fourth Anniversary of Iraq War
The United States is entering the fifth year of its occupation of Iraq. To mark the fourth anniversary of the U.S. invasion, tens of thousands of people in cities across the US and the world have taken to the streets in the past few days to protest. The largest US demonstration took place in Washington DC on Saturday where thousands braved below freezing weather to march on the Pentagon.
The United States is entering the fifth year of its occupation of Iraq. On March 19th 2003, the US began dropping bombs on Iraq as thousands of US forces poured across the country's borders. Four years later the occupation continues. In that time, over 3,200 American soldiers have died, many thousands more have been wounded. As many as 650,000 Iraqis have been killed with the number of wounded unknown. Meanwhile Iraq is suffering the worst refugee crisis in the world today. According to the United Nations, some two million Iraqis have fled the country - many of them to neighboring Jordan and Syria. Forty thousand more leave each month. Another 1.9 million are estimated to be internally displaced, driven from their homes by violence and ethnic cleansing.
To mark the fourth anniversary of the US invasion, tens of thousands of people in cities across the US and the world have taken to the streets in the past few days to protest the war.
The largest US demonstration took place in Washington DC on Saturday where thousands braved below freezing weather to march on the Pentagon. Due to bad weather, a number of busses turned back. The rally was organized by A.N.S.W.E.R.--an acronym for "act now to stop war and end racism." Former Congressmember Cynthia McKinney was one of the first speakers. She represented her Georgia district for more than ten years. She was the first African American woman to represent Georgia in the House until she was beaten in last year's Democratic primary. Her target at the antiwar rally was the party she used to represent.
* Cynthia McKinney, former Democratic Congressmember from Georgia.
Other speakers including soldiers, military families and more addressed the rally.
* Michael Berg, son beheaded in Iraq.
* Jonathan Hutto, co-founder of the Appeal for Redress.
* Ramsey Clark, former Attorney General of the United States.
Protests to mark the fourth anniversary of the Iraq invasion are continuing today across the country. In New York peace activists are taking part in mass civil disobedience on Wall Street. We get a report from the protest.
* Frida Berrigan, Senior Research Associate with the Arms Trade Resource Center of the World Policy Institute. She joins us on the phone from the protest.