October 7: Protesting of 8 years of War, Occupation of Afghanistan

By Debra Sweet 

Rush hour commuters mixed with more than 100 people protesting 8 years of US occupation of Afghanistan at Grand Central Terminal Wednesday evening.  World Can't Wait staged two wedding party "die-ins" to draw attention to US/NATO bombings of weddings and civilians in Afghanistan.

 
Police quickly yanked the "dead" from the floor, and confiscated props, telling us we could not distribute flyers.  While World Can't Wait held 3 similar protests in the last year without much police interference, we noted that 4 police commanders in whites were directing the major police operation against this protest. Two men with War Resisters League were arrested for dropping banners which read; "Afghanistan" and "ENOUGH." 
 
Wall Street Journal featured the protest, as did local TV, and newspapers around the country picked up photos.  More on Flickr.  The War Resisters League, Veterans for Peace, Granny Peace Brigade, Activist Response Team and Brooklyn for Peace united in the action.
 
Protests were held in Denver, San Francisco, Chicago and other cities.  Students for a Democratic Society held anti-war protests around the country on Wednesday.  In Rochester NY, about 40 rallied to demand an end to US occupations of Iraq & Afghanistan, and an end to the militarization of Rochester public schools.  Their peaceful, musical, youthful march was surrounded by 27 police cars.  The first of 12 to be arrested was one of the few African American marchers.  2 marchers required medical attention, as the police pulled out clubs and beat people away from standing on a sidewalk.