The 6th annual March Against The Iraq War - what to expect...
This Saturday, on its sixth anniversary, Washington DC and the Pentagon will be hosting yet another march against the Iraq War. Lefty activists from several sponsoring groups have called on members and supporters from across the country to rally at the Capitol in support of the cause.
I had been planning for over a month to attend the march. But a last minute lower back pinched nerve has me reconsidering the 32 hour round trip bus ride and two-mile march. So my plans have been changed and I'll be looking at a more local event - Chicago or Milwaukee or Madison.
It's a pity though - the antiwar dynamics have changed so much from last year, and this year's promises to be quite different from earlier marches. So in the proud American tradition of armchair quarterbacking I thought I'd take this chance to post some pre-march observations.
So for what it's worth here's my predictions -
1) With Bush out of office the numbers in the march will drop dramatically. Many, many people were motivated to go to previous marches simply because they detested him.
2) War news has been bumped to the back pages - both literally and in the minds of many Americans - displaced by stories of economic doom. Not only are people distracted out of participating, but a number who would go just won't be able to afford the trip. Even the $110 organized bus runs might be beyond those who normally take the cheap seats.
3) Further dwindling the numbers is Obama's Presidency. Many in the antiwar camp will not make this march simply because they want to believe in Obama and don't want to be seen as undermining him. Hell, some of them may even join with the counter protesters.
Also worth noting here is that when Bush was President people marched on the White House. This year they are marching on the Pentagon (though part of that is likely due to the defense budget breaking $1trillion).
3) Last year there were about 50,000 marchers. With the above taken into consideration my guess is the maximum number this year MIGHT be 15,000, but even that is a stretch. In actuality, it won't even hit 10,0000.
4) The people left in the march will be the most virulent antiwar/anti capitalist - communists and anarchists are my guess, joined by a hefty number of agents provocateurs. That they will be marching outside of the center of American's military machine should make for some interesting news, many arrests and great visuals.
5) The mainstream media won't care - members of both the left and right can agree with me on this. Because the government and corporate bodies aren't spoon feeding them info, the MSM won't find it worth attending.
Anyhow, that's how I see it. Come Sunday I will be ready wither accept lumps, dispense I told you so's or discover the march was the greatest nothing of 2009.