Posted by CODEPINK Staff
Short Report-Back from CODEPINK roseroots organizer and SF-based activist Rae Abileah
We had a wonderful contingent in the ANSWER coalition march today with activists from all corners of the Bay Area, Sacramento, Monterey/Carmel, Lake Tahoe area, and we were even joined by CODEPINK Boulder/Denver coordinator Anne Toepel who happened to get off the subway in SF and find herself (with her luggage!) in the rally downtown. She promptly reached into her suitcase and donned her CODEPINK sweatshirt and joined our march! Now that's spontaneous PINKing!
Click here to see vibrant pink photos from our CODEPINK contingent in the SF march on the anniversary of the invasion of Iraq today!
Heather, Nancy, and I spoke at the rally and we sang the Yes We Can Can with a stage full of PINKs. I thought we had the perfect spot in the march--we were behind the brass marching band which played upbeat music, and alongside Gabriella Network; one of their organizers had a bullhorn and led great women's chants. We also marched side by side with Jewish Voices for Peace and near the FMLN (who recently celebrated an amazing victory in El Salvador winning the presidency and hosted a great victory party at the Women's Building in SF tonight). CODEPINK tabled at the civic center where the march ended and gave away homemade baked goods and good literature.
At the final rally there was a pro and anti palestine rally face-off with riot gear police in between the two groups, At the end of the march as we were leaving at the Bart (subway), Heather and I witnessed 4 pro-war provocateurs taunting protesters and ultimately resorting to hate speech to target a group of pro-Palestine youth; the two groups got into an altercation and when the police finally showed up, they came in riot force, blocked off the area, and arrested the youth, letting the 4 provocateurs walk free. It was, in my opinion, a discriminatory, racist call by the SFPD and the hate offenders were not held accountable, at least not yet but I hope this case will come to trial. Many of us took video and photo.
Today's march followed Thursday's day of actions all around the Bay Area at Bart stops, which was coordinated by United for Peace and Justice. There were two direct actions that day blocking Market St.
Kudos and thanks to the awesome CODEPINKers who brought so much energy, joy, vision for a more peaceful world, to today's action, and all-ways!