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A socialist newsweekly published in the interests of working people
Vol. 73/No. 12      March 30, 2009


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Imperialist troops out of Afghanistan, Iraq!
Marchers demand end to wars, deportations
(lead article)
Militant/Jorge Lertora
More than 800 people march in Chicago March 14 to protest six years of U.S.-led wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, Israeli assault on Gaza, and attacks against immigrants.

CHICAGO—More than 800 people marched through the largely Mexican communities of Little Village and Pilsen on the South Side here March 14 demanding: “Stop the occupations now” in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Palestine, and “Stop the government’s war against immigrants!”

The action to protest the sixth anniversary of the U.S.-led war in Iraq was marked by hundreds of youth who participated.

A contingent from the March 10th Committee, an immigrant rights coalition, kicked off the march holding banners demanding "legalization for all." Hundreds of flyers were distributed to promote this year's May Day demonstration.

They were followed by a lively contingent of Palestinians from Chicago and nearby Bridgeview, Illinois, organized by American Muslims for Palestine. They carried flags and banners in solidarity with Palestinians in Gaza and against the assault by the Israeli military earlier this year and also against the U.S.-led imperialist wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Other contingents came from area high school and college campuses.

“We came to show that there are still wars,” said Abdul-Aziz Hassan, who works at Lawndale High School in Little Village and came with a group of students. “Troops are leaving Iraq, but they are still in Afghanistan and Palestine. We are going to be in the streets until we get what we want, rights for immigrants and to get the troops out.”

“It’s important to have a march that brings together the antiwar and immigrant rights movement,” said Chris Poulos, a member of Students Against the War at Northeastern Illinois University. “That’s what builds a mass movement, bringing all the issues together.”

Some participants came from other parts of the Midwest, including Iowa and Minnesota.

“It has been a long six years of a terrible and unjust war in Iraq,” said Melissa Goodemote, who came with a friend from the Urbana-Champaign area, where she is a student at the University of Illinois. Both Goodemote and her friend demonstrated in Washington, D.C., January 10 against Israel’s assault on Gaza.

Alyson Kennedy contributed to this article.
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