There was a large national rally last weekend to protest continued funding by the United States for the war in Ukraine. This event was one of the most politically diverse rallies in recent history.
The rally speakers came from all political backgrounds, from the likes of the Conservative Libertarian Ron Paul to Tulsi Gabbard to left-leaning war-correspondent Chris Hedges to former Green Party Presidential candidate Jill Stein. The far left-leaning anti-war group Code Pink was also present, but their co-founder Medea Benjamin was pressured by her organization to drop off the speaker list because they were not comfortable with Benjamin sharing a stage with right wing personalities.
See our interviews with Protest Speakers and guests here. CLICK VIDEO BELOW FOR INTERVIEWS (and scroll down to bottom for full rally, including speeches).
According to the rally press release: “The US has instigated World War Three in Ukraine. NATO and the US are at war with nuclear superpower Russia. Countless thousands are being slaughtered for empire. Billions of taxpayer dollars are being torched at the altar of US hegemony, the Military Industrial Complex, and a corrupt Congress. The Doomsday Clock is closer to Midnight than ever before. Nuclear war threatens to kill nearly all life on Earth.”
The rally in front of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington D.C. was largely ignored by the Main Stream Media and dubbed a “Pro-Putin” rally. This is inaccurate- the protest made no mention of Putin and was a balanced assortment of peaceful people asking for an end to war. In fact, it was one of the most peaceful protests this reporter has attended in the past three years. Over five American political parties came together for a cause. There were conservative people there that attended the January 6th protest and progressive people who attended the Women’s March. It really was incredible to witness.
The legendary Ron Paul addresses the crowd.
The rally was organized by the Libertarian Party and The People’s Party. The crowd at the rally were a truly diverse bunch of about three thousand participants from all political backgrounds. There were MAGA hat wearers, conservatives, die-hard libertarians, members of the Green Party, progressives and Democrats all demanding “Not One More Penny for War in Ukraine”.
Jill Stein of the Green Party, Tulsi Gabbard (Independent), Ron Paul of the Libertarian Party, Dennis Kucinich of the Democrat Party, and Nick Brana of the People’s Party.
Leftist rally speakers were definitely baffled yet thankful for the heavy conservative rally-goer turnout.
“It’s just so weird,” said Code Pink’s Media Benjamin (a darling of what many people consider the far left). “The people who I thought were the peacemakers were the progressives and the Democratic Party, but on this one they’ve become pro-war. So I don’t align ideologically with the people in Congress who are calling for an end to the weapons, but I want to get everybody in Congress to say that. And I think the polls are shifting that show now that it’s only 48% of Americans in the latest AP poll that want to sent more weapons to Ukraine. That means the majority of American people either don’t or don’t understand. And that means that Congress and the White House are totally out of sync with what the American people are thinking now.”
The left-leaning Benjamin continued:
“It’s absolutely bizarre, I never thought I’d see this happen. I always thought that the people that I have been aligned with for decades now—people like Barbra Lee from California who was against the US military response to the 9/11 attacks—you know, I thought people like her, like “The Squad”, they would be the ones… the progressive caucus which has 100 members of Congress. But when they came out with their letter with 30 people signing it, and then withdrew it within 24 hours, it’s been really hard to get any of them to speak out.”
Tulsi Gabbard speaks to the crowd.
I don’t agree with Matt Gaetz about anything related to domestic issues,” said Max Blumenthal of The Grey Zone. “But his (Gaetz) bill, the Ukraine Fatigue Act, is a breath of fresh air. And what we’re doing, those of us who come from the left, is that we’re hounding the squad. Because they’re supposed to do the same thing, but it turns out they’re controlled by the Uniparty.
Gaetz’s bill calls for the United States to halt additional military and financial aid to Ukraine. Congressman Gaetz was joined by fellow members of “The Freedom Caucus”. The following original co-sponsors on the “Ukraine Fatigue” Resolution: Reps. Andy Biggs (AZ-05), Lauren Boebert (CO-03), Paul Gosar (AZ-09), Marjorie Taylor Greene (GA-14), Anna Paulina Luna (FL-13), Thomas Massie (KY-04), Mary Miller (IL-15), Barry Moore (AL-02), Ralph Norman (SC-05), and Matt Rosendale (MT-02).
“It seems like the logical left is more aligned with the “far-right” Freedom Caucus than their own party.” said a rally-goer.
The 10 demands are listed on the front page of the organizers’ website. They are:
1) Not One More Penny for War in Ukraine
2) Negotiate Peace
3) Stop the War Inflation
4) Disband NATO
5) Global Nuclear De-Escalation
6) Slash the Pentagon Budget
7) Abolish the CIA and Military-Industrial Deep State
8) Abolish War and Empire
9) Restore Civil Liberties
10) Free Julian Assange
Speakers included: Tulsi Gabbard, Ron Paul, Jimmy Dore, Dennis Kucinich, Roger Waters, Cynthia McKinney, Scott Horton, Max Blumenthal, Chris Hedges, Kim Iversen, Gerald Celente, Daniel McAdams, Garland Nixon, Jackson Hinkle, Anya Parampil, Ann Wright, David Swanson, Tara Reade, Diane Sare, Dan McKnight, Jill Stein, Craig “Pasta” Jardula, Wyatt Reed, and Dan Cohen.
Here is a detailed list and explanations of the demands of the rally-goers and organizers:
1- Not One More Penny for War in Ukraine
The Democrats and Republicans have armed Ukraine with tens of billions of dollars in weapons and military aid. The war has killed tens of thousands, displaced millions, and is pushing us toward a nuclear WW3. Stop funding the war.
2- Negotiate Peace
The US instigated the war in Ukraine with a coup on its democratically-elected government in 2014, and then sabotaged a peace deal between Russia and Ukraine in March. Pursue an immediate ceasefire and diplomacy to end the war.
3- Stop the War Inflation
The war is accelerating inflation and increasing food, gas, and energy prices. The US blew up Russian gas pipelines to Europe, starving them of energy and deindustrializing their countries. End the war and stop increasing prices.
4- Disband NATO
NATO expansion to Russia’s border provoked the war in Ukraine. NATO is a warmongering relic of the Cold War. Disband it like the Warsaw Pact. The war is accelerating inflation and increasing food, gas, and energy prices. The US blew up Russian gas pipelines to Europe, starving them of energy and deindustrializing their countries. End the war and stop increasing prices.
5- Global Nuclear De-Escalation
The war in Ukraine has brought us to the edge of WW3 and nuclear war with Russia. US intelligence agencies estimate a one in four chance of nuclear war, which would plunge the world into nuclear winter and kill almost all life on Earth. Adopt a no-first-strike nuclear policy. Drawdown nuclear weapons worldwide.
6- Slash the Pentagon Budget
Half of the federal discretionary budget goes to Pentagon. The military budget is $857 billion per year, and the Pentagon just failed its fifth straight audit. The Pentagon can only account for 39 percent of its $3.5 trillion in assets. Cut the military budget in half and return those funds to the American people.
7- Abolish the CIA and Military-Industrial Deep State
The CIA and deep state are an unelected permanent government of intelligence agencies that run our country outside of constitutional and democratic control. They surveille Americans, manipulate the media, curtail free speech, blackmail politicians, infiltrate activist organizations, torture people, overthrow governments, and assassinated President John F. Kennedy. Abolish the CIA and deep state and restore a government of, by, and for the people.
8- Abolish War and Empire
War and empire subjugate billions of people around the world to enrich a small group of elites. In just the past two decades, the US has waged and backed wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Syria, Palestine, Yemen, Ukraine, and other countries. End all US wars and regime change. Stop all military aid to other countries. End drone strikes. Close all US military bases abroad. Bring all US troops home. Build a world that guarantees every person freedom from war and empire in place of the collapsing US hegemonic world order.
9- Restore Civil Liberties
Restore the constitutional liberties taken from us in the name of war and empire, including freedom of speech, the press, and assembly. End mass surveillance, repeal the Patriot Act, and restore the right to privacy and habeas corpus.
10- Free Julian Assange
The US is charging Julian Assange with espionage and criminalizing our right to publish information that challenges the military-industrial deep state. He is imprisoned in the UK and being extradited to the US. The CIA plotted to assassinate him for exposing US war crimes. Free Julian Assange and all political prisoners.
Watch the FULL RALLY and individual speeches HERE:
Please visit the Rage Against War website for more information.