The London protest against the bombing of Syria will take place outside Downing Street from 12 – 2pm this Saturday 28 November.
Thousands of people are expected to gather outside Downing Street and in cities across the UK on Saturday to protest against government plans to launch a bombing campaign in Syria.
Nearly 6,000 people have so far indicated on Facebook that they will attend the London protest organised by the Stop the War coalition.
The event page says: “The UK has been bombing countries for a decade and a half, at the cost of millions of lives. Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results meets Albert Einstein’s definition of madness.
“We are calling on all our groups to organize protests in their towns and cities on the same day. We need to resist this brutalizing and dehumanising spiral of violence.”
David Cameron published a document on Thursday outlining his case for airstrikes against Islamic State. He said: “The threats to our interests and to our people are such that we cannot afford to stand aside and not to act.
“Throughout Britain’s history we have been called on time and again to make the hardest of decisions in defense of our citizens and our country. Today one of the greatest threats we face to our security is the threat from Isil.”
The prime minister said all seven terror plots in the UK this year have been directed by Isis or inspired by the group’s propaganda. He insisted that bombing would be part of a comprehensive political and diplomatic plan to deny the group space and create the circumstances for an end to the civil war in Syria.
Chris Nineham, vice-chair of the Stop the War coalition, said: “I think it’s a very, very weak statement and I think Cameron has failed utterly to put a coherent case or to outline a coherent strategy. He has not been able to answer the question: why would a relatively minor increase in the level of bombing change the current situation, which is that America and its allies have been bombing Isis in Syria for 13 months and Isis has grown?
“We always get this argument when we are asked to back another war, that our weapons don’t kill civilians, that they are precision-guided, that they cause minimal ‘collateral damage’. And yet all the facts argue the opposite: one impact of extra bombing raids will be more civilians killed. Why on earth would Britain want to increase the death rate?
“Leaving aside the purely humanitarian question, doing that would entrench the bitterness towards the west. Does anyone really believe that Britain joining the war in Syria would make a terror attack on Britain less likely?
“The kind of action Cameron is outlining is going to increase the level of suffering and destruction in Syria, it’s liable to entrench the civil war [and] to strengthen rather than degrade the position of Isis.
“There simply is not an upside in the plan that Cameron has outlined. We are urging MPs to step back and think long and hard about the consequences before they take Britain into another war.”
The Downing Street protest will begin at midday. Similar protests, public meetings and actions are planned in 18 towns and cities, including Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff, Leeds, Manchester, Newcastle, Nottingham, Sheffield and Swansea.
Nineham said that protests, organized at the last minute, had quickly attracted interest. “Very, very few protests that we have organized have got such a strong response so quickly on social media, so we are expecting thousands of people to descend on Downing Street this Saturday,” he said.
“People feel that it’s a critical moment in British politics. The strikes are high risk. We saw a Russian plane being shot down by Turkey two days ago. We are talking about entering a theater of war which is already very crowded.
“There’s going to be protests right across the country and I think the anti-war movement is back, unfortunately. It shouldn’t have to be, but it is.”
Stop the War has been mobilizing its members across the country to lobby their MPs. The group claims thousands of people have written to their MPs using its online tool. It has also sought to mobilize local groups to lobby MPs directly at their weekly surgeries for constituents.
26 thousand people have now been invited on Facebook.
Will update as when know of time for places and if other cities are involved as good change there will be more things happening in many other countries.
Cardiff 28.11.15 12 noon Nye Bevan Statue Please come along!