"World Can't Wait" protesters rally outside the White House
Friday, February 10, 2006
On a rainy Saturday, February 4, 2006, several thousand protesters gathered in a corner of the Ellipse in Washington, D.C. to protest the current administration’s stance on the War in Iraq and to demand that President Bush be impeached or resign as Commander-in-Chief.
Saturday’s demonstration that lasted through five hours of rain ended with a march around the White House was organized by a group called World Can’t Wait – Drive out the Bush Regime. The group organized a smaller rally near the Capital during the State of the Union.
Demonstrators came from as far away as Hawaii; New York sent 12 buses. However the crowd was significantly less than the 30,000 protesters that organizers had anticipated. The actual numbers were more like 2,000 to 3,000 and varied with the strength of the rain. Park Police refused to comment on the size of the crowd.
A series of speakers included a 96 year old great grandmother, and a Georgetown law student that led a protest against a speech given by Attorney General Gonzales. The speeches were followed by the dropping of a 30 foot wire effigy of President Bush from the stage. The crowd, which had already been in a frenzy, chanted in unison: "Bush step down! Bush step down!" After it fell, protesters kicked and cursed at the fallen mass of chicken wire and construction paper.
Some protesters got more visual and burned a mock US flag that contained corporate logos instead of stars as at least one protester yelled that the flag burners were "FBI Plants."
The rally ended with a march around the White House through closed streets escorted by the Capital Police and the Uniformed Division of the United States Secret Service. A group of ten to fifteen counter-protesters waited in front of the White House and although cursing was traded, the obvious police presence kept the scene peaceful.