In the last three days of last week the anti-war mood in France snowballed. If asked in the week before the demonstration, most political activists would have said that 150,000 would demonstrate in Paris. It turned out that over 300,000 marched. The total participation in protests throughout France was over 500,000.
15 February. No to war in Iraq. cwi reports from around the world. France.
Growing anti-war mood sees 300,000 demonstrate in Paris
Those who attended came from a hugely varied background: Left organisations (The LCR had a contingent of 2000), human rights activists, trade unionists (the CGT was well represented), immigrants and Palestinian support groups. But the most important thing about this protest (and something which is not generally a characteristic in France) was that over half the demonstrators were unorganised. In France the head of any demonstration is usually made up of organised contingents but on this occasion, those watching the start of the demo waited for half an hour for the first organised contingents to appear. The unorganised demonstrators were mainly young people.
Gauche Révolutionnaire (CWI France) ran a successful street stall as well as participating in the demonstration, selling our newspaper and giving out leaflets, which many people new to political activity were eager to take.