Over 60 students walked out of classes here at UNC-Asheville on Thursday, March 20th, to answer the national call to action from Students for a Democratic Society. They were joined by members of the community, as well as members of the WNC Peace Coalition, Veterans for Peace, Iraq Veterans Against the War, No More Victims, and Freedom Road Socialist Organization for a march downtown and a rally at Pack Square. These organizations made up the Asheville March 20 Coalition, organized by UNCA SDS. Leaders from all of these organizations spoke at the rally downtown.
Angela Denio spoke to the rally on behalf of UNCA SDS. In her speech to the assembled crowd she noted, “Almost 4000 American soldiers have died in this war. 1.2 million Iraqi people have died. Beyond this there is mass displacement- 4 million refugees.”
She also said, “59% of Americans think the United States should end the occupation of Iraq. And the majority of Iraqis definitely think the US should be out now. When will this government listen? The main thing that will make them hear–that will force them to leave–is when the heroic Iraqi national resistance beats them on the ground in Iraq, because the resistance is already winning… but the other part is when the people of the U.S. get organized and demand that something changes, and in the word of Malcolm X, are willing to do whatever is necessary to see justice!”
Ninety schools accross the country particpated in the week of action.