Poignant photos of 2003’s Anti-War Protest, the biggest march London has ever seen

Over one million people went to the demonstration against the war in Iraq


February 15, 2003, marked a coordinated day of protests across the world – over 600 cities took to the streets to express their opposition against the then imminent Iraq War. According to BBC News, between six and eleven million took part. The largest anti-war rally in human history.

Over a million people in London alone came together for what they believed in – with people travelling to join in from 250 different cities around the country. The centre of the capital stood heaving with demonstrators, from young children to former members of the Armed Forces. Embankment and Gower Street were two of the starting points put in place for the London rally – with the aim to make a three mile walk to Hyde Park. The two of these got so busy and overrun with crowds that the police started the march early. The two mass groups met in Piccadilly Circus; an eruption of cheers, horns and drums sent shockwaves through the capital.

Brexit’s march last weekend had 10,000. The tuition fee protest in 2010 had 50,000, 1990’s poll tax march had 200,000. This swamped all of them.

It’s emerged that Tony Blair called the protest ‘fatuous’ in a memo sent to George W Bush, days after the launch of the Iraq war. No protest has ever come close to comparing with this one – not even the march against tuition fees – with countless demonstrations having been held in Central London since. Stop The War still remains one of the most poignant and breathtaking examples of society joining together to fight for what they believe in.

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