Peace activists to hold vigil for Iraq war

Chuck Fager

March 19, 2010 8:53:36 PM PDT
Peace activists are gearing up for a vigil in Fayetteville Saturday.Friday, marked the seventh anniversary of the beginning of the Iraq war.

Chuck Fager with the Quaker House has helped organize and lead some the biggest anti-war protests in the nation. Several marches have drawn thousands of demonstrators and counter demonstrators to Fayetteville.

"The idea that there are still some of us who think it was a bad idea to start with the sooner it gets done the better we will like it," Fager said.

Fayetteville has seen thousands of combat troops out of Fort Bragg, since March 19, 2003.

As of today, the U.S. military has confirmed 4,385 casualties in Iraq.

Despite those numbers, Fager expects a smaller turnout for Saturday's peace vigil at Fayetteville's Market House like those he's led.

"The crash in the economy has cost a lot of attention," Fager said. "People got worry about mortgages and jobs, or you are out of a job or losing your home, you don't have time you may still feel the same but you don't have time."

Fager has been a peaceful protester for 45 years. He began with Dr. Martin Luther King in Selma Alabama, then Vietnam, Desert Storm, now Iraq and Afghanistan.

The son of a World War II pilot, Fager sees his mission for peace as a righteous duty he does not tire of.

"We've worked hard here ever since I've been here to project the message we are for the troops as much as we are against the war," Fager said. "It seems as if allot of people are getting the message, even if they don't agree with us they don't think we are against them."

Fager says Saturday's vigil and rally will pay special tribute to more than 100 female service-members killed in the war.

Still they expect it to be low key event. Fayetteville police don't expect they haven't heard of any plans for counter demonstrations.

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