Protesters rally on Chicago’s North Side

In Chicago, some 5,000 people braved bitter cold temperatures to demonstrate at Rogers Park on the city’s north side, in a mainly Pakistani community. Protestors included large numbers of youth and high school students, as well retirees, workers, immigrants and families, including infants in strollers. Buses brought demonstrators from around Illinois, as well as from Iowa and Indiana.

A group of about 70 artists and musicians dressed and painted as skeletons played tubas, drums and saxophones as they marched through the crowd. Mocking recent suggestions by the Department of Homeland Security that Americans should use duct tape and plastic sheeting to protect their homes from biological attacks, some protesters dressed in plastic smocks and wore rolls of duck tape as bracelets.

Speakers included representatives of the Chicago Coalition Against War and Racism and other groups sponsoring the event. Some spoke of the connection between the war abroad and attacks on the democratic rights of the immigrant population in the United States.

A World Socialist Web Site team distributed leaflets and spoke to demonstrators, meeting a number of regular readers of the WSWS.