by Rashad Ali
Thousands gathered in London to express their feelings of palpable pain, anger, and frustration at the invasion and attempted take over of Ukraine by Putin and his regime. Yet the spirit of defiance, indignation, hope and camaraderie were much more poignant. It is the latter that dominated the will of some 8,000 plus protestors throughout the day. In front of Downing Street with the backdrop of a symbolic Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament. This is conservative estimate as there were people coming and going throughout the day.
This was a different atmosphere than many other protests I had attended. Ukrainians were well represented, the chants were led by Ukrainians, and clear-cut demands were made. There was no feeling of political partisanship. People came out as people, not as left or right, nor were they led by professional activists. They had nothing in common with the contorted ideology of the misnamed “Stop the War Coalition”. This was genuinely grass roots.