At the time I had been living in the UK for 8 years and during those 8 years I never felt moved to get involved let alone travel to London with my 7 years old daughter to march against a war in Iraq.
As events unfolded prior to the march I became increasingly more angry. I knew we were being lied to and I struggled to bear the burden of silence in the face of the crimes to be comitted against the Iraqi people.
Up to that point I never discussed politics with my daughter. I was conscious of wanting her to make up her own mind.
I battled with myself about involving her and then it became clear to me. This is about humanity, about empathy, solidarity and compassion. About understanding the consequences of our actions and inactions. My conviction was always that war was never the answer unless your end goal was suffering and destruction. And this was how I explained this to her. Bombs kill killers and innocents.
I also felt very strongly that if the war was to go ahead and happen I needed to feel that I was there and I said no and that we didn’t have a hand in this.
It was contentious and some family members felt I was being unfair to involve her. I felt I was giving her a voice. No child wants war.
We went as a group with others of her friends and parents. The train to London was full of protesters. Families like us. We got off the train and joined the march of the Euston Rd. That was where it strarted. This was the first time I had seen so many people. We walked for a couple of hours and never got to the destination because of the numbers of people. London’s streets were full with people saying no. It was breathtaking.
I felt that history would judge us for our silence and I chose to speak up, quietly and peacefully.