Condoleezza Rice - Secretary of State and former National Security Advisor to the Bush Administration - toured Liverpool on the weekend beginning 31st March. She visited LIPA & was serenaded by the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra. Mersey poet Roger McGough was due to compere the concert in her honour, but withdrew his support. Masses of protesters turned out and let Rice know she was not welcome here.
Liverpool Foots the Bill…And People Say Scousers Are Thieving Bastards
Sat 1st April - Maritime Museum visit Rice, Straw and Liverpool's Rich Cultural Heritage
On Indymedia: 30 Mar - Protests outside Condi's hotel | Protestors, performers & police get ready for Condi visit
Previously:1 | 2
A resolution passed by the North West TUC Annual conference said Ms Rice had been involved in every stage of the Iraq war in which "thousands of Iraqis have died". The resolution added: "She has their blood on her hands".
Condoleezza was invited by Jack Straw, and visited Liverpool before heading to the Foreign Secretary's constituency in Blackburn, Lancashire.
The website http://www.condiwatch.co.uk detailed several protests including one in Liverpool on the Friday, where protestors marched to the Philharmonic Hall where Condoleezza was the guest of honour at a special performance by the Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra.
There were some hitches to the visit. Some members of the orchestra refused to play for her visit, and poet Roger McGough - who was due to compere the event - withdrew his support following a public outcry. Attempts to pay other celebrities £500 to host the night have also failed, with actress Cathy Tyson turning down the offer.
A member of the Merseyside Stop the War coalition, said:
"I plead with the people of this great city to shun Condoleezza Rice who has been central to these events. We should show our true Scouse heart which is one of love, peace and solidarity."
At the Liverpool city council meeting on 15th March, anti-war campaigners were able to address councillors and the mayor, but the council leaders seemed to think that plugging Liverpool as 'Capital of Culture' was more important than taking a principled stand against the devastating and illegal invasion of Iraq. see Daily Post report for more info
Merseyside Stop the War Coalition said:
"Several Councillors have told already us that they object to and will not participate in any event arranged for Condi. We want to persuade all the Councillors to boycott any civic event in her honour. She helped Bush prepare an illegal war which has costs tens of thousands of lives. She turns the other way when people are tortured in Guantanamo Bay. She redefines the definition of torture apparently being strapped to a board and pushed face first into a barrel of water no longer applies! Please contact your local Councillor to protest".