The political elite has every interest in minimising and dismissing popular protest but it was the anti-war movement that played the crucial role in highlighting government deceit in the run-up to the invasion of Iraq and mobilising and educating so many people.
Last time Britain and USA went to war without a UN mandate it created a human catastrophe that cost hundreds of thousands of lives, billions of dollars and badly damaged the West's credibility at home and abroad. 10 years later it's Russia and China that are likely to veto any UN Security Council resolution authorising military action, and this time it's Cameron and Hague arguing that intervention could be legal without UN approval...
In 2003, during the run-up to the war in Iraq, I was living in Hollywood, where at the time I was working as Ben Affleck's stand-in on the movie Surviving Christmas.
Like hundreds of teenagers who didn't make the real thing, students at my school hastily arranged their own small protest, marching through our small rural town chanting and playing anti-war music. We must have looked pathetic, but we didn't care. We were adding a cry to a national roar that made the hairs on the back of our necks stand up.