The first anti-war demonstration I attended was in San Francisco and it felt anything but violent. People danced, sang and made merry, much like a Swing Singapore affair. San Francisco, USA, 2003.
People turned up with their posters, banners, caricatures and art works, sharing a moment of solidarity against war.
Young punks, old people, families, dogs even an unborn baby lent their voices to peace.
I noticed a splinter group of punks breaking away from the main parade into in an alley and followed them. They quickly gathered in numbers, put on their masks and lined a parallel street in the opposite direction. Here was one of them taunting the police forces that swiftly moved in to ensure that no property was damaged in the heat of the matter.
The war proceeded. Our efforts were shrugged off. But we spoke. More than a hundred thousand of us in San Francisco. And many more in other parts of the world.