Car horns sounded Sunday afternoon while drivers and passengers waved and hollered at the group of about 30 people in Vander Veer Park protesting U.S. military involvement in Syria.
The group, with placards that read “Support the Troops – End the War,” “Peace on Earth” and “Neighbor for Peace,” gathered at Brady Street and Central Park Avenue to protest military intervention in the Middle East nation.
Bill Sherwood, of Davenport, organized the group that included about 30 people throughout the afternoon. “We can’t keep going down these pathways that lead us to more bloodshed with no resolution,” he said.
Sherwood waved to drivers and passengers and said, “We have yet to see anyone who’s hostile. If this is an unscientific poll of the American people, I can tell you that they’re overwhelmingly opposed to using military force in Syria.”
U.S. officials citing intelligence reports say Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's regime used sarin gas in an Aug. 21 attack, and that 1,429 people died, including 426 children.
“The last thing the world needs today is more violence,” said Davenport Mayor Bill Gluba, who was part of the group. “President (Barack) Obama and Congress should heed the words from sacred scripture: ‘Blessed are the peacemakers, for they are the children of God.’”
Although calling Assad a "war criminal," Gluba said he does not present a “direct or imminent” threat to the people of the United States.
“In my judgment, what the U.S. should do is lead a world-wide effort to bring Assad before the International Criminal Court of Justice, where he could be dealt with as a war criminal with appropriate action to follow.”
The Quad-City protest came as more than 100 anti-war protesters rallied outside the White House and in New York's Times Square, among other locations across the nation. Their messages were similar.
“We need to take this guy to the world court,” said Karl Rhomberg, of Davenport. “Then you can marshal world opinion.
“There are 2 million displaced people outside that country,” he said. “We’re going to build high-quality refugee centers with schools, and teach people the elementary principles of municipal governance, of self-governance.”
Caryn Unsicker, of Silvis, is president of Progressive Action for the Common Good, a nonprofit organization that builds a support network aimed at educating, engaging and empowering people to work for the common good. The organization, which began in 2005, “is not political. We don’t take sides or support candidates. We support issues.”
Obama is expected to address the nation Tuesday night. The U.S. Senate is expected to vote by the end of this week, with the House taking up the matter next week.
U.S. officials citing intelligence reports say Assad's regime used sarin gas in an Aug. 21 attack, and that 1,429 people died, including 426 children.
(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)