Revolution Club Chicago Field Report: “No War On Iran!”



In response to the Trump/Pence regime’s war moves against Iran, people protested across the country Saturday in significant numbers, demanding “No war on Iran!” In Chicago, a large rally at Trump Tower turned into a march of at least a thousand people taking over the streets of downtown for about an hour, including briefly stopping traffic on Lake Shore Drive where two people were arrested.

The march had a lot of young people and a pretty bold spirit, with a couple hundred people staying with the march as it turned towards Lake Shore Drive where police were moving into place to try to stop it. People chanted “No more war” and “U.S. out of the Middle East,” and a lot of people took up the Trump/Pence #OutNow! signs and chants.

It was important that the leadership of the rally and march called for and led people to take the streets in this way, even though the content of the rally was sharply contradictory. Some of it downplayed the danger of the situation by acting as if these war moves are just a continuation of same old, same old and not part of the consolidation of fascism; some of it appealed to American interests in terms of “money for jobs and education, not war”; and at least one speaker even upheld the reactionary butcher Soleimani as a great fighter against ISIS and the theocratic Iranian regime as a fighter against U.S. imperialism. (A member of the Revolution Club responded loudly during applause to some of the most backward statements, pointing out the reactionary nature of the Iranian regime that pales in comparison to the crimes of the U.S., with the need to act in the interests of humanity to overthrow imperialism and end wars for empire and exploitation, not get a piece of it. This was well received by a number of people.) The speaker from Refuse Fascism really stood out, putting forward the need to drive out the fascist Trump/Pence regime and that mass sustained protest is the way to do that.

The Revolution Club marched as a contingent with a banner that said, “U.S. Out of the Middle East, Trump/Pence Fascist Regime Out Now, Revolution—Nothing Less.” We only had a handful of us in the T-shirts, “BA Speaks: REVOLUTION—NOTHING LESS!,” but had a much bigger presence because there were a number of people who stayed close to us, consistently took up the chants we were leading, and paid attention to our agitation at different points. Throughout the rally and march we got out 300 copies of the article about the assassination of Soleimani that included a box about how to get organized with the Revolution Club. And some people were also putting on the sticker, “American Lives Are NOT More Important Than Other People’s Lives.”

The chants were important—a way of leading people en masse, not just in what people were saying, but to affect how people are thinking about things. Periodically we would pause the chanting to do a burst of agitation that gave more depth to the content of the chants. We chanted “1-2-3-4 slavery, genocide and war, 5-6-7-8 America was never great” and a lot of people took this up, especially the part “America was never great.” We chanted “How do we get out of this mess? Revolution—Nothing Less!” and this was also taken up by people all around us. When we first started to chant “Trump/Pence Out Now” it wasn’t immediately picked up, but especially when we added in “Puerto Rico showed us how…” and other countries where people have gotten in the streets in sustained mass protest, this chant became more popular and a lot of people took it up. We also chanted, “They say America First, We say Humanity First” and a lot of people chanted “HUMANITY FIRST” with us.

At a certain point, we started doing the chant, “What’s the problem? The whole damn system! What’s the solution? Revolution!” People around us took this up. Then we added in “Who’s our leadership? Bob Avakian!” That part people were unsure of. We did a burst of agitation about Bob Avakian being the leader of the revolution to overthrow this capitalist-imperialist system, that he’s developed a new communism, a scientific approach to making revolution, that the Revolution Club is getting organized for this revolution now, and people need to get into Bob Avakian and find out about this, go to and get with the Revolution Club. We did this a few times on the march. On Lake Shore Drive we did another burst of agitation at a moment when people seemed to be trying to find their footing after the arrests, upholding the importance of what we were there doing together acting in the interests of humanity, and the need to do no less than #OUTNOW!, grow a movement of protests this month to be able to get sustained protests to drive out this fascist regime.

When the march ended, we were headed to the Refuse Fascism meeting that was happening immediately after, so unfortunately didn’t have a lot of opportunity to talk with people and learn more of how people were thinking about things. However, it was interesting at the end of the march that a bunch of people came up to get materials from the club, some thanking us for our role in the march, some getting connected, some just wanting to have a way to learn more of what we’re about.

See the full film, excerpts and Q&A of this film




Get a free email subscription to

Volunteers Needed... for and Revolution

Send us your comments.