When Dom Bonavitacola, ’06, walks through campus and sees people protesting the war in Iraq, he can’t help but think of his friend now fighting in the war and wonder what effect this must have on him.

“My friend is a marine in Iraq and must know that people back home are protesting. And I can’t see how that helps. He may feel like Americans don’t appreciate what he and the rest of the soldiers are doing,” said Bonavitacola.

The topic of troop support has raised many questions in the last few weeks and caused some to feel that protestors are unappreciative of the soldiers hard work.

In contrast, others understand why protestors feel the need to have their voices heard.

Mike Dickinson, ’06, has a close friend fighting in Iraq but isn’t opposed to those who protest and continue their fight against the war.

“I don’t mind the protesting because I am against the war myself, but some people do take it too far,” said Dickinson. “I don’t understand when people publicly denounced our leaders…it shows weakness.”

Ed Feldheim, ’03,co-head of Fairfield Students for Peace, protests against Operation Iraqi Freedom on a regular basis but is not against the troops themselves.

“I protest because the information that the government has put forth is not adding up,” said Feldheim. “I believe that we are invading Iraq for oil and other such reasons, not to liberate the Iraqi people.”

Feldheim went on to say that he has “mixed feelings” toward the troops’ presence and stressed that “the fact that troops are over there at all is a problem.”

Those with friends in Iraq understand that some people will always be against war but are worried about the soldiers’ morale.

As the war rages on, war supporters are finding a growing need for the American Public to let the troops know that they are thankful.

Bonavitacola believes that the time to protest has in fact come to an end.

“I don’t think that there is any reason for protesting now,” said Bonavitacola. “Before the war it was OK but now no one should be going against it. Our troops are over there and need our support.”

Linda Davidow, ’05, is also an avid protestor and plans on continuing to work toward peace. “People say that since the war has begun, we should support the troops and I agree,” said Davidow. “I only hope for the best for them, but I don’t think that now that we are in war we should change our view. Just because we are in a war doesn’t make it right.”

As troops begin to move into what may be the most treacherous part of their mission, they will have to continue to block out what some believe is an unneeded resistance from home.

There seems to be no end from the protest movement taking place all over the world and it may only be picking up momentum.

“If I could talk to those with family and friends in Iraq I would ask them not to get mad at the people protesting,” said Feldheim. “You should be angry with the people that put them [the soldiers] over there in the first place.”

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