No war against Iraq. Are you listening, Prime Minister? Unlikely, yes, but naive? No

I think many of us today are inwardly congratulating ourselves that we are the usual suspects. Because it is one of the most often-stated features of this coming war that so many of its opponents are not. There are people here who look really excited about being on a march. I'm sure someone is about to ask me: "And what happens when we get to Hyde Park – will there be nibbles?"

I think the last time I was on a demonstration commanding support even a tenth as broad was when Heseltine closed the pits. I remember that Paddy Ashdown spoke, and was booed – for being Paddy Ashdown.

Today the Liberals have, of course, adopted the "no war without UN backing" position, so I couldn't wait to see their placards. Liberals always make their own placards, to prove they are individuals. They turn the inside of a Weetabix packet into a cardboard banner, emblazoned with stirring marker-pen slogans, such as "Please Stop This Madness Now, If At All Possible". So given their view that what matters is what's stencilled on the tanks (Exxon or UN), I was dreading seeing a phalanx of placards reading: "Mr Blair, We Don't Doubt Your Sincerity, Or The Seriousness Of The Poisoned Couscous Scare At Marble Arch Tube Station, But Please Bear In Mind The Need For A Broad Based Coalition With the Authority of International Law."

But to my relief, their placards are properly printed and say simply, "Lib Dems Say No". And not one of them has added "On Balance". The war's cheerleaders are careful to dismiss us as naive, suggesting we are an unlikely coalition. But they can't come up with a single credible reason for going to war, so no wonder we are such a motley crew. No one here is fooled that this is a just war. Any person suffering from that delusion must be naive beyond redemption, and I hope they feel very lonely not to be part of this splendid day.

Jeremy Hardy is a regular contributor to Radio 4's 'News Quiz', Friday 6.30pm

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA celebration of British elections
Arts and Entertainment
The Ridiculous Six has been produced by Adam Sandler, who also stars in it
filmNew controversy after nine Native American actors walked off set
Life and Style
Google celebrates Bartolomeo Cristofori's 360th birthday
techGoogle Doodle to the rescue
Life and Style
Drinking - often heavily - is a running theme throughout HBO's Game of Thrones adaptation
food + drink
News
Florence Welch from Florence + the Machine
people
News
people
  • Get to the point
2015 General Election
May2015

Poll of Polls

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Senior Digital Marketing Consultant

£28000 - £45000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Senior Digital Marketing Cons...

Recruitment Genius: Assistant Stores Keeper

£16640 - £18500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An Assistant Stores Keeper is r...

Recruitment Genius: Claims Administrator

£16000 - £18500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an excellent opportunit...

Recruitment Genius: Software Developer - C# / ASP.NET / SQL

£17000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Developer required to join a bu...

Day In a Page

Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Russell Brand's interview with Ed Miliband has got everyone talking about The Trews

Everyone is talking about The Trews

Russell Brand's 'true news' videos attract millions of viewers. But today's 'Milibrand' interview introduced his resolutely amateurish style to a whole new crowd
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living