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Rage Against War Machine Rally Attracts Support—and Controversy

Rage Against the War Machine, an anti-war rally planned later this month in Washington, D.C., has garnered significant criticism following a key guest speaker’s inclusion—and later exclusion. This comes just as the rally garners additional support from another prominent third party.

A screenshot of Scott Ritter denying influencing any other speakers.

Scott Ritter, a former UN weapons inspector known for his criticism of the Iraq War, initially planned to address the event as a guest speaker. However, it wasn’t long before Ritter became a flashpoint for controversy due to his 2011 conviction of sex crimes involving a minor and later claims that he never identified as anti-war. Social media discussion of his potential removal prompted significant backlash from supporters and proponents alike, including allegations that several speakers would step away from the event if organizers removed Ritter. Scott Ritter denied influencing the action of any other panelist.

In a more recent article on his Substack titled “The Best Speech I Never Gave,” Ritter stated that he would not be speaking at the event for “personal reasons” before providing the text of his planned speech. “In short, I have decided to take one for the team,” Ritter wrote.

Executive Director for the Ron Paul Institute of Peace and Prosperity, Daniel McAdams, castigated the Libertarian Party for allowing this to happen on social media early Thursday morning before apologizing for his words. McAdams has served as Executive Director of the Ron Paul Institute since 2013. Before that, he was an advisor to then-Rep. Ron Paul.

Screenshot from Twitter.“This is devastating. We pledge to never, ever work with the COWARD
@LPNational @LPMisesCaucus Libertarian Party again,” wrote McAdams in a Twitter post sharing Ritter’s recent Substack article. “They are 100 percent dead to us. Don’t dare pretend to be the party of Ron Paul.”

McAdams apologized for his statement less than 24 hours later; however, writing on Twitter that he acted out of emotion and that the rally is ultimately more important than individual personalities. “Was I emotional in my reaction to yesterday’s news? Yes. I apologize,” wrote McAdams. “I tend to stick fiercely by those I consider friends and to be very hurt when I feel let down. Both happened yesterday. This rally is more important than personalities and I do not want to detract. I am sorry.”

However, not all news has been critical for Rage Against the War Machine. Earlier in the week, the event found additional support from other political parties and prominent figures, including two former third party presidential candidates.

On Sunday, the Green Party National Committee approved a motion to endorse Rage Against the War Machine. “This action has already been endorsed by multiple anti-war groups, and the GPUS should join them to strengthen opposition to America’s endless wars. Although some of the groups participating in this demonstration do not share all of the goals of the GPUS, advancing the cause of peace, a pillar of the USGP platform, should take precedence over considerations of ideological homogeneity. The GPUS should play a leading role in the emergence of a unified U.S. anti-war movement,” the party released in a statement. While the Green Party formally throws its endorsement behind the event, it’s worth noting that such an action does not include financial support.

Screenshot from Twitter.

In addition to the Green Party, current independent and former Green Party presidential candidate Cynthia McKinney has joined the lineup as a guest speaker. McKinney was the 2008 Green Party presidential nominee, appearing on the ballot with Rosa Clemente and securing over 160,000 votes nationwide. Before that, she served six terms in Congress as a Democratic member of the Georgia delegation. As a member of Congress, she frequently criticized the Bush administration over the 9/11 attacks and the Iraq War effort.

“The United States is becoming more dire for ordinary Americans, and the last thing we need to do is to spend money on death, destruction, and war,” McKinney’s speaker bio reads. “The United States has far more to offer the world than our bombs, missiles, and military technology.”

Last week, event organizers announced two-time Green Party presidential nominee Dr. Jill Stein as a guest speaker. Stein, the Green nominee in 2012 and 2016, has been an outspoken critic of the war and proponent for peace.


  1. Ryan Ryan February 23, 2023

    Scotty Boman,

    There’s a “Movement for a People’s Party” that formed in the aftermath of 2020 and it’s kind of fizzled. It seems abandoned by the left.

    “I don’t understand the amount of energy going toward trying to delegitimize a rally against funding of the war machine…it’s right there in the title, no interpretation necessary.”

    I’ve said this before, I’ll say it again. There’s a difference between being anti-war and being Jane Fonda sitting on a North Vietnamese tank. This rally is Jane Fonda sitting on a North Vietnamese tank. Do you accept or not accept the evidence provided the speakers are funded by Russia?

    Even if you take your claims at face value, Russia invaded Ukrainian sovereign territory. Yes, the breakup of the Soviet Union was a very messy event, and should in serious eyerolling fashion be heavily studied by the people that advocate “national divorce”, but again, RUSSIA INVADED UKRAINIAN SOVEREIGN TERRITORY. Talking purely libertarian philosophy here, that’s as fundamental a violation of the Non-Aggression Principle as you’ll ever get, the Ukrainians protecting their homeland that was invaded by another country is one of the Libertarian Party’s own stated principles for when war by the state is in fact justified, the argument of “the invasion was justified to protect Russian speakers from harm” is no different than the justifications of Hitler for the Sudetenland and Danzig if you want to discuss real Nazis, or if you want to go softer and more American the justification of Reagan invading Grenada in the 1980s.

  2. George Phillies George Phillies February 22, 2023

    The Editor went to the link and, about half way down the page, found the image of the tweet you are claiming is not there.

  3. Tracy Hahn Tracy Hahn February 22, 2023

    Jeffrey St. Clair has written no such thing. It”s not in the link you posted, nor anywhere else.

  4. Sharon Sharon February 18, 2023

    The people being called “pro-Russian” here are really “anti-Nazi”.
    Y’all don’t seem to know the history of Stepan Banderas and his Nazi admirers in Ukraine. Or that the Nazi nationalists have taken over the Ukraine military in 2014 and have been genociding Russian speakers in Eastern Ukraine ever since.
    I don’t understand the amount of energy going toward trying to delegitimize a rally against funding of the war machine…it’s right there in the title, no interpretation necessary. I hope the combination of staying on their couch and sipping their lattes is satisfying when the world suffers from nuclear armageddon. I don’t have grandkids but I DO care about other peoples’….be they American, Ukrainian, Russian.

  5. Rice Wheelock Rice Wheelock February 16, 2023

    Judging from the comments, war is preferable over getting your nose bent out of shape due to reciting propagandist talking points.
    I for one am not a bot or a troll, either. They don’t have grand kids.

  6. rr rr February 13, 2023

    This is just a anti America rally and a pro-China and Russia rally.

  7. SocraticGadfly SocraticGadfly February 13, 2023

    J Doe, I know that’s why Ritter was removed. What I’m saying is that his pro-Russia stance justifies his removal anyway.

  8. J. Doe J. Doe February 13, 2023

    There have been many “People’s parties” over the years. The article you read references the most well known, but there have been others using the same name since. The current one I don’t think has ballot access anywhere, at least yet, and I’m not aware of any candidates that they have run for office under that ballot name, so it’s not surprising if you didn’t quickly find them online. They do exist at least to some extent.

    Ritter was not removed from the speaker list because of his openly pro-Russian war position. Others with that position remain listed as speakers and organizers. He was removed from his role or roles because he has been convicted of illegal sexual activities involving underage individual(s). You can look that up if you care to know more.

    It may or may not have been the LP that pressured for his resignation or removal. Regardless of how important the LP role in that was or wasn’t, it is being blamed by Ron Paul cult insiders such as Ron Paul Institute jefe Daniel McAdams, the once proprietor of the Daily Putin fansite who currently features the flag of Belarus as his Twitter header picture and recently tweeted that the LP and even its so-called Mises Caucus, which was specifically designed to bring in Ron Paul-Lew Rockwell blood and soil cultists like himself into the LP in greater numbers and take over party leadership, and which succeeded in that goal, is now “100% dead to” him. Stay tuned for further developments.

  9. Jim Jim February 13, 2023

    They’re back and just as far left. The new one came as a result of Bernie Sanders’ campaign.

  10. SocraticGadfly SocraticGadfly February 12, 2023

    Ritter’s gone off the boards, IMO.

    Jeff St. Clair at Counterpunch has a tweet of Ritter’s a week ago calling Ukraine a “rabid dog” and Russia the “Atticus Finch” justified in shooting it. That’s not anti-war, that one IS pro-Russia.

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