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Pro-Bush and anti-Iraq war demonstrators square off in Texas
CRAWFORD, United States (AFP) - Hundreds of demonstrators against the war in
Iraq squared of with others rallying in support of President George W. Bush, outside Bush's vacation home.
Protestors seeking a US withdrawal from Iraq gathered near Bush's ranch for a rally and were met, in this tiny town of 750, by a group of Bush supporters.
The squaring off stirred up Crawford, usually sweltering quietly in August heat. About 1,000 people swarmed into town and police came out in force.
The antiwar protest was launched a week ago by Cindy Sheehan, the mother of a US soldier killed in Iraq in April 2004. She decided to camp outside Bush's ranch until he meets with her, and to demand a withdrawal of the 138,000 US troops.
Asked Saturday about the presence of Bush supporters opposite the anti-war protestors, Sheehan said "I don't want to argue with them. This is their right as Americans to do what they do, and we realize that."
Thomas Zapp, the father of another soldier killed in Iraq in November 2004, came to rally for Bush and "talk to Cindy."
"She expresses her opinion and I want to express mine to her. She has no right to call Bush a murderer and to compare him to
Saddam Hussein," he said.
Some 1,840 US troops have been killed in Iraq since the war began in March 2003.
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