Elsewhere in the world, around a million protesters turned out in Italy, and in Barcelona nearly 1.3 million people turned out in the city's biggest protest eve. Hundreds of thousands rallied in Madrid, paralyzing the city center, and in New York, South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu addressed a crowd of over a quarter million outside the United Nations, urging that the inspectors be given time to do their work.
Best of all, <a href="http://www.guardian.co.uk/Iraq/Story/0,2763,896282,00.html">Blair blinked</a>! The prime minister, Tony Blair, today told the Labour party's spring conference that weapons inspectors will get more time to establish whether Iraq has complied with UN demands to disarm. Mr Blair said that the chief weapons inspector, Hans Blix, would again report to the security council on February 28th.
Note that he backed down before the Bush administration said anything about it... interesting. It still sounds like a compromise between a pressured Blair and a gung-ho Bush administration, but it *IS* a compromise that the Bush administration would probably have prefered not to have to make.
Good news, and a sign that the protests matter. The big battle, however, is public opinion between now and Febriary 28th. Will it continue to swing hard towards peace, or will we see our governments try to scare us to death?!