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Protest against Karl Rove: War Criminals Not Welcome at UW-Milwaukee

By Daniel Ginsberg

Protester holding sign that says "No War No Rove"

Milwaukee, WI – Lining the entryway with banners and loud chants Dec. 3, 100 angry people arrived at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee (UWM) to demand Karl Rove, former senior adviser and deputy chief of staff to the Bush administration, return the $25,000 speaker honorarium allocated to him by the university to speak.

Protesters accused Karl Rove, also known as ‘Bush’s Brain,’ of being a war criminal for his involvement in the invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan. They also made clear Rove was an enemy of working class youth, who now struggle more than ever to achieve a higher education due to his policies over the last eight years.

“An institution with a chancellor that sets goals to provide ‘higher education access to the broadest possible audience’ should not allow tens of thousands of dollars to host a war criminal who resided over eight miserable years for Iraqi people and poor people all over this world,” said Natasha Morgan, a member of Milwaukee Students for a Democratic Society.

Protest participants included Milwaukee Students for a Democratic Society, Iraq Veterans Against the War and the UWM Education Rights Campaign, a coalition of 16 student and labor organizations fighting against budget cuts at UWM. About 25 people inside the event were forcibly removed for speaking out against Rove during his talk.

Author and historian Michael Parenti weighed in about Rove’s visit to UWM. “Karl Rove should be standing trial for his various crimes while serving in the White House rather than being received at a reputable U.S. university,” he wrote.

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