PORTLAND Like many people across the United States, Portland-area residents demonstrated Monday to protest U.S. military action in Syria.

The rallies took place from downtown Portland to Beaverton and Vancouver.

The protesters wanted to send a message to Congress that they don t support the White House s proposal for military intervention in Syria, organizers said.

Leila Piazza, a Syrian-American who has family still living in Syria, said she opposes any military intervention by the U.S. government.

We don't want military strikes against the government or the country and we do not want the U.S. government to support the rebels, she said.

Merrill McPeak, a retired U.S. Air Force general, also disagreed with military intervention. He said if Obama wanted to attack, he should have done so weeks ago.

You don't decide to attack then spend a couple weeks for the other side to get prepared, so that you are attacking prepared defenses, McPeak said.

Aric Naber swarmed all four street corners surrounding downtown Portland's Federal building, hoping those in power will take notice. It's our responsibility to let our politicians know that we don't agree with their decisions, said Naber.

Protesters said they've emailed, called and met personally with legislators, but felt the need to make their presence known. We need to focus on assisting the refugees and try diplomacy, said Jean Groves.

At a Beaverton rally, Joan Kobssler told KGW Maybe economic sanctions but I don't see that bombing is going to help anybody, said Joan Kobssler at the Beaverton rally.

Tina Tierson lost a son in Desert Storm. I know that pain to lose your child, whether your American or Syrian, all mothers cry in the same language. It has to stop.

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