Pro- and Anti-War Demonstrations Hit Texas By ANGELA K. BROWN, Associated Press Writer
2 hours, 37 minutes ago
CRAWFORD, Texas - Several thousand people descended on President Bush's adopted hometown Saturday, attending a rally supporting him or arriving for the last leg of an anti-war demonstration near his ranch.
The pro-Bush rally by the school football stadium was the culmination of the "You don't speak for me, Cindy!" tour that started last week in California — referring to the protest that peace activist Cindy Sheehan started Aug. 6 near Bush's ranch.
Several times the crowd of about 1,500 chanted, "Cindy, go home!"
"You are giving hope and encouragement to the enemies of America," said former California Assemblyman Howard Kaloogian, a Republican who co-founded Move America Forward, the group that coordinated the rally.
Meanwhile, busloads of war protesters gathered several miles away at "Camp Casey," named for Sheehan's 24-year-old son who died in Iraq last year, for a Saturday bell-ringing ceremony to honor soldiers serving in Iraq. Organizers estimated the crowd at more than 2,000, but it appeared smaller.
"I know that the Camp Casey movement is going to end the war in Iraq," Sheehan said, adding that no other families should have to suffer the loss of a relative. She led the crowd in chanting "Not one more!"
The Fire Sermon
By Chris Floyd
08/26/05 "Moscow Times" -- -- In his inaugural speech last January, President George W. Bush repeatedly invoked images of unbridled, ravaging destruction as the emblem of his crusade for "freedom." Fire was his symbol, his word of power, his incantation of holy war. Mirroring the rhetoric of his fundamentalist enemies, Bush moved the conflict from the political to the spiritual, from the outer world to the inner soul, claiming that he had lit "a fire in the minds of men."
But words are recalcitrant things; they have their own magic, and they will often find their own meanings, outside the intentions of those who use them. Bush has indeed inflamed the minds of men -- and women -- with his military crusade. But it is not the "untamed fire of freedom" that scorches them: It is the fire of grief and outrage at the lies that have consumed the bodies of their loved ones. This bitter flame burns in the rubble of blasted houses in Iraq and in the quiet, leafy suburbs of America, where the dead are mourned and the mutilated are left as the enduring legacy of Bush's cruel, wilful and unnecessary war.
This "fire in the mind" has now found its own symbol in the unlikely figure of Cindy Sheehan, the mother of a slain American soldier. Here again, Bush's war-rousing words have gotten away from him. Sheehan's campaign -- which began as a lonely vigil outside Bush's vacation ranch and has now spread across the country -- centers on a single, simple request: that Bush explain to her what he means when he describes the war as "a noble cause."
Published on Friday, August 26, 2005 by CommonDreams.org
Mother's Day in Crawford
by Medea Benjamin and Gayle Brandeis
When Cindy Sheehan marched into Crawford, Texas to ask President Bush why her son died in Iraq, it was Mother's Day. Not the Hallmark-infused, soft focus, breakfast-in-bed Mother's Day that shows up on the calendar in May. This was the day that Julia Ward Howe envisioned when she created Mother's Day in 1870 as a time for all the mothers who lost their sons in the Civil War to protest the senseless violence.
Howe's Mother's Day Proclamation begins:
Arise then... women of this day!
Arise, all women who have hearts!
Cindy Sheehan has risen up against the senseless violence of this war in Iraq, and countless women and men have risen up with her. The numbers at Camp Casey continue to swell, and support pours in from all corners of the globe. While George Bush says he feels Sheehan's pain but must "get on with his life," Sheehan's supporters are uprooting themselves from their lives-often at great personal sacrifice-- to vigil beside her in the hot Texas sun. Tired of seeing our soldiers and countless Iraqis die in an unjustified war, millions of Americans-especially mothers--are joining Sheehan's revolution of the heart. And in the process, they're exposing Bush's own heartlessness for refusing to meet with a grieving mother, and more tragically, for needlessly putting our sons and daughters in harm's way.
And What Did They Die For Once Again?
By Daniel Ruth
08/19/05 "Tampa Tribune" -- -- This may come as something of a shock to some of those yahoos down in Crawford, Texas, who are so upset with antiwar Gold Star mother Cindy Sheehan's vigil outside the president's Godforsaken ranch, but if they were to look real close they'd discover she is committing first-degree, premeditated citizenship.
You see, we have this nagging, irritating, troublesome document called the U.S. Constitution. It's all the rage - or at least those dead bodies in Arlington National Cemetery thought so.
There, right at the top of the Constitution, there's this thing called the First Amendment.
Stop Drooling And Read
And if some of you goobers who have been shooting shotguns in the air to intimidate Sheehan and trampling white crosses in the ground honoring the dead troops who have sacrificed their lives for George W. Bush's war in Iraq could stop drooling for just a moment, here's what the First Amendment states:
``Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the FREEDOM OF SPEECH, or of the press; or the RIGHT OF PEOPLE PEACEABLY TO ASSEMBLE, AND TO PETITION THE GOVERNMENT FOR A REDRESS OF GRIEVANCES.''
Sheehan has a grievance - her son Casey died in Bush's war and thus she has petitioned the Clausewitz of Skull and Bones to explain why, especially since the administration's alibis for invading Iraq turned out to be more bogus than Burt Reynolds' hair, more than 1,800 American families had to lose a loved one.
Downing Street Memos Verify Death of Journalistic Ethics
by Carmen Yarrusso
The preamble to the Code of Ethics for the Society of Professional Journalists eloquently declares: "journalists believe that public enlightenment is the forerunner of justice and the foundation of democracy. The duty of the journalist is to further those ends by seeking truth and providing a fair and comprehensive account of events and issues."
Mainstream media's dismal failure to enlighten the public to the dire implications of the Downing Street memos is the final nail in the coffin of journalism ethics. Our mainstream media have officially given up all pretense of "public enlightenment" or "seeking truth" (much less "providing a fair and comprehensive account of events and issues") and instead have effectively acknowledged being a propaganda tool of our government.
Not One More
by CindySheehan [Subscribe]
Sun Aug 28th, 2005 at 05:48:25 PDT
Not One More
The Peaceful Occupation of Crawford
A photographer friend of mine went down to Crawford to the Pro-War, Anti-Peace rally today. There were about 1500 people there he said. He also said that it was the most "third reich" spectacle that he had ever seen in America.
My friend said that the speakers were whipping up the crowd into a frenzy of hatred for me (like they already didn't hate me?) and for the peace movement. My friend said that the entire theme of the rally was: "Cindy is killing American troops by her anti-American protest." Oh really, isn't George Bush killing innocent Americans and Iraqis by sending them to fight in an illegal and immoral war for power and greed? I think the real culprit is my neighbor: George.
August 29, 2005
Crawford, Texas: David Clemons seethes when he sees Cindy Sheehan on television, standing among small white crosses in an anti-war encampment named after her dead son.
To Mr Clemons her protest is a crushing insult to his own son, who was also killed.
"The lady is not honouring her son's sacrifice, because we don't have a draft and he went and signed his name on the dotted line," said Mr Clemons, of Winchester, Tennessee. His son Nathan, 20, was killed by a roadside bomb on June 14. "She'd better not be presenting herself as the voice of all the fallen."
However, Andre Lieurance, a retired naval officer whose son, Victoir, 34, was killed by a bomb the week before last, said he found Ms Sheehan so stirring that he might join her vigil at Camp Casey. "I just want some answers about why we're over there," said Mr Lieurance, also from Tennessee. "I don't even see the purpose any more. It's frustrating, and I'm angry."
Updated: Saturday, 27 August 2005, 10:59 GMT 11:59 UK
In search of an Iraq exit strategy
By Justin Webb
BBC News, Texas
LINK TO ORIGINAL
At the beginning of August, Cindy Sheehan, the mother of an American soldier who died in Iraq, set up camp in front of President Bush's Texas ranch, vowing to stay there until he agreed to meet her. Justin Webb considers the impact her protest has had on US politics.
Sheehan's voice just first to be heard
Aug. 28, 2005 12:00 AM
Cindy Sheehan isn't trying to speak for you or me. She is speaking for herself.
The difference is that she is speaking about those things that many of us have been speaking of for the past three years.
She is just the one who finally got the attention and the support that the anti-war movement has been needing to bring the war in Iraq and the questions and death surrounding it to the forefront of the American consciousness. Jennifer Burnett, Goodyear
August 28, 2005
Sheehan as food for thought
Painfully aware as I am that no camp in America's endless verbal war is free of sin, I have had to cross-examine myself in light of the all-out assault from the right on Cindy Sheehan.
From the talk shows to the columns to those downright chilling blogs, Bush loyalists who've never come within a country mile of a combat zone have carpet-bombed a bereaved mother whose worst offense is embarrassing the president about a supreme sacrifice when he's trying to relax.
Sheehan's refusal to follow the script, which says her son Casey died in Iraq for freedom, has made her a heroine of the antiwar movement, a distinction hardly calculated on her part and arguably melodramatic on the part of activists.
Now a public figure, she's subject to rebuttal. But to line up to lay into her, as these war buffs have done, to call her a "crackpot" engaged in "swindle" on behalf of a constituency that "doesn't think" and "borders on treasonous" is plain dastardly.
To pick at the consistency or judiciousness of her remarks when she is challenging a foreign policy that is built upon non sequiturs and falsehoods is nothing short of desperate.
To dredge up her divorce and other private irrelevancies is, sadly, standard procedure.
All of Us: A Poem for Cindy Sheehan
Geraldine Green 18.8.05
ALL OF US
and i she replied in a watery voice as she slung her hips forward over avalanche
and ice and i she cried on the hillsides crumbling soil and i she replied to herself
as she stepped like an antelope over the wall of the dead. the dead that lay like sandbags against
an oncoming river or tidal wave they could not stop they could not be stopped. and i they replied
as they marched side by side over elongated river beds like crocodile teeth and i we all cried as
OK, now I'm really pissed off... Just caught the CNN news and they said something insinuating that there were "thousands" of Bush supporters and "hundreds" of Sheehan supporters.
Let me set the record straight here and now! That is an absolute lie. They only showed Camp Casey 1, where there were a handful of supporters for both sides. As we have said all day, Camp Casey 2 had at least 2000 people there. That's a fact.
This is why we must be the media.
Posted by: madame defarge in wacko, texas at August 28, 2005 12:56 AM
Mitt backs war, but his boys are safe at home
By Maggie Mulvihill
Saturday, August 27, 2005 - Updated: 09:19 AM EST
Gov. Mitt Romney, who has comforted the grieving loved ones of soldiers killed in Iraq and promoted National Guard recruitment, yesterday said he has not urged his own sons to enlist - and isn't sure whether they would.
The Herald posed the question as Romney - a potential 2008 White House contender and backer of President Bush's Iraq policy -was honored by the Massachusetts National Guard after he signed a bill extending pay for state workers on active duty.
Minneapolis Star Tribune
'What They Died For' in Iraq is a Mystery
by Ken Lessley
President Bush spoke in Utah Monday defending his policies and practices in Iraq, and I have to say he seems focused solely on getting his agenda accomplished, regardless of who has to die unnecessarily in the process.
Referring to the "sacrifice" of the more than 1,800 American lives lost in Iraq to date, he said we must honor what they died for.
He left out the part about how they died for lack of proper armor, that the money for proper gear and equipment is still largely unaccounted for, that the families of the connected and powerful aren't sending their kids to die, that there weren't enough troops sent from day one, that their deaths will continue to mount for years to come, or that he started this war on false premises.
Published on Saturday, August 27, 2005 by CommonDreams.org
by Gar Smith
On August 2, George W. Bush fled the clamor of the Capitol and hopped aboard Air Force One for a two-and-a-half-hour flight to his Texas ranch - 1,300 miles from the Oval Office. Bush's five-week vacation has set a new record for the longest presidential hiatus in US history. It also marks a personal best for Bush, who had already established several benchmarks for excessive executive layoffs.
According to the Washington Post's tabulations, by August 2003, Mr. Bush had spent 250 days - 21% of his presidency - on vacation (166 of those days ensconced at his Crawford ranch). This year's jaunt marks Bush's 49th trip to Crawford since he was handed the presidency.
Bush's war in Iraq: The moment has come to decide whether to withdraw.
The Asahi Shimbun (Japan)
"Why did my son have to die?" This simple question from a bereaved mother of an American soldier killed in Iraq is fueling growing war-weariness across the United States.
Already, three weeks have passed since the mother, Cindy Sheehan, 48, set up camp near President George W. Bush's ranch in Crawford, Texas, where he is spending his summer vacation.
Last April, Sheehan lost her son, a 24-year-old army specialist, in Iraq. Since early August, she has been asking to meet the president in person and calling for U.S. troops to be withdrawn from Iraq.
Sheehan's anti-war message follows Bush trail
60-second ad airs on stations in Idaho, Utah
Bill Wallace, San Francisco Chronicle Staff Writer
Saturday, August 27, 2005
An anti-war TV spot featuring Cindy Sheehan, the Vacaville woman whose son Casey was killed in Iraq, has been dogging President Bush's footsteps as he traveled to Idaho and Utah this past week.
The 60-second ad, in which Sheehan speaks directly to the camera and castigates the president for "your lies" about the Iraq war, has aired on six television affiliates in Salt Lake City and Boise, Idaho, and is scheduled to run nationally on CNN and Fox Network News during the next week.
By Sam Coates
Washington Post Staff Writer
Sunday, August 28, 2005; A03
CRAWFORD, Tex., Aug. 27 -- They arrived in thousands from all corners of the country, asserting their right to protest in the name of war and peace near President Bush's ranch.
It was almost 100 in the shade, but the temperature in this dusty prairie town felt far higher, with protesters of wildly differing views and temperaments packing into narrow roads and small open spaces. Some came to party, some came to weep, a small number came spoiling for a fight -- police said there were two reports of assaults.
This weekend is the culmination of the standoff between Bush and war protester Cindy Sheehan, who arrived 21 days ago. She came asking Bush to meet with her, even though he had done so before, to discuss the war. Her protest snowballed, with the arrival of Sheehan sympathizers and then pro-war demonstrators. Both sides planned major rallies over the weekend because it is the last one before Bush ends his vacation and Sheehan leaves.
Dear Clifford May:
Unfortunately Cindy Sheehan is too busy trying to keep other mothers' sons and daughters from dying in Iraq to accept your invitation to lunch.
But I would be delighted to accept your invitation in her place on one small condition: that you sign and submit this document, known as "DD Form 4/1".
If you haven't already, visit this new site:
We propose the following principles as essential to ending the war in Iraq:
First, as a confidence-building measure, the U.S. government must declare that it has no interest in permanent military bases or the control of Iraqi oil or other resources.
Second, as a further confidence-building measure, the U.S. government must set goals for ending the occupation and bringing all our troops home - in months, not years, beginning with an initial withdrawal of troops by the end of this year.
ANGELA K. BROWN
CRAWFORD, Texas - Thousands of war protesters have come and gone since a grieving mother started camping off the road leading to President Bush's ranch three weeks ago, from business executives to young parents and their children spending a few hours or days for the cause.
But for more than a dozen people, their home for much of the sweltering month has been the makeshift campsite of tents and portable toilets in ditches and anti-war banners hanging from trees.
"It's staggering what's happened," said camp leader Ann Wright, who resigned her post as a senior diplomat at the U.S. Embassy in Mongolia in 2003 in protest of the war with Iraq. "I would say between 8,000 and 10,000 people have wandered in and out since the beginning. Every single day you never know what's going to come up."
Bush in San Diego! 2 events: Mon. vigil & Tues. protest
As President George W. Bush visits San Diego, let’s ask him…
How Many More,
Support the Troops. Bring Them Home Alive.
Two Events! Attend Both!!
Monday, August 29th; 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm
CANDLELIGHT VIGIL FOR PEACE
Ocean Blvd on the beach, Hotel Del Coronado
Join Gold Star father Fernando Suarez del Solar, military families and veterans for a Candlelight Vigil outside of the Hotel Del Coronado. Bush will be staying at the hotel Monday evening, prior to his speech to a select audience of supporters at Naval Station North Island Tuesday Morning. Bring candles, banners and signs of peace. Anticipate traffic congestion. Carpool or use public transit!
Tuesday, August 30; 6:00 am to 8:30 am
GIVE GEORGE BUSH THE WELCOME HE DESERVES!
North Island Naval Air Station, Main Gate
4th St. and Alameda Boulevard, Coronado
Gather at the base entrance with your signs and enthusiasm to tell President Bush: Stop the Unjust War in Iraq!
If either event is prevented on Coronado Island, please gather in Horton Plaza, 4th St. and Broadway, Downtown San Diego.
Brad Blog on Air America Saturday Night
Brad Blog: "In the spirit exemplified by the Peace House in Crawford, Texas, Saturday Night radio "competitors" Laura Flanders of Air America Radio and Brad Friedman of The BRAD SHOW via RAW RADIO are announcing an historic partnership as they simulcast their programs together this Saturday Night from on the ground in Crawford!..read on"
More from Raw Story on the joint venture.
Bay Buchanan: Say What?
Cindy Sheehan is having a very weird effect on the extreme right wing apologists.
Case in point: Bay Buchanan actually praised Cindy Sheehan on The Situation Room yesterday: (hat tip Midori)
Bay: I think she deserves a lot of credit........She's very compassionate.....She's given it focus, national media...I think she's a very good spokesperson...
Saturday, August 27, 2005
Move America Forward's Shady Dealings
Max Blumenthal has some great information about the front group that has bankrolled the Creepy Caravan tour to attack Cindy Sheehan. Here's a little about Sal Russo:
"If Kaloogian wants to fight corruption, he should get up, turn the light on, and take a look in his own slimy bed. After all, Move America Forward's "Chief Strategist," Sal Russo, who handled Bill Simon's hapless 2002 gubernatorial campaign, is knee-deep in unethical business dealings and scandals."
and this: "That's right. Move America Forward's Sal Russo ran tax shelters and bilked campaign donors out of $200,000. Oh, and then there's the little thing about Russo and Simon being in bed with a major drug trafficker, something they still can't explain" ...read on
I went to Crawford yesterday
by JamesC [Subscribe]
Sat Aug 27th, 2005 at 19:23:52 PDT
I went to Crawford, Texas yesterday to add my voice to the protesters. It was exciting, enlightening, and all together satisfying. I met Cindy, sweated a lot, laughed, and wept.
This is Bob, and Bob is my new hero. He is a 6'7" Marine, Iraq War II vet, and evangelical Christian. What you can't see in his left hand here is a silver trumpet. At sunset he and Cindy stood next to each other at sunset in the middle of the crosses while he played taps. Everyone was completely silent. It brought tears to my eyes, and many openly wept.
[Breaking Update]Police just Arrest Driver that honked for peace!
by JR [Subscribe]
Sat Aug 27th, 2005 at 18:51:23 PDT
I'm standing on a street in St Pete as I type. Two cars were just stopped and at least one arrest ensued after the passing drivers honked their horns in support of our protest.
Call the St Pete police and ask when we lost the right to honk for peace! 727-893-7780
Email the mayor and demand he take action here
Here's some backstory:
Six protesters with the anti-war group St. Pete for Peace, including three under 18 years old, were arrested Aug. 6 outside a trendy downtown St. Petersburg development owned by Sembler Co., founded by a former Republican National Committee finance chairman and major contributor to President Bush.
The protesters were demonstrating against the Iraq War outside BayWalk, a complex of shops and restaurants owned by the development firm started by Bush-backer and former Ambassador to Italy Melvin Sembler. Protests by groups such as St. Pete for Peace and the Democratic Uhuru Movement are regular fixtures on the public sidewalk outside the development. Sembler Co. has reportedly attempted to- purchase the sidewalk in question from the city. Metal barricades were recently placed across the sidewalk by the St. Petersburg Police Department. Police spokesman Bill Proffitt has stated that the barricades are meant to aid pedestrian safety. "This is just our attempt to make sure that everyone who goes to BayWalk can go there safely," Proffitt said of the barricades.
Protesters claim the barricades are meant to force demonstrators either into traffic or onto Sembler property, making them subject to arrest for trespassing. At a press conference on August 9, ACLU spokesman Mark Kamleiter rejected police claims, saying, "Nobody is getting pushed into the streets." He later added, "these people have no access to the media. The only way that they can have an impact is to get out on the sidewalk and talk."
Our Visit to Camp Casey
by Dr Observer [Subscribe]
Sat Aug 27th, 2005 at 18:11:31 PDT
Our family (myself, my wife, and our three older kids who are 11, 13 and 16) went down to Crawford today. We wanted to take the kids down there to see what's going on before Cindy Sheehan leaves on her anti-war bus tour and the Boy King goes back to getting his workouts in and ignoring the country from the Oval Office. Today was a good day to go because there were two opposing rallies scheduled.
Before I tell the story, here is my advice to people thinking of going before Cindy leaves on August 31: There's plenty of ice and bottled water at the camp. Check the Peace House web site before you go to see if there are any urgent needs, like toilet paper, paper plates, cutlery, etc. It seemed to me that the biggest need today was for more shuttle drivers and vehicles, but today was probably crazy compared to most other days.
Acting on very good advice from Meet With Cindy and the Crawford Peace House, we arrived a little early (around 11am) at the Peace House. There was less traffic than I was expecting. We felt very lucky to be able to sneak into a grassy parking lot near the Peace House where a few places remained up against the railroad tracks.