By ANGELA K. BROWN
The Associated Press
Sunday, August 14, 2005; 10:57 PM
CRAWFORD, Texas -- Undaunted by counter rallies and even a neighbor's gunshot blasts into the air, a woman whose son died in Iraq said Sunday that she will continue her anti-war demonstration near President Bush's ranch for three more weeks.
"We can't give up, no matter hard it gets," said Cindy Sheehan of Vacaville, Calif. She started the protest Aug. 6 in memory of her 24-year-old son Casey, an Army specialist killed in Iraq last year.
Her makeshift campsite along the road leading to the Western White House has grown to more than 100, and hundreds more have stopped by for a few hours to show their support. Sheehan says she won't leave "Camp Casey" until Bush meets with her and other grieving families or until his monthlong ranch visit ends.
Christian Science Monitor
from the August 15, 2005 edition
Cindy Sheehan's vigil outside Bush's Texas ranch brings focus to a protest movement that's been largely unseen and ineffective.
By Brad Knickerbocker and Kris Axtman | Staff writers of The Christian Science Monitor
ASHLAND, ORE., AND CRAWFORD, TEXAS - In her high-profile vigil outside President Bush's Texas ranch, Cindy Sheehan has brought the face and the heart of the antiwar movement to the world.
The plain-spoken words and image of a mother carrying a wooden cross to commemorate the son she lost in Iraq have suddenly brought focus to what has been largely an unseen and ineffective protest movement in the US.
14 Aug 2005 20:27:00 GMT
By Tabassum Zakaria
CRAWFORD, Texas, Aug 14 (Reuters) - The mother of a dead American soldier who brought the anti-war movement into President George W. Bush's backyard has become a symbol for those who want U.S. troops pulled out of Iraq.
Cindy Sheehan, whose 24-year-old son Casey was killed in Iraq in April 2004, has pitched a tent on the side of a country road that leads to the president's ranch and refuses to go away until he speaks to her.
She has grabbed the national spotlight and developed an almost cult-like following, drawing supporters to this Texas town, which has a population of 705.
By Tim Goodrich
U.S. Tour of Duty
August 14, 2005
Since today was Sunday, I¹m going to take this time to talk about religion. Although I¹m not typically a religious individual, the prayer service that we had at Camp Casey today was nice. There were a number of reverends there representing their different faiths. Prayers were said, bread was broken, and tears were shed.
I find it interesting the way religion has come to be twisted in American society. Instead of being an institute of peace, there are too many congregations across the United States that support the illegal occupation of Iraq. The last time I looked, the Ten Commandments said, "Thou shall not kill." They don¹t say, "Thou shall not kill, except when another country needs oil or strategic military control." And it¹s not that I¹ve forgotten the Ten Commandments, either. In fact, I looked at them today as we passed the Bush store at the main intersection in Crawford. They have an overly large display in the front of the store consisting of the Ten Commandments with a fake Liberty Bell in the middle. I would think that with this display being so prominent, Bush would know better.
The Peaceful Occupation of Crawford
The ninth day ended in the most awesome way. We were out at Camp Casey and it was sprinkling a little bit and it really looked like the rain was going to start pouring down anytime. We looked over into the next cow pasture and there was a full rainbow. If that wasn't a sign from the universe than I don't know what is.
I was being interviewed by Alex Jones and he asked me what I thought the rainbow signified. I told Alex that I was positive that it means we are going to be victorious. Rainbows are supposedley God's sign of hope. When Casey was killed on 04/04/04, I thought that all of my hope was killed, too. Being involved in the peaceful occupation of Crawford and meeting hundreds of people from all over the world who are willing to put their money where their mouths are has given me so much hope for the future. We won't let George Bush and his evil neocon cabal ruin our world anymore. John Lennon sang: "Power to the people." We are the people and we have the power.
"Today is kind of a blur to me."--Cindy Sheehan
Pilgrims of Protest in Crawford: A People's History of Aug. 11, Part Three
By Greg Moses
Penny strides into the front lawn of the Crawford Peace House talking about that time up in Racine five weeks before the alleged re-election when she stood along the street with firemen and everybody, and flipped the President the bird. "Thank you," is what Penny recalls the President saying to her. "God, what a weak man!"
Like Cindy Sheehan, Penny is motivated by the death of her son, but Penny's son was not killed in an overseas war. He lost his life to the politics of health care funding in Texas. "I'm only the Governor," is how Penny recalls Bush's response when she asked him to help restore a sudden cut in funding to the cancer research trial in Arlington, Texas that was doing good things for her son. "My son died because that treatment was delayed," says Penny. And that's one reason why she flipped the President the bird.
Defends refusal to meet protester
Sunday, August 14, 2005
Cox News Service
CRAWFORD, Texas - President Bush, noting that lots of people want to talk to the president and "it's also important for me to go on with my life," on Saturday defended his decision not to meet with the grieving mom of a soldier killed in Iraq.
Bush said he is aware of the anti-war sentiments of Cindy Sheehan and others who have joined her protest near the Bush ranch.
"But whether it be here or in Washington or anywhere else, there's somebody who has got something to say to the president, that's part of the job," Bush said on the ranch. "And I think it's important for me to be thoughtful and sensitive to those who have got something to say."
The Bahama Journal
Cindy Sheehan’s son was a soldier. The name of the dead soldier is Casey Sheehan. Today his mother, father and other neighbours, family and friends mourn his furious passage to the exit. And as they grieve, the whole world now watches as another drama plays out in Crawford, Texas, home to President George W. Bush’s ranch.
This drama involves-among other interested parties- Cindy Sheehan, the dead soldier’s mother and others who have experienced similar war-related losses. Highest on their list of priorities is their stated desire to find out from president Bush why their loved ones are being called upon to pay the ultimate price in a struggle that has come to epitomize the essence of blunder and failure.
The Daily Telegraph (Australia)
August 15, 2005
A FRUSTRATED local farmer fired shots into the air today near hundreds of protesters who began their second week of demonstrations against the Iraq war outside US President George W Bush's ranch.
Larry Mattlage, who lives next to the Bush ranch where the president is spending a five week vacation, complained about the 200 protesters, media and government security officials occupying the road outside his own residence after firing a rifle into the air several times.
"Five weeks of this is too much. We live here, this is our community," Mattlage said in footage shown by CNN television, while insisting the gunshots were just him "getting ready for dove season".
A woman lost her son in Iraq and won't leave George W. Bush alone until he sees her. Who is she, and why is she stirring such emotion?
BY AMANDA RIPLEY IN CRAWFORD
Posted Sunday, Aug. 14, 2005
Cindy Sheehan, 48, is not a natural-born revolutionary. She speaks in a high, almost childlike voice. She says like as often as any teenager, as in, "This whole thing was like so freaking spur of the moment." When her supporters gather to discuss strategy, Sheehan is not to be found in the circle of beach chairs; she is 50 yards up the road, doing yet another interview, hugging yet another stranger. But here she is, the mother of Casey, 24, who died in Iraq last year, and now the central character in the strange, swirling protest she initiated two miles down the road from President Bush's ranch in Crawford, Texas.
By O’Ryan Johnson
Sunday, August 14, 2005 - Updated: 10:27 AM EST
We're here for Cindy.
That was the message yesterday as about 150 protesters gathered on the Boston Common in a show of solidarity with Cindy Sheehan, the mother of a dead Marine. Sheehan is camped outside of President Bush's ranch in Crawford, Texas, waiting for the commander-in-chief to explain to her in person why her son was killed.
``Mr. Bush can't hide forever,'' said Rose Gonzalez, whose own mother is serving with a National Guard unit north of Baghdad.
Protesters wore stickers that featured a picture of Sheehan over the words, ``I support Cindy.''
OPERATION NOBLE CAUSE
August 6, 2005 George W. Bush told the world that the parents of fallen heroes in Iraq could rest assured their lived ones died for a noble cause. Gold Star Families for Peace founder, Cindy Sheehan traveled to Crawford, Texas to ask the president what "noble cause" our fallen soldiers died for. Bush has refused to meet and Cindy has refused to leave. Since August 6, 2005 Operation Noble Cause has grown from a one woman operation to a massive campaign involving more than seven hundred people.
Operation Noble Cause (Expeditionary): Iraq Veterans are encouraged to volunteer for service in Crawford, TX for a period of three to five days. Airfare, campsite, and rations will be provided.
By Kathryn Westcott
Cindy Sheehan has swiftly become a media star after setting up a "peace camp" outside US President George W Bush's ranch in Crawford, Texas.
Ms Sheehan, whose 24-year-old son Casey was killed in Iraq last year, has vowed to remain for the duration of his holiday, or until he consents to talk to her.
Ms Sheehan is campaigning for the US to withdraw its troops from Iraq, where American casualties are rising towards the 2,000 mark.
Many of the supporters who have joined her sport shirts that say: "Talk to Cindy.
And while Mr Bush has declined to speak to her, he has been unable to ignore her.
by Clarence Page
Published August 14, 2005
Cindy Sheehan's vigil raises uncomfortable questions for Bush
WASHINGTON -- I sympathize with Cindy Sheehan, the California woman who wants to talk to President Bush about her son Casey, who was killed in Iraq. I also sympathize with President Bush. It can't be easy to look as confident as he usually does while he's trying to get his country out of a bigger mess than he expected to get it into.
It is August, normally a no-news time in which the president can roll up his shirtsleeves and clear brush around his Crawford, Texas, ranch while news cameras click and roll and his approval ratings soar. It is interesting how presidential approvals tend to ascend in August, regardless of which party happens to be in power. The American people, in accord with Thomas Jefferson, seem to appreciate government the most when it is governing the least.
by NewCon06 at Daily Kos
Sun Aug 14th, 2005 at 19:05:46 PDT
I wish I could be there to support Cindy and our country's cause, but I can't afford the trip. I don't feel helpless though.
I'm a Graphic Designer that's pissed off at this coward of a leader we have and I want to help Cindy Sheehan get an answer for the loss of her son.
If this helps, please use it. It's a 24"x18" poster that can be downloaded from anywhere and printed at Kinko's as a poster for support Cindy rallies everywhere.
Please link here to see poster
By Farhad Manjoo
Saturday 13 August 2005
Conservatives are attacking her as a dupe of the left who's exploiting her dead son. Some relatives have piled on too. But the grieving mother says her well-timed Crawford visit is "my idea, my mission, my vision."
August was supposed to have been a quiet month for George W. Bush. Last year, the president cut short his customary weekslong vacation in order to campaign for reelection, so this year, unencumbered, he'd planned to spend more than a month in the sweltering heat of his ranch in Crawford, Texas. Then, last week, Cindy Sheehan, a grieving Northern California woman whose son was killed in Baghdad, Iraq in April 2004, showed up on Bush's vacation doorstep. She refuses to leave until Bush meets her in person. Nothing's been quiet in Crawford ever since.
by murphy at Daily Kos
Sun Aug 14th, 2005 at 12:20:27 PDT
An interfaith service with Pastors for Peace and George Regis of Pasadena, CA All Saints Episcopal. We joined to break bread and celebrate our hope of peace.
We heard from Micah about making pruning hooks and plow shares, as well as the Beatitudes of Jesus. We prayed for the fallen soldiers, with 500 crosses and Stars of David with a name on each of them, and photos of some of them behind our table.
There were prayers for George Bush, for Iraqi civilians, for individual soldiers and veterans, living and dead. So many prayers, prayers for our damaged earth, our damaged families. There was a prayer in Arabic by one of our Muslim brothers who are here.
From Tomdispatch comes "Cindy Sheehan's War -- Cindy, Don, and George: On Being in a Ditch at the Side of the Road."
Sheehan is a phenomenon -- but few have attempted to put her in the larger context of the moment in Iraq, in Washington, in the military, and in Crawford, Texas. This piece focuses on an administration suddenly in uncharacteristic disarray and a President who prides himself on not flinching, giving ground, or ever saying he's sorry, but who has also had remarkably good luck until he ran into Cindy Sheehan.
Whether in his presidential runs, in Congress, or elsewhere, he really hasn't come up against an opponent who was ready to dig in and duke it out blow for blow, an opponent ready never to flinch, never to apologize, never to mince words, never to take prisoners.
by Japhet at Daily Kos
Sun Aug 14th, 2005 at 08:36:09 PDT
Japhet writes this about Iraqi War Veteran Benjamin Hart Viges: I met Hart a few days ago here at Crawford. The personal stories here are amazing to listen to and report. Here is one from Austin, TX and has been here in Crawford for two days now. he wrote this for yesterday evening after all the activities.
Benjamin Hart Viges' Story
My name is Benjamin Hart Viges and I am a veteran of this current war in Iraq. After September 11th I thought joining the army was a way to solve the problem we as Americans were facing. After spending a year in Iraq I was given a first hand experience of war. It showed me that the occupation was spurring on further violence which is contrary to why they told us we were there. When I came back I filed for Conscientious Objector status. After ten months I received CO status and was released from the army honorably.
by Dr. Jeffrey Feldman, Editor in Chief
In broad terms, the success of the 'grieving mom' phrase indicates that Americans are now thinking about the War in Iraq through the frame of the family, rather than thinking about Iraq through the frame of 'terrorism' or 'ideology.'
If Democrats want to build on Cindy Sheehan's success, we must accept that last week's media storm was less about Cindy's demand to meet or her accusation against the President, than about her image as a 'grieving mother.'
Of the 122,000 pages that result from a Google search of grieving mom, almost all of them are stories about Cindy Sheehan. Clearly, 'grieving mom was the magic phrase at the heart Cindy Sheehan's success.
Administration Is Shedding 'Unreality' That Dominated Invasion, Official Says
By Robin Wright and Ellen Knickmeyer
Washington Post Staff Writers
Washington Post, Sunday, August 14, 2005; A01
The Bush administration is significantly lowering expectations of what can be achieved in Iraq, recognizing that the United States will have to settle for far less progress than originally envisioned during the transition due to end in four months, according to U.S. officials in Washington and Baghdad.
The United States no longer expects to see a model new democracy, a self-supporting oil industry or a society in which the majority of people are free from serious security or economic challenges, U.S. officials say.
Sympathy for grief, not necessarily Cindy Sheehan's cause
If you are a mother who grieves for a child killed in the war on terror, what would you say to President Bush?
By John Cramer
The Roanoke Times (Virginia)
Roanoke Valley residents expressed sympathy for a military mother camped outside President Bush's Texas ranch, but they differed on whether the commander-in-chief should meet with the antiwar protester.
"He should, but my hunch is he'll ignore her," said Eli Fishpaw of Rockbridge Response, a peace and justice group based in Rockbridge County. "It really helps [the antiwar movement] to have military families against the war, but the Bush people have mastered the technique of ignoring people."
By Tom Hayden
Cindy Sheehan represents an alternative world of meaning that more Americans need to experience before this war can end. She represents the survivors' need to define a meaning in her son's death - and her life - that is counter to the meaning offered by President Bush. That is why she refuses any condolences, and why she continues to ask the President what was the "noble purpose" for which Casey Sheehan died.
All wars take on a new momentum when the survivors believe that those killed represent a "noble sacrifice" and hear repeated assurances from authority figures that they "shall not have died in vain." The momentum begins to reverse when the survivors question deeply the justification for all the suffering.
Editor and Publisher
By E&P Staff
Published: August 14, 2005 12:55 PM ET
NEW YORK Showing the value of its nearly round-the-clock coverage, the Lone Star Iconoclast, a weekly in Crawford, Texas, reported this morning from the scene that shots had been fired near the Cindy Sheehan antiwar encampment near the Bush ranch, which has drawn national attention.
Apparently they were fired by a local landowner none too pleased with the protest in his neighborhood.
Earlier this week, the Houston Chronicle talked to the neghbor, Larry Mattlage. Sitting on a tractor across the road, Mattlage said he supported the right to protest but that the demonstrators should not be allowed to stay for prolonged periods. "In the morning I usually wake up and see the morning sun," he said. "Now I wake up to stuff hanging in trees."
by William Pitt on Democratic Underground
“This thing, the wheels are coming off it.
Deborah Mathews reporting for The Iconoclast .
Camp Casey is becoming very organized, with how-to signs placed about. Ann Wright said, "That's what we are trying to do."
Let me read you the schedule posted on a tree: "9:15 camp meeting; 10 a.m. inter-faith service, 10:30 a.m., "Food-Not-Bombs Breakfast at Peace House," and....
"Wait! Someone is firing a gun. (pause). He fired it into the air about five times. He appears to be a local inside the fence line on private property. Now he has thrown what looks like a shotgun into the front seat of a pickup, and he's stomping off out of sight. I wonder where he went.
Update: Phone calls with Lietta.
When she first arrived there, Lietta's first impressions included remarks about the repeated appearance and "drive- bys" of the secret service,
"You could always tell which cars, usually driving fast, were Secret Service. They're the ones with the tinted windows."
The firm but friendly authority and respect demonstrated by the local police. She has yet to speak one word against how they have struggled to maintain order while enforcing the law which seems to mostly have to do with local private property owners' right, crowd control and occasional elements of "national security" actions at the behest of the feds.