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Why I'm camping out in Crawford, Texas


Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
By CINDY SHEEHAN

I will never, ever forget the night of April 4, 2004, when I found out that my son Casey had been killed in Iraq.

I will also never forget the day when we buried my sweet boy, my oldest son. If I live to be a very old lady and forget everything else, I will never forget when the general handed me the folded flag that had lain on Casey's coffin, as his brother and sisters, standing behind me, sobbed.

I think of Casey every day as I wait outside President Bush's ranch in Crawford, Texas, determined to meet with him.

I want to let the president know that I feel he recklessly endangered the life of my son by sending our troops to attack and occupy a country that was no imminent threat to the United States.

And I want to let him know that millions of Americans believe that the best thing we can do - for our own security, for our soldiers and for the Iraqi people - is to bring the U.S. troops home from Iraq now.

Just because it's too late for Casey and the Sheehan family, why would we want another innocent life taken in the name of this ever-changing and unwinnable mission in Iraq?

I did get to meet with Bush two and a half months after my son was killed, but I never got to say any of these things to him. I was in deep shock and grief at the time, and all I wanted to do was to show him pictures of Casey and tell him what a wonderful man our son was.

But today, things are very different. My shock has worn off, and now I've got a lot of anger along with my grief.

I'm angry because every reason the Bush administration gave for the invasion of Iraq has been shown to be false.

The 9-11 commission's report concluded there was no link between Iraq and the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.

The weapons inspectors gave up searching for weapons of mass destruction and wrote in the Duelfer report that there were none to be found.

From the Downing Street memo, we learned that the Bush administration "fixed" intelligence to justify the Iraq invasion.

And after every supposed milestone in Iraq - the capture of Saddam Hussein, the transition to Iraqi rule and most recently the Iraq election - things just don't get better. U.S. soldiers and Iraqis continue to be killed in greater and greater numbers, the cost of the war skyrockets and there's no end in sight.

After 30 U.S. troops were killed in one week recently, the president reiterated his pledge to complete the mission of our fallen soldiers. But that mission originally was to protect the U.S. from a lethal attack by Hussein - with weapons it turns out he did not have.

Anyway, I don't want the president to use Casey's memory to justify continuing this war, which will end up only needlessly killing more wonderful young men like him.

Many people have been streaming in to Crawford to support my vigil and convince the president to listen to the people who want an end to this war. We are camping out in a drainage ditch, in 100-degree weather, but it's worth it.

If and when I do meet with the president this time, it will be for all of the Gold Star Families for Peace who lost children in this war, for all of the mothers and fathers and husbands and wives who are grieving and who want to tell the president to end this devastating war.

No one else, not one more mom, should have to lose her son in Iraq.

Cindy Sheehan is the mother of a fallen Iraq war soldier and the co-founder of Gold Star Families for Peace. This was written for Progressive Media Project in Madison.

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The name of his column is "Somebody Tell the President the War is Over"
http://www.nytimes.com/2005/08/14/opinion/14rich.html
I say if anybody is going to tell him it should be you. So go for it, tell the President the war is over.

An excerpt from Rich's Times article:

In an interview with Tim Russert early last year, Mr. Bush said, "The thing about the Vietnam War that troubles me, as I look back, was it was a political war," adding that the "essential" lesson he learned from Vietnam was to not have "politicians making military decisions."

And, what peace activists learned from the Vietnam War was: don't diss the soldiers, support the troops!

Cindy Sheehan and all the others present at Camp Casey or supporting in other ways are doing a damn good job of supporting the troops!

Thank you all for the great work you are doing.

You da man!

Cindy, I hope you are planning to attend church with President Bush in the morning.

All the best, Pat Collins

Go to church with him stand, side by side and let him know you want answers.You go and make him sweat. Let him understand, the blood and tears of all that have lost their lives. Make him see that you have a strong agenda.You have AMERICA BEHIND YOUR LOSS.

Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.
Matthew 5:4

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be filled.
Matthew 5: 6

Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.
Matthew 5:8

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God.
Matthew 5:9

Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness' sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Matthew 5:10

Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely for My sake. Matthew 5:11

Thou shall not kill
Exodus 20:13

And they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.
Isaiah 2:4

Greet one another with the kiss of Christian love. May peace be with all of you who belong to Christ.
1 Peter 5:14

You must turn away from evil and do good; you must strive for peace with all your heart.
1 Peter 3:11

And goodness is the harvest that is produced from the seeds the peacemakers plant in peace.
James 3:18

Try to be at peace with everyone, and try to live a holy life, because no one will see the Lord without it.
Hebrews 12:14

May the Lord himself, who is our source of peace, give you peace at all times and in every way.
2 Thessalonians 3:16

The peace that Christ gives is to guide you in the decisions you make; for it is to this peace that God has called you together in the one body.
Colossians 3:15

God has called you to live in peace.
1 Corinthians 7:15

Love your neighbor as you love yourself.
Matthew 22:39

For the whole Law is summed up in one commandment: "Love your neighbor as you love yourself."
Galatians 5:14

A child is born to us! A son is given to us! And he will be our ruler. He will be called, "Wonderful! Counselor," "Mighty God," "Eternal Father," "Prince of Peace."
Isaiah 9:6

Go to church with him stand, side by side and let him know you want answers.You go and make him sweat. Let him understand, the blood and tears of all that have lost their lives. Make him see that you have a strong agenda.You have AMERICA BEHIND YOUR LOSS.

Did you forget the talk you already had? I feel for you, but at the same time it is documented that you accepted what he said in another meeting. Why the change of heart?

It has been well publicized by Cindy that she was in complete shock the first meeting, and the reality of it did not hit her till later.
It took her quite awhile to be able to disclose many of W's repugnant words at that meeting, and his swaggering cocky attitude. Cindy has also obtained much proof of the Bushco lies after the first meeting, including the Downing Street Minutes/Memos. When he recently said that our Troops died for a noble cause, Cindy now knows that to be a false lie. She wants to confront W with questions including "What is the 'noble cause' Casey died for?"

Dear Cindy 8/13/05
I Love America and now we have hope of turning our country around. We need to restore our democracy, our decency, our esteem in the eyes of the world. All of these values were devastated by the regime who have taken over our government. Until you started the vigil last Saturday we had been rendered silent in large part.
We needed someone to humanize what bushco have very successfully dehumanized which is the horror of this war. They refuse to allow photos of the honored dead coming home. He has not attended one funeral service. I have family members in Arlington. i cant stand to see bush going there. Hes a coward, a liar; the worst president ever.
Until now we have been unable to unite. We have been alone in our shame and horror about what these people have done to our country. And no one should doubt its about anything but power and profitering (cheney's halliburton) and all the other profiteering with weaponsno bid contracting etc. This is why they are the most secretive admin. in recent history. What they are doing is simply criminal.
They should hide it and they know it. For example; cheneys meeting with the executives/energy czars. They refuse to release any info on those secret meetings, then the new energy bill is passed by the repub congress giving billions in subsidies to these coporations. This is why we have to fight to get any info about what they are doing.$$$tealing
They dont want people to know what they are doing. This goes for the war as well. They refuse to tell us the truth because what they are doing only benefits the few. Its not about democratization; thats a lie. Its about privitization and exploiting another country.
Its also about consolidating power. Endless war enables the radical right wing to silence dissent, intimidate the citizens, and do just about anything they want in the name of "911/ national security, and patriotism" I knew from the moment i saw him standing with the fireman at ground zero that they would take this crime and begin using it to their own political, financial advantage. REpubs are about money and power and hurting people. They are cruel. Their power is well organized and funded. They are immoral, and not Christian.
They thrive on ignorance. Which is why texas is 49th in education. (W)
They have besieiged us ever since with lies; or an assault on the truth, which can only be compared to Goebbels big lie machine. They are in complete isolation and detachment from the American people. And lets remember they got him in with barely 25% of the eligible voters. There are millions and millions who did not vote for him and millions who voted against him. They bought this election with money, cronyism, dirty tricks and slanderslime campaigns. Their power is well organized and funded. Unfortunately many americans bought it. Our frustration comes from this dumbing down and manipulation of people who turned our govt over. The relentless assault on every aspect of our lives from education, environment, medical care, jobs, worker,civil and women's rights does not stop. It goes on and on.We have been dazed and disorganzied by this assault on our lives;Perhaps in shock and awe.
The worst crime of all of course is this illegal, immoral war
It is based on lies. As John Bonifaz testified before John Conyers committe, lying to the american public, and our Congress about the justifications for going to war are Felonies. There is no doubt about this. History will prove it but we cant wait.
We have been unable to organize the American people who have been terrorized, and overwhelmed by this conglomeration of power, wealth, corporate lobbying, cronyism,lies and media control. They have taken over our country. They continue a daily assault on the separation of powers. They are not afraid to lie, commit crimes or take any other type of immoral or unethcial actions.
This agenda includes conducting an illegal war. Any one who has stood up to them is slandered by rovereillylimbaugh slime machine. The list is quite lengthy. Stories were aborted or quickly buried. Paul O'Neil, Richard Wright, Lt Col. Karen Kiatowski, Gen Shinsecki Col.Gardner, Scott Ritter, and many others were slandered attacked andor fired/forced to resign for speaking out about this war. Many high level military and intelligence posts have been replaced by civilians in military uniforms who have "drunk the cool aid" ie are willing to do what they are told. They dishonor and disarm both the military and the intelligence community as Ray McGovern, Mike Scheur(CIA), Seymour Hersh and many others have told us. All of this of course makes us less safe. It also disturbs two centuries of democratic progress,and the balance of governmental powers.
Sleazy hacks like Sensenbrenner and Delay, are now in powerful positions.They are exploiting power as fast as they can. The scandals are coming so fast and furious its a full time job just to keep track of all the damage they have done to this country. Some of this damage is irreversible. Certainly all the deaths and horrible maiming and wounding of our honorable Military and the Iraqi and Afghani people is. It seems we are at a really critical place in our history as
the relentless concentration of coroporate/govt takeover mergers continues. Govt plus Corporation equals a corprotocracy.
How anyone thinks bombing, insulting, exploiting and torturing people makes us safer is beyond belief. It defies simple common sense or logic. Obviously we are in much greater jeopardy than we were before. Endless war fits this administrations's agenda. Profits for the very few who benefit from war. For the rest of us who suffer, and who have suffered as much as a family can; the pain will go on & on. This country is still suffering from all our other wars and now we have yet another one.
I realized tonight that we now have hope and a focus of our attention and activism. You have united the millions that feel exactly as you do. You have educated and inspired many who didnt know what was happening, but recognized the truth when they heard it.
There are millions of Americans who feel EXACTLY AS YOU DO. You have crystalized a movement. For this you will be remembered as a true patriot who spoke the heartfelt Truth . CitizenG

Dear Cindy,

While I have not sufferred your loss, I share your pain and your shame of this administration. I am so proud of you! Take em on girl. With every cell in my body, from the minute of inception, I knew this was was wrong. They have tried to silence us, and you have the courage that we should all have! Know that you have the support of many - and I soooo hope that it is finally becoming the MAJORITY! If anyone is furthering that - it is YOU! I sstand beside you in spirit.

Dear Cindy,
I watch for news of you everyday. I am with you in my heart. I for the life of me don't understand how these republicans can say they have better morals cause they go to church and are against abortion. How can they be for murdering our sons??? How does that make sense?? How did this man even get in office again?? It is not the rich republican sons who are sent off to die for this oil war of this madman president. It is our democratic sons and daughters that are fighting for him.

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