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8-22 The Cindy Sheehan Effect


By Cynthia Bogard

George Bush flew the coop this morning in his red presidential helicopter, off to deliver a speech to 15,000 Veterans of Foreign Wars in Utah, the reddest of red states.[He received 71% of the votes in Utah in 2004.] We were having our morning volunteer meeting at Camp Casey II just then and we raised our arms in unison to salute him with the peace sign as he flew across the prairie.

But a funny thing happened on the way to Bush's carefully scripted photo-op to hype the war, motivated, according to ABC's George Stephanopolos, by "the Cindy Sheehan effect." That's us, the 50 to over 1,000 people on site at any one time here in Crawford and the many thousands of supporters who have besieged the Crawford Peace house with gifts, words of support and donations. "Oddly," noted the New York Times, war protesters showed up in Salt Lake City. And more oddly still, the 1,000 person peaceful protest was organized by none other than Ross C. Anderson, the mayor * yes, the mayor, of Salt Lake. Well, okay, he is a Democrat. But still, that's what's happening today in Utah.

The spirit of Camp Casey haunted the president's appearance in the body of Celeste Zappala, who vowed that she and other Gold Star mothers will appear to remind the president of the costs of this war at every one of his attempts to pump up Americans about Iraq and assure them that our men and women in uniform as he likes to call them, are too, really, there for a good reason. "That's my mom!" said Zappala's younger son Dante, who remained here at Camp Casey while his mother reminded the president from her Salt Lake protest site that he still hasn't given Gold Star parents, or the nation, some reason to believe this war is a noble cause.

Senators and representatives on vacation in their home states are working their constituents and finding that even in the red states, Americans have a newfound voice and are asking questions about Iraq. And that voice has been motivated by Cindy Sheehan and now by the small but growing group of former soldiers and military family members that have vowed to continue spreading her message. Rhea Parker from Maryland, the mother of a young marine stationed in the Red Sea whose ship got fired on a few days ago, has committed herself to standing with Cindy. So has Michelle De Ford from Oregon who lost her oldest son David to this war. And then there's Adele Kubein, whose daughter was permanently crippled by an injury she suffered in a helicopter crash. She had to ask her Congressional Representative to intervene to get her daughter the physical and emotional rehabilitation she needed after "pulling the body parts of her best friend" out of a Hummer that had been decimated by a roadside bomb. "You see, she's a member of the National Guard and they only get 90 days of medical care after they've been wounded in battle." National Guard members who need longer term care are told that they would have to stay on bases far from home and are pressured to sign waivers relieving the federal government of responsibility for their health care "so that they can go home."

Many of these family members have been actively questioning the war for some time but others have come to this decision only after months of trying to believe that their loved ones are fighting and at times dying for a worthy cause. They are eager to share their stories. They make the most persuasive argument anyone can make against this war. "I'm doing this," admits Rhea Parker, "because I don't want my son to die in a war I can't justify."

Most former soldiers and military family members are supporters of America's armed forces. "I love the Marines," says former Marine Jeff Key, and "I think America should have the best military in the world." But with having a premier fighting force comes responsibilities, which just weren't met in the case of Iraq, continued Key. "We thought we were there to take out Saddam and liberate the Iraqi people," Key continues. But somewhere along the line, the mission changed and Key saw his fellow soldiers treating Iraqis as "the enemy." That was a crucial turning point in Key's feelings of support for the war.

Jeff Key has written a masterful one-man performance piece, a journal of his 14 months in Iraq, which he enthralled a late-night crowd with last night here at Camp Casey. Other soldiers and military family members just stand up and tell their story, at Camp Casey and wherever they find an audience at home. Together, they have given the anti-war movement an honesty and credibility that can't be dismissed by either the mainstream media or by the American public. Americans are finally beginning to hear what many of us have been saying for several years now. But it took parents becoming "Gold Star Parents" for that message to spread.

Joan Baez, who played her classic anti-war repertoire for a jubilant crowd Sunday night decided to stay on for another day. Tonight she's giving a lecture (though knowing Baez's style, it will be infused with song) on 40 years in the peace movement. Baez's extended presence has drawn some mainstream media, CNN, NBC and AP reporters were all spotted on site today. It was a quiet day today after the crowds of the weekend, when over 2,000 people visited the big revival style tent perched on the hot Texas prairie. Ann Wright, Camp Casey's coordinator said that 8,000-9,000 people have stopped by since Cindy Sheehan set up in the ditch sixteen days ago.

Yesterday, Frank Rich writing his Sunday column in the New York Times, may have named our three enclaves, the original Camp Casey, which is still a growing concern, the new site with its high-tech equipment and crowds and the welcome center at the Crawford Peace House. He said Crawford constituted "an insurgency at home."

We are a peaceful insurgency, given to carrying signs and making impassioned speeches. But without a doubt, there is a rumble of angry Americans that George Bush must now take seriously. The insurgency, Mr. President, has literally come to your backyard. And it's spreading across the country, finally, faster perhaps than even the Bush Administration can control. We fight with only words and persistence. But the president would be wise not to underestimate what motivated and grieving parents can accomplish.

Call it the Gold Star Insurgency.

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All i have to say is that Cindy Sheehan is not honoring her son's memory. She is dishonoring his bravery. He joined a volunteer military to fight for what he believed in and i dare say that he would be ashamed of what his mother is doing. How can i say this? After all, i am not his mother. I am however, a wife and mother who has spent 14 years in the military community and who has been around the veterans who are appalled at whay is going on right now. Her son would be appalled. she would not be outraged if he were alive. counseling maybe, but stop dividing the country. Will it take another 9/11 for everyone to realize that we as Americans must stick together during all times not just tragedy. Think about this Cindy. Your son did not die in vain. He died defending your right to cry and whine to the media and put on a "look at me" show for the public.

I think Casey would most certainly be appalled by those who smear his mother's good name as you -- and many others-- have been doing. Of course we'll never know what Casey thinks on anything, ever again.

I totally disagree with you, but I respect your right to your opinion. Cindy is the mother and has a right to disagree with a war started on lies by President Bush and his administration...causing the deaths of thousands of soldiers, horrible injuries, and countless citizen deaths. The illegal war has furthered the cause of Islamic terrorists from around the planet to take pot shots at our fighting men and women. As long as the ones who feel like you do do all of the fighting and feel it is justified, then OK. But, will your perspective change if you lose loved ones, God forbid? We would mourn your loss, too. So sad...We were attacked by Saudi's if we must strike back, but Bush & his buddies like that oil....So, someone else is the patsy, and you are offering up your soldiers to make those old rich man richer...

The disgusting, politically motivated smear campaign being conducted against Cindy Sheehan only proves that our fraudulent president and his fool's chorus of defenders are running scared. The undeniable truth is about to destroy their house of cards, and their desperation has reduced them to the new low of trashing the mother of a dead soldier who dares to publicly ask George W. Bush a very simple question:

"What is the 'noble cause' that you claim my son and all the others have died for, Mr. President?"

Claims by Bush, his subordinates and his blind followers that Cindy Sheehan's anti-war crusade shows a lack of support for the troops, hurts their morale, and dishonors the memory of those that have paid the ultimate price is nothing more than pathetically disingenuous political spin.

There can actually be no greater show of support for our troops than streets filled with fellow citizens demanding that they be brought home and not made to fight a war waged on the lies of a corrupt administration.

Every ounce of blood spilled in Iraq is on George W. Bush's hands. His lips know no public truth about this unnecessary disaster. He and his war mongering minions are the ones showing no respect for the troops, damaging their morale and dishonoring the memory of every single dead soldier.

You would think that if the war criminal in chief were trying to sell America a fraudulent military conflict he would at least try to make sure the troops had everything they needed. Instead we have families spending their own money on essential communication equipment for the troops that the military has failed to provide.

We can only speculate about how many of the dead would be alive today if the people responsible for sending them into battle had seen to it that they were properly equipped.

More than two years into the Iraq disaster, troops are still forced to add plywood and sand bags to their unarmored Humvees for extra protection. The problem with this improvisation and the bolt on armor kits that have been provided in some cases is that the underside of the vehicle is left unprotected from roadside bombs, which of course are the cause of most troop deaths.

But no expense is spared, of course, to make sure that Pentagon and State Department employees and Congressional delegations are riding in nothing but the best armored vehicles when they visit Iraq.

All the flowery presidential rhetoric in the world cannot overcome the glaring evidence that the people on the front lines are considered to be nothing more than pawns of war by the fascist Bush administration.

His completely dishonest recruiter aside, Casey Sheehan did indeed make his own choice, as an adult, to join the military, and it is reasonable to assume that he was aware of the risks. This does not, however, give his commander in chief cart blanche to put his life at risk for nothing more than the advancement of his own political agenda.

This is why Cindy Sheehan and other parents of troops who took their last breath in the Bush-created hellhole that is Iraq are so angry and speaking out so forcefully. They are not anti-America. They are not against the troops. They are actually better patriots than George W. Bush or any of his blind supporters could ever hope to be, because they have the nerve to live up to their responsibility as citizens of this great country by demanding accountability of their president. Unlike so many misguided Bush supporters, they have not forgotten that it's the president that works for the people, and not the other way around.

To suggest that the anger of Cindy and her supporters and fellow military families is somehow not justified is to close one's eyes to the unavoidable truth. Their loved ones died not for freedom or democracy or to ensure the safety of their fellow countrymen. They died for a pile of blatantly obvious lies told by the president of the United States of America.

If you are a parent or loved one of a soldier killed in Iraq that still supports George W. Bush, I am doubly sorry for you.

John Perry
http://www.johnperryonline.com

Very well said!
And lurking in the background,serving to cheapen the value of a human life for the benefit of our war-criminal-in-chief: the specter of conscription.

---The Bikemessenger

VERY WELL SAIF INDEED.

Let's not forget that Bush isn't doing this all by himself:

HIS CONTINUING AND CRIMINAL ABUSE OF POWER IS ENABLED BY THE REPUBLICAN CONGRESSMEN WHO SUPPORT HIM.

It's the responsibility of Congress to stop a corrupt president who's hurting the country for the benefit of the wealthy. The Republicans are supporting every corrupt measure of this administration, from the war, to tax cuts for the wealthy, to trade agreements that send our jobs to low-wage countries.

The Republicans are to blame. They're selling us out for more profits for the wealthy interests that finance their campaigns. Make them pay next election!

If Bush would not have lied to start this war...he might get more sympathy ....and i might agree with you.....
however, before you or anyone attempt to judge this lady, you should look to see how and why this war was started. there is much documentation ..if only you cared enough to read it. Casey THOUGHT he was defending his country, much as the rest of us thought.
It was to Afganistan we were to go and get Bin Laden, because ?? {supposedly,} he did the 9/11 at NYC. As you nor anyone can deny...we don't have Bin Laden. Why did we go to Iraq? WMD. Well, we don't have them either.So, we blow off 9/11 and Bin Laden? That's what GWB has done. Now ,that should make ANYONE wonder.
Is this lady wrong in wondering WHY her son was sent to Iraq ,along with so many others, to die? I'd be asking why too....IF Casey was your son, wouldn't you want to find his murderer and ask why?
Even in a court of law, the families get to ask the murderers why? and, SOMETIMES, they even get to watch the killers exucation.
Why should Cindy be treated any differently?

Do not defend those who attack Cindy Sheehan. If you want to defend something, defend the war in Iraq! Your defense can and should boil down to one thing: namely, the 'noble cause' for which soldiers are being killed. What is that cause, Ms. Marine wife and mother of 2?

I have family in Iraq -- military family, fighting for the elusive 'noble cause'. My experience is that many military families feel as if they are being questioned by Cindy Sheehan and the thousands of others who are demanding answers from Bush. The truth is that nobody -- at least not the (rather sane and reasonable) majority -- is questioning the soldiers or, in particular, their families. The soldiers, including my family members, are doing their jobs. Experienced military presidents (those who actually did service) are the last -- the very, very last -- to lead the country into war. Experience tells them why. Bush, of course, is not like that, nor is Cheney.

Nobody is questioning you, your family, or your children's plans (which may well be to join the military when they're older). (I assume that they're not old enough, or you'd probably encourage them to go to Iraq immediately.) What is being questioned is the alleged 'noble cause' for which soldiers are dying -- and for which our nation has paid such a high international (and soon to be domestic) price.

If you want to defend something, do not waste your energy defending those who attack Cindy Sheehan. Instead, as above, do everyone -- and I do mean everyone -- a favor: defend the Iraq war by giving an answer to the question of 'noble cause'. Bush can't do it, as you know. Perhaps you can.

(Incidentally, for those of us who lost friends and family members in the 9/11 horror, we would appreciate it if you wouldn't continue the ignorant, evil pretense of some connection with Iraq. Thank you.)

Please remember that the root cause of the anti-war anger and subsequent movement are the lies and hypocricy. (DSM, Karl Rove Niger yellow cake, WMD, MUSHROOM CLOUDS in America etc Etc ETC)Cindy Sheehan has somehow galvanized the nations frustration, but she is only a catalyst of a rising tide of righteous indignation, at not being truly represented in the Congress or the media. And please dont forget to ask every single war pundit: "Who in YOUR family is helping with this 'noble' cause?"

It's implied when a person joins the military for the honorable purpose of defending their country, that their commander-in-chief will make well informed, well considered decisions about deploying them.Obligations cut both ways; their commitment does not give him carte blanche.
Casey Sheehan may have gone off to war believeing,as Jeff Key,that he was put at risk for a just cause and if he died believeing that, he deserves any postumous honor as those who gave their lives for a truly just cause.The individual, by nature, owns himself,ergo it is their perspective that is the criteria.
To doubt that cause in the presence of overwhelming evidence against it is rather the ONLY honorable thing to to do.
Where do you find the monumental arrogance, regardless of what parallel experience you may have had,to speak on behalf of a deceased stranger?To claim to know his mind better than his own mother?Is there any action possible that the president could send the military out on that could possibly meet with your disapproval?Have you no moral considerations at all? Is it all just mindless "hurray for our side"?
How dare you accuse her of "dividing" the country.It is you who are divisive; but only as a secondary effect of your treasonous unwillingness to question authority."...Governments are instituted among Men,deriving their just Powers from the Consent of the Governed,that whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these Ends,it is the Right of the people to alter or abolish it, and to institute new Government..." true patriots need not be told the source of these words. For your benefit: The Declaration of Independence.
How in the world could the people ever exercise this right from the mindlessly obedient, unquestioning state where you dwell?The objective facts are that while Casey Sheehan may not have died in vain;BUT HE WAS LOST TO HIS LOVED ONES IN VAIN.
And that is the crux of the issue.Just a couple of facts for you to consider: Journalists Mickey Herskowitz,the senior President Bush's biographer,and Osama Silbani, publisher of the leading Arabic/English bilingual newspaper in the country, have both quoted George W. Bush to the effect that he was determined to "get" Saddam Hussein before he was ever nominated for president.And as to the "...fixing of the intelligence and the facts around the policy..."; Col. Karen Kwaitkowski(USAF, ret.)describes the process from first hand observation in the Pentagon.
This very website has plenty more,if you have the courage and maturity to consider them.
There's an objective reality out there. And there's a limit on how long you and your president's path can continue to diverge from it.

Robert...Beautiful admonishment. we should all take a lesson from your wisdom and truth.

Thank you for the compliment. Strating today, you can catch my libertarian rants at www.smallgov.org

"...vs. The Mindless Warmongering Sheep Effect"
Submitted by Robert(overthetoplib)Noval (not verified) on Mon, 2005-08-22 21:38.
It's implied when a person joins the military for the honorable purpose of defending their country, that their commander-in-chief will make well informed, well considered decisions about deploying them.Obligations cut both ways; their commitment does not give him carte blanche.
Casey Sheehan may have gone off to war believeing,as Jeff Key,that he was put at risk for a just cause and if he died believeing that, he deserves any postumous honor as those who gave their lives for a truly just cause.The individual, by nature, owns himself,ergo it is their perspective that is the criteria.
To doubt that cause in the presence of overwhelming evidence against it is rather the ONLY honorable thing to to do.
Where do you find the monumental arrogance, regardless of what parallel experience you may have had,to speak on behalf of a deceased stranger?To claim to know his mind better than his own mother?Is there any action possible that the president could send the military out on that could possibly meet with your disapproval?Have you no moral considerations at all? Is it all just mindless "hurray for our side"?
How dare you accuse her of "dividing" the country.It is you who are divisive; but only as a secondary effect of your treasonous unwillingness to question authority."...Governments are instituted among Men,deriving their just Powers from the Consent of the Governed,that whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these Ends,it is the Right of the people to alter or abolish it, and to institute new Government..." true patriots need not be told the source of these words. For your benefit: The Declaration of Independence.
How in the world could the people ever exercise this right from the mindlessly obedient, unquestioning state where you dwell?The objective facts are that while Casey Sheehan may not have died in vain;BUT HE WAS LOST TO HIS LOVED ONES IN VAIN.
And that is the crux of the issue.Just a couple of facts for you to consider: Journalists Mickey Herskowitz,the senior President Bush's biographer,and Osama Silbani, publisher of the leading Arabic/English bilingual newspaper in the country, have both quoted George W. Bush to the effect that he was determined to "get" Saddam Hussein before he was ever nominated for president.And as to the "...fixing of the intelligence and the facts around the policy..."; Col. Karen Kwaitkowski(USAF, ret.)describes the process from first hand observation in the Pentagon.
This very website has plenty more,if you have the courage and maturity to consider them.
There's an objective reality out there. And there's a limit on how long you and your president's path can continue to diverge from it.

so your saying cause he volunteered to be in the army that gives bush or anybody the right to send them off to be killed for lies killed cause bush just wanted to take Iraq their is no reason for us the united states to be there but for a bunch of lies so he volunteered or anybody volunteer's there just meat to be slaughtered

so hey FUCK THEM THEY VOLUNTEERED KILL THEM WHO CARES they volunteered we can do what we want with cause they volunteered lie to them fuck'em they volunteered they are just meat to be killed for NO REASON fuck'em they volunteered

NOBODY VOLUNTEERED TO BE SENT TO WAR FOR A BUNCH OF FUCKING LIES NOBODY WELL I GUESS YOU WOULD

Another ignorant comment made by a "brainwashed" military Mom.
First of all, Casey enlisted BEFORE 9/11. I doubt he would be appalled, and ashamed by his moms actions as you say. Casey didn't die defending his mothers rights, or any of our rights for that matter. This war has nothing to do with protecting America. There has been no evidence whatsoever linking Iraq with the events of 9/11, and there hasn't ever been any threats to the U.S coming from Iraq. God forbid this country ever experiences another terrorist attack; but if it does it will come from a terrorist group that is building strength right now as we spend all our focus and money on Iraq. My guess is that in your 14 years in the military community, you have never lost the life of your husband, a daughter or son. That being said, you have absolutely no concept of how Cindy is feeling, and therefore no right to criticize her actions. How about you sit down and close your eyes. Now picture this: your son comes to you and says " Hi mom, I'm going out right now and am going to stand in front of someone we don't know and let him blow my head off because Bush asked me to. See you in the next life. Bye!" Would that make you all proud and happy in your heart?

Casey was an Eagle Scout and altar boy and we'd have to surmise would never have enlisted if he thought the war was based on deceiving the American people and the world. His immediate family agrees with Cindy's anti-false war stance as representing Casey.

Casey joined before it was clear we were going to invade Iraq. Remember, Bush promised to go to war only as a last resort. He was, of course lying, because he intended to invade Iraq before he even stole the election of 2000. Casey, was in fact opposed to the invasion because he knew it was wrong. He went, he said, because he felt it was his duty, which according to his contract, it was, and also because his buddies were going. he was quite loyal and courageous. He was actually killed while on a mission to rescue fellow wounded soldiers that he had volunteered. Thus, this was a young man who embodied highly laudable personal qualities and opposed this illegal and immoral neocolonial war. Bush betrayed him and thousands of others by waging unnecessary war. The founders of our great nation would find him to be a despicable example of the corruption of our government and would probably call on all loyal Americans to join together to overthrow his evil fascist regime.

I want everyone to know. I've joined an Army. I am a "soldier for Cindy."

Casey is proud of his mom, and so am I.

To Robert Noval,

Your comments were beautifully written, and I agree 100 percent (I voted with all of my heart last year, and I was bitterly dissapointed with the results).

When will we as a collective group understand that violence does not bring true peace? It never has, and it never will. As Ghandi said "An eye for an eye leaves the world blind".

What happened to "turn the other cheek"? "Love thy neighbor like thyself"? What we did in Iraq, (and have done in the past to bring about this extreme hatred of America from other nations and their people) is far from "Christian" or "Democratic". Our hypocritical policies towards foreign governments and religions are what "fuel" the terrorists.... not anti war demonstrations from people who exercise their rights (and I feel, obligations).

When you lose your family member due to your government's extreme arrogance, ignorance, and violent nature, then you have EVERY right to oppose that government, to question the reasons for war, to demand answers. THAT IS WHAT OUR SOLDIERS DIE FOR. They die to defend the PEOPLE, and the PEOPLES RIGHTS, as defined by our Constitution and Declaration of Independance, NOT the "Commander in Chiefs" mistaken belief that he is the bringer of Democracy to the entire world, as chosen by God, which, scarily enough, sounds exactly like the rhetoric of the most violent of extremists.

If and when the country is directly attacked, by an invading army, and as a LAST RESORT, the Commander in Chief should be on the front lines defending HIS people, HIS soldiers, not having a hoedown and BBQ on his private ranch on yet ANOTHER vacation while soldiers and civilians are dying by the thousands.

I lived in NYC at the time of 9/11, and remember all to well the horror, but in no way did it justify the Iraq war. To use the memory of 9/11 to justify, promote and continue a tragically misguided, immoral, and illegal war that continues to kill innocents is beyond blasphemy.

I think that Bush has an obligation to meet with EVERY PARENT OF EVERY SOLDIER THAT DIED. He owes the country a real explanation, he deserves impeachment, but most of all, he should beg forgiveness from the families whose children he took in vain.

Thank you very much for the compliment.You may appreciate my anti-Robertson diatribe (along with some of my other libertarian rantings) at http:// www.smallgov.org
I would suggest that you make a common metaphysical error:( "When will we as a collective group understand that violence does not bring true peace? It never has, and it never will. As Ghandi said "An eye for an eye leaves the world blind".)Understanding is by nature an exclusively individual process, notice how you and I understand, but the President would at least appear not to,but we each do so individually.
Unfortunately, he is the one with all the power.Like understanding, it is impertinent to view it as appropriate for one individual to hold so much power, that is what makes all these calamities possible.But unlike understanding,power can be cumulative.
The deadly conundrum is manifest when all that power that rightly and naturally should be dispersed amongst the multitude who initially produce it,is inappropriately vested in the hands of the few.That's why the Founding Fathers tryed to bequeath us LIMITED GOVERNMENT!
It is the grand, fundamental illusion as to the nature of reality as it refers to human society,which the GOVERNMENT OWNED AND OPPERATED SCHOOL SYSTEM exists to inculcate.
Oh, but contrary to what you are taught the problem is not the dictator, the problem is dictatorship!
There is no solution in ousting the Republicans and installing the Democrats in their place. The only solution is the dissolution of the power they covet.
My favorite quote form Ghandi is:"You must be the change you wish to see in the world".It reminds me to always treat my fellow man as the autonomous entity it is his nature to be.
As an atheist, I'm not qualified to expound on the implications of agressive warmongering for Christian morality.But I strongly urge you to read the work of my friend, Lawrence Vance, who writes eloquently and scathingly on the subject http://www.lewrockwell.com/vance/vance-arch.html

Mr. Noval,
Thank you for your comments. I am afraid, however, that I cannot agree with your assessment of my hope for our "collective group" ability to be peaceful as a "metaphysical error". Nor do I agree with most of your friend, Mr. Vance's, opinions concerning religion, as I find them narrow and extreme.

However, that is the wonderful thing about free speech. You and I, and all of our friends, have the right to say what we think, and to think for ourselves. Some call it "free thinking", some call it "education", but whatever you call it, it is a very powerful and important right; one that should be highly valued.

In my opinion, "Limited government" sounds great in theory, like many government models, but in practise, it hinges on the fact that everyone must think basically in the same way for it to work. In fact, and in practise, you require a collective agreement from the masses of the governed on issues regarding core values, priorites, etc, for there to be harmony. Otherwise, you simply have individual chaos, and a constant fight between the differing opinions. "Limited government", unfortunately, is not the magic pill that will solve everything that is wrong in the US.

The reasons listed above are why Iraq is destined to dissolve into civil war, with or without us along for the ride, as there are FUNDAMENTAL differences in opinion, and an inability to compromise, that have existed long before the US formally occupied the country and announced that Democracy was the ideal model for the new government.

Bush did not get into office alone. We do NOT live under dictatorship. The fact of the matter is that a 51% majority voted to keep him in office, and that our democracy did (in fact) work, according the the values that are generally accepted as "American" by "Americans". Now we are reaping what we sowed, and although I certainly do hold Bush responsible for the Iraq war specifically, I also know that he did not do this alone. Support from the 51% majority was largely built based on fear, manipulation, and greed, in my opinion, but whose fault is it that? The manipulator, or the manipulatee?? The fact is, under our current system (and quite frankly, under many systems), we have the ability to say NO, as a collective group, to our government.

That is what I intend to do now, by supporting the anti-war movement, and joining like-minded Americans who perhaps knew in advance(like myself), or are just now realizing, what chaos and destruction this war would/will bring.

In any case, it was nice discussing these concepts with you. I thank you for challenging my thinking and beliefs on certain issues. That is never a bad thing, for either of us ;)

B.K.

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