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October 26


By Cindy Sheehan

"If you believe in what you are doing, give me your stiffest sentence. If you don't, then resign."
Gandhi

Yesterday, started off with a "bang" when we went to Arlington Cemetery to lay a wreath in the section where the Iraq War dead are buried. In our group yesterday morning were 3 other members of Gold Star Families for Peace. Juan Torres was with us and his son, Juan, was murdered in Afghanistan.

First of all, I was followed all morning by the Park Police. I guess because I am a very dangerous subversive. I would never hurt a flea, but what I am dangerous to is the lies and corruption of our government.

Secondly, Juan, Beatriz Saldivar, and Julie Cuniglio who have all had loved ones killed in this war had brought pictures of their dead loved ones with them to Arlington. We were told by the administration of the cemetery that they couldn't take the pictures into the cemetery because they were "political statements!!" We were stunned that pictures of our children that have been killed for lies and betrayals and for purely political reasons can't be shown in a cemetery that supposedly honors those who have served, some making the ultimate sacrifice in war. We are living in a state that kills our children then calls them political statements. That speaks volumes to the chicken hawks who we are allowing to ruin our country.

After Arlington, I met with Sen. Carl Levin from Michigan who has been a strong and outspoken critic against the war. The mess that George Bush has unleashed on our country and on the innocent world weighs heavily on his shoulders. He knows something needs to be done. Let's support him in doing so. Today, I will meet with Sen. Stabenow from the same state.

We headed to the vigil at the White House for our hours long wait in the freezing cold. There was a man there who had several signs which among them said: "Saddam loves Cindy." This man didn't care that Rumsfeld (or Rumsfailed as I accidentally called him on an interview yesterday) was buddy, buddy with Saddam and gave him or sold him tons of WMD's before he became our enemy. I told this man that he didn't bother me, and he told me I don't bother him either. Well, if I don't bother him, why did he come down and make signs and march for hours screaming that I kill our soldiers? We found out why. He was making 60 dollars an hour to do so from some non-profit, right wing group. He said he would switch signs if we gave him more money.

At 7:30 PM about 100 patriots symbolically died in front of the White House. Then 26 of us refused to get up and were arrested. As usual, the Park Police were very polite and efficient and many whisper words of support and encouragement to us. We are planning another die-in tonight at 7 PM. We need more Americans to come out and symbolically die with us here in DC…or do it in your own communities at relevant places, like a federal building, congressperson or senator's office.

When I was being processed out the Lieutenant warned me if I got arrested again that I may have to stay in jail until January since this was my second arrest and I already have one under my belt that hasn't been resolved (which I plan on going to court for anyway). The Lt went to bat for me, he said, so the judge wouldn't keep me until my November court date this time.

I appreciate the warning of the Lt., but I plan on doing Civil Disobedience again this evening. I cannot live freely in a country where people are allowed to commit murder and roam free to commit more mayhem while other people who are exercising their first amendment rights to free speech are locked up in jail. I cannot live freely in a country where others are allowed to lie to retaliate against a person who had the temerity to challenge previous lies. I cannot live freely in a country where bereaved family members aren't allowed to carry pictures of their murdered loved ones into a national cemetery.

If I go before a magistrate tonight or tomorrow after my next arrest, I will tell him/her: If you believe in what you are doing, give me the stiffest sentence possible. If you don't, then resign.

Peace soon.

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Thank you Cindy - for being the role model for courage that we so badly need. Maybe there aren't enought of us out there on the sidewalk with youto make it feel like you have enough support, but please know that it is there, in hearts and minds around the country. You HAVE made a difference. For all these setbacks, and maybe even jail time that you are enduring, you HAVE changed the subject in America. While the media woefully fails to cover your "die in", it is at least raising a chorus of debate about getting out of Iraq. This morning I received an e-mail from John Kerry about his speech today. It's way late, of course, and about time, but nevertheless he is calling for exit strategy, adding his voice to the growing chorus. Soon this will become the tobogan heading pell mell to peace that it will become "politically incorrect" to be on the wrong side of. At that point only George and his neo-killers will be touting "stay the course". You're the one who we're all looking to "stay the course" - for Peace, and yes, while you're at it, freedom of speech.

Cindy, the majority of us in this country that have a brain and a conscience believe in what you're doing and wish we could be there. Keep fighting the right(wrong)-wingers there in Washington DiaboliC!

Cindy is joining the great peacemakers of our time like Martin Luther King, Ghandi etc...How did our country go so wrong...that so many still support a man who lied us into war...who lied to attack dissent...who has killed countless innocent people for some delusion...and now, pay people to harrass Cindy with signs and call their children political statements....and the biggest crime that the Bush followers support is using our children to fight illegal wars of conquest. When is the media going to stop supporting this criminal regime...when is the Republican Party going to stand for something and hold their own accountable...when is the democratic party going to get a backbone...When are they going to realize decent people do not kill...

The $60.00/hr "PROFESSIONAL PROTESTOR" speaks most loudly as to the lack of both intestinal fortitude AND moral credibility on the part of the "anonymous, non-profit, right wing sponsor", which follows directly on the line of the fundamentalist cant.
My personal thanks to Cindy and all those MORAL people who are following the path of NON-VIOLENCE in seeking to bringing an end to the madness that has infected American politics after SCOTUS delivered us into the hands of insanity in November of AD 2000.

We've recently lost another woman who stood up--or sat down--for what is right: Rosa Parks. But thankfully America has another woman with the courage of her convictions by the name of Cindy Sheehan.

To speak truth to power is the need of the hour once again in America. Absolute power corrupts absolutely, but i pray it is not too late for America to find a higher path than she's been forced upon by a corrupt, misguided administration, Congress, and Senate.

Thank you, Cindy Sheehan, for your leadership.

God Bless the peacemakers of the world & bring down the war mongers that love to shead other peoples BLOOD.

Cindy, your courage to stand up for all of us moves me more than I can say. Thank you for being out there in Washington and in Texas standing for peace.
Martha, living in exile in Amsterdam, The Netherlands
www.loveexiles.org

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