Saturday, August 20, 2005

COM: From the hand of Cindy Sheehan

with thanks to Thom Woodruff for passing this along

By Cindy Sheehan
truthout, Saturday 20 August 2005

The media are wrong. The people who have come out
to Camp Casey to help coordinate the press and events
with me are not putting words in my mouth, they are
taking words out of my mouth. I have been known for
sometime as a person who speaks the truth and speaks
it strongly. I have always called a liar a liar and a
hypocrite a hypocrite. Now I am urged to use softer
language to appeal to a wider audience. Why do my
friends at Camp Casey think they are there? Why did
such a big movement occur from such a small action on
August 6, 2005?

I haven't had much time to analyze the Camp Casey
phenomena. I just read that I gave 250 interviews in
less than a week's time. I believe it. I would go to
bed with a raw throat every night. I got pretty tired
of answering some questions, like: "What do you want
to say to the President?" and "Do you really think he
will meet with you?" However, since my mom has been
sick I have had a chance to step back and ponder the
flood gates that I opened in Crawford, Tx.

I just read an article posted today on by artist Robert Shetterly who painted
my portrait. The article reminded me of something I
said at the Veteran's for Peace Convention the night
before I set out to Bush's ranch in my probable futile
quest for the truth. This is what I said:

I got an email the other day and it said, "Cindy
if you didn't use so much profanity ... there's people
on the fence that get offended.

And you know what I said? "You know what? You know
what, god damn it? How in the world is anybody still
sitting on that fence?

If you fall on the side that is pro-George and
pro-war, you get your ass over to Iraq, and take the
place of somebody who wants to come home. And if you
fall on the side that is against this war and against
George Bush, stand up and speak out.

This is what the Camp Casey miracle is all about.
American citizens who oppose the war but never had a
conduit for their disgust and dismay are dropping
everything and traveling to Crawford to stand in
solidarity with us who have made a commitment to sit
outside of George's ranch for the duration of the
miserable Texan August. If they can't come to Texas,
they are attending vigils, writing letters to their
elected officials and to their local newspapers; they
are setting up Camp Casey branches in their hometowns;
they are sending flowers, cards, letters, gifts, and
donations here to us at Camp Casey. We are so grateful
for all of the support, but I think pro-peace
Americans are grateful for something to do, finally.

One thing I haven't noticed or become aware of
though is an increased number of pro-war, pro-Bush
people on the other side of the fence enlisting to go
and fight George Bush's war for imperialism and
insatiable greed. The pro-peace side has gotten off
their apathetic butts to be warriors for peace and
justice. Where are the pro-war people? Everyday at
Camp Casey we have a couple of anti-peace people on
the other side of the road holding up signs that
remind me that "Freedom isn't Free" but I don't see
them putting their money where their mouths are. I
don't think they are willing to pay even a small down
payment for freedom by sacrificing their own blood or
the flesh of their children. I still challenge them to
go to Iraq and let another soldier come home. Perhaps
a soldier that is on his/her third tour of duty, or
one that has been stop-lossed after serving his/her
country nobly and selflessly, only to be held hostage
in Iraq by power mad hypocrites who have a long
history of avoiding putting their own skin in the

Contrary to what the main stream media thinks, I
did not just fall off a pumpkin truck in Crawford, Tx.
on that scorchingly hot day two weeks ago. I have been
writing, speaking, testifying in front of
Congressional committees, lobbying Congress, and doing
interviews for over a year now. I have been pretty
well known in the progressive, peace community and I
had many, many supporters before I even left
California. The people who supported me did so because
they know that I uncompromisingly tell the truth about
this war. I have stood up and said: "My son died for
NOTHING, and George Bush and his evil cabal and their
reckless policies killed him. My son was sent to fight
in a war that had no basis in reality and was killed
for it." I have never said "pretty please" or "thank
you." I have never said anything wishy-washy like he
uses "Patriotic Rhetoric." I say my son died for LIES.
George Bush LIED to us and he knew he was LYING. The
Downing Street Memos dated 23 July, 2002 prove that he
knew that Saddam didn't have WMD's or any ties to Al
Qaeda. I believe that George lied and he knew he was
lying. He didn't use patriotic rhetoric. He lied and
made us afraid of ghosts that weren't there. Now he is
using patriotic rhetoric to keep the US military
presence in Iraq: Patriotic rhetoric that is based on
greed and nothing else.

Now I am being vilified and dragged through the
mud by the righties and so-called "fair and balanced"
main stream media who are afraid of the truth and
can't face someone who tells it by telling any truth
of their own. Now they have to twist, distort, lie,
and scrutinize anything I have ever said when they
never scrutinize anything that George Bush said or is
saying. Instead of asking George or Scotty McClellan
if he will meet with me, why aren't they asking the
questions they should have been asking all along: "Why
are our young people fighting, dying, and killing in
Iraq? What is this noble cause you are sending our
young people to Iraq for? What do you hope to
accomplish there? Why did you tell us there were WMD's
and ties to Al Qaeda when you knew there weren't? Why
did you lie to us? Why did you lie to the American
people? Why did you lie to the world? Why are our
nation's children still in harm's way and dying
everyday when we all know you lied? Why do you
continually say we have to "complete the mission" when
you know damn well you have no idea what that mission
is and you can change it at will like you change your
cowboy shirts?"

Camp Casey has grown and prospered and survived
all attacks and challenges because America is sick and
tired of liars and hypocrites and we want the answers
to the tough questions that I was the first to dare
ask. THIS is George Bush's accountability moment and
he is failing ... miserably. George Bush and his
advisers seriously "misunderestimated" me when they
thought they could intimidate me into leaving before I
had the answers, or before the end of August. I can
take anything they throw at me, or Camp Casey. If it
shortens the war by a minute or saves one life, it is
worth it. I think they seriously "misunderestimated"
all mothers. I wonder if any of them had authentic
mother-child relationships and if they are surprised
that there are so many mothers in this country who are
bear-like when it comes to wanting the truth and who
want to make meaning of their child's needless and
seemingly meaningless deaths?

The Camp Casey movement will not die until we have
a genuine accounting of the truth and until our troops
are brought home. Get used to it George, we are not
going away.