Three Reports on Cindy Sheehan’s Campaign:

Camping Out at Crawford, Texas, Against the Iraq War—
Demand That Bush Talk to Cindy and Get Out Now!



Cindy Sheehan is the mother of Army Specialist Casey Sheehan, who was killed in action in Iraq (at Sadr City) on April 4, 2004. For the past several days Cindy Sheehan has been at the gates of President George W. Bush’s ranch in Crawford, Texas, demanding that Bush come out and talk with her—face to face—and demanding that the troops be brought home now, so that no more mother’s sons or daughters will die for the oil cartels and other corporations, the sole beneficiaries of this murderous war.

As Bush’s opinion-poll ratings have dropped below 40 percent, and as dozens of U.S. Marines—and countless more Iraqis—were killed this past week, Cindy Sheehan’s story is getting coverage from the major corporate media: the New York Times, Associated Press, ABC, CBS, CNN, etc.  The Bring Them Home Now coalition is waging a “Talk to Cindy” campaign, generating e-mail and phone calls to the White House. See below for three reports on Cindy Sheehan’s campaign. The link to the Bring Them Home Now coalition home page is www.bringthemhomenow.org. We urge our readers to support Sheehan’s campaign. See also Stan Goff’s tribute to Cindy Sheehan, and to Kevin and Monica Benderman, entitled “Resistance—Of Hoisting and Petards,” at his web site, stangoff.com—The Editors, Labor Standard


Sheehan Draws Tears of Support

by Greg Moses, August 9, 2005

Greg Moses is editor of Peacefile and author of Revolution of Conscience: Martin Luther King, Jr. and the Philosophy of Nonviolence.

When Robert DeLozier saw the story of Cindy Sheehan on television Sunday, he told his spouse right away: “I’m going up there. We have to drop everything and go.” At the Sam’s Club of all places, says Robert, he nearly broke down crying while he was shopping Monday morning thinking about what Sheehan was doing in memory of her son Casey, who was killed in Iraq last April.

“She’s a strong woman,” says Robert via cell phone as he drives back home Monday night. “She feels she has been wronged. She feels her son has been wronged. And she feels like this whole occupation of Iraq is wrong. She is strong and powerful enough to take a stand. When I see it, it just strikes a chord. She’s speaking truth to power. That’s it. David and Goliath.”

Robert hands the phone to spouse Abbe Waldman DeLozier as their car glides up and down the gentle hills of Central Texas. It is just past dark Monday night, but Abbe is lit up with fresh memories of an evening with Sheehan and the brave band of pilgrims who have come from unexpected places. “Hawaii,” says Robert from his seat as Abbe holds the phone. 

“Yes, Hawaii, that was one of the places,” says Abbe. “And California. Two young ladies from L.A., another from Pennsylvania.” In all there were about 15 people who gathered at dusk to powwow some strategy. “They say there are more people coming in the morning,” says Abbe. This afternoon, an anonymous donor ordered up two or three party trays of sandwiches from the Subway Sandwich Shop in McGregor and had them sent out to feed Sheehan’s camp. Folks are sending flowers and money, too.

Since Abbe has experience with media, she volunteered to help Sheehan sort out her media calls. There were 85 messages on Sheehan’s cell phone. Abbe, with the two young ladies from California who had never done any media work before, copied down the messages, put them on a list, and began returning the calls.

“The two young ladies were very professional,” said Abbe. “They had never done this before, but they were very good.” By the end of the evening, Abbe had made a master schedule for Sheehan so that she could begin to manage the line of media waiting from all over the world.

Returning a call to a radio station in Oregon, Abbe suddenly found herself on the air live during a show in progress with Mike Hoffman, cofounder of Iraq Vets Against the War (IVAW). She said “Hi, Mike,” but didn’t have much time to chat with a war resister who she had once helped with media relations back in the bad old days when the work was very difficult indeed, not like this where you end up accidentally live on the air, both of you in Oregon!

Abbe doesn’t know much more about the powwow. An NPR reporter was on hand and the group asked for fifteen minutes of privacy to talk about some serious issues like what they were going to do if the cops showed up and started arresting people. The NPR reporter was gracious enough to give the tribe some space, and Abbe was hospitable enough to walk around with the reporter while the group worked things out. Then the NPR reporter took about 90 minutes of tape from Sheehan and Company which has to be cut down to perfect size by deadline.

Abbe thinks the media are responding to Sheehan because of her strong stand. “I’m not leaving until Bush just simply comes out and talks to me,” says Abbe in a respectful impersonation of Sheehan’s message. “She will not leave until they put her in jail, until she sees the President, or until he leaves Crawford for the summer,” says Abbe. “And she is very intelligent.”

When Robert and Abbe arrived at the camp about 4:00 this afternoon, folks had just moved off a “triangle” of grass at the request of police and were camped down in a “ditch area” with cows and fields for as far as the eye could see. Press reports put the group five miles from the President’s ranch, but Jim Harrington of the Texas Civil Rights Project says that if the media get to stand within a half mile of the ranch, so should the protesters. Legal help is another thing people are giving.

Later in the evening black suburbans started whizzing past. A stream of maybe 25, coming down the road, one after the other, about a minute apart, with government tags. Soon after that overhead came the presidential helicopter with a three-helicopter escort, buzzing past the camp and over to the Western White House. But the impressive action was down in the ditch among the small band of resolute activists who have flung themselves together for this circle of courage and tears.

“It’s very moving being out there,” says Abbe. “I’m so glad I went.” She’s going to clear her schedule and go back soon. “I’m very emotional, very glad. If I could communicate to you what it’s like to be there. If people could see it and experience it, well then number one...” But Abbe can’t finish the sentence. “I can’t finish the sentence, because I’m crying.”

“Let me just say,” says Abbe Waldman DeLozier through her tears, “that there would be millions out there. Millions.”


The following article from CounterPunch may be seen on the web here.

August 9, 2005

Cindy Sheehan in Dallas

What One Mom has to Say to Bush

by Mike Ferner

“That lying bastard, George Bush, is taking a five-week vacation in time of war,” Cindy Sheehan told 200 cheering members of Veterans For Peace at their annual convention in Dallas last Friday evening. She then announced she would go to Bush’s vacation home in nearby Crawford, Texas and camp out until he “tells me why my son died in Iraq. I’ve got the whole month of August off, and so does he.”

Sheehan left the VFP meeting on Saturday morning and is now in Crawford with a couple dozen veterans and local peace activists, waiting for Bush to talk with her. She said in Dallas that if he sends anyone else to see her, as happened when national security adviser Steve Hadley and deputy White House chief of staff Joe Hagin did later that day, she would demand that “You get that maniac out here to talk with me in person.”

She told the audience of veterans from World War Two to today’s war in Iraq, that the two main things she plans to tell the man she holds responsible for son Casey’s death are “Quit saying that U.S. troops died for a noble cause in Iraq, unless you say, ‘well, except for Casey Sheehan.’ Don’t you dare spill any more blood in Casey’s name. You do not have permission to use my son’s name.”

“And the other thing I want him to tell me is ‘just what was the noble cause Casey died for?’ Was it freedom and democracy? Bullshit! He died for oil. He died to make your friends richer. He died to expand American imperialism in the Middle East. We’re not freer here, thanks to your PATRIOT Act. Iraq is not free. You get America out of Iraq and Israel out of Palestine and you’ll stop the terrorism,” she exclaimed.

“There, I used the ‘I’ word — imperialism,” the 48 year-old mother quipped. “And now I’m going to use another ‘I’ word — impeachment — because we cannot have these people pardoned. They need to be tried on war crimes and go to jail.”

As the veterans in Dallas rose to their feet, Sheehan said defiantly, “My son was killed in 2004. I am not paying my taxes for 2004. You killed my son, George Bush, and I don’t owe you a penny...you give my son back and I’ll pay my taxes. Come after me (for back taxes) and we’ll put this war on trial.”

The co-founder of Gold Star Mothers for Peace objected to hearing that her son was among the soldiers lost in Iraq. “He’s not lost,” she said tearfully. “He’s dead. He became an angel while I was sleeping.”

She railed against the notion expressed by officials in the Bush administration that bringing the troops home now would dishonor the sacrifice of those who have died. “By sending honorable people to die, they so dishonor themselves. They say we must complete our mission…but why would I want one more mother to go through what I have, just because my son is dead?”

The Vacaville, California resident said she first heard of Veterans For Peace in early May last year, during a CNN report about an exhibit of white crosses arranged in rows in the Santa Barbara beach. The exhibit was organized by VFP Chapter 54 to memorialize each U.S. soldier killed in Iraq. Her son had died the month before. “I decided there was only one place I wanted to be on Mother’s Day that year, and it was Santa Barbara,” she told the VFP members in Dallas.

Retired Special Forces Sgt. and VFP member, Stan Goff, today initiated a “Talk to Cindy” campaign to get Bush to meet with Sheehan. Contact information for the White House is: (202) 456-1111 or comments@whitehouse.gov

Mike Ferner is a writer in Toledo, Ohio and a member of Veterans for Peace. He can be reached at mike.ferner@sbcglobal.net


Military Families to Join Cindy Sheehan in Crawford;
Gold Star and Military Families from Across Country on Their Way to Texas

CONTACT: Military Families Speak Out / Gold Star Families for Peace
Ryan Fletcher, 202-641-0277, Dante Zappala 215-520-7040

The following press release was issued August 9 by Military Families Speak Out and Gold Star Families for Peace. Their web sites are, respectively, www.mfso.org and www.gsfp.org.

August 9—CRAWFORD, Texas—More members of Gold Star Families for Peace (GSFP) and Military Families Speak Out (MFSO) are traveling to Texas to join the protest outside of President Bush’s ranch in Crawford, Texas, where he is vacationing for the month of August.

Starting today, Gold Star families, whose loved ones have died as a result of the war in Iraq—families from Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Arkansas, and other states—will be joining one of their members, Cindy Sheehan, at the protest. Ms. Sheehan, whose son Army Specialist Casey Sheehan was killed in Sadr City, Iraq, on April 4, 2004, has been in Crawford since August 5, demanding a meeting with the President. These families will be joined by military families with loved ones currently serving in Iraq or about to deploy or redeploy to Iraq. All of these families are coming to Crawford, Texas, to share their stories about the personal costs of the war in Iraq and add their voices to the call for a meeting with President Bush.

On August 3, 2005, President Bush, speaking about the dreadful loss of life in Iraq in early August, said: “We have to honor the sacrifices of the fallen by completing the mission...The families of the fallen can be assured that they died for a noble cause.” Gold Star and military families coming to Crawford know that the cause was not noble; that their loved ones died, or are currently in harm's way, serving in a war based on lies.

In the first 8 days of August, 36 service members died in Iraq; countless Iraqi children, women, and men are dying each day. All of the families traveling to Crawford will carry the message to the vacationing President: Honor our fallen and honor our loved ones' service by ending the occupation, bringing the troops home now, and taking care of them when they get here.

President Bush has consistently tried to hide, and to hide from, the cost of the war in Iraq. This August, these costs are being brought right to his doorstep.

Members of Gold Star Families for Peace and Military Families Speak Out who are traveling to Crawford will be available for interview beginning on Tuesday afternoon August 9.