Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | News Flashes | Scoop Features | Scoop Video | Strange & Bizarre | Search

 


War-Hawk Republicans and Anti-War Democrats

War-Hawk Republicans and Anti-War Democrats:
What's the Difference?


By Cindy Sheehan
t r u t h o u t | Perspective
From: http://www.truthout.org/docs_2005/100405Y.shtml

Tuesday 04 October 2005

The past week in DC found me in many offices of our elected officials: Senators, Congresspersons, pro-war, "anti-war," Democrat, Republican. With a few notable exceptions, all of our employees toed party lines.

Thanks to those who met with me, because, except for Senator Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), I was not their constituent. And I believe the Republicans who met with me, whether they knew it or not, were breaking with their leader on this, since he was too cowardly to meet with me.

The War Hawks I met with made my skin crawl. They so obviously are supporting a war that is not in our nation's best interest, nor is it making us more secure. I heard from Senators Dole (R-NC) and McCain (R-Ariz.) and Representative Marilyn Musgrave (R-CO) about 9/11 and "fighting them over there, so we don't have to fight them over here." That made me sick. George Bush and his lying band of imperialist greed-mongers exploited 9/11 and our national terror of other terrorist attacks to invade a country that had nothing to do with the attacks on our country. Now, in the aftermath of those lies, tens of thousands of innocent Iraqi civilians are dead, and almost 2000 of our brave young men and women. What makes the Iraqi babies and families less precious than ours? The crime that these people committed was being born at the wrong place at the wrong time. George took his war OF terror to their doorsteps. I even asked Senator Dole when she thought the occupation would be able to end, and she was incredulous that I would even think of Iraq as an occupation: she sees it as a liberation. I really wanted to know how many of them we have to kill before she considered that they were liberated.

The War Hawks (or war-niks, as I like to call them) also use the rationale that Saddam used weapons of mass destruction on his own people. I asked Senator Dole three times where Saddam got those weapons, and she wouldn't answer me. Because the smiling, kind, patronizing War-Hawkette knew where Saddam got the weapons. He got them from the USA. Saddam was a bad guy, but he was our bad guy (see the famous picture of the grinning Rummy shaking Hussein's hand) until he decided to sell his oil to Russia and France for Euros ... then, "Oh my gosh, Saddam kills his own people!!"

We didn't care about Saddam killing his own people after the first Gulf War, when George the First encouraged the people of Iraq to rise up against Saddam. We didn't care about the Iraqi children dying from the bombings and the sanctions during the Clinton years. All of a sudden in March 2003 those things became so important that it was urgent that our troops invade Iraq. Besides, the memo to Congress in which George asked for the authority to invade Iraq specifically mentions WMDs and terrorism - it says nothing about Saddam being a "bad guy" or about spreading "freedom and democracy" to Iraq. The reasons for our continued occupation change as fast as the old ones are proven lies.

It was horrible to talk to these three war-mongering Republicans; I almost felt like I had to take a shower after each visit, but they did not affect my resolve. Congresswoman Musgrave was openly hostile when we were ushered (by her very nice staff) into her office. Ms. Musgrave actually has a son in the service, but she got very defensive when I asked which branch of the service her son, who is stationed in Italy, was in. I was asking mother-to-mother, but she basically said it wasn't any of my business. I told her she must be very worried about her son and he would be in my prayers.

I know that it is hard to have a child in military service whether in Iraq or Italy. She also "supports the president" 100%. Do these politicians not realize that the people are withdrawing their support for this war and for this president at an unprecedented clip? To support George at this point is to support a sinking stone. To support George at any time is and was a mistake of tragic and immense proportions.

The War-Hawk Dems I met with were equally, if not more, disheartening. Although my meeting with Senator Clinton (D-NY) went well, I don't believe she will do anything to alleviate the suffering of the Americans in Iraq or the Iraqi people. I don't believe that sending more troops is the solution; it will only aggravate an already untenable situation. We met in NYC with Senator Charles Schumer's aide, who told us that the Senator thinks the occupation of Iraq is a "good thing for America," but he wouldn't elaborate on why. The aide was asked if the Senator had a vested interest in keeping this war going, because the Senator is certainly not stupid enough to believe that this misbegotten misadventure in the Middle East is good for anyone. I don't think the people of Louisiana, Alabama, and Mississippi would agree with the Senator that this illegal occupation is a "good thing."

The "Anti-War" Dems perplex me the most, however. Except for the good guys, like the members of the Out of Iraq Caucus and a few Senators, the Democratic party line is that we must allow Iraq a window of two months' time, and after the referendum on the constitution this month and the parliamentary elections in December, it will be time to attack the failed policies of George and his cabal of liars.

In my meeting with Howard Dean, he told me that the Iraq issue was "hard," and the new Democratic "Contract with America" is going to have 10 points, and the first one is going to be "Universal Health Care." I told Mr. Dean that if the Dems didn't come out strongly against the war and against George's disastrous policies, we were going to become irrelevant as a party (which is already happening) and the "hard" issue should be the one that is worked on the hardest! I'll admit that the issue doesn't seem so hard to me: George and his sycophantic band of criminals lied to the world; too many people are dead for the lies; too many people are in harm's way for the lies; it is time to bring our troops home. I am just hoping against hope that the war is on the Dems' contract somewhere. George is always pulling out the old saw that what he does in sending our children to die and kill is "hard work." I hate to see that same adjective used to describe bringing them home. The war issue is not complicated: Wrong to invade and wrong to stay. Bring our troops home. Simple.

I think if one is not speaking out right now against the killing in Iraq, one is supporting it. I believe that the members of Congress who have always been, or are now, opposed to this war, need our 100 percent support, admiration, and encouragement. Everyone else needs to be prodded in the right direction. I implored every member I spoke to this past week (and during our bus trip) to lead our country out of the desert. I believe that if they did, America would follow them through fire to bring our troops home.

Finally, I was harrassed at the Capitol Building by a thug security guard, who screamed at me to get out of the building until my next appointment. I complained to another security guard about the disrespectful treatment that I had received from the other guard and he said that most of the employees were "Republicans" and they didn't appreciate what I was doing. I have news for them: this is not about politics - to me, this is about flesh and blood. This is not about right and left, this is about right and wrong. 19 troops were needlessly killed in Iraq this past week. 19 families were destroyed senselessly and avoidably. Hundreds of innocent Iraqis were killed for just being home that day, just being out shopping, or just going about their daily lives. An average of almost three of our young men and women are killed every day in George's abomination. While the War-Hawk Repbublicans are wrongfully supporting a wrongheaded war and the "anti-war" Dems are hemming and hawing about the politics of this administration's misguided and evil policies, how many more families will get the news that their lives have been destroyed in the tragic meantime?

What are they waiting for?

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Top Scoops Headlines

 

Werewolf: Living With Rio’s Olympic Ruins

Mariana Cavalcanti Critics of the Olympic project can point a discernible pattern in the delivery of Olympics-related urban interventions: the belated but rushed inaugurations of faulty and/or unfinished infrastructures... More>>

Live Blog On Now: Open Source//Open Society Conference

The second annual Open Source Open Society Conference is a 2 day event taking place on 22-23 August 2016 at Michael Fowler Centre in Wellington… Scoop is hosting a live blog summarising the key points of this exciting conference. More>>

ALSO:

Buildup:

Gordon Campbell: On The Politicising Of The War On Drugs In Sport

It hasn’t been much fun at all to see how “war on drugs in sport” has become a proxy version of the Cold War, fixated on Russia. This weekend’s banning of the Russian long jumper Darya Klishina took that fixation to fresh extremes. More>>

ALSO:

Binoy Kampmark: Kevin Rudd’s Failed UN Secretary General Bid

Few sights are sadder in international diplomacy than seeing an aging figure desperate for honours. In a desperate effort to net them, he scurries around, cultivating, prodding, wishing to be noted. Finally, such an honour is netted, in all likelihood just to shut that overly keen individual up. More>>

Open Source / Open Society: The Scoop Foundation - An Open Model For NZ Media

Access to accurate, relevant and timely information is a crucial aspect of an open and transparent society. However, in our digital society information is in a state of flux with every aspect of its creation, delivery and consumption undergoing profound redefinition... More>>

Keeping Out The Vote: Gordon Campbell On The US Elections

I’ll focus here on just two ways that dis-enfranchisement is currently occurring in the US: (a) by the rigging of the boundary lines for voter districts and (b) by demanding elaborate photo IDs before people are allowed to cast their vote. More>>

Ramzy Baroud: Being Black Palestinian - Solidarity As A Welcome Pathology

It should come as no surprise that the loudest international solidarity that accompanied the continued spate of the killing of Black Americans comes from Palestine; that books have already been written and published by Palestinians about the plight of their Black brethren. In fact, that solidarity is mutual. More>>

ALSO:


Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Top Scoops
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news