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Cindy Sheehan: Walk for Change, In Search of Peace

Walk for Change: In Search of Peace

By Cindy Sheehan
t r u t h o u t | Guest Contributor

Monday 18 December 2006

As dissatisfaction with the occupation of Iraq soars and the carnage seemingly continues unabated, the new Democratic Congress is on board with staying the disastrous course that BushCo and the Republican-dominated Congress has set for our nation.

I watched a Democracy Now! interview with new Ohio senator Sherrod Brown, the Congress member who has most consistently voted against George and his policies. When Amy Goodman asked him about voting "nay" to more funding for the war, he dodged the question and talked about his ambitious domestic program.

I think we progressives can all agree that we need health care reform, more tuition assistance (not in the form of military assistance), and a fairer distribution of the tax burden. However, my question to Senator-elect Brown would be: Where is Congress going to come up with the funding for all of these amazing social programs?

Breaking the cost of the war down to more manageable numbers, we are spending $10,000,000.00 an hour on this immoral misadventure. How many students could we send to college and how many families would be able to afford health insurance with the money already put aside for one hour of the killing?

Potential senate majority leader Harry Reid was on CNN with Wolf Blitzer, and he said that it may take 30,000-40,000 more troops to stabilize Iraq and reach the goal of having our military out of Iraq by 2008! Every adverse affect of this occupation that the anti-war movement predicted has come true. There were no flowers and chocolates for our brave young men and women: only bullets, bomb, and IEDs. Every occupation force throughout human history has been met with a homegrown insurgency. With the aid of militia forces trained by Saudi Arabia and the US, the country is descending into what some people call a civil war and some people call "ethnic violence."

It is clear that there is a maelstrom of violence (at the command of the Saudi royal family) in Iraq, and the only way to quench the violence is to stop the violence. Adding more troops will be like adding gasoline to a fire. We need to throw water on the fire, not more fire! If the US sends more troops (while most "coalition" countries are withdrawing), the body bags coming home stateside from Iraq will only increase, as will the genocide there.

We progressives who put the Democrats in power so that they could change the course cannot, must not, allow the Congress to give the insaniacs in the White House more money to fund what we all now know is a mistake based on lies. How can such leaders as Representatives Pelosi and Murtha and Senator Reid say that they are against the war while giving George more money to wage his monstrous crimes against humanity? If the time ever comes for accountability, the people with the purse strings will be found as culpable as the people with the pointed weapons!

Senator Reid, who has been a busy bee lately, was on with George Stephanopoulos Sunday morning, and he said that there are over "100,000" independent contractors in Iraq. With our troops still scrambling for basic survival tools in Iraq, who do we think is getting the billions upon billions of dollars that Congress is readily handing over?

Another urgent issue is accountability. George Bush is a three-dimensional Homer Simpson who screws up our world on a daily basis and doesn't even have the brains to say: "d'oh!" He sits in our oval office blowing farts for the "enjoyment" of the White House interns while reserving his right, through signing statements, to torture and spy on Americans without due process.

I started saying "impeachment" back in November of '04, when George stole another election. These days I am not the only one using that term. Impeachment is a Constitutional remedy designed for such Homer-esque presidents as George. It's as if the framers had a premonition of the future, and if the impeachment provisions are not used on BushCo, then we need to just have them removed from the Constitution. If impeachment is off the table for George, then our new crop of presidents will also think that they are above the law and can literally get away with murder. After impeachment, and removal, charging with war crimes should be on the table. Is Congress hesitant to hold BushCo accountable because they don't want to hold themselves accountable, too? Are they hesitant because the problem that manifested itself in the boil of George Bush is systemic, and they are part of the system? We the people need to tell them that we are setting the table, now, and we want accountability as the first course.

Gold Star Families for Peace, along with a coalition of progressive peace groups, will be walking the Halls of Congress the first two days the 110th Congress is in session. It is our money they are using for killing, and it is our Constitution they are desecrating.

Please join us to work for true change. If you can't join us on those days, please consider donating to GSFP to help us defray the costs. It costs money for us to be there and to have our members there.

In Search of Peace is Cindy's reflections on her journey toward peace and away from violence.


Cindy Sheehan is the mother of Spc. Casey Sheehan, who was killed in Bush's war of terror on April 4, 2004. She is the co-founder and president of Gold Star Families for Peace and the Camp Casey Peace Institute. She is the author of three books; the most recent is Peace Mom: A Mother's Journey Through Heartache to Activism.

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