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Camp Casey to DC
With a Detour to New Orleans
Cindy Sheehan

The Camp Casey to DC tour is going so well. We have the three RV's that are going from city to city and we are speaking in front of rallies that have hundreds, and sometimes thousands of people attending. We are receiving positive response from all over America. We have had amazingly little opposition to what we are doing. Today in Raleigh, NC at the University, there were some Young Republicans who support the President and support the war. I tried to get one of the many recruiters who were on campus to go over and sign them up for the service, but they wouldn't even look at me. I think the recruiters missed a golden opportunity to swell the ranks. I have a feeling that the Young killing supporters wouldn't be willing to go over and put their money where their mouths are. One of the fine young American baby chicken hawks told one of the members of our tour whose brother was killed in Iraq that: "someone has to stay in school and employ people." Sounds like the "Dick Cheney" alternative to serving your country to me.

The people who are on the three RV's are true Americans serving their country without reservation. Most of the patriots on the tour have given up their entire months of August to be at Camp Casey in Crawford and now they are giving up their Septembers to be on the bus tour or at Camp Casey III in Covington. If everyone who believes that our country can change from a paradigm of war to one of peace did even did a small fraction of our what our Camp Casey loyalists did, this war would be over tomorrow, the troops would be home, and America would be a safe and sane place to live. I honor everyone who works for peace, but especially the people who dropped everything to take back our country and make it a better place to live and raise children.`

In Columbia, SC, yesterday, the Southern Leg of the Bus Tour spoke to a few hundred supporters and 2 counter protestors. One of the counter protestors had a sign that said: "Support the Mission." I invited her to talk to me after the rally to explain to me what this every changing and ephemeral mission is now. She didn't. We all know on August 29th, George said that "we need to stay in Iraq to keep the oil fields from falling into the hands of terrorists." Is that the mission? Are we supporting our troops dying and innocent Iraqi people being killed for oil and greed? This doesn't sound like anything I want to support.

While we are at it, let's talk about the people who held a "We support the troops" rally at the capitol in Raleigh today while we were holding our "We really support the troops" rally in Moore Square. I wonder if the people who say they support the troops by wanting to support more of them being killed realize how ironic they are being.  They don't think that it's hypocritical that our troops still don't have the body armor, proper training, equipment, food, water, competent leadership, support when they return from the battle field, etc? They thinks "Supporting the Troops" is sending them to a mistaken war based on lies to occupy a country that was absolutely no threat to the United States of America. These people equate supporting an evil mission with supporting the troops. I believe that the people on the peace side are the ones who authentically support the troops by wanting them to come home alive. But like the sign said to today: The Peace Symbol is the footprint of the American Chicken. Do they find it ironic that they are protesting a group of people who have served our country in war (Iraq included), families who have loved ones serving, and families whose brave children have been killed for the deceptions of this criminal administration? Do they find it in the least bit ironic that the people who are sending our lifeblood off to kill and die NEVER served their country in the military and don't have children in the military? They also say "Cindy doesn't speak for me." Phew...I wouldn't even presume to have such a narrow world view and speak for them.

Another thing these pro-war people don't realize is that just like them, we have the right to say what we are saying, we give them their space to do so, we would like the same space from them. Besides, if they think they are going to make us go away by protesting us, they are wrong. The number of pro-war, pro-Bush (sorry for being redundant) people are dwindling in numbers and in intensity. Maybe the crimes that are happening in Iraq have softened their venom? It is one thing for the criminal negligence of George and company to kill innocent Iraqis, but also killing innocent Americans in America? Maybe that's where they draw the line. I hope the line is drawn quickly before George is allowed to harm more of us.

The "Winter Soldiers" who stayed in Crawford to guard the memorial to Casey, Camp Casey, and all of our fallen heroes, have had two very disturbing events happen. In the first incident, the Mc Clennan County Board of Supervisors have banned parking on County roads up to the Bush ranch. But we all remember that the supervisors told us it was "private property" so I don't think they have any authority up Prairie Chapel Road. When we take Camp Casey back from George's home away from his vacations: DC, we were planning on taking Camp Casey there. I hope they don't try to stop us from parking there. If they do, maybe Fred will let us use his land to park, also. Another thing that happened was that some "Patriot" stole the memorial. They took everything that honored our children. They stole Casey's boots. What will these people stop at? They are shameless and they have no sense of moral values. They have tried to stop us before by shooting rifles at us, mowing down the crosses, calling us names: but you know what? Nothing will stop us. Check the Lone Star Iconoclast's web site for more info on the vandalism and suppression of our rights going on still in Crawford.

But even with the minor counter-protests, our spirits are high and we are overwhelmed and grateful for all of the support we are getting from the true Americans who come out to help us bring the troops home now!

I received the email below from a Doctor whom I met in Louisiana. I told him I would pass it along:

Dear Cindy,

My name is Stuart Leeds - I'm the family practice MD that you met at the storage facility shortly before we all caravanned to Algiers today.

It was a great honor and delight to meet you!  I'm also pleased and somewhat relieved to have the opportunity to give you a brief report on the state of affairs visa vi the medical relief effort in the afflicted areas.

In short strokes: people are not getting the help they need, because our government, through the agency of FEMA, has totally politicized the relief effort.  I'm sure you've already gotten wind of the reports that the Bush Administration is handing out huge contracts to favored vendors, much as they have done in Iraq. But what is not widely known  is - and I can verify this personally --  that FEMA is preventing certain groups and individuals from participating in the relief efforts. Here's a quick synopsis of the experience I and my companions (my wife, and two respiratory therapists) had today, in our attempts to offer our services to the Red Cross operation in Covington, LA.

  1.      We got a call from an official at the Red Cross that the Vets for Peace were being invited to send doctors to Abita Springs, a nearby community.
  2.      When we got there around 9 AM, some of director Dr Rachel Murphy's assistants welcomed us, and started making lists of materials we would need
  3.      Suddenly, a man wearing a Homeland Security shirt came over and rudely asked us to leave.  He brought a local cop with him, and their body language was pretty threatening. We explained that we were coming at the request of both Dr. Murphy and the mayor of Covington, Candace Watkins.  He (whose name was Rodney Hart) would hear none of it from us; he forced us to leave immediately.
  4.      We went to Mayor Watkins, who called Dr. Murphy and arranged for us to be allowed into the Red Cross center.  We decided that only my wife and I would go - realizing that the other gentlemen, who were wearing VFP T-shirts, would be less than welcome at the center.
  5.      We met Dr. Murphy a little after noon, and she was very friendly.  She told us she would find a place for us to work - I as a physician, and my wife as an organizational specialist.  However, midway through our tour of the facility, she stepped into the office of Mr. Hart, the Homeland security rep, and there were some tense words exchanged between them.  She repeatedly exclaimed that we were not representing VFP, and finally there was a long period of silence. Mr. Hart apparently made some gestures we couldn't see.  She sighed, and turned to us, and abruptly suggested we get some lunch in the basement.  As we ate, she started talking about how the Red Cross was pulling out of her parish within a week, how there were already an excess of docs, and that our services wouldn't be needed.
  6.      She also explained that the reason that VFP was not welcome with the Red Cross (or indeed, within the entire parish) was because of a series of allegations that we had already heard from others in the center. We had heard several conflicting versions of these stories: that someone with VFP had stolen $15,000 worth of medical supplies, and that he turned out to be a child molester; that the Vets for Peace had come to one center and were taking over, and bringing cameras into clinics; that VFP was illegally collecting Red Cross donations on the Internet.

We could not substantiate any of these rumors, and indeed, I think it's unlikely that there was truth to any of them.

  Clearly, FEMA and/or Homeland Security is trying to keep "political undesirables" from lending a hand during this catastrophe.  Perhaps they are marching to orders from Bush's political hacks to preventing peace groups from upstaging the administration in the relief effort - which would hardly be difficult to do, on anything like a level playing field.

It is so sad to think that the Bush machine would put politics in front of the safety and security of human beings, even in a the wake of a natural disaster of Katrina's magnitude. But in the eyes of this physician, I believe that is exactly what is happening.  And it will continue, as long as the responsible government agencies can get away with it..

We must hold them accountable.  But more importantly, we must let people know this is happening, and thus  bring such pressure to bear on these obstructionist agencies that they can no longer keep VFP, or indeed any group of caring citizens from pitching in.

Thanks, Cindy.  And keep up the great work.

F.Stuart (Skip) Leeds, MS, MD

I am ready to keep fighting for humanity. I thank you all for joining me in the struggle: the fight of our lives.

Originally posted to CindySheehan on Fri Sep 16, 2005 at 03:03 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Cindy , we posted something at the same time (none)
    and yours is much better. You must have been up at 4 in the morning to do it! Recommended, of course. And yes, the hospital where many died had tried to get supplies to them which were initially 'confiscated' by FEMA, and they had to airlift more and went throught without FEMA's knowledge. The looting has begun even before the rebuilding.
    •  criminal (4.00)
      it is 6am where i am today...
      peace
      •  There are no words I can say ... (none)
        .. that would adequately convey my feelings toward your mission, Cindy. You are an honorable person and I hope that I can make a difference in this world the way you have in such a short time.  

        (Plus, you are such a sweetie with a tender heart. It shines through everything you say and do and gives you strength and courage.)

        I send much love, healing and peace to you and all those whose lives you touch.

        Blessings

        Bow down before the one you serve. You're going to get what you deserve.

        by Bexley Lane on Fri Sep 16, 2005 at 03:56:14 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Glad to hear (none)
    all is well on your tour Cindy. Also happy to hear of the well attended stops. Truly, more and more folks are against this stupid war.

    As for the Young Republican college "war supporters" in Raleigh, I don't know why they won't come out and admit it: they will support a war as long as someone else fights it for them. They are such elitist, cowardly punks.

    Anyway, keep up the great work, and see you in DC!

    "In the event of a terrorist attack, natural disaster or other large-scale emergency, the Department of Homeland Security will assume primary responsibility..."

    by assyrian64 on Fri Sep 16, 2005 at 03:22:35 AM PDT

  •  Dear Cindy Sheehan (none)

    I don't know what time it is at the place, where you are. Here we have high noon. I wonder that no comment is given yet. Did the people forget you already - I hope not.
    I watched your aktivities from the beginning on. You have my very respect. You didn't fail from the beginning on - you stayed your course - claiming, certain and insistantly. People heard you - and they answered you in a good way or in a bad way. Don't care about the bad way. That is helplessness.
    I wish you all the best and I hope to see you in DC (I'm 6000 miles away from DC but they can't hide).
    Yours sincerely
    Juergen Dopp

    Ok - it probably is very early in the States. Comments are coming :).

    Bushfire? - No! - fire Bush!

    by juergendopp on Fri Sep 16, 2005 at 04:06:33 AM PDT

  •  up early today (none)
    Seeing a very nice sunrise out the window with my morning coffee as I get ready for a long day at work.  And as happens often, reading your post makes that sunrise - or any part of a day - just a little brighter.

    My "America Stands With Cindy" placard is still up from the night of the vigil.

    Keep it up, Cindy.  Good work.  Stand strong.

    "Don't get mad. Don't get even. Just get elected, then get even." --James Carville

    by MN camera on Fri Sep 16, 2005 at 04:34:34 AM PDT

  •  Casey's boots were stolen? (none)
    Cindy:

    If I understand your post correctly, you said someone stole Casey's boots in Crawford as well as other items displayed by families of soldiers?  How utterly despicable!  These people have no souls as far as I am concerned.

    Let's add Dr. Leeds to the hero list.  It is people like you and Dr. Leeds who bring hope to us.  And in return for your sacrifices we will be there with you on September 24, 25, and 26.  I live right outside DC and from what I am hearing the crowds should be historical.  I hope that is true.  There is so much going on right now and I hope you know your tour has not been put on the back burner.  Thank you Cindy and do you plan to stay in DC after the 26th?  There should be weekly demonstrations in front of the White House until they bring the troops home.

    •  yes (4.00)
      casey's boots..these people are despicable

      see you in dc...i hope the crowds are historical.
      was at an event in raleigh last night and almost all of the 800 people there are coming...

      •  Cindy, you're beautiful (none)
        really.  a friend of mine shared with me a Jewish saying:

        If you save one life, you save the world.

        You are saving the world Cindy & saving it lives & lives at a time.

        It's sad that Casey's boots were taken.  It frankly doesn't suprise me.  There are some ugly people in this world.

        But you, dear woman, are beautiful.

        They can't take Casey's memory from you or from the millions of people around the world who Casey's story now lives through.  

        You've honored your son's memory & you continue to do honor to this great country by expecting it to live up to ideals every day.

        Thank you.  

        ps.  I missed you in Houston.  It was you or the Astrodome evacuees & I kinda got sucked in (& that was good).  Please let us know when you come back.

  •  Sticking With Cindy (none)
    I am so sorry that those thugs stole Casey's boots.  What is wrong with these people?

    I will stand with you Cindy until all of America takes notice.  Thank you and all those on the Bring Them Home Now tour for your heroic efforts.

  •  R O V I A N L I E S (none)
    These sladerous lie has to be straight out of Karl Rove's mouth:

     She also explained that the reason that VFP was not welcome with the Red Cross (or indeed, within the entire parish) was because of a series of allegations that we had already heard from others in the center. We had heard several conflicting versions of these stories: that someone with VFP had stolen $15,000 worth of medical supplies, and that he turned out to be a child molester; that the Vets for Peace had come to one center and were taking over, and bringing cameras into clinics; that VFP was illegally collecting Red Cross donations on the Internet.

    My God.  Only Karl Rove's sick mind could think of throwing in a "child molester" just to seal the deal.  Well Karl and a bunch of famous Nazis.

  •  How do I contact you? (none)
    Dear Cindy,

    I have been trying unsuccessfully to reach you.  I have gone through the message mechanisms, over the last several weeks more than once, at Gold Star Mothers for Peace, and the Meet with Cindy website.  I have also tried Code Pink.  Through a special contact I have also received what it supposed to be your personal e-mail address.

    I am a minister active in our local peace coalition.  I would like to invite you to speak at a major university town on the East Coast at any time convenient to you, but if possible especially in mid-October.

    If you read this message, would you kindly let me know how I might reach you.

    Thank you.

  •  You're always welcome in Raleigh (none)
    I had the great pleasure of hearing you speak in Moore Square yesterday. Thank you and bless you for all you have done and continue to do for all of us.
  •   You Can't Steal the Camp Casey Movement (4.00)
        You Can't Steal the Camp Casey Movement
        By Scott Galindez
        t r u t h o u t | Perspective

        Friday 16 September 2005

        There was a song written about Camp Casey by a minister from Dallas, called Prairie Chapel Road. Eric Folkerth was his name and one of his versus goes like this: "You can mow down the crosses but you can't mow down our hope because the truth will always see the light of the day."

        Larry Northern thought he would kill Camp Casey's spirit when he mowed down the crosses with his pickup truck, well he was mistaken. The Spirit of Camp Casey was too strong and the movement that was launched there cannot be stolen by another jerk who stole the memorial that remained there until yesterday.

        The idiot who stole the memorial took the crosses with the names of soldiers who died in Iraq, Casey Sheehan's boots, photos of fallen soldiers, and the first tents set up at Camp Casey.

        All that physically remains on that plot of earth is the frame of the canopy that covered the tents and some of the crosses.

        What also remains there is the spirit of the movement launched By Cindy Sheehan and thousands of people who joined her on that land in Crawford during the month of August. That spirit has already spread around the world and cannot be crushed by a thief or a vandal.

        Hundreds of thousands of people will be converging in Washington, DC on September 24th. They will be bringing the spirit of Camp Casey with them.

        Cindy will be there; former Diplomat Ann Wright who spent the whole month at Camp Casey will be there; Jeff Key, a marine who walked across the road and invited the counter protesters to join Camp Casey in a candle light vigil will be there; Beatrice Saldovar who regularly brought everyone to tears talking about her nephew who will never meet the baby his grieving wife is carrying will be there; dozens of Iraq War Vets who inspired everyone at Camp Casey while sharing their experiences will be there; hundreds of family members of soldiers who died, are in, or will be deployed to Iraq who shared their pain at Camp Casey will be there; Thousands of people who took time out of their life to take a stand with Cindy in the sweltering heat of Crawford, Texas will be in Washington.

        The Spirit that is in their hearts that they are spreading around the world can't be loaded into the back of that pick-up truck. Please don't even think of wearing those boots, Casey's boots are way too big for someone like you.

    for more information www.truthout.org

  •  "Stay in school and employ people?" (none)
    That is too rich. How do these maggots live with themselves? That mentality is killing this country. Thanks for doing everything you can to expose the rotted underbelly of the "conservative" sham (how conservative is it to undertake bombing orgies against an enemy who represents no threat?).

    That quote's going to bother me all goddamn day. Woe betide the person who voices such an outlook to my face. Sadly/fortunately, my likelihood of encountering such a discussion is non-existent, in my little liberal ghetto in Brooklyn. Maybe someday.

    •  Feel Compelled To Point Out (4.00)
      One of the legs of the Bring Them Home Now Tour will be in NYC this Sunday and Monday, including an event in Fort Greene.
      Sunday, September 18th

      8:00 PM
      Lafayette Ave. Presbyterian Church, 85 South Oxford St. Brooklyn,
      Join Rev. David Dyson in welcoming the Bring Them Home Now Tour! Contact: Rev. David Dyson - 718 625 7515; Gloria Mattera - 917 886 1419

      Monday, September 19th

      10:30 AM
      Press Conference with United for Peace and Justice

      Stop by Camp Casey Union Square

      6:30 PM
      Bring Them Home Now event at St. John the Divine
      The Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine is located on Amsterdam Avenue at 112th St. Take the 1 train to 110th Street and Broadway, or take the B or C to 110th Street and Central Park West (Cathedral Parkway).

      Speakers include:
      Congressman Charles Rangel (invited)
      Military Families and Veterans from the Bus Tour and NY
      Cindy Sheehan
      Judith LeBlanc, Co-Chair of United for Peace and Justice

      Local Event Contact:

      Leslie Kielson: 917-613-4657
      lrk44@earthlink.net

      Lisa: 213-840-1972, fithianl@igc.org
      backup: Nikki, 215-435-2609
      nikki@mfso.org

      It's not entirely clear whether Cindy Sheehan will be attending the Brooklyn event, but she'll certainly be at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine on Monday.
    •  Bothered me too (none)
      I can see this smug-faced punk who probably won't even be able to get through college or will do so cheating and buying papers.

      GWB thought he was some business man too. Hah.

      I wish I was clever enough to figure out something profound to place here.

      by boocilla69 on Fri Sep 16, 2005 at 09:06:22 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  God bless you Cindy (none)
    my prayers are with you!
  •  The media must catch wind of this! (none)
    If what that doctor said is true (and I have no doubt that it is) then the relief efforts are a sham and more people are going to suffer. ALL help should be accepted and coordinated. How dare they seel the relief off to the highest bidder and deny people down there the help of their fellow Americans?
    WE are trying to help and the GOVERNMENT is stopping it?
    My god in heaven, this makes me so F'ing ANGRY!
  •  a concern about language (none)
    Cindy,

    I support what you are doing with all my heart.  One thing I've valued so much about what you are doing is that yours has been such a clear and almost unique voice in US politics, and of course one that has truth on its side.

    I'm worried about what's happening to your rhetoric.  where do we hear the opposition being described in terms as demeaning as "young killing supporters," and "baby chicken hawks"?  The right wing talk shows.

    Maybe that's all they deserve.  Maybe we want to start imitating their brutal language.  Maybe that's what works.  But it's a big risk, because it participates in the degrading of American political debate.

    •  This is legitimate language. (none)
      IMHO this language describes the war supporters EXACTLY.  Baby chickenhawks?  Exactly what is the problem with that?  These are kids supporting a war that they refuse to fight.  They are of military age and are happy for someone less priveleged than themselves to fight it.  If they support the war, they should be there.  In their cowardice, they are in fact supporting killing that they "believe" in but will not do themselves.  This is nothing like the far right language of Devilcrats etc etc.
  •  Post a monetary reward for Casey's boots (none)
    Since these people are all about the money and there are probably plenty of people that know who took the boots, perhaps someone could step forward and offer a monetary reward for their return.  I'm appalled that someone would stoop that low, but then, these people always seem to be able to limbo under the morality bar.

    I hope you don't let these things affect your resolve.  I know there are plenty of people like me that support you and your mission even though we can't do that in person.  Slow and steady perserverence will indeed see your mission through.

    I wish I was clever enough to figure out something profound to place here.

    by boocilla69 on Fri Sep 16, 2005 at 09:02:56 AM PDT

  •  Re another mother of a Casey (none)
    When you were in the Crawford ditch, I sent information re your efforts to my friend June Callwood, a mom of another Casey. I was sure it was too crazy for you to read it then. You seem to be responding to more comments today, so I will tell the story again.

    June is Canada's most prolific and beloved social activist. Her son Casey died in 1982. A few years later, she started Casey House, an AIDS hospice in Toronto.

    http://tinyurl.com/cajwt

    She admires your work and is watching you closely, like much of the world.

    Alison

  •  cindy (none)
     God bless, see you on the 24th, the will of the people will be heard loud and clear!

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