Antiwar activist Cindy Sheehan and about a dozen other peace protesters demonstrated at the House of Representatives to urge Democrats to aggressively investigate the war in Iraq.

“De-escalate! Investigate! Troops home now!” Sheehan and the other protesters chanted at Democratic leaders in the House Cannon Office Building, who had assembled for a press conference on their agenda as they prepare to take power Thursday.

Democrats, who take control of Congress Thursday for the first time in 12 years, have vowed to hold President George W. Bush’s administration accountable for its handling of the Iraq war.

Protest organizer David Swanson told AFP said they wanted to underscore their displeasure that Democrats, in the view of peace activists, are not aggressively holding the Bush administration accountable for missteps in Iraq.

“We were there to lobby. We wanted to tell them that ‘we in the peace movement won this war for you, and we have the impression that you’re turning your back on us from day one,'” he said.

“We want Democrats to turn off the money and investigate the crimes,” Swanson said.

“Pelosi (incoming House speaker Nancy Pelosi) has said cutting off the money is off the table and impeachment is off the table. This is not what we elected her to do.”

Sheehan, whose son Casey was killed in Iraq in April 2004, rose to national prominence that same summer when she camped outside of President George W. Bush’s Texas ranch to demonstrate her opposition to the US-led war.

She has remained a constant gadfly on the Iraq issue, with antiwar protests, a book, letter writing campaigns, and various civil disobedience actions.

Copyright © 2007 Agence France Presse

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