Antiwar mom Sheehan calls it quits

Cindy Sheehan, the soldier's mother who galvanized an anti-war movement with her monthlong protest outside President Bush's ranch, says she's done being the public face of the movement.

"I've been wondering why I'm killing myself and wondering why the Democrats caved in to George Bush," Sheehan told The Associated Press by phone Tuesday while driving from her property in Crawford to the airport, where she planned to return to her native California.

"I'm going home for awhile to try and be normal," she said.

In what she described as a "resignation letter," Sheehan wrote in her online diary on the "Daily Kos" blog: "Good-bye America … you are not the country that I love and I finally realized no matter how much I sacrifice, I can't make you be that country unless you want it.

"It's up to you now."

Sheehan began a grass roots peace movement in August 2005 when she set up camp outside the Bush ranch for 26 days, asking to talk with the President about the death of her son, Army Spc. Casey Sheehan. Casey Sheehan was 24 when he was killed in an ambush in Baghdad.

Cindy Sheehan started her protest small, but it quickly drew national attention. Over the following two years, she drew huge crowds as she spoke at protest events, but she also drew a great deal of criticism.

"I have endured a lot of smear and hatred since Casey was killed and especially since I became the so-called "Face" of the American anti-war movement," Sheehan wrote in the diary.

On Memorial Day, she came to some "heartbreaking conclusions," she wrote.

When she had first taken on Bush, Sheehan was a darling of the liberal left. "However, when I started to hold the Democratic Party to the same standards that I held the Republican Party, support for my cause started to erode and the 'left' started labeling me with the same slurs that the right used," she wrote.

"I guess no one paid attention to me when I said that the issue of peace and people dying for no reason is not a matter of 'right or left', but 'right and wrong,'" the diary says.

Sheehan criticized "blind party loyalty" as a danger, no matter which side it involved, and said the current two-party system is "corrupt" and "rapidly descending into with nary a check or balance: a fascist corporate wasteland."

Sheehan said she had sacrificed a 29-year marriage and endured threats to put all her energy into stopping the war. What she found, she wrote, was a movement "that often puts personal egos above peace and human life."

But she said the most devastating conclusion she had reached "was that Casey did indeed die for nothing … killed by his own country which is beholden to and run by a war machine that even controls what we think".

"Casey died for a country which cares more about who will be the next American Idol than how many people will be killed in the next few months while Democrats and Republicans play politics with human lives," she wrote. It is so painful to me to know that I bought into this system for so many years and Casey paid the price for that allegiance. I failed my boy and that hurts the most."

"I am going to take whatever I have left and go home," Sheehan wrote.

"Camp Casey has served its purpose. It's for sale. Anyone want to buy five beautiful acres in Crawford, Texas?"


  1. Richard Kanegis

    Richard Kanegis (
    22 S 22 nd St Apt 305 Phila PA 19103

    The most precious moments of Cindy Sheehans protest was the first few days or weeks when a former Bush supporter actually though she could change his mind and Bush’s handlers were afraid she might if he took a three minute photo op with her.

    The biggest lost was when she sat down on the White House lawn expecting to be arrested rather than waiting when she was arrested by surprise for wearing a peace shirt in the Congressional gallery

    Anyway I believe Bush’s heart is right, but he is locked up in the White House.

    Cheney and Moonie White House Secretary Tony Snow got him surrounded and Condoleezza is too busy fawning over him to even notice and warn the rest of the world he is a prisoner.

    I really believe Bush’s go slow approach to federal stem cell research with moral oversight all along the way makes sense if he could articulate it right, and so does his faith based initiative.

    By the way in Fuluja in October 2006 an Iraqi go-between arranged with commanders in the field for the insurgents to accept nominal Bagdad authority and US troops pulled back. Then a Kerry campaign ad complained of terrorists hiding in Fuluja and Bush demanded al Sadr’s arrest. Today sadly they would be happy to out each other in exchange for peace, but they now can’t trust a world the US says.

    After the Sunni’s told the CIA of the sickopath al Qaida’s leaders whereabouts, Bush offered peace but Sunni insurgents didn’t believe him.

    Spmeone plesae help free our wonderful retarded President from the White House cage.

    I never called for impeach Bush, if Cheney Rowe and Snow are jailed, we’ll have a brand new Bush

  2. Paolo

    Observe that, when a female takes a stand on an important political issue, the response of those she has challenged usually starts with criticism of her physical appearance and her femininity.

    Cindy Sheehan had to put up with being called a “publicity whore,” along with countless snide remarks about her looks, most of which were just too slimy and lewd to dignify by repeating them here.

    It’s rare we hear criticism of, say, Dick Cheney, starting with a long description of his obesity and soft, dough-like features. After all, why would that be relevant? Yet the whole pro-war crowd seemed to home in on criticism of Cindy’s femininity, rather than her arguments.

    I don’t blame her for quitting and going home. I doubt I would have been able to hold out as long as she did. You may notice the genuine, quiet courage Cindy displayed throughout this public mocking, as opposed to the fake “courage” of men like George Bush, who loves the adulation of armed forces audiences who have no choice but to cheer.