August 25, 2005


Coming Back To Crawford (Cindy Sheehan, 25 August , 2005, Huffington Post)

I'm coming back to Crawford for my son. As long as the president, who sent him to die in a senseless war, is in Crawford, that is where I belong. I came here two and a half weeks ago for one reason, to try and see the president and get an answer to a very simple question: What is the noble cause that he says my son died for?

President Addresses Military Families, Discusses War on Terror (George W. Bush, Idaho Center, Nampa, Idaho, 8/24/05)
We're spreading the hope of freedom across the broader Middle East. In the long run, the only way to defeat the terrorists is by offering an alternative to their ideology of hatred and fear. So a key component of our strategy is to spread freedom. History has proven that free nations are peaceful nations, that democracies do not fight their neighbors. (Applause.) And so, by advancing the cause of liberty and freedom in the Middle East, we're bringing hope to millions, and security to our own citizens. By bringing freedom and hope to parts of the world that have lived in despair, we're laying the foundation of peace for our children and grandchildren. (Applause.)

We're using all elements of our national power to achieve our objectives -- military power, diplomatic power, financial, intelligence and law enforcement. We're fighting the enemy on many fronts -- from the streets of the Western capitals to the mountains of Afghanistan, to the tribal regions of Pakistan, to the islands of Southeast Asia and the Horn of Africa. You see, this new kind of war, the first war of the 21st century, is a war on a global scale. And to protect our people, we've got to prevail in every theater. And that's why it's important for us to call upon allies and friends to join with us -- and they are.

One of the most important battlefronts in this war on terror is Iraq. Terrorists have converged on Iraq. See, they're coming into Iraq because they fear the march of freedom. Their most prominent leader is a Jordanian named Zarqawi, who has declared his allegiance with Osama bin Laden. The ranks of these folks are filled with foreign fighters who come from places like Saudi Arabia and Syria and Iran and Egypt and Sudan and Yemen and Libya. They lack popular support so they're targeting innocent Iraqis with car bombs and suicide attacks. They know the only way they can prevail is to break our will and the will of the Iraqi people before democracy takes hold. They are going to fail. (Applause.)

The stakes in Iraq could not be higher. The brutal violence in Iraq today is a clear sign of the terrorists' determination to stop democracy from taking root in the Middle East. They know that the success of a free Iraq, who can be a key ally in the war on terror and a symbol of success for others, will be a crushing blow to their strategy to dominate the region, and threaten America and the free world. They know that when their hateful ideology is defeated in Iraq, the Middle East will have a clear example of freedom and prosperity and hope. And the terrorists will begin to lose their sponsors and lose their recruits and lose the sanctuaries they need to plan new attacks.

And so they're fighting these efforts in Iraq with all the brutality they can muster. Yet, despite the violence we see every day, we're achieving our strategic objectives in Iraq. The Iraqi people are determined to build a free nation, and we have a plan to help them succeed. America and Iraqi forces are on the hunt, side-by-side, to defeat the terrorists. And as we hunt down our common enemies, we will continue to train more Iraqi security forces.

Like free people everywhere, Iraqis desire to defend their own country. That's what they want to do. They want to be in a position to defend their own freedom and their own democracy. And we're helping to achieve that goal. Our approach can be summed up this way: As Iraqis stand up, we will stand down. And when the Iraqi forces can defend their freedom by taking more and more of the fight to the enemy, our troops will come home with the honor they have earned. (Applause.)

At the same time, we're helping the Iraqi people establish a secure democracy. The people of Iraq have made a choice. In spite of the threats and assassinations, eight and a half million Iraqis went to the polls in January. (Applause.) By casting their ballots in defiance of the terrorists, they sent a clear and unmistakable message to the world: It doesn't matter where you're born; it doesn't matter what faith you follow, embedded in every soul is the deep desire to live in freedom. (Applause.) I understand freedom is not America's gift to the world; freedom is an Almighty God's gift to each man and woman in this world. (Applause.)

That may not sound like a noble cause to Cindy Sheehan, but it did to her son.

Posted by Orrin Judd at August 25, 2005 10:46 PM

Because Sheehan taught her son that America was great and good - before she found out in middle age, (apparently never having paid attention in school as a youth), that there were people in the New World before the Europeans got here, and we did very bad things to those poor ignorant natives.

Posted by: Michael Herdegen at August 26, 2005 12:47 AM

The irony here is just too great. The son died an unassailable hero fighting to defend (for his own country and expand for countless strangers in Iraq) the very democratic freedom upon which his own mother relies to hold in highest contempt the country for which he gave the ultimate sacrifice.

Maybe my head's the next to explode.

Posted by: John Resnick at August 26, 2005 6:14 PM

How is Cindy relying on Israeli democracy?

Posted by: David Cohen at August 27, 2005 10:52 AM

Very funny, David.

Posted by: Michael Herdegen [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 27, 2005 5:01 PM