Thinking About Hillary

People I like support Hillary for president. Could I? Well, if she wins the nomination, and has denounced the travesty in Iraq, I could, especially against a pro-war Republican. But I fear she can't speak out against the occupation because she supports it. Never again will I make the mistake of supporting a pro-war Democrat for president, just as I would never support a pro-war Republican.

Why the delay? The moral policy is also the practical policy: End the occupation. Americans want it. The world wants it. Iraqis want it.

Pro-war people can change their minds, and we should welcome them with open arms when they do. Senator Clinton, taking the peace road would not prove you are weak, as some claim. Instead, it would prove that you are a strong and wise candidate. As a mom, as an American, as a patriot: I implore you to have the strength and courage to lead the fight for peace. Prove that you reflect our nations’ values and do not support imperialism, Halliburton, and torture.   

Senator Clinton: come out against this occupation of Iraq. Not because it is the politically expedient thing to do, but because it is the right thing to do. If you want to make Casey’s sacrifice count, bring his buddies home alive.

If you do not, like many American moms, I will resist your candidacy with every bit of my strength.

Recently I met with Sen. Clinton and Sen. Harry Reid.  No one has asked me how it went with Sen. Reid, but I’ve been asked about my meeting with Sen. Clinton many times. A few days earlier in Brooklyn, I had referred to her as waiting for a politically “expedient” moment to speak out against the war in Iraq. Of course, I think that that tactic is wrong, because politics should have nothing to do with opposing the slaughter. No one asked the almost 2000 dead Americans and tens of thousands of innocent Iraqi dead what political party they were rooting for. When a mother receives the news that her son or daughter has been killed for lies, she never thinks “Oh no, how could this have happened? I am a Democrat(Republican)!”

I had gone to the meeting with another Gold Star Mother, Lynn Braddach, and my sister, Dede Miller. After Sen. Reid left, Mrs. Clinton stayed for a moment to tell us that she had met with other Gold Star Mothers who had a different view. I said that didn’t really matter, because our view is the right one. But our meeting had no effect, because immediately afterwards, Mrs. Clinton told Sarah Ferguson of the Village Voice: “My bottom line is that I don’t want their sons to die in vain…. I don’t believe it’s smart to set a date for withdrawal…. I don’t think it’s the right time to withdraw.”

Lynn, Dede, and I resent the deaths of our loved ones being used to justify the killing spree in Iraq. Besides, it sounded as if Mrs. Clinton were using Republican party talking points.

The allegedly wonderful tradition of a bipartisan foreign policy is actually against the public interest. It ensures that there is no serious opposition in Washington to the establishment's wars. That must change, no matter who is in power.

Sen. Clinton is in California now to raise money for her political campaigns. An invitation to one event read:

“We must stand with Senator Clinton as she stands up for what we believe in. Hillary is and always has been our champion in the White House and the Senate.” She’s one of the “strongest, most passionate and intelligent Democrats.”

But she doesn’t stand up for what I believe in. I don’t believe in continuing this occupation of Iraq and I don’t believe in killing more of our soldiers because my son has already been killed. Nor do I believe she is "passionate." I think she is a political animal who believes she has to be a war hawk to keep up with the big boys. She is intelligent, there’s no doubt about that. But the intelligent thing for Democrats to do for 2006 and 2008 would be to come out strongly against the botched, bungled, illegal, and immoral occupation of Iraq, as Sen. Russ Feingold has. Republicans too, like Rep. Ron Paul.

62% of Americans now believe that this war is based on lies and betrayals and want our troops to start coming home. 53% of Americans want our troops to come home immediately. The last time I looked, Democrats did not comprise 62% of the population. Americans oppose this war in overwhelming numbers, and it crosses party lines. Americans can see that the war in Iraq has fueled terrorism and has made the world and our country less secure. Americans can see that the murder of innocents is not a “right and left” issue, but a “right and wrong” one.

Sixty-nine of our best and brightest have been sent meaninglessly and unnecessarily to their graves since I met with Mrs. Clinton. Sixty-nine mothers and fathers and who knows how many spouses, brothers, sisters, sons, daughters, cousins, and friends have been sent into tailspins of grief and emptiness since that meeting.

Sen. Clinton, along with many others, voted to give George Bush the authority to invade a sovereign nation that was no threat to the USA. They spinelessly and illegally delegated their constitutional responsibility to declare war. We (and most of them) know that giving an irresponsible person authority to engage in mass killing is devastatingly wrong.

Sen. Clinton, if you now oppose this war, it will not bring my son or almost 2000 other Americans back, and it won’t bring back Iraq's war dead. But it will help prevent more deaths, and it will make you a strong candidate. I am not holding my breath, I'm sorry to say, but I pray that you prove me wrong.

UPDATE: Cindy Sheehan Pledges Civil Disobedience Campaign

October 24, 2005