Vermont: Land of Hope
By Cindy Sheehan
Thursday 08 March 2007
My recent trip to Turkey opened my eyes further to anti-American hatred. As more and more people in the occupied
countries of Afghanistan and Iraq are being killed by American troops or by violence that didn't exist before America
entered their countries, the intensity of the hostility is escalating along with the escalating violence. At a "peace"
conference that I attended in Istanbul I was appalled when attendee after attendee rose up from the audience to commend
my fellow panelist, an Iraqi scientist, on the insurgency in Iraq that was giving the world "hope" by staving off the
self-entitled "mightiest military in history." I was as appalled because a violent insurgency was applauded as I am
appalled that a violent regime in DC is still in power to continue devastating the world which encourages people to
place their hope in the Iraqi resistance.
I want to live in a country that gives hope to the world. I want to live in a country that decreases world instability
instead of fomenting and celebrating it. I want to live in a country that listens to its citizens and not the lobbyists
of the war profiteers. I want to live in a country that doesn't use its precious sons and daughters to kill other
people's precious sons and daughters. I want to live in the USA, and that's why I want Bloody George and Doomsday Dick
to be impeached.
I had the honor over this past weekend to travel the state of Vermont (in the Yellow Rose of Texas VFP and Camp Casey
Bus) with impeachment activists, including Dan DeWalt, who began the impeachment movement in Vermont; John Nichols, who
is an associate editor of The Nation magazine and author of "The Genius of Impeachment," which puts the impeachment of
the Bush regime in crystal clear historical focus; along with three superbly intelligent and articulate Iraq Vets
Against the War: Drew Cameron, Matt Howard and Adrienne Kinne.
We made 13 stops across Vermont (which is bigger than it looks) and found ourselves settling into a routine. First, the
Iraq Vets would speak. Adrienne was an Arabic linguist for 10 years and knew the intelligence that our country was
gleaning from such sources as Ahmed Chalabi was false because she, using her brain, figured out that he had much to gain
from the invasion of Iraq. When she brought this up to her commander, he accused her of not supporting their unit or the
mission. Adrienne now works in a VA hospital in Vermont and hears tragic tales of why our vets have PTSD. Stories of
soldiers who were driving down the road in a sandy country that they had no business being in, and who awaken to find
themselves covered in blood with a body part in their laps, not knowing if it's their own or one of their buddies'.
Matt, a Marine, and Drew, a soldier, told horror stories of lack of body armor, lack of enough food and the killing of
innocent women and children. The young vets' points basically boiled down to this: as our VA hospitals are falling apart
and soldiers are committing suicide, because even if the harmed soldiers wanted to, they can't get beds in a VA
facility, the illegal occupation of a country that Bloody George wants to make worse is creating more damaged veterans
who will be refused, or criminally delaying treatment from the very government that hurt them in the first place.
John Nichols would then arise and talk about the founding of our country and the genius of the founding fathers who
built impeachment into our Constitution - which mentions impeachment six times and God zero. Impeachment was our
founders' way of ensuring that no branch of the government - but especially the executive branch - got too powerful or
tyrannical. With the fire of an evangelist, John would relevantly quote Jefferson, Madison and Adams with alacrity and
wisdom. Then John would introduce me.
By the time I would speak, the crowd had heard about the atrocity and senselessness of war. John would give them the
historical background and reasons for impeachment, i.e., starting wars of aggression based on lies; torture; Katrina;
spying on Americans without permission, and torture, to name a few, and my job was to put impeachment into the present
day and explain future implications.
My imperative for impeachment does not come out of a sense of revenge. If I wanted revenge, I would be calling for
something more harmful than impeachment. Justice is one of the reasons that I want impeachment. Peace is one of the
reasons that I want impeachment. Accountability is one of the reasons that I want impeachment, but the overriding reason
that I want impeachment is for the future.
I believe that a mammoth number of Americans think that Vietnam was a wrongheaded war, and that atrocities and crimes
against humanity were committed. However, the main architects of that disgusting crime of that century left office to go
on to lead happy and healthy lives of ease. Johnson went back to Texas to bar-be-que; Nixon returned to California to
golf; McNamara went on to be president of the World Bank (which seems to be a reward for planning horrid wars), and
Kissinger is back in the saddle advising the cowboy of killing. If even one of the above-mentioned murderers had been
impeached and imprisoned, maybe George would not have thought that he was above the law, and maybe he wouldn't have felt
so comfortable leading our country into disaster a la the war that he spent a lot of time avoiding himself.
It is urgent and necessary that we impeach the criminals who inhabit the highest offices of the world to ensure the
future peace of the world.
Impeachment is absolutely mandatory, so that the crooks will be held accountable for their crimes so America can be the
shining city on the hill that the rest of the world can look towards with hope and confidence in her wisdom.
Impeachment is a constitutional requirement that must not be expediently avoided and must be set back on the table as
the first course.
Dozens of towns in Vermont were voting on impeachment resolutions in their town meetings March 6th as a people's
antidote for the political temerity of Congress. If Congress won't do its constitutional duty, then we the people will.
Vermont, the world is watching. Be the glowing beacon that leads our country down a path of justice and peace.
The hope of the world is counting on you.