WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Activist Cindy Sheehan announced she was ending her public campaign against the Iraq war with an angry blast at Democrats, Republicans and “cowardly leaders” who have abandoned U.S. troops indefinitely in Iraq.
“This is my resignation letter as the ‘face’ of the American anti-war movement,” Sheehan said in a Memorial Day posting Monday on the Web site Daily Kos.
Sheehan became a leading voice against the Iraq conflict after her son, Casey, was killed in combat in 2004.
She was a frequent protester in President George W. Bush’s adopted hometown of Crawford, Texas. She began visiting Crawford in the summer of 2005 when she wanted to meet with Bush while he was vacationing at his ranch. Bush had met with her after her son died but did not see her again, although he sent two top aides to talk to her.
The White House had no comment on Sheehan’s announcement.
Sheehan said she had reached the conclusion over the Memorial Day holiday that her son “did indeed die for nothing” and was “killed by his own country which is beholden to and run by a war machine that even controls what we think.”
“Our brave young men and women in Iraq have been abandoned there indefinitely by their cowardly leaders who move them around like pawns on a chessboard of destruction,” she wrote.
Sheehan criticized Democrats, saying they had turned against her when she tried to hold them to the same standards she held Republicans. And she expressed frustration with an anti-war movement that she said “often puts personal egos above peace and human life.”
“I am going to take whatever I have left and go home,” she wrote. “I am going to go home and be a mother to my surviving children and try to regain some of what I have lost.”
“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,” she said. “It’s up to you now.”
Democrats have been under increasing pressure from liberal groups to turn the tide against the Iraq war since they took control of Congress this year.