Cindy Sheehan’s Lonely Vigil in Obamaland

by JOHN V. WALSH

Cindy Sheehan will be at Martha’s Vineyard beginning August 25 a short way from Obama’s vacation paradise of the celebrity elite but very far from the Afghanistan and Pakistan and Iraq where the body bags and cemeteries fill up each day as Obama’s wars rage on.    She will remain there from August 25 through August 29 and has issued a call for all peace activists to join her there.  For those of us close by in the New England states and in New York City, there would seem to be a special obligation to get to Martha’s Vineyard as soon as we can.

A funny thing has happened on Cindy Sheehan’s long road from Crawford, Texas, to Martha’s Vineyard.   Many of those who claim to lead the peace movement and who so volubly praised her actions in Crawford, TX, are not to be seen.    Nor heard.  The silence in fact is deafening, or as Cindy put it in an email to this writer, “crashingly deafening.”  Where are the email appeals to join Cindy from The Nation or from AFSC or Peace Action or “Progressive” Democrats of America (PDA) or even Code Pink?   Or United for Peace and Justice. (No wonder UFPJ is essentially closing shop, bereft of most of their contributions and shriveling up following the thinly veiled protest behind the “retirement” of Leslie Cagan.)   And what about MoveOn although it was long ago thoroughly discredited as principled opponents of war or principled in any way shape or form except slavish loyalty to the “other” War Party.  And of course sundry “socialist” organizations are also missing in action since their particular dogma will not be front and center.  These worthies and many others have vanished into the fog of Obama’s wars.

Just to be sure, this writer contacted several of the “leaders” of the “official” peace movement in the Boston area – AFSC, Peace Action, Green Party of MA (aka Green Rainbow Party) and some others.  Not so much as the courtesy of a reply resulted from this effort – although the GRP at least posted a notice of the action.  (It is entirely possible that some of these organizations might mention Cindy’s action late enough and quickly enough so as to cover their derrieres while ensuring that  Obama will not be embarrassed by protesting crowds.)   We here in the vicinity of Beantown are but a hop, skip and cheap ferry ride from Martha’s Vineyard.   Same for NYC.  So we have a special obligation to respond to Cindy’s call.

However, not everyone has failed to publicize the event.  The Libertarians at Antiwar.com are on the job, and its editor in chief Justin Raimondo wrote a superb column Monday on the  hypocritical treatment of Sheehan by the “liberal” establishment.  (1)  As Raimondo pointed out, Rush Limbaugh captured the hypocrisy of the liberal left in his commentary, thus:

“Now that she’s headed to Martha’s Vineyard, the State-Controlled Media, Charlie Gibson, State-Controlled Anchor, ABC: ‘Enough already.’ Cindy, leave it alone, get out, we’re not interested, we’re not going to cover you going to Martha’s Vineyard because our guy is president now and you’re just a hassle. You’re just a problem. To these people, they never had any true, genuine emotional interest in her. She was just a pawn. She was just a woman to be used and then thrown overboard once they’re through with her and they’re through with her. They don’t want any part of Cindy Sheehan protesting against any war when Obama happens to be president.”

Limbaugh has their number, just as they have his.  Sometimes it is quite amazing how well each of the war parties can spot the other’s hypocrisy. But Cindy Sheehan is no one’s dupe; she is a very smart and very determined woman who no doubt is giving a lot of White House operatives some very sleepless nights out there on the Vineyard.  Good for her.

Obama is an enormous gift to the Empire.  Just as he has silenced most of the single-payer movement, an effort characterized by its superb scholarship exceeded only by its timidity,  Obama has shut down the antiwar movement, completely in thrall as it is to the Democrat Party and Identity  Politics.   Why exactly the peace movement has caved to Obama is not entirely clear.  Like the single-payer movement, it is wracked by spinelessness, brimming with reverence for authority and a near insatiable appetite to be “part of the crowd.”  Those taken in by Obama’s arguments that the increasingly bloody and brutal AfPak war is actually a “war of necessity,” should read Steven Walt’s easy demolition of that “argument.” (2) Basically Obama’s logic is the same as Bush’s moronic rationale that “We are fighting them over there so we do not have to fight them over here.”  There is a potential for “safe havens for terrorists,” as the Obamalogues and neocons like to call them, all over the world; and no one can possibly believe the US can invade them all.  However, the ones which Israel detests or which allow control of oil pipelines or permit encirclement of China and Russia will see US troops sooner or later.

The bottom line is that everyone in New England and NYC who is a genuine antiwarrior should join the imaginative effort of Cindy Sheehan in Obamaland this week and weekend.  We owe it to the many who will otherwise perish at the hands of the war parties of Bush and Obama.

1.See: http://original.antiwar.com/justin/2009/08/23/war-coverage-and-the-obama-cult/

Or go to Antiwar.com and make a contribution while you are there.  It’s almost as good as CounterPunch.com.

2.See:http://walt.foreignpolicy.com/posts/2009/08/18/the_safe_haven_myth

JOHN V. WALSH can be reached at John.Endwar@gmail.com  He welcomes comments, and he looks forward to seeing crowds of CounterPunchers at Martha’s Vineyard this week and weekend.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

John V. Walsh can be reached at John.Endwar@gmail.com

Like What You’ve Read? Support CounterPunch
September 02, 2015
Norman Pollack
Obama, Flim-Flam Artist: Alaska Off-Shore Drilling
Lawrence Wittner
Russians and Americans Get Their Kids Ready for War
September 01, 2015
Mike Whitney
Return to Crisis: Things Keep Getting Worse
Michael Schwalbe
The Moral Hazards of Capitalism
Eric Mann
Inside the Civil Rights Movement: a Conversation With Julian Bond
Pam Martens
How Wall Street Parasites Have Devoured Their Hosts, Your Retirement Plan and the U.S. Economy
Jonathan Latham
Growing Doubt: a Scientist’s Experience of GMOs
Fran Shor
Occupy Wall Street and the Sanders Campaign: a Case of Historical Amnesia?
Joe Paff
The Big Trees: Cockburn, Marx and Shostakovich
Randy Blazak
University Administrators Allow Fraternities to Turn Colleges Into Rape Factories
Robert Hunziker
The IPCC Caught in a Pressure Cooker
George Wuerthner
Myths of the Anthropocene Boosters: Truthout’s Misguided Attack on Wilderness and National Park Ideals
Robert Koehler
Sending Your Children Off to Safe Spaces in College
Jesse Jackson
Season of the Insurgents: From Trump to Sanders
August 31, 2015
Michael Hudson
Whitewashing the IMF’s Destructive Role in Greece
Conn Hallinan
Europe’s New Barbarians
Lawrence Ware
George Bush (Still) Doesn’t Care About Black People
Joseph Natoli
Plutocracy, Gentrification and Racial Violence
Franklin Spinney
One Presidential Debate You Won’t Hear: Why It is Time to Adopt a Sensible Grand Strategy
Dave Lindorff
What’s Wrong with Police in America
Louis Proyect
Jacobin and “The War on Syria”
Lawrence Wittner
Militarism Run Amok: How Russians and Americans are Preparing Their Children for War
Binoy Kampmark
Tales of Darkness: Europe’s Refugee Woes
Ralph Nader
Lo, the Poor Enlightened Billionaire!
Peter Koenig
Greece: a New Beginning? A New Hope?
Dean Baker
America Needs an “Idiot-Proof” Retirement System
Vijay Prashad
Why the Iran Deal is Essential
Tom Clifford
The Marco Polo Bridge Incident: a History That Continues to Resonate
Peter Belmont
The Salaita Affair: a Scandal That Never Should Have Happened
Weekend Edition
August 28-30, 2015
Randy Blazak
Donald Trump is the New Face of White Supremacy
Jeffrey St. Clair
Long Time Coming, Long Time Gone
Mike Whitney
Looting Made Easy: the $2 Trillion Buyback Binge
Alan Nasser
The Myth of the Middle Class: Have Most Americans Always Been Poor?
Rob Urie
Wall Street and the Cycle of Crises
Andrew Levine
Viva Trump?
Ismael Hossein-Zadeh
Behind the Congressional Disagreements Over the Iran Nuclear Deal
Lawrence Ware – Marcus T. McCullough
I Won’t Say Amen: Three Black Christian Clichés That Must Go
Evan Jones
Zionism in Britain: a Neglected Chronicle
John Wight
Learning About the Migration Crisis From Ancient Rome
Andre Vltchek
Lebanon – What if it Fell?
Charles Pierson
How the US and the WTO Crushed India’s Subsidies for Solar Energy
Robert Fantina
Hillary Clinton, Palestine and the Long View
Ben Burgis
Gore Vidal Was Right: What Best of Enemies Leaves Out
Suzanne Gordon
How Vets May Suffer From McCain’s Latest Captivity
Robert Sandels - Nelson P. Valdés
The Cuban Adjustment Act: the Other Immigration Mess