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Day 17

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"This Misbegotten War"

Farewell, Senator Kennedy

by CINDY SHEEHAN

"My vote against this misbegotten war (Iraq) is the best vote I have cast in the United States Senate since I was elected in 1962."

Senator Ted Kennedy

I would like to extend my sincere condolences to the Kennedy family and the people of Massachusetts on the death of Senator Edward Kennedy.

I was invited to visit with the Senator in September of 2005 right after my first foray into presidential vacation adventures. I walked into an office on Capitol Hill that was a mini American History Museum. The Senator displayed his own art, memorabilia from the Kennedy family and even framed child’s artwork from his children and various nieces and nephews.

Gathered around a large marble fireplace (unlit in the September Washington DC heat) and surrounded by his Portuguese Water dogs, we talked about loss and war and peace.

We commiserated on my tragic loss of Casey and the losses that his mother Rose had to endure in her life. No matter what one thinks of the Kennedy family, they have been hit hard with tragedy.

The Senator and I talked about the wrongness, even criminality of the US foreign policy in the Middle East and I find it serendipitous that I am on Martha’s Vineyard the day he died.

In the next few days, we will be working on an International People’s Declaration of Peace (IPDoP) here in Massachusetts where I have always felt overwhelming support for a message of peace and justice.

In the spirit of peace and to honor Ted Kennedy’s legacy, Camp Casey Martha’s Vineyard will go forward and hopefully at the end of the week, we will have a wonderful first draft of the IPDoP that we can present to the globe: a people’s grassroots movement to counteract the violence of governments all over the world.

We will be leaving Martha’s Vineyard and taking this Declaration all over the world to advocate that, finally, we the people of this planet refuse to be used as pawns of failed and violent policies.

CINDY SHEEHAN is running for congress as an independent. She can be reached through her website.