Photo by KG4CHW. License: Creative Commons Attribution 2.0.
Cindy Sheehan spoke with Amy Goodman on DemocracyNow yesterday about the day her son Casey died in Iraq, campaigning to hold Bush and Congress to account for the Iraq war, becoming a leading peace activist, and divisions in the movement.
She wrote a sort-of resignation letter to the US peace movement on Monday, in which she wrote: "When I started to hold the Democratic Party to the same standards that I held the Republican Party, support for my cause started to erode and the 'left' started labeling me with the same slurs that the right used. I guess no one paid attention to me when I said that the issue of peace and people dying for no reason is not a matter of 'right or left', but 'right and wrong.'"
I think Cindy is right to take time now to withdraw, reflect, and perhaps retool for another crack at it some day. I always found her story about moving from grieving mother to antiwar activist profoundly challenging. Above all, it has lessons about love of enemy -- the soldiers and mercenaries who've died invading Iraq, Iraqis and foreign fighters involved in the quagmire there. And now it reminds us to love ourselves too.
Sometimes peace groups and sustainability campaigns could do with a bit more of that peace internally, if they want to last or be a model for more people to join. So look after yourself Cindy -- and thank you!