Turn-Turn-Turn by Cindy Sheehan

Turn, Turn, Turn
Cindy Sheehan

To everything there is a season.
A time for war, a time for peace.
Ecclesiastes, Hebrew Scriptures

I wish I could say I thought of something profound as
I saw the president and his wife’s picture on that
billboard on Hwy 317 in my rear view mirror on my way
out of Crawford today. I will be back for the final
weekend farewell to Camp Casey on July 6th, but I
won’t be back as the owner of property there, or as a
leader of the American peace movement.

The protests that were Camp Casey I and II that
evolved into the five acres on Hwy 317 (Lone Star
Parkway), which was known as Camp Casey III,
definitely were effective and served a relevant
purpose in the national discourse of the pros and cons
of the war. In an occupation that was and still is
kept far from apathetic American eyes, summer ’05 was
one of the first times the cost of BushCo’s Iraq
fiasco was made public and many people sympathized and
resonated with and some even traveled for miles to be
with the Mom in the ditch.

When I announced that I was going to put my five acres
up for sale in Texas, the horrible anti-peace;
anti-American group, Move America Forward announced
that they would buy it to erect a “Memorial.” This
group still cheer-leads and supports a war where our
troops are clearly being misused and mal-treated by
their civilian leadership and celebrates each death as
a sacrifice for the neo-con, obscene, and Orwellian
idea of “freedom.” Move America Forward is still
collecting money for their memorial, which will never
be built on my old property and if they really wanted
to buy it, they wouldn’t have sent out a press
release—they just wanted a few more minutes of fame
off of my misery!

Into all of the drama, radio talk show host Bree
Walker enters. She could not bear the thought of Move
America Forward or any other right-wing fascist group
buying Camp Casey, so she cashed in her corporate
buy-ins and bought my land to leave as a legacy to
peace—and a true memorial to our children and the
people of Iraq who have been killed for corporate and
political greed. Bree is putting her money where her
mouth is, too, and we Camp Casey-ites were relieved
and overjoyed when she purchased it!

I was in Crawford this past week to transfer the deed
to Bree and to take care of some last minute business.
Selling my land and kicking the Crawford dirt off of
my flip-flops was bittersweet. I have had some of my
highest-highs in that ½ horse town, but also some of
my lowest lows.

August ’05 was the happiest, yet the 2nd most
stressful time of my life. The people who saw my
sunburned face, wild hair and chapped lips every time
they turned on their TV never saw me tossing and
turning in my tent or trailer on a nightly basis
totally stressed out about the Rovian smear campaign
and worrying about what lies were going to be told
about me, or what attack was coming next. It seemed
like everyone with an agenda from “Israel is the
culprit” to “9-11 was an inside job” flocked to
Crawford to have a moment in the blazing hot sun with
me. Soldiers came from Ft. Hood to secretly be in
solidarity with me and parents of live and dead
soldiers also came: Mostly to stand in solidarity with
me, but some to try and take Camp Casey over to mold
it to their own agendas.

I fell in love at Camp Casey and had my heart broken
again there. I found true friends and learned how to
distinguish between true friends and people who only
pretend to be your friends until your usefulness to
them is over. I smiled more than I frowned; I laughed
more than I cried; I danced badly and sang out of
tune; I received more love than animosity and I think
thousands of us were given renewed hope and energy
because Camp Casey existed.

I will always be grateful for this experience that did
have an intense and positive effect on the world but I
am also content I have chosen a new direction and can
rest easily in the fact that we did do good. It’s time
for someone else and something else to manifest itself
in Crawford and time for some of us to ride into the
beautiful Texas sunsets that I definitely will miss.

I think when one is heading in the wrong direction, it
is always prudent to change direction—even if you
have to pull over and ask the way to go, and very
imprudent to stay a ridiculous and mistaken course.

I want to thank everyone for the outpouring of love,
support, and financial support that has come my way
since my resignation from the peace movement. My
medical bills will be paid off and because of Bree’s
generosity, I have a financial cushion to help me on
to the next phase: helping humans who have been hurt
by US corporate imperialism. I want to also thank
everyone who has helped me along the way so far and
encourage people to stay their courses if they think
they are being productive and supported.

The millennia old season of war is getting tiresome
and while never good, is growing in evilness as the
people who run the wars become more corrupt, callous
and as far removed from their conflicts as they can
possibly get.

There is a season for peace—I hope for all of our
sakes we reach it soon.

Cindy would like to invite everyone to her 50th
Birthday Party and Camp Casey final celebration the
weekend of July 6 to 8 at Camp Casey in Crawford, Tx.
RSVP to CampCaseyMom@yahoo.com
or Tiggerloli@aol.com