Cindy Sheehan: Some kind of populist uprising needs to happen

Dandelion Salad

The Socialist
17 September 2008

Anti-war activist challenges Nancy Pelosi, Democratic House Speaker, for US Congress

WHEN CINDY Sheehan’s son, Army Specialist Casey Sheehan, was killed in Iraq in 2004, she quickly became one of the country’s most high-profile anti-war activists. Sheehan camped out near George Bush’s ranch in Crawford, Texas, demanding an explanation for her son’s death.

Now, the 51-year-old mother of three is running for Congress against Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi as an independent anti-war, pro-worker challenger, although not a socialist. Justice, the paper of Socialist Alternative (the Socialist party’s US counterpart), spoke to Cindy in her San Francisco campaign office, just days after her supporters turned in over 20,000 signatures to qualify her for the ballot.

Many anti-war activists have focused a lot of time and energy on electing Democratic Party candidates in the hope that they will challenge Bush’s policies. Why did you decide to take a different path and run as an independent?

CS The Democratic Party is not a vehicle for getting us out of Iraq. Since the Democrats have taken over Congress in January of 2007 the situation has gotten far worse and they’ve appropriated billions of dollars to continue to fund the occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan. They’ve always said “redeploy”, they’ve never said “withdraw”. Now they are redeploying troops from Iraq to Afghanistan.

The Democratic Party has been responsible for many of the major wars in our history.

Vietnam is one that comes right to mind. The first five years were waged under a Johnson presidency. The two party system inherently is a pro-war machine. The Pentagon and the military are very well funded, while programmes to help people in communities, families, and the people out in the streets in front of my office are cut.


Interview with Cindy Sheehan: “Some kind of populist uprising needs to happen” | The Socialist 17 September 2008.


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