Protesters Outside, Bush Toes Iraq Line

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by leekohler, Aug 12, 2005.

  1. leekohler macrumors G5

    leekohler

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    #1
    I think he owes her an explanation. Don't you? Not to mention us.




    CRAWFORD, Texas - President Bush said Thursday he sympathizes with war protesters like the mother camped outside his Texas ranch demanding answers for her solider-son's death, but he said he believes it would be a mistake to bring U.S. troops home now.


    Bush said he had "heard the voices of those saying, `Pull out now.'" And he said, "I've thought about their cry and their sincere desire to reduce the loss of life by pulling our troops out. I just strongly disagree."


    "Pulling the troops out would send a terrible signal to the enemy," the president told reporters between meetings with his military and foreign affairs advisers.


    Outside his sprawling ranch, California mother Cindy Sheehan sat on the road with a growing group of war protesters who have pitched tents in shallow ditches. Sheehan's son, Casey, was killed five days after he arrived in Iraq last year at age 24.


    Sheehan began her standoff on Saturday, declaring she would stay for the entire month that Bush plans to stay in Texas if he won't meet with her. Since then, dozens of other activists have traveled from across the country to join her, including at least three other parents who have lost children in the war.


    "The president says he feels compassion for me, but the best way to show that compassion is by meeting with me and the other mothers and families who are here," Sheehan said. "All we're asking is that he sacrifice an hour out of his five-week vacation to talk to us, before the next mother loses her son in Iraq."


    The protesters put a human face on Americans' increasing opposition to Bush's handling of the war. An AP-Ipsos poll early this month showed just 38 percent of respondents approved of his handling of Iraq. More than 1,840 members of the U.S. military have died since the beginning of the war in March 2003


    "I sympathize with Mrs. Sheehan," Bush said. "She feels strongly about her position. She has every right in the world to say what she believes. This is America. She has a right to her position. And I've thought long and hard about her position. I've heard her position from others, which is, `Get out of Iraq now.'"


    "And it would be a mistake for the security of this country and the ability to lay the foundations for peace in the long run if we were to do so," the president said.


    The White House put out an accounting of all the meetings that Bush has had with families of the war dead - 900 relatives of 272 people who have died in Iraq and Afghanistan. Sheehan met the president in June 2004 but said she deserves another visit since there have been so many revelations about faulty pre-war intelligence since then.


    Bush said reports that the Pentagon may increase or decrease troop levels in Iraq next year are simply "speculation and rumors." He noted, though, that the United States had sent more soldiers to Iraq and Afghanistan before elections and was considering doing so again before another round of Iraqi elections in December.


    Gen. George Casey, the top commander in Iraq, has said repeatedly that "fairly substantial" reductions are expected after the election if the political process stays on track, if the insurgency does not expand and if the training of Iraqi security forces proceeds as planned.


    Bush said he would make any decision to remove troops based on recommendations by Casey, who gave a briefing by videolink during the president's ranch meeting with advisers.


    "My position has been clear, and therefore, the position of this government is clear," Bush said. "Obviously, the conditions on the ground depend upon our capacity to bring troops home."


    Bush said Casey reported that Iraqi security units were becoming more capable, although he acknowledged they were not ready to work alone without support from U.S. forces. He described the Iraqis' progress as improving from "raw recruit" to "plenty capable."


    "I know it's hard for some Americans to see that progress," Bush said. "But we are making progress."


    Bush reiterated that the United States sees no reason that an Iraqi committee working to draft a new national constitution cannot finish its work by a Monday deadline.


    On another Mideast topic, Bush indicated that the new Iranian president will receive a U.S. visa to attend an annual United Nations gathering next month.


    Bush said U.S. investigators still have not yet determined what role Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad may have played in the 1979 takeover of the U.S. Embassy in Tehran. Six former hostages have identified Ahmadinejad as one of their captors.


    Even so, Bush said, the United States has separate obligations to other countries as the host nation for the United Nations, which is headquartered in New York.


    "We have an agreement with the United Nations to allow people to come to meet, and I suspect he will be here to meet at the United Nations," Bush said.


    As host, the United States is obligated under U.N. rules to approve visas to foreign leaders irrespective of political considerations.


    Bush said he welcomed the U.N. nuclear watchdog agency's warning to Iran about the consequences of its nuclear ambitions.


    The International Atomic Energy Agency's 35-nation board of directors expressed "serious concern" Thursday over Iran's resumption of nuclear activities that could lead to an atomic bomb.


    "That's a positive first step," Bush said.


    ---


    On the Net:


    http://www.whitehouse.gov

    http://start.earthlink.net/article/pol?guid=20050811/42fc1ec0_3ca6_1552620050812-749745880
     
  2. Thomas Veil macrumors 68020

    Thomas Veil

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    #2
    Glad to see that a protest of this type is not only attracting followers, but media attention as well. We need more of these kinds of protests, but even more media attention. That's the only way you're going to keep the pressure on.
     
  3. miloblithe macrumors 68020

    miloblithe

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    #3
    So, they're "plenty capable", just incapable of operating alone without US support.

    What a bunch of crap.
     
  4. leekohler thread starter macrumors G5

    leekohler

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    #5
    Oh- and don't you just love the media spin? All she wants to know is why her son died and what he died for and they're painting like she's telling Bush to bring the troops back. She wants to know why her son had to fight in this war- the reasons they gave have all been proven false.
     
  5. solvs macrumors 603

    solvs

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    #7
    I love how he says stuff like this, but then does the exact opposite.
     
  6. leekohler thread starter macrumors G5

    leekohler

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    #8
    My cousin is over there right now too. And if that beautiful kid doesn't come back, I'll be right there with Mrs. Sheehan.
     
  7. blackfox macrumors 65816

    blackfox

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    #9
    I know I am going to word this all wrong...

    First of all, I sympathize with this woman and all those like her. I support her efforts to make her opinion known and to attempt to get the things she needs for closure on this issue.

    I am not sure, however, that any President should agree to meet with an aggreived party over such a complex, emotionally-charged issue. I do not think it does any of the parties involved a service.

    For the record, I never agreed with the War, or many of Bush's policies. I generally have found his administration to be not in the best interests of the majority of the people they supposedly serve.

    Be that as it may, I do not think that you as a President should seriously entertain a change in policy (such as troop level changes) based merely on the aggreived (if valid) emotional pleas of some of your citizens. If these pleas congeal into a mass puiblic opinion shift, then this should of course be considered, but ultimately any elected official is free to do what he/she wishes within the law, with the only course of action for citizens being at the polls in the next election. As much as I disagree with the repurcussions of such a principle in action, I do largely agree with it.

    Even if Bush was to meet privately with this woman, it is unlikely that he, nor any other President would be able to say, let alone change, the right things to satisfy this woman. Would you give her a national security briefing on Iraq? Lacking any substance, the meeting would most likely be patronizing rhetoric.

    But again, I support this womans's efforts, as of all the protesters to raise the visibility of this issue and to express themselves as our constitution guarantees. It does us all a service.
     
  8. Phat_Pat macrumors 68000

    Phat_Pat

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  9. Peterkro macrumors 68020

    Peterkro

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    #11
    Protecting his country from what exactly,Wmd's, the foreign hordes massed on the borders or possibly the control of oil supplies being held by independant sources.
     
  10. Advance The Man macrumors 6502

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    #12
    This lady is a misguided, liberal hand puppet. She has a steering wheel on her back and a microphone hooked up to liberal whackos. She is an embarrassment to the memory of her brave son. She has a short memory. She met with the President June 2004 and said several positive things about Bush at the time. I hope she gets the mental health she desparately needs.

    *Note from Drudge

    The local paper rag in her home town interviewed her in June 2004 after meeting with the President and she had nothing but high praise.

    PROTESTING SOLDIER MOM CHANGED STORY ON BUSH
    Mon Aug 08 2005 10:11:07 ET

    The mother of a fallen U.S. soldier who is holding a roadside peace vigil near President Bush's ranch -- has dramatically changed her account about what happened when she met the commander-in-chief last summer!

    Cindy Sheehan, 48, of Vacaville, Calif., who last year praised Bush for bringing her family the "gift of happiness," took to the nation's TV outlets this weekend to declare how Bush "killed an indispensable part of our family and humanity."

    CINDY 2004

    THE REPORTER of Vacaville, CA published an account of Cindy Sheehan's visit with the president at Fort Lewis near Seattle on June 24, 2004:

    "'I now know he's sincere about wanting freedom for the Iraqis,' Cindy said after their meeting. 'I know he's sorry and feels some pain for our loss. And I know he's a man of faith.'

    "The meeting didn't last long, but in their time with Bush, Cindy spoke about Casey and asked the president to make her son's sacrifice count for something. They also spoke of their faith.

    "The trip had one benefit that none of the Sheehans expected.

    "For a moment, life returned to the way it was before Casey died. They laughed, joked and bickered playfully as they briefly toured Seattle.

    For the first time in 11 weeks, they felt whole again.

    "'That was the gift the president gave us, the gift of happiness, of being together,' Cindy said."

    CINDY 2005

    Sheehan's current comments are a striking departure.

    She vowed on Sunday to continue her protest until she can personally ask Bush: "Why did you kill my son?"

    In an interview on CNN, she claimed Bush "acted like it was party" when she met him last year.

    "It was -- you know, there was a lot of things said. We wanted to use the time for him to know that he killed an indispensable part of our family and humanity. And we wanted him to look at the pictures of Casey.

    "He wouldn't look at the pictures of Casey. He didn't even know Casey's name. He came in the room and the very first thing he said is, 'So who are we honoring here?' He didn't even know Casey's name. He didn't want to hear it. He didn't want to hear anything about Casey. He wouldn't even call him 'him' or 'he.' He called him 'your loved one.'

    Every time we tried to talk about Casey and how much we missed him, he would change the subject. And he acted like it was a party.

    BLITZER: Like a party? I mean...

    SHEEHAN: Yes, he came in very jovial, and like we should be happy that he, our son, died for his misguided policies. He didn't even pretend like somebody...

    END

    On her current media tour, Sheehan has not been asked to explain her twist on Bush; from praise to damnation!
     
  11. yellow Moderator emeritus

    yellow

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    #13
    I wonder if he snickered (al la Will Farrell playing GWB on SNL) when he thought about "positions". Probably. Dumbass. The next 3 years are going to be the longest.. ever.
     
  12. Advance The Man macrumors 6502

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    #14
    Yale grad, MBA at Harvard, President of the USA. Dumbass, doubt it. ;)
     
  13. yellow Moderator emeritus

    yellow

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    #15
    Whatever you have to tell yourself to sleep at night. ;)

    Besides, schooling the man does not make. Nor does Wealth and privileges make one intelligent. I went to a top 5 school and met PLENTY of dumbasses, hopefully none of them will end up at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. Thankfully most of them are now increasing our health care premiums.
     
  14. Phat_Pat macrumors 68000

    Phat_Pat

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    #16
    Yeah i remember reading that... most people here think she has lost her mind.

    her son died for something he believed in and now look.

    ugggh making us look bad
     
  15. Advance The Man macrumors 6502

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    #17
    No I'm serious when I say she is crazy. I get mourning, been there, done that. She is no longer mourning, she is a hell bent, loco who would probably attack W if she had the chance. No way does Bush give this lady a chance to embarrass him.

    Here's the conversation:
    Mom: why did you kill my son?
    W: I didn't.
    Mom: I want all the soldiers out of Iraq.
    W: No.

    Maybe there would be a bit more conversation, but Bush gains nothing but gets the hopes of other whack jobs out there wanting to meet the President.

     
  16. solvs macrumors 603

    solvs

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    #18
    Yes, I wonder what her motives are. I mean, her son gets killed, then we start finding out that maybe we didn't go in Iraq for the reasons we said we did. No WMDs, no ties to Al Qaida, and more troops are dying every day while we have no exit strategy, we've pissed off the rest of the world even more, Bin Laden's still out there... shall I go on? Yes, she's so crazy for wanting answers to the death of her son and the sons of almost 2000 others. I'm surprised you didn't just call her a flip-flopper. After all, stay the course. Why change your mind when things are going so well.

    (that was sarcasm BTW)
     
  17. Phat_Pat macrumors 68000

    Phat_Pat

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    #19
    yeah i know. And i can understand why she is sad. But what she needs to see is that this is something that her son believed in. That he died supporting. I don't know why she would want to stop it...

    Vacaville is right next to Travis Air Force Base. So a lot of people who live here have either served, are serving, or are going to serve.

    Some people support this lady but most.... well don't
     
  18. solvs macrumors 603

    solvs

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    #20
    Actually, he joined in 2000 because he wanted money for college. He was supposed to be a Chaplin's assistant. When that job was unavailable, he was told he could be a cook. Promised he wouldn't ever see combat, even if there was a war. Understandably, since that did not happen, she is a little upset.

    Actually as the war goes on, support for it continues to go down. And a majority of the ones that do cite things that are no longer valid, as I named above (9/11, WMDs). She herself supported the War until she began questioning the reasons behind it.

    If you guys actually read something about her and her son before you criticized, you would have known this. ;)
     
  19. Phat_Pat macrumors 68000

    Phat_Pat

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    #21
    ouch :eek:
     
  20. miloblithe macrumors 68020

    miloblithe

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    #22
    Yeah. Also, there are plenty of people in the military who opposed the invasion of Iraq. This includes plenty of people in the officer corps and those on up the chain of command. It includes plenty of people who joined to get money for college and never imagined that a US president would willingly start a war that would require excessive troop commitments (such as those that would necessitate heavy use of reserves).
     
  21. Advance The Man macrumors 6502

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    #23
    So the mom is mad that it is Bush's fault he wasn't a cook? wtf I truly don't believe anyone would join the military and not think they may go to war. And even if your hero Gore or Kerry had won, they too would have gone to war. Would they have done much different? I don't think so. War sux, people die and it needs to end yesterday. If we were to react purely on opinion polls, we would of never even won the Revolutionary War that gained us independence. Thank God for conservatism or we'd never finish what we start.

     
  22. leekohler thread starter macrumors G5

    leekohler

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    #24
    So- she's a whack job for realizing how messed up the Iraq policy is? She's a whack job for changing her mind? You sir, have some explaining to do. Don't just regurgitate that simple-minded Limbaugh/Drudge crap. You won't get away with it here.

    I personally applaud anyone who realized they were wrong about this ridiculous war. We went under false pretenses, and I don't blame here at all.
     
  23. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #25
    Jesus was a peace-loving hippie liberal.
     

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