Having read the Dana Milbank quote and TAP’s assessment that Cindy Sheehan has standing as the mother of a fallen soldier, I am compelled to say a few words about this: she may have some technical standing, but I have serious questions about whether her son would have wanted her to do this. I spent 5 months in Iraq last year reporting for NRO and the Ashbrook Center, and I met a lot of Caseys — men who felt a sense of duty to serve, and men who understood why they were there. They were appalled by the attempts of politicos in the U.S. to use the deaths and injuries of their comrades as anti-war rallying cries.
I must admit that I had my own fears about being used in such a way, which is why I wrote an article for NRO which, thankfully, was never published. You see, my parents are liberal, and opposed the war. I feared that if I were killed in Iraq, either my parents or Ted Kennedy-types might use my passing for their political ends. I therefore drafted a final article which I left with my office, explaining why any politicization would be inappropriate. Casey left no such letter to my knowledge, and while I cannot speak for him, my own experience with my parents gives me grave doubts as to whether Cindy speaks for him either.