Maureen Dowd, back in August 2005:
Cindy Sheehan, a 48-year-old Californian with a knack for P.R., says she will camp out in the dusty heat near the ranch until she gets to tell Mr. Bush face to face that he must pull all U.S. troops out of Iraq. Her son, Casey, a 24-year-old Army specialist, was killed in a Sadr City ambush last year . . .
Selectively humane, Mr. Bush justified his Iraq war by stressing the 9/11 losses. He emphasized the humanity of the Iraqis who desire freedom when his W.M.D. rationale vaporized.
But his humanitarianism will remain inhumane as long as he fails to understand that the moral authority of parents who bury children killed in Iraq is absolute.
Cindy Sheehan, today:
I am sorry, but if you believe the newest death of OBL, you’re stupid. Just think to yourself–they paraded Saddam’s dead sons around to prove they were dead–why do you suppose they hastily buried this version of OBL at sea? This lying, murderous Empire can only exist with your brainwashed consent–just put your flags away and THINK!
I have a hard time bearing much ill will toward Sheehan, no matter how nonsensical or inane her utterances get; who knows what the depths of grief can do to a parent’s mind? The widespread politicization of the grief, and the notion of the worst event in your life suddenly turning you into a celebrity with admirers, probably spurs one to react in strange ways.
But the degree to which the “anti-war” crowd — who today applaud
war kinetic military action against Libya without congressional approval, and who are today applauding unilateral military action on foreign soil without the host government’s knowledge or consent or U.N. approval — exploited Ms. Sheehan remains unforgivably appalling. They lost interest in Sheehan right about the moment she ran against Nancy Pelosi for Congress.
I wonder if Maureen Dowd will ever reconsider that 2005 declaration in print.