Cindy Sheehan lies above her son’s markerless grave in Vanity Fair’s January 2006 issue

Cindy Sheehan, the anti-Bush activist dubbed the “Peace Mom” for her efforts to stop the war in Iraq is lashing back at detractors who decry her lack of a tombstone for her son, Casey Sheehan, who was killed in the conflict two years ago.

“I am so tired of the Rovian, heartless, and ignorant smear machine attacking me and my family at every turn of my back,” Sheehan writes in an online commentary.

Sheehan is responding to criticism aimed at her for not having a headstone to mark Casey’s grave at the Vacaville-Elimira Cemetery in Vacaville, Calif.:

For the first year after Casey was killed, I didn’t want to believe it. I didn’t want to place a TOMBstone on my son’s grave. I didn’t want one more marble proof that my son was dead. I couldn’t even call where he was buried a “cemetery,” I had to call it “Casey’s Park.” I placed fresh flowers in the cup every week and journaled there almost on a daily basis, and often laid on it and fell asleep and dreamed of my needlessly killed son. Have any of these people who claim that I am pissing on my son’s grave even visited him? Have they visited the grave of any soldier needlessly or senselessly killed in George’s war of choice for oil and profit? Have they sobbed uncontrollably for my first born who shouldn’t even need a gravestone? No, all they want to do is attack a mother who wants to prevent other people from having to bury their own child. They want to perpetuate a war that has already killed many thousands of our fellow human beings for absolutely nothing. …

There are many people whom the Bush regime has killed, either directly or indirectly, by their murderous policies: there are people buried under rubble of Iraq and who were buried under the rubble of the World Trade Towers, and if their families were lucky they could find small parts to bury, before their remains were carted away in the enormous trucks and barges; there are people still unaccounted-for in the swamps of New Orleans and in refrigerated trucks in Mississippi that will never even have graves, let alone gravestones. The Bush regime is good for business, all right; especially the funeral business.

Some of the related comments aimed at Sheehan in recent days on Internet blogs include:

  • “I’m willing to bet she didn’t put a marker so that it’s harder for people to find his grave and honor him and his sacrifice for a cause he truly believed in. She’s pathetic.”

  • “The bottom line is that she put herself into the public eye and once there people will ask questions. Seems that she expects others to have tough skins when she attacks them, but now when asked a tough question, she dodges and ducks.”

  • “It is a very good thing indeed that Saint Cindy is provided with handlers by George Soros’ looney libs who are manipulating her, ’cause, folks, this just ain’t a very smart woman. Her ability to generate her own rational thoughts, put them together in a modestly coherent sequence, and express them in a rudimentary form of English is on a par with that of a rural, south Louisiana 12-year-old. (I could have used Georgia or Alabama, but both of those states are blessed with Republican governors who are active in upgrading their states’ educational standings.) Point is, Sheehan’s non-answer amounts to, ‘I can’t be bothered with that right now. I’m on a mission. Don’t bother me with stupid details.’ Godspeed, Casey Sheehan. You deserved better of your sacrifice.”

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