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Has Sheehan Started Something?

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Sometimes it only takes one voice to kickstart a movement. The Moderate Voice’s Joe Gandelman, captures some interesting sentiments about Sheehan and how the tide could be turning her way.

First, Joe gives us an online conversation conducted by the Washington Post with reporter Dana Milbank:

Reading, Mass.: Is Cindy Sheehan just a passing August media enriched phenomenon or the catalyst of a crisis for the Bush Presidency?

Dana Milbank: That’s why I posed the question: Rosa Parks or Lyndon LaRouche?

Certainly Sheehan has caught a wave, and the ranch stakeout was very clever. But she has been seeking publicity for more than a year (she even held a protest outside the Post a few weeks ago because she didn’t like something I’d written) and for the most part, the media ignored her.

My sense is something of a perfect storm has developed: low polling numbers for Iraq, and Bush on Iraq, a surge in the violence, struggles over the constitution, and the Bush vacation providing a vacuum.

Sheehan’s story will fade after the Roberts hearings start. But it’s possible she has ignited a movement that will continue. Until now, there’s been virtually no mass antiwar movement that puts people in the streets. There’s a big antiwar protest here in DC I think on Sept. 24. That may be a gauge of where the antiwar movement is.

Second, Joe talks about Senator Chuck Hagel and how he has suggested that Bush invite Sheehan to the ranch, echoing similar sentiments expressed by our own Michael Totten yesterday.

Personally, I still think that she has every right to protest, but some of the questions I’ve heard that she wants to ask Bush don’t really seem like any he can reasonably answer. I’m speaking of questions like “Why did you kill my son?” and contradictory statements like “You can’t tell me that [he cares for the soldiers] because I’ve met with him and I know that he doesn’t care.”

In short, does she really want to meet the President? It certainly seems that’s an open question..

Of course, one poll last month showed that many in this country now think that the administration “misled” us into the war, so it only makes sense that we’re starting to see people like Sheehan asking unanswerable questions.

And if the growing sentiment in this country is one of frustration, Bush may start being asked a lot of questions from that aren’t easily answered.