CNN Promotes Cindy Sheehan's Anti-War Trip to Britain

December 15th, 2005 10:54 AM

As reported by Brent Baker in today's CyberAlert, on December 13th, during the second hour of Anderson Cooper 360, CNN highlighted Cindy Sheehan's trip to England, where she traveled to spread her anti-war message. CNN correspondent Paula Newton championed Sheehan as "America's most famous bereaved mom" who "isn't challenged on her opinions about President Bush here in Britain." Newton's piece also featured a British woman who "says she will stop Tony Blair a la Sheehan." The woman, of Stop the War-U.K., declared that President Bush is "nothing but a warmonger."

The transcript from today's CyberAlert continues below.

From Baghdad, Cooper announced: "It's often said that war changes soldiers forever. The same is true for those they leave behind. Cindy Sheehan, a mother, has become one of the most visible critics of the war in Iraq. Her vigil outside President Bush's ranch in Texas last summer made her a hero to some, a target of hate for others. Criticism has not stopped her. She's taken her cause now overseas to England, where another mother is ready to take the baton. Here's CNN's Paula Newton."

Paula Newton, over video of people applauding and hugging Sheehan: "Her reception is warn, her cause passionately embraced. These British families not only share Cindy Sheehan's defiance, they share her loss. Sheehan brought her anti-war protest to Britain, and she says for her, it's now a crucial second front. She's backed by strong British resentment towards the war."

Man in a bar: "There was no war here, it was a simple invasion. And if there'd bananas instead of oil, there'd be nobody there."

Second man: "Our troops should be brought home."

Newton: "It's what Cindy Sheehan has come here for, unqualified support. While some have questioned her motives and her tactics in the U.S., Sheehan isn't challenged on her opinions about President Bush here in Britain."

Cindy Sheehan: "It's like he, he says that we have to kill more people cause we've already killed so many, and when's the killing going to stop?"

Newton, over video of woman tending a grave: "That message resonates with Rose Gentle. On a serene slice of Scottish turf, this mom lingers at her son's grave and indulges her grief. But back at home, Gentle indulges her anger."

Rose Gentle, Stop the War-U.K.: "The man's nothing but a warmonger."

Newton: "Most of that anger is reserved for President George Bush and British Prime Minister Tony Blair. Her son, 19 year old Gordon Gentle, a British soldier, was blown apart by a roadside bomb in June of last year, just three weeks after he arrived in southern Iraq."

Gentle: "They tell you it gets easier, it doesn't get easier. How can it really get easier when you turn on the telly and it's telling you that another boy has actually been blown up and killed? You're re-living it every day."

Newton: "She wants all British and American troops out of Iraq now."

Gentle: "I'm not giving up."

Newton: "And so she's joining forces with America's most famous bereaved mom. Gentle says she will stop Tony Blair a la Sheehan. She's already protested in front of his home three times. She hopes it will all lead to a change in policy."

Charles Kupchan, Council on Foreign Relations: "If Blair were to go wobbly, if he were to begin to say, it's time for us to begin to head for the exit's, that would certainly increase the pressure on Bush to follow suit."

Newton: "Just like Sheehan, Gentle has learned how to refine her message, but her grief, that's still raw, and so painfully obvious, she says she'll be putting it on display for Tony Blair again and again. She promises to begin an anti-war vigil here, in front of 10 Downing Street, sometime in the new year. Cindy Sheehan hasn't ruled out joining her. They say they'll chain themselves to these gates if they have to, anything to put a new spin on their anti-war message. Paula Newton, CNN, London."