Sheehan Plans 'Camp Democracy' Protest in Washington

By Nathan Burchfiel | July 7, 2008 | 8:31 PM EDT

( - After wrapping up the second annual "Camp Casey" protest in Crawford, Texas, anti-war activist Cindy Sheehan will travel to Washington, D.C., to kick off a 17-day protest and conference aimed at ending the war and "righting injustices."

Sheehan rose to fame in the anti-war movement in August 2005 when she camped out near President Bush's Crawford ranch demanding a meeting with him. She named the protest "Camp Casey" after her son, Spc. Casey Sheehan, who was killed in Iraq in 2004 after voluntarily re-enlisting in the Army for a second tour of duty.

Since her first protest, Sheehan has traveled the world speaking out against the war in Iraq, meeting with opponents of the Bush administration including U.S. senators and Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez.

Sheehan's latest effort, dubbed "Camp Democracy," will branch out from her anti-war message to include workshops on the "progressive" movement, immigrants' rights, organized labor and election reform, according to the conference's website.

The event, which takes place on and near the National Mall from Sept. 5-21, is being sponsored by numerous anti-war and "progressive" organizations, including CODE PINK, the National Organization for Women, United for Peace and Justice,, Veterans for Peace and the International Socialist Organization.

"Camp Casey" in Crawford is scheduled to end Sept. 2. Sheehan has been in and out of the protest due to speaking engagements and a recent hospital visit. While she was in the hospital, doctors ordered her off the "liquid diet" she began to protest the war, Sheehan claims.

Protestors actually will not be "camping" in Washington, D.C., as they did in Crawford, because it is illegal to sleep outdoors as part of a demonstration in the District of Columbia. They will, instead, stay at campsites outside the District and in some local residents' homes.

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