Now Playing: Cindy Sheehan, Lietta & Arthur Ruger
Topic: Media Involvement
August 13th, 2005 11:20 pm
Northwest Woman Joins Protest Outside President Bush's Ranch
By George Howell / Komo News
SEATTLE - A California woman, whose son died in the war in Iraq, has inspired a peace movement that's brought dozens of people to her side in Crawford, Texas -- including some who made the trek all the way from the northwest.
Arthur and Lietta Ruger were both following Cindy Sheehan, before she started gaining momentum.
Arthur said, of his wife Lietta, "she was beside herself when it started. She was just in many, many, ways dying to be down there."
The Rugers were both desperate to be part of the now nationally publicized protest, because they have a unique perspective to offer the peace movement.
Arthur and Lietta pride themselves on their very close ties to the military. The two have a son-in-law presently serving overseas. Arthur is a Vietnam era veteran, and Lietta grew up in a military family. They now represent a group called Military Families Speaking Out, protesting the war in Iraq.
Arthur said his wife recently approached him about a personal invitation she received in the mail, to be part of the protests in Crawford. "She sent me a letter saying, they'd actually asked me if I'd like to go," Arthur explained. "I said back to her 'I'll have to figure out our finances, and you go.'"
So, Lietta Ruger went, and Arthur stayed here at home. The two have been in constant communication with one another. Lietta has been sending pictures back from the protests, and updates for people who want to know more about Cindy Sheehan and her fight.
"Cindy is like the focus," Arthur explained, "but they have this sense of mutual advocacy, they're all talking about the same thing. We're talking about why are our sons and our daughters dying."
Protestors plan to keep camping out, until Sheehan a face-to-face answer from President Bush. So far, that has not happened. The Rugers still believe Sheehan protests have been successful, because she's given a voice to military families who see this as a senseless war.
"In some ways, you could say she's lit a candle or a fuse on a lot of unvented rage across the country, against the kind of thing that's going on." Arthur Ruger said.