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It's her first visit since she buried 1st Lt. Kenneth Michael Ballard, a fourth generation soldier, last fall.
Still fresh, like the soil churned behind her son's grave for another row of dead, is her anger. Anger at the way the Pentagon refused her sole wish when her son was killed by a sniper last May to photograph his casket returning from Iraq.
Meredith wanted to capture the way fellow soldiers respectfully draped the American flag across the casket, tucking the sides just so, and the way an honor guard watched over him as he was unloaded from a cargo plane.
But the Pentagon firmly said "no"
"It's bad enough that they won't let the country see the pictures of the caskets, but a grieving mother?" asked Meredith. "It's unforgiveable after what I lost."
She doesn't understand how a single photograph of his casket for her own personal album would violate her own privacy.
"It is ironic that this policy denies us the very freedoms of the press and speech my son — and so many like him — gave their lives to protect," Meredith says.
“There’s a lot of money to pay for this that doesn’t have to be U.S. taxpayer money, and it starts with the assets of the Iraqi people…and on a rough recollection, the oil revenues of that country could bring between $50 and $100 billion over the course of the next two or three years…We’re dealing with a country that can really finance its own reconstruction, and relatively soon.” -Paul Wolfowitz
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