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Art is Not a Crime - Another Victory for SOA Watch! PDF Print E-mail
Written by María Luisa Rosal   
Thursday, 05 June 2014 21:48

Do you remember the Art is Not a Crime Campaign we launched just over a few weeks ago? Well, I am very happy to say that we have GREAT news to share with you!

Today, myself, along with fellow SOA Watch Activists Dominique Diaddigo-Cash, Gail Taylor and Nico Udu-gama appeared before the Washington, DC Superior Court for our arraignment hearing. We had been arrested and detained for six hours after having put up a beautiful mural with other friends and activists - about a dozen of us total - to commemorate just some of our sisters and brothers from across Latin America who have been murdered at the hands of SOA graduates.

The pressure created by supporters like you made a huge difference!

This is truly empowering news! Over 1,200 supporters from across the United States and Canada signed a petition asking US District Attorney Ron Machen to drop the charges, which carried a maximum penalty of 180 days in prison and a $1,000 fine. We are especially grateful to our attorney Mark Goldstone - criminal defense and constitutional lawyer - for having represented us. Today, all of the charges against us were dropped! We challenged the system and won!

We felt supported by each and every one of you, as you never left our side. This is what solidarity looks like! This is what our movement is all about! You all continue to inspire us, and it is encouraging to see just how big the impact of solidarity can be when we continue to stand together and build a culture of peace and justice.

In response to the attempts by Washington, DC police to silence us, supporters throughout Denver, Colorado, Guatemala City, Guatemala, Los Angeles, California, Takoma Park, Maryland and UC Riverside, California, have put up more posters to continue to denounce the human rights violations that continue through the training of Latin American military and police at SOA/WHINSEC, funded through US tax dollars. Download the posters today and send us a picture when you put it up in your town!

Our fellow comrade Nico was absolutely right - "Our message is too powerful to be locked behind bars." Let's continue to spread the message through creative actions! As for me and the rest of the Washington, DC staff, as well as our vibrant community of local activists, we remain committed to putting up more art, because we know just how important it is to never forget. We know how important it is to continue taking a stand for justice and exposing the realities of US Foreign Policy in Latin America. Ultimately, we know why we must close the SOA.

Let's keep walking together. I'll see you at the gates of Ft. Benning this November!

in solidarity,

María Luisa Rosal

Last Updated on Thursday, 05 June 2014 23:59
 
Job Opening and Internship Opportunities
Join the resistance! Join the SOA Watch family! We are looking for candidates for the SOA Watch Latin America Liaison position in Latin America, and for activantes in Washington, DC.
Read more...
 
Poster Campaign PDF Print E-mail
Written by Hendrik Voss   
Friday, 16 May 2014 00:00

Together with street artist César Maxit, SOA Watch developed a series of downloadable posters (in Spanish and English) for you to spread the word about the impact of the School of the Americas on people all over the hemisphere (scroll down for step-by-step instructions).

The posters show the names, faces and stories of people who were murdered at the hands of graduates of the School of the Americas, and the names and faces of SOA graduates.

Last Updated on Sunday, 02 November 2014 15:51
Read more...
 
WANTED for Genocide PDF Print E-mail
Today, on Saturday, May 10, people around the world are commemorating the one-year anniversary of the conviction of SOA graduate Ríos Montt for genocide perpetuated against the Maya Ixil people during Guatemala's internal armed conflict.

Print out and post the posters that SOA Watch created in cooperation with street artist César Maxit, to stand in solidarity with genocide survivors.

high resolution pdf versions
in English: https://www.dropbox.com/s/dzc6buy85qvqek0/wanted-montt.pdf
en Español: https://www.dropbox.com/s/ukvh5oghfagcb7m/se%20busca%20rios%20montt.pdf

high resolution jpg versions
in English: https://www.dropbox.com/s/1o93iiq11rwjw5v/wanted-montt.jpg
en Español: https://www.dropbox.com/s/8t66b5mkcouoora/se%20busca%20rios%20montt.jpg

#GenocideSentenceGT #sentenciaporgenocidio #YesItWasGenocide #Sihubogenocidio

 
Urge the U.S. House of Representatives to address Human Rights and Rule of Law in Honduras PDF Print E-mail
Tuesday, 06 May 2014 22:16

IMMEDIATE ACTION NEEDED!
Contact the Foreign Policy Staffer in Washington DC Office of Your U.S. Rep in Congress!


We need your help!  On Monday, April 28, 2014, Rep. Janice Schakowsky (D-IL) began circulating a sign-on "Dear Colleague" letter in the U.S. House of Representatives to Secretary of State John Kerry addressing Human Rights and the Rule of Law in Honduras. Reps. Sam Farr (D-CA) and Farr and Hank Johnson (D-GA) have joined as initial co-signers.  Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-AZ) has also now joined as a co-signer.  Below is a copy of the letter.



The letter states that "egregious violations of human rights continue" almost 5 years after the coup.  It raises concerns about militarization of the police, and the failure to investigate or prosecute human rights abuses, including in the Aguan Valley. The letter also raises concerns about freedom of speech and associations, and questions whether the November 2013 election was not free and fair.


The letter asks State Department to:


  • Pay close attention to these issues and strictly evaluate U.S. support for Honduran security forces, in accordance with conditions placed on the aid in the 2014 State and Foreign Operations Appropriations Act.
  • Fully enforce the Leahy Law, which prohibits U.S. assistance to any individual or unit that has committed gross human rights abuses and is not being brought to justice.

The deadline to sign on is Friday, May 9, 2014 at 5:00 PM eastern time.

We need your help in securing the signature of your Member of the U.S. House of Representatives on this letter.  Only members of the House can sign the letter.

To sign on to the letter (or if the staffer wishes an official copy of the letter), your Rep’s staffer must contactAndrew Goczkowski Andrew.Goczkowski@mail.house.gov in Schakowsky's office. (NOTE: please do not contact Schakowsky's staff yourself, but ask the staffer to do so).


Call the Capitol Switchboard at (202) 224-3121, give them the name of your Rep, then ask to be connected:

(If you do not know the name of your Rep, please go to http://www.house.gov/ and enter in your zip code at the upper right).


When you call, ask to speak with the aide who handles Foreign Policy.  Use the script below in speaking with the aide.  If the aide does not recall seeing the letter, ask for the aide’s email address so that you can forward a copy of the letter.


If the foreign policy aide is not is not available, ask to leave a message on his or her voice mail.  Be sure to getthe name foreign policy staffer so you can follow up.

Script: “My name is _____.  I am a constituent from (town / city) in (your state).  I am calling to ask Senator _____ to sign the Jan Schakowsky letter on Human Rights and the Rule of Law in Honduras. Has Representative­___ seen this letter?  Can I count on him/her to sign on?   Please call me this week at (_your phone number_) to let me know if you have seen the letter, and if Representative _____ will sign it.”

In your phone conversation, you might highlight why this letter is important to you, especially if you have travelled to Honduras or heard a Honduran speak in your community.

PROMPT FOLLOW-UP: 

It's useful to follow up with an email to the aide.  You can ask whoever answers the phone what their email is and/or use this formula if you know how to spell their name correctly (the person who first answer the phone can spell it for you):  Firstname.Lastname@mail.house.gov, e.g.  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

In an email, you can just ask them to sign the letter, and then if you like send some information.

Here are two useful general articles, and the recent statement from Reps. McGovern, Schakowsky, and Farr.

If you learn that your Congressmember has agreed to sign, please notify me, Gary Cozette at  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , so we can confirm the signature with Rep. Schakowsky. Please contact me if you want to know if your representative has signed on.  I will circulate updated lists of signers whenever we receive them from Rep. Schakowsky's office.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 06 May 2014 22:32
 
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