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Home News Organizing Updates SOA Watch Speaking Tour Dates & Call for Volunteers
SOA Watch Speaking Tour Dates & Call for Volunteers PDF Print E-mail
SOA Watch Update, September 21, 2006

SOA Watch Update
September 21, 2006

In this email, you'll find:

  • SOA Watch Fall Speaking Tours
  • Volunteer for the November Vigil
  • Host a Nonviolence Workshop in your Community before the November Vigil


As in previous years, during the two months prior to the November Vigil, various SOA Watch activists will be traveling throughout the country to speak out against the SOA/WHINSEC and oppressive U.S. foreign policy.

Father Roy Bourgeois

After a successful trip to Chile, Ecuador and Peru together with SOA Watch activists Lisa Sullivan, Linda Panetta and Carlos Mauricio, Fr. Roy Bourgeois, will speak powerfully and from personal experience about why the SOA/ WHINSEC must be closed. Fr. Roy, founder of SOA Watch, will be in Colorado, North Carolina, Illinois, Rhode Island, and Texas before the November Vigil to Close the SOA. See Roy?s full speaking tour schedule.

Bus Tour: Journey for Justice

Carlos Mauricio, who along with two other torture survivors successfully sued two Salvadoran generals for torture and human rights abuses, is organizing a bus and speaking tour in the lead-up to the November Vigil to Close the SOA. This 3rd annual tour will start in San Francisco in early November and travel through the Southwest, arriving in Georgia on November 17.

If you?re interested in hosting the tour or would like more information about the event, contact This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or by phone at 415-407-0294. Read more about the Journey for Justice Tour.

Hector Aristizabal

Hector Aristizabal is a torture survivor from Colombia who has dedicated his life to end torture, advocate for peace, and to the closing of the SOA/WHINSEC. His theatrical play "Nightwind" depicts the night his life was forever changed by his capture, imprisonment and subsequent torture at the hands of SOA graduates. Hector will be performing "Nightwind," speaking of his experiences in human rights work in Colombia and the United States and his work with SOA Watch to close the School of Assassins. This year he will be in Michigan, Canada, Kansas, South Carolina and California. See Hector?s complete speaking tour and schedule.

Eric LeCompte

Eric, Outreach & Events Coordinator at SOA Watch, will be speaking in New York, Minnesota, Birmingham, Atlanta, Athens and Toronto this fall. Eric will share the latest updates in the campaign to close the School of the Americas. See Eric?s full speaking tour and schedule .

East Coast Puppetista Tour

Once again Cardboard Chaos hits the road in its annual tour to help shut down the U.S. Army School of the Americas. This November, Cardboard Chaos presents a brand new circus. The show features Uncle Sam's Little Global Circus and their provocative mix of circus, puppetry, political satire and original music.

Last year's tour was an inspiration and rallying point for hundreds of activists in Connecticut, New York, Virginia, North Carolina and Georgia as they organized for the November SOA Watch actions.

For more information or for booking, please contact Jake Weinstein at 203-562-1471. The Cardboard Chaos puppetistas are also looking for a van/small bus that could be used for the tour. Please contact Jake if you have one! Read more about the Puppetista Tour.

FOR MORE INFORMATION ON THE VIGIL, including resources to assist your organizing, click here.


As you well know, it takes a lot of work to hold our annual Vigil at Fort Benning. You already do some of that work, planning your group?s trip to Georgia, always seeking to invite new people to come along with you. Have you ever considered trying a new type of work as well, by volunteering for a national Working Group?

Joining a Working Group is as easy as reading the messages below from each Working Group, and then contacting the person listed. Some Working Groups have volunteer opportunities for consecutive days throughout the weekend, while others may only need your help for an hour or two. Some Working Groups are looking for individual volunteers, while others need the help of your entire local group!

Legislative Working Group:

The Legislative Working Group is an on-going working group of SOA Watch that is very active at the November Vigil. At this year's Vigil we need volunteers to help us hand out packets, postcards, and information flyers at the legislative tables at the Vigil site. The legislative campaign of SOA Watch pulled together in 2006 for a very successful vote on the floor of Congress, and after this year's midterm elections, we look forward to a new Congress where the SOA issue will be brought front and center once again! To volunteer your time at our legislative table, please contact Theresa Cameranesi at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . For more information on year-round activities of the Legislative Working Group, or to become a part of our strategizing team, please contact the Legislative Coordinator of SOA Watch, Pam Bowman, or by phone at 202-234-3440.

Media Working Group:

We work to spread the word about the SOA/ WHINSEC and the movement to close it down via the mainstream and alternative media and to empower more folks in this grassroots movement to do the same. We set up and staff a media office for the November Vigil, and we work year round to craft press releases and messaging for SOA Watch. With the ever-increasing news from Latin America regarding human rights abusers being held accountable for their crimes, the media working will need all the help it can get this year. Contact Joao Da Silva or by phone at 202-234-3440.

Translation and Interpretation Working Group:

The Translation and Interpretation Working Group provides on-site simultaneous and consecutive interpretation services at the November Vigil and offers translation services for working groups preparing multilingual materials. We?re looking for volunteer Spanish and Sign interpreters and translators for the vigil during Nov. 17-19 at Ft. Benning, Georgia. We are asking for a pro bono donation of services, but can offer housing and help with travel costs for interpreters. If you think you can contribute or need more information about this working group please contact This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Development Working Group:

The Development Working Group needs entire local groups - vanloads and busloads - to help collect donations at the Vigil! This task will take only an hour or two of your group?s time but it makes an enormous difference in the success of the Vigil. We also need volunteers to meet by phone throughout the year, doing short-term fundraising and long-term development. Contact This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or by phone at 202-234-3440.

Stage and Program Working Group:

We create the programs used at the November Vigil and coordinate music and musicians for all trainings and caucuses. Contact This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or by phone at 202-234-3440.

Tabling Working Group:

This group organizes the tables at the November Vigil. We host hundreds of organizations so they can meet other SOA Watch activists and spread their ideas for peace and justice. We need volunteers to register organizations, set up tables, and welcome tablers as they arrive. Contact This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or by phone at 202-234-3440.


The Peacemaker Working Group is looking for volunteers to serve as Peacemakers during this year's gathering at the gates of Fort Benning, GA. Peacemaker volunteers commit to being an intentional nonviolent presence throughout the weekend; to assist in acting as Guides for Sunday Morning?s solemn procession; to intervene in a nonviolent manner to de-escalate any violent behavior that might occur throughout the weekend; and to attend one of the Peacemaker Training Sessions.

We need many Peacemakers. Please consider volunteering and/or giving us names of others from your region who can join us, too, for this important task. To volunteer, contact Marge Clark or by phone at 202-347-9797 ext. 211. Find out more about volunteering as a peacemaker.

If you are interested in volunteering but don?t see something listed here that fits your skills, please call the D.C. SOA Watch office at 202-234-3440 or contact Aisha Brown to talk more. See a complete list of SOA Watch Working Groups.


Host a Nonviolence Training in your Community before the SOA Watch Vigil: Close the SOA & Challenge Unjust Foreign Policy

Pace e Bene Nonviolence Service is partnering with SOA Watch to offer workshops to colleges, universities and high schools across the United States this fall. These workshops will explore nonviolence and nonviolent action in the context of the issue of the SOA and students? role in the movement to close it.

The Engage workshop engages participants in a dynamic, experiential, interactive process, introducing students to the vision, spirituality and tools of transformative nonviolence.

Read more about the Engage Workshop and visit PaceeBene.org for more information.

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SOA Watch
733 Euclid Street NW
Washington, DC 20001

phone: 202-234-3440
email: info@soaw.org