|International Human Rights Encuentro in Bajo Aguán, Honduras|
Interview with Father Fausto Mila in Honduras
SOA Watch participated in the International Human Rights Encuentro in Honduras in February 2012. Laura Jung spoke with Father Fausto Milla, a religious leader in the Honduran movement who has been persecuted by the State of Honduras.After the SOA graduate-led military coup in 2009, Father Milla was self-exiled due to death threats. He has only recently returned to Honduras.
What does this meeting here in Honduras mean?
Father Milla: This meeting has a great deal of importance because your presence reveals to the rest of the people outside the country the Honduran reality. [...]We have to make a big effort because in the U.S. and in Europe, Honduras is not mentioned any more. Recently they have mentioned about this inhumane, diabolic, infernal catastrophe in the prison in Comayagua, but besides that, and after about five days…afterwards they forget, Honduras no longer exists, and the people of Honduras are suffering a lot.
What do you think of the role of the United States?
Father Milla: The role of the United States is very diplomatic, but a lot of times it moves away from diplomacy and [the people] discover that everything that happened had approval and that there are enough means so that the situation happens the way it does. For example, the U.S. never wanted to recognize that there was a military coup d’état, they always say state-orchestrated coup, but not military. Because saying military coup, they couldn’t aid the police and the army, they would need to cut this aid, that’s why they never accepted this word “military.”
[…] The US has been supporting the police and the army since the coup d’état up until now. Therefore, the US is overseeing all of this, making them responsible for this history. It’s necessary to unmask [it all] because these are crimes against humanity - the Honduran people are silenced, they have to put up with it, they must submit, it is forbidden to think, to act like human beings, because, well, there are no freedoms, it’s a terrible thing.
You’re speaking of the continuation of the coup d’état, of militarization, repression, but the people are working, they are fighting against these things, can you talk about these things a little? This theme is one of the objectives of this meeting.
Father Milla: It’s a little risky to talk and sometimes we can’t do it in public, because the situation in the country has turned very delicate in terms of the path to Resistance. The Resistance has been a struggle and still is, but it is hidden now and does not appear publicly, qualified by sociologists outside, that describe Honduras as the most hopeful movement, so the movement has been a truly miraculous movement for us, because the Honduran population has thought of ourselves as very conformist, very exhausted, and we have proven that it’s incorrect, because of the reaction. In the moments following the coup d’état there was an incredible reaction, incredible, of courage, of bravery, of decision, from which came the decision to not permit this [violence].
But, the police and military paralyzed action in the streets. Paralyzing action in the streets, in one of the countries with one of the most dispersed populations, gives the impression that the Frente has completely collapsed, and it is one of the biggest problems that we have. But its very important for us, these social movements that you are going to see, the people who are fighting…this is the social movement we are speaking of, local groups fighting in their own communities.
For more information about the situation in Honduras and about the International Human Rights Encuentro that took place in the Bajo Aguán, Honduras in February 2012, visit www.SOAW.org/honduras
The Spring issue contains mobilizing information for the SOA Watch Border Convergence, which is taking place from October 7-10, 2016 at the US/Mexico border in Nogales, and also focuses on recent developments in Latin America and within the SOA Watch movement.
Click here to download a PDF version of the Spring 2016 issue.
As this issue of Presente went to print, our hearts were heavy. The assassination of our dear friend and comrade Berta Cáceres, and the increased repression against social movement groups, have left us shocked and saddened. SOA Watch Latin America liaison Brigitte Gynther traveled to Honduras the morning after she learned about the assassination and has been coordinating SOA Watch’s response together with our partner groups on the ground. If you do not already receive Urgent Action emails from us, please click here to sign up now.
The recent decision by the U.S. judge in North Carolina to extradite one of the perpetrators of the 1989 massacre at the University of San Salvador gives us hope that justice will prevail in the end. It will take all of us to create change! Please join us as we mobilize to the U.S./Mexico border from October 7-10, 2016!
Other articles in this issue cover a protest by SOA Watch in Chile against US bases in Latin America, the FBI surveillance of SOA Watch, updates from Colombia and Mexico, news about the first Border Patrol agent to receive training at WHINSEC, background information about Direct Action, the Youth Encuentro in Guatemala, and more.
Download this issue of Presente here.
Interview with Father Fausto Mila in Honduras
SOA Watch participated in the International Human Rights Encuentro in Honduras in February 2012. Laura Jung spoke with Father Fausto Milla, a religious leader in the Honduran movement who has been persecuted by the State of Honduras.
By Pablo Ruiz, Equipo Latinoamericano of SOA Watch
SOAW Chile achieved an important victory; to declassify the names of over 760 Chilean soldiers who took courses at the School of the Americas/WHINSEC during the past decade.
For more info about ¡Presente!, go to About US.
Now is the moment to build barriers, to build walls and to fight against intolerance, against racism, sexism and globalisation, to fight vigorously against that. And to re-unite people.
- Augusto Boal
A challenging new documentary has quickly become one of the
widest-reaching films to encapsulate the history of the SOA Watch
An in-depth look at the torture practices of the United States in Afghanistan, Iraq and Guantanamo Bay, focusing on an innocent taxi driver in Afghanistan who was tortured and killed in 2002.