Sample Phone Script Print
Please take the time to call the DC office of your Representative by calling the Capitol Hill Switchboard (202-224-3121 or toll free 1-888-355-3588). Ask to speak with the foreign affairs legislative assistant and here is a suggested message for you to convey:


"I am a constituent from (city/zip code) calling Congressman/woman [Click here to find out who your Congressperson is] to alert her/him about a new development in our foreign policy with Latin America. After revelations about the involvement of the U.S. military at Abu Ghraib and at Guantanamo Bay, the human rights and leadership credibility of the United States is at an all-time low. Our relationships with nations in Latin America are at a crossroads and now is the key time for us to make strategic choices.

After decades of neglect in development assistance and social programs, as well as graduates from the U.S. Army School of the Americas committing some of the worst human rights abuses in their histories, Latin America is turning their backs on a legacy of torture and terror. The government of Venezuela publicly announced that they will no longer send soldiers to the SOA/ WHINSEC. This week, visits by human rights activists in three more countries are moving towards similar results. For civil society and a growing number of new Latin American leaders like Ver?nica Michelle Bachelet, the president of Chile and Evo Morales, the president of Bolivia, the SOA stands synonymis with torture and the repressive military regimes that killed their loved ones. [1]

This is our chance to suspend operations at the SOA/ WHINSEC, investigate the legacy of torture manuals and atrocities linked with the school, build good relationships and trust in the Western Hemisphere and send a positive human rights message to Latin America. One way that we can reevaluate and reformulate United States foreign military training is to support HR 1217.

As my elected official in Washington D.C., I hope you will represent me and support HR 1217."


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[1] When Augusto Pinochet came to power with the help of SOA trained Generals in the September 11, 1973 coup, Michelle Bachelet's father, was detained, under charges of treason. Following months of daily torture at Santiago's Public Prison, on March 12, 1974, he suffered a cardiac arrest that resulted in his death.
In Bolivia, SOA graduates played key-roles on every level of the repression campaign against the social movements that Evo Morales is a part off.