DJPC and SOA Watch must exist in order to create the change we want. By Josephine Brady.
“The SOA Watch30th Commemoration happened this past weekend (November 16 -18) in Columbus, Georgia, in front of the gates of Fort Benning where the School of the Americas (SOA, now called WHINSEC) still exists and operates today. My first time attending an SOA Watch gathering was two years ago in Nogales, Arizona, where the protests have highlighted the connected between US military and foreign policy and the flow of migrants fleeing the countries we destabilize. This year, the protests returned to Georgia, to be in front of the base where Salvadoran soldiers were trained and went on to massacre six Jesuit priests, their housekeeper, and her daughter exactly 30 years ago. To this day, Latin American militaries continue to send their soldiers to SOA to learn inhumane practices in order “to spread democracy”.
The protest was particularly impactful for me, as my partner and heart is in Chile right now. I left during the first days of the protests currently erupting in Santiago and throughout the country. When looking at what is happening in Chile, throughout Latin America, and at the U.S./Mexico border, the filth and stretch of United States imperialism is evident.
I felt it was necessary for me to go Fort Benning and continue to do the work of gathering in solidarity and to give voice to the people who suffer in the shadow of US empire. I was fortunate enough to be able to attend the commemoration with the Regis University community, and the weekend provided a space for a small but powerful group to gather. I was reminded of the importance of continued allyship and love that must persist in order to educate others about the SOA, border patrol, ICE, and U.S. intervention in other countries. As I am still processing the whole weekend, I am grateful for the direction that SOA Watch is heading in diversifying the movement/staff and continuing to do the necessary work that is solidarity, supporting the people who are working to protect their natural resources and denounce U.S. imperialism.
The Denver Justice & Peace Committee (DJPC) has been an ally in this work. I have been working for DJPC for almost a year now, and as an intern that attended the gathering, I see the impactful work that DJPC does in the Denver community, and beyond, as more important now than ever. DJPC has been creating, for more the 40 years, a space to promote solidarity, daily in the Denver community. Following this past weekend, I hope that people can take away that organizations like DJPC and SOA Watch must exist in order to create the change we want. I feel more than ever ready to work and make the change happen here in Denver. Our friends and families need us to no longer remain complicit to the injustices to our immigrant community, people of color, the environment and to remember the loved ones who have been impacted all over the world by U.S. imperialism.”
Josie Brady. DJPC Intern / Regis University Senior.
Please consider making a tax deductible donation to DJPC to continue our work in solidarity with Latin America.
Go to our website www.denjustpeace.org and click on the DONATE button.