Central New York SOA Abolitionists
The Central New York SOA Abolitionists, founded in the late nineties, are members of CLAC. Our business is transacted at the monthly CLAC meetings. All are welcome.
The Abolitionists are also an independent chapter of School of the Americas Watch -- based in Washington, D.C. and Columbus, Georgia.
Like the national organization, the Abolitionists aim is to expose and close the U.S. Army's terrorist training camp, the School of the Americans. Due to its notoriety (for teaching torture, assassination, anti-insurgency, etc.), several years ago the SOA changed its name to the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation (WHINSEC).
To learn more about SOA/WHINSEC, check www.soaw.org. That website can lead you to the numerous excellent books and videos focusing on the SOA and documenting the human rights abuse of many SOA grads.
Unlike the SOA, SOA Watch and the Abolitionists are committed to nonviolence.
ANNUAL NATIONAL ANTI-SOA GATHERING
Each year in late November (on the weekend before Thanksgiving) Abolitionists join thousands of others from all over the U.S. at Ft. Benning, Georgia -- the home of SOA/WHINSEC -- for a three-day gathering. That event is a combined teach-in, rally, demonstration, march, and liturgy focused on closing the School. To learn more about the November 21-23, 2008 gathering, check out the SOA Watch website.
To participate in this national event with people from CNY, contact Ann Tiffany, (315) 478-4571, email@example.com, for logistical information and support.
Since the early nineties, "prison witness" has been a pivotal SOA Watch strategy. To date about 200 SOA Watchers have willingly gone to prison to help publicize and expose the SOA and to put the SOA itself on trial in the Columbus, George federal court.
Since the mid-nineties 17 current (or former) Central New Yorkers have gone to prison for their nonviolent civil disobedience at Ft. Benning:
Many of these former prisoners of conscience are available to give presentations to classes, congregations and community groups about the SOA and about their prison experience. To arrange speaking engagements, contact Ann Tiffany, (315) 478-4571, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Congress has the power to close the SOA/WHINSEC. Lobbying is a major SOA Watch strategy.
Since the mid-nineties our own Republican Representative Jim Walsh, heeding his clamorous constituents, has consistently voted in favor of anti-SOA bills in the House. Please contact him, thank him for his past support, and urge him not to miss the next vote.
Representative Jim Walsh
For updates on national anti-SOA legislation check www.soaw.org.
Syracuse Peace Council
Center for International
[updated january 2007]