Report On School Of America’s Watch Spring Days Of Action

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Above: SOA Watch protest at Ft. Benning

Our Voices Were Heard: Now it’s time to Turn Up the Volume!

The 2014 Spring Days of Action are finished but the struggle continues!

Last week in Washington, DC, our voices reverberated in the halls of power! We took our message both to Congress and to the community of Takoma Park, Maryland, where President Obama’s Chief of Staff Denis McDonough lives.

Write McDonough now at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, Washington, DC 20500 to pressure the Obama Administration to close the SOA/WHINSEC by executive order. Click here for a template letter. Email the text of your letter to info@soaw.org. Or order a full set of advocacy cards here to build on the momentum coming out of Spring Days.

Thanks to the commitment of SOA Watch activists and local allies, the tangible results of the Spring Days of Action include:

  • A vibrant People’s Movement Assembly focused on the intersectionality of militarism, immigration, and torture ensured Movement strategy continues to come from the grassroots. Our struggles are connected!

  • Sunday night’s Love Music, Resist Empire concert featured Latin@ hip hop artists Bocafloja, Cindy Zevala a.k.a la SalvodaReina, FenomeDon, Olmeca,and dj rAT brought our message to DC’s youth and continued our tradition as a musical movement.

 

  • We took to the streets of Takoma Park, MD to connect McDonough’s neighbors with the movement to close the SOA. Father Roy and Reverend Grayland Hagler made impassioned appeals to Takoma Park residents to use their proximity to power to call for justice in the Americas. Great coverage of the action was captured in Spanish by RTHispanTV and TeleSur in Spanish.

  • Wheat pasting of Wanted and Missing posters throughout DC and Maryland to called attention to the unresolved human rights abuses committed by SOA/WHINSEC grads. Because U.S. media largely ignores the abuses of SOA grads, creating our own popular media forms is more important than ever.

  • We remembered Victor Jara in word, song and deed at a forum and concert at the University of Maryland that used the powerful tools of historical memory and music to reactivate our Justice for Victor Campaign pressuring the Obama Administration to extradite Victor’s killer, Pedro Barrientos, to stand trial in Chile.

 

  • Grassroots lobbying led to four new congressional cosponsors for HR 2989: Reps. Mike Doyle of Pennsylvania, Jim Moran of Virginia, John Larson of Connecticut, and Bobby Rush of Illinois. A group of students from University of Pittsburg flexed their advocacy muscles for the first time, leading to two of these cosigners.

We hope you will draw inspiration, as we did, from the successes of the 2014 Spring Days of Action.