Monday, July 20, 2009

Converge on US Southern Command
Take action in solidarity with the people of Honduras

Gather on Sat., July 25 at 10:30 am at NW 87th Ave & NW 36th St in Miami

As you are surely aware, on June 28, SOA-trained Honduran generals overthrew the democratically-elected government of President Manuel Zelaya in a military coup. The Honduran social movements are resisting the coup regime and engage in daily pro-democracy protests, strikes and civil disobedience.

On Saturday, July 25, you can join human rights activists in Florida taking action in solidarity with the people of Honduras by converging on the headquarters of the US Southern Command (US SouthCom) in Miami.

SouthCom coordinates all US military activities in Latin America and the Caribbean — and is in charge of the SOA/ WHINSEC (School of the Americas, renamed Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation).

This notorious military school trained some of the worst human rights abusers, death squad and coup leaders in the Western Hemisphere, including General Romeo Orlando Vásquez Velásquez, who attended the SOA twice before ordering the kidnapping and forced deportation of President Zelaya on June 28.

When Your Only Tool is a Hammer, Every Problem Looks Like a Nail

SOA/ WHINSEC & SouthCom’s military-solutions-mindset is sowing the seeds for further repression of Latin American social movements with their rhetoric about “radical populism” overtaking the hemisphere. Over the last few years, military aid to Latin America has skyrocketed, and SouthCom definitions of terrorist threats expanded from “traditional terrorists” like gangs, paramilitaries and guerrilla groups to include “radical populists” whose only crimes include listening to their people and challenging the failed neoliberal model of development.

Evidently President Zelaya’s social reforms have put him in league with the “emerging terrorist” threat that is defined by SouthCom as radical populists. Following that logic, the Honduran army (which is still led by an SOA graduate and still being trained at the SOA/ WHINSEC) removed him from power. But the people of Honduras continue resisting, and are calling for you to join them in solidarity!

Obama’s military policy in Latin America is not an improvement after the Bush Era — though the US air base in Manta, Ecuador will close this year, the US will replace it with five new bases in Colombia with expanded missions. You have an important chance to join our brothers and sisters resisting militarization throughout the Americas. Please join us this Saturday at SouthCom!

The protest is sponsored by SOA Watch South Florida, Miami for Peace, and CODEPINK Miami. For more information call Ray Del Papa at 754-423-0051 or Linda at 305-801-0245. If your group would like to endorse the action, please email Ray at

Yours in struggle,
Linda and Ray