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NYC and Long Island Residents Join
Thousands in Georgia Calling for
Closure of the SOA

By admin on November 20, 2009

More than 100 people from Long Island and New York City are outside the gates of Fort Benning, Georgia, for the 20th annual vigil and direct action (see photo below, taken today by SOA Watch’s Linda Panetta) to protest the School of the Americas (now called WHINSEC), the notorious training facility for Latin American soldiers. Yesterday, a group of Long Islanders protested outside the office of Rep. Peter King, a big SOA supporter.

crowd09.jpg

They groups include students from Hoftstra University and members and friends of SOA Watch and NYCISPES.

The vigil began 20 years ago, after a death squad that was trained at the SOA murdered six Jesuits, their housekeeper, and her 15-year-old daughter in San Salvador. SOA grads have been implicated in many other massacres and tortures and disappearances since the school’s inception.

In the recent coup in Honduras, the major players that ousted President Zelaya are two well-known graduates of the SOA: General Romeo Vasquez, the head of the military, and General Luis Suazo, a 1996 graduate, the head of the air force.

This school is well known in Latin America as a school of coups. The school has trained over 60,000 soldiers from 15 countries in Latin America in combat skills. And it’s all paid for by U.S. taxpayers.

It’s time to shut down the SOA.

For more information on the local groups, contact Bill McNulty of SOA Watch Long Island.

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Local and National SOA Protests November 20-22, 2009

By admin on November 19, 2009

Please join the annual local protest of the School of Americas in front of the office of Rep. Peter King in Massapequa Park.

King supports the SOA/WHINSEC, and has even said that “the School of the Americas has advanced democracy in Latin America.”

The protest began 20 years ago, shortly after a death squad murdered six Jesuit priests, their housekeeper, and her 15-year-old daughter in San Salvador. The priests were killed for their outspoken stance in defense of the poor. Of the 24 assassins, 19 were trained at the School of the Americas at Fort Benning, Georgia.

The Long Island protest, organized by the South Country Peace Group and SOA Watch Long Island, will coincide with the SOAW’s yearly Vigil and Direct Action outside the gates of the SOA at Fort Benning, Georgia.

Thousands are expected to coverge for the Georgia event, especially because it is the 20th anniversary of the vigil and because the recent military coup by SOA graduates in Honduras has once again exposed the deadly effects that the SOA has on Latin America. A large New York City/Long Island contingent is heading to Georgia this year. (Contact Andy at NYC SOAW for details.)

Despite the long history of human rights abuses associated with the graduates of this institution it continues to exist and has never been investigated–only given a name change.

Saturday, November 21, 2009, at 1:00 PM
In front of Rep. Peter King’s office
1003 Park Blvd, Massapequa Park

Directions: Sunrise Hwy to Park Blvd (House of Pancakes is on south side of Sunrise), turn north. King’s office is just north of Sunrise/RR Station. There is parking available behind the stores if there is no space on the street.

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Daniel Ellsberg Documentary at Cinema Arts December 2

By admin on November 19, 2009

Cinema Arts Centre is screening the documentary The Most Dangerous Man in America: Daniel Ellsberg and the Pentagon Papers on Wednesday, December 2. Ellsberg or filmmaker Rick Goldsmith will speak live via Webcast. Show this wonderful theater your support–it’s a great place to see a flick!

The Most Dangerous Man in America: Daniel Ellsberg and the Pentagon Papers
Wednesday, December 2, 2009
5pm: Food
6pm: Poetry and music
7pm: Film and discussion

$15 Admission / Tickets can be purchased online at www.CinemaArtsCentre.org, at the box office during theatre hours, or by calling Brown Paper Tickets toll free at 800-838-3006

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Join the World March for Peace in NYC November 30

By admin on November 18, 2009

The World March for Peace and Nonviolence started on October 2 in New Zealand and will be in New York City on Monday, November 30. Long Islanders will be joining the marchers in Brooklyn Borough Hall, then march across the Brooklyn Bridge at 1pm for a 3pm rally at City Hall in Manhattan.

World March for Peace and Nonviolence in NYC
Monday, November 30, 2009
1pm: March from Brooklyn Borough Hall, across Brooklyn Bridge to Manhattan
3pm: Rally at City Hall
7pm: Riverside Church event, details TBA

By van: Two vans will be picking up Long Islanders to participate.The vans are for those who will not be walking over the Brooklyn Bridge. The pickup points: LIE Park & Rides, Exit 58 Old Nichols Road at 10:00 am and Exit 36 Christopher Morley Park at 10:45 am.

The vans will be meeting with others at Brooklyn Borough Hall for the 1pm march. One van will go back to Long Island after this rally. The second van will stay in NYC to participate in events at Riverside Church at 7:00 pm. More info on these events will be forthcoming. The cost of the van is $20 cash per person payable that day. (Note: The Riverside event might require paid admission.) If you are interested in taking a van, call George at 516-249-7517.

By train: A LI WPM representative will be at each of the following stations to meet you. Please sit in the first car of the train. Marchers will be met at Flatbush Ave. and proceed to Brooklyn Borough Hall for the 1pm march. If you are interested in taking a train and need additional information, please call Karen at 631-875-8647 or email rksrc2001@yahoo.com.

Train schedule:
Leave Babylon: 10:19 AM (arrive Flatbush Ave. 11:33 AM)
Leave Wantagh: 10:41 AM
Leave Baldwin: 10:51 AM
Leave Ronkonkoma: 10:08 AM
Leave Huntington: 10:04 AM
Leave Hempstead: 10:11 AM (arrive Flatbush Ave., 11:03 AM)

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