COLOMBIA: The SOA and the War on Terrorism. A letter from Scott Kerr

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CPTnet

December 22, 2001

COLOMBIA: The SOA and the War on Terrorism. A

letter from Scott Kerr

[Note: Scott Kerr was arrested for trespassing at Fort

Benning in November, along with hundreds of other

people who were protesting the U.S. Army’s training of

Latin American officers there, before he returned to

Colombia.]

Dear friends and family,

This is from a note I wrote to those who are facing

trial for

the School of the Americas (SOA) action this November.

In the paper in Colombia we are reading of the

possibility that Colombia will be the next theatre for

the

war on terrorism. I encourage all of you to be

proactive

and call your reps and senators now before the

propaganda

machine gets rolling.

Fifteen minutes outside of Barrancabermeja there is a

paramilitary (AUC) checkpoint on the arm of the

Magdelena River. This week, a motorist that CPT has

used

has been kidnapped and is presumed dead, and three

indigenous people from Ecuador have also been killed.

This

AUC checkpoint is ten minutes from a [Colombian] Navy

checkpoint and can be seen by one of their towers. I

have

been stopped at both of these checkpoints before, and

the

Navy commander there is well aware of the paramilitary

operations.

The links between paramilitary forces are not debated

in

this city, the lines are very clear.

Be encouraged that we are not fighting for pie in the

sky

idealism. When we struggle to close the SOA we are

protecting farmers all over Colombia.

The impunity continues in Barranca. Thank God some are

in resistance in the States. The human rights

community

here was very energized by the SOA actions and sends

saludos.

in peace for justice,

scott

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