School of America's building with skull and cross bones flag

AMERICA'S SCHOOL
OF DEATH

    In a picturesque Spanish-style structure resembling a mission or cathedral and located in historic Fort Benning, Georgia, is housed what is called "The School of the Americas" (SOA). Its benign sounding name, however, belies the malignancy of its curriculum.

   This "educational institution" has for years been the U.S. Army's training center for Latin American military personnel. The purpose or "mission" of the training facility, according to the statement posted on their official web site is:

"To provide doctrinally sound, relevant military training and education to the nations of Latin America; promote democratic values and respect for human rights; and to foster cooperation among the multinational military forces."

   The School of the Americas was founded for the purpose of training foreign counterintelligence forces to operate in Latin America. In the training of these forces the "U.S. Army...used training materials that condoned 'executions of guerillas, extortion, physical abuse [a sanitized term for torture], coercion, and false imprisonment", according to the U.S. Intelligence Oversight Board (IOB) in a report issued June 28, 1996. The IOB is a four-person committee created three years ago by order of President Clinton for the purpose of independent investigations of alleged abuses by the United States intelligence community.

   Representative Joseph P. Kennedy (D. Mass.) has called for legislation to dismantle the SOA. "Our country," Kennedy says, "has taught those soldiers how to create suffering amongst the poorest people of Latin America....[The SOA training] manuals taught tactics that come right out of a Soviet gulag and have no place in civilized society."

   Kennedy's opening statement in the Executive Summary of his office's review of SOA states:

"In September 1996, the Pentagon released seven training manuals used at the U.S. Army School of Americas in Fort Benning, Georgia. These seven manuals, which taught murder, torture, and extortion, were used to teach courses at the U.S. Army School of the Americas during the 1980s despite explicit U.S. army policy.

"This is not the first time that training manuals advocating brutal training methods were used in Central America. Nor is this the first time that U.S. army policy was ignored. In fact, the torture manuals discovered at the U.S. Army School of the Americas (USARSA) represents just one piece of a much larger problem: somehow in the vast and powerful military bureaucracy the message was delivered repeatedly from the upper echelons of power that the rules don't matter."

   The school lies within the district of Georgia Republican Congressman, Mac Collins, who claims that the school's three-million dollar budget is cost effective. (Kennedy unofficially claims $18 million is more accurate). Collins says, "It's a whole lot cheaper on the American taxpayer...to continue this type of education...to insure democracy than it is to...do what we did in Haiti where we have to send troops down because Haiti did not participate in the School of Americas for a long time."

   This seems indirectly to imply that nations of the Americas not participating in SOA course studies or adhering to its doctrines, can be assured of U.S. military intervention. Manuel Noriega, a graduate of SOA, apparently forgot his schooling and all of Panama suffered the consequences of an American invasion.

   The graduates of SOA reads like a Who's Who Rogue's Gallery of Latin American military/political villains. According to SOA Watch, (a group with a link listed in Rep. Kennedy's Congressional web page), among the nearly 60,000 alumnus of the school are such as Noriega, El Salvador death squad leader Roberto D'Aubuisson, and former dictators of Argentina, Peru, Ecuador and Bolivia. Kennedy claims that SOA graduates were also responsible for the assassination of Archbishop Oscar Romero, the El Mozote massacre, the Uraba massacre, and the assassination of six Jesuit priests, their housekeeper and her daughter.

   In a well documented report SOA Watch claims that no less than 148 Latin American military leaders who are graduates of School of the America's training are known to have been directly involved in activities of severe human rights abuses.

   The following is excerpted from a Department of Defense memorandum analyzing School of the Americas training manuals in which the Pentagon openly admits to their content:

ASSISTANT TO THE SECRETARY OF DEFENSE WASHINGTON, DC 20301-7200

10 March 1992

MEMORANDUM FOR THE SECRETARY OF DEFENSE

THROUGH:    DEPUTY SECRETARY OF DEFENSE
FROM:   WERNER E. MICHEL, ASSISTANT TO THE SECRETARY OF DEFENSE (INTELLIGENCE OVERSIGHT)...

ANALYSIS OF THE MANUALS...

"These manuals are: Handling of Sources, Revolutionary War and Communist Ideology, Terrorism and the Urban Guerrilla, Interrogation and Combat Intelligence. To illustrate, the manual Handling of Sources, in depicting the recruitment and control of HUMANITY [Human Intelligence] sources, refers to motivation by fear, payment of bounties [f] or enemy dead, beatings, false imprisonment, executions and the use of truth serum."

[italics and emphasis supplied]

   Included in Kennedy's full Congressional report are explicit examples of U.S. government involvement in promoting methods taught in SOA training manuals.

"Atrocities committed by Honduran death squads were reported by James LeMoyne, former El Salvador bureau chief for The New York Times, on June 5, 1988. In his article, LeMoyne told the story of Florencio Caballero, a self-confessed interrogator in a Honduran army death squad. Caballero says he was trained in Texas by the Central Intelligence Agency.

"According to Caballero, who sought exile in Canada, he and 24 others were taken to Texas between 1979 and 1980 to be trained by the army and the CIA. Caballero says that, in Texas, the Americans taught 'interrogation in order to end physical torture in Honduras. They taught us psychological methods - to study the fears and weaknesses of a prisoner. Make him stand up, don't let him sleep, keep him naked and [in] isolation, put rats and cockroaches in his cell, give him bad food, serve him dead animals, throw cold water on him, change the temperature.'

..."Caballero told LeMoyne that he tortured and murdered about 120 Hondurans and other Latin Americans. And he told LeMoyne about secret jails, murder, and CIA involvement in Honduras.

"Caballero told LeMoyne about the torture of 24-year old Ines Murillo in 1983, which LeMoyne was able to confirm. Murillo was a prisoner in a secret army jail in Honduras, and Caballero interrogated her and watched her get tortured. For 80 days, Murillo was beaten, electrically shocked, burned, starved, exposed, threatened, stripped naked, and sexually molested. To keep her from sleeping, her captors poured water on her head every ten minutes.

"According to Caballero, an American C.I.A. agent sometimes visited the secret jail where he worked, and where Murillo was being tortured. The agent was given edited interrogation reports on the prisoners there. Caballero did not know how much the Americans knew about the physical torture that was taking place.

"Murillo confirmed that during the months that she was in a secret jail, an American official periodically visited her. He was never present when she was tortured. However, Murillo 'does not believe the CIA could fail to know what was going on.'

"While in jail, Mr. Caballero and other interrogators gave her raw dead birds and rats for dinner, threw freezing water on her naked body every half hour for extended periods of time and made her stand for hours without sleep and without being allowed to urinate.

"Murillo survived her torture experience, mostly due to the intervention of her father, who formerly served in the Honduran military. Her father bribed a soldier to tell him where his daughter was being held. The soldier also revealed the name and phone number of the purported C.I.A. operative. After Murillo's father threatened to publish this information, his daughter was released into a regular jail in Honduras. 13 months later, she was allowed to go into exile.

"One American official who spoke with LeMoyne told him that 'the CIA knew what was going on....' "

   In a previous WINDS article (See: US Approves use of Military Against Citizenry) we discussed the Carter Administration's approval and encouragement of the use of the South Korean military against its own citizens during student demonstrations, an action that is forbidden in the United States by constitutional law. In the U.S. Army School of the Americas this hypocrisy is brought to new heights. It seems to be the norm for United States Foreign Policy that we promote and encourage actions among other nations that we vigorously condemn domestically.

   By the existence of policy that virtually proclaims that the citizens of other nations are not worthy of the rights "guaranteed" to us by our constitution, we also, in a sense, claim that they are less than human and therefore unworthy of the "human rights" this nation so loudly promotes. That, of course, is born out by the practical results of that foreign policy -- torture, murder, extortion and innumerable other abuses.

THE HIDDEN AGENDA

   There is, however, a greater and more insidious deception that lurks camouflaged within the purposely tangled and confusing web of lies and disguised government language. All the apparent candor concerning the contents of SOA's curriculum makes it appear as if the U.S. government is "coming clean" and desires to purge the conscience of the nation by confessing and eradicating those things that "have no place in a civilized society". The driving document of the New World Order outlines one of their primary methods of deceit and manipulation. It makes the statement that "among those who will be making attacks upon us there will be organizations established by us; but they will attack only things that we have already decided to change", thus giving the illusionary appearance that the government is responsive to the will of the people.

   This manipulative deception of the public mind has proven quite effective both in making the government appear concerned about human rights and at the same time creating an effective smoke screen to mask even more heinous activities. Anyone investigating history can observe that this government has a track record of using whatever wrong it gets caught doing as a means to make it appear that there is certainly nothing worse to be discovered. The Pentagon now claims that the school's current curricula is largely comprised of courses on human rights and respect for democracy. It can be seen that a standard exists in which admissions are made followed by promises of correction that, in actuality, are never fulfilled. In the previously quoted document that establishes the procedural basis of the New World Order is the statement:

"In all ages the peoples of the world, collectively and as individuals, have accepted words in the place of deeds because they are content with a show. They rarely pause to take notice whether promises are followed by performance, especially in the public arena; ...it is not our actions but our words for which we seek approval. This is true because words are the true force by which we create and manipulate public opinion, and those words are constantly designed to convince the masses that all our purposes are founded in a hope on a conviction that we are serving the common good of the people."

   In Kennedy's report to Congress it states that in 1984 the CIA Contra Manual was revealed to the public. It contained instruction on the accepted methods of killing within Nicaragua. The Reagan Administration made promises that those responsible for writing and approving the document would be dismissed. No disciplinary action was ever taken. The NWO has very effectively proven that the population, or "masses" are nearly always satisfied with the right words and rarely take notice when their government fails to make good on its promises. The news media has successfully created in this nation's mind set a short attention span for any issue that does not immediately affect our wallets, our stomachs or our toys. We quickly lose interest in things that we once thought were of great importance to us. All of this should be, to the American citizenry, an ominous portent of things to come. Unfortunately, it does not seem to be so. As long as these abuses are "out there" somewhere, few seem to care. As long as they do not directly affect our lives, we are willing to allow them to make the world "safe for democracy." Thus we continue to allow this inbred apathy to prepare us for our own slaughter. On the National Archives building in Washington, D.C. is printed:

"WHAT IS PAST IS PROLOGUE"

   Concerning this inscription, newsman David Brinkley once made the prophetic comment, "That is the government's way of saying, 'You ain't seen nothin' yet!'" Current American foreign policy constitutes a form of codified racism -- that is, abuses such as torture, murder by death squads, etc., are acceptable for those outside North America but certainly not for U.S. citizens -- at this time. When that policy comes home to roost, however, no one in this country will be concerned about racism, human rights or any other New World Order "hot-button" issues. They will be too occupied in trying to survive the assaults of their own government.

   What Americans seem to miss is that it is a false conviction and an empty hope to believe that we are insulated from such things happening to citizens within these borders. If history teaches us anything, it is that whatever policies a government exports in order to accomplish its will in foreign nations, will eventually be used against its own population if that government determines that its people present a sufficient threat to its agenda. History and scripture also teaches that, "what goes around comes around", or as Solomon put it,

"Whoso diggeth a pit shall fall therein:
and he that rolleth a stone, it will return upon him."
Proverbs 26:27

 

Written 5/27/97

 


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