- Let us not forget the United States, through the School of the Americas the US played a leading role in forced disappearances, Thousands upon thousands of disappearances occurred across the American continent as a whole, and in Guatemala alone there were over 45,000 disappearances, 5,000 of which were of children. Disappearances have been part of Latin American security doctrine since the 60s.
- Victory: First Amendment Rights Triumph Over Columbus Police and Fort Benning Officials!
Maria Luisa Rosal, Popular Resistance
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Disappeared in Chile Demonstration organized by the Association of Relatives of Detenidos-Desaparecidos (Disappeared Detainees). 2009, Santiago, Chile. Photo courtesy of antitezo on Flickr.
August 30th, 2014 | August 30 marks the International Day of the Victims of Enforced Disappearances, and I couldn’t let this day go by without sharing some brief reflections on the subject. My father – Jorge Alberto Rosal Paz y Paz – was disappeared by the Guatemalan state on August 12, 1983, when I was barely eight months old. This year is the 31st anniversary of his disappearance – that same number was my mother’s age at the moment of my father’s kidnapping and disappearance, and it is my age today.
As you can see, August is a month full of emotions and every year, dates and anniversaries take on different meanings. The truth is that each year comes and goes, but not without leaving it’s lasting mark.
Maria Luisa Rosal: Field Organizer, SOA Watch. Born in Guatemala during the worst intensification of the internal armed conflict, she and her family fled into exile to the United States, where they received political asylum. Her father was disappeared by the Guatemalan state on August 12, 1983.
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Victory: First Amendment Rights Triumph Over Columbus Police and Fort Benning Officials! Arturo, Brigitte, Hendrik, Karolina, Kat, María Luisa, Pablo, and Roy, SOA Watch
We have collectively secured not only our historical and sacred space of convergence to remember the martyrs, but have successfully defended and protected our First Amendment rights!