Forty two Democrats voted to keep the world's foremost torture school, the School of the Americas (SOA), open during a House vote on June 21. The vote was 203 yes, 214 no, 1 voting "present" and 19 not voting. These Democrats voted no on the McGovern/Lewis Amendment that would have finally cut off funding to the SOA, now known as Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation (WHINSEC).
Cathy Webster, a grandmother from Chico, CA, was released from jail on May 18th after completing her 60 day sentence for crossing onto the U.S. Army Base at Ft. Benning, Georgia. She was participating in the annual protest against the U.S. Army School of the Americas.
After having lunch with family and supporters, Cathy Webster of Chico, California turned herself in at the Rio Cosumnes Correctional Facility today to spend 60 days behind bars and high security fences for a simple trespassing charge at last November's protest at the U.S. Army's School of the Americas in Fort Benning, Georgia.
This may be the year that the infamous SOA of the Americas (SOA), implicated in massacres and human rights violations throughout Latin America, is finally closed. The prospect of an impending vote in the U.S. Congress, combined with a steady movement of Latin American countries withdrawing their troops from the school, makes the shut down of the school very possible in 2007.
Cindy Sheehan, the Vacaville mother of a fallen soldier who reinvigorated the anti-war movement in the U.S. last year during her vigil outside Bush's ranch near Crawford, Texas, is planning another "Camp Casey" this August when George W. Bush takes his annual vacation.
The Sacramento,CA City Council, by an 8 to 1 vote on November 1, called for "a humane, orderly, rapid and comprehensive withdrawal of United States military personnel and bases from Iraq." The Council also asked Congress and Bush to deliver "promised veterans' health, education, disability, and rehabilitation benefits, and otherwise meet the needs of returning veterans." Sacramento joins a growing list of cities, including Chicago, San Francisco and Philadelphia, calling for withdrawal. California's capital city is the second community in the Central Valley after Davis to support an anti-war resolution.