America infamous for training terrorists as well

Why does it seem like our government always acts like a hypocrite? Apparently, if you have enough power you can accuse others of the same dirt you are doing.
The government is using terrorism as its strongest suite for war against Iraq. It is so quick to tie terrorism, especially Al-Qaeda, with Iraq. However, if we really want to go to war with terrorism, should we not instead get rid of actual institutions that train terrorists outside of our country as well as within? If we look hard enough into our own country and its funds, we will see that we actually have a school to train assassins for governments in Latin American countries. How is this paid for? The lovely portion of our tax dollars is sent to the Pentagon, which then transfers part of that money to fund the school.
Historically known as the School of the Americas, the school “trains Latin American Soldiers in combat, counter-insurgency, and counter-narcotics” (School of the Americas
Watch web page). With this training, many of the 60,000 graduates have continued to terrorize and kill the citizens of various countries in Latin America. In El Salvador for example, graduates kidnapped, raped, and killed hundreds of women, shot men in the head, assassinated Arch Bishop Romero and conducted the massacre that killed over nine hundred civilians in El Mozote.
Although there has been no factually complete link found between Al-Qaeda and Iraq, or that Iraq is funding Al-Qaeda for training and weapons, it is a fact that the United States Government runs a school now called the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation that teaches Latin Americans how to violate the human rights of citizens by torturing and killing them. Why do we not hear more about this school and the damage it has done around the world? It is the government’s job to inform the American citizens where our tax dollars go. However, most Americans do not know about the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation because it is rarely in the news and almost never mentioned when the government addresses the press. I have a good feeling that if more Americans knew about the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation and all the harm it has caused around the world, there would be even more protests against it and people may think twice before going to war with Iraq supposedly in the name of terrorism, and stress focusing on fixing the problems within the United States.

Erin Wright can be contacted at ewright@umsis.miami.edu.

March 28, 2003


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