Since 1995, Jesuits, lay partners and members of the broader Ignatian family have gathered with others organizations at the gates of Fort Benning, Ga., to call for the closure of the School of the Americas, now known as the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation. On Nov. 16, 1989, six Jesuit priests were shot to death by a Salvadoran military squad, who then proceeded to murder the Jesuits’ housekeeper and her daughter while they slept. The Salvadoran soldiers, who killed these Jesuits and their companions, were trained at the SOA. The Ignatian Solidarity Network annually hosted a teach-in for justice prior to the protest at the fort’s gates.
In 2009, the ISN gathered the national Ignatian family for its final year of participation in the SOA protest. While other groups will carry on at Fort Benning, the ISN is transitioning to a regional model of raising awareness. The focus will be on teaching and informing the public about a variety of issues in their local area.
Watch the video below to hear more about last fall’s protest and the transition plans for ISN.