No Soy El Army coming to Rural Oregon


The Rural Organizing Project is excited to announce the No Soy El Army Peace Tour

coming to rural Oregon in August 2010.

What is No Soy El Army?

Human Dignity Groups are invited to host a stop on the No Soy El Army 2010 Tour in Oregon to open a dialogue between the traditional peace community and Spanish-speaking and Latino communities about war, military recruitment, race and cross-community organizing.

No Soy El Army will present bilingual (English/Spanish) military veterans and community leaders from across the US speaking about their personal experiences and facilitating a dialogue about the experiences of those in the room, then offering concrete information about the military and alternatives for youth.


Presenters (subject to change & most stops will have one or two presenters):

  • Jesus Palafox – Jesus works with the Youth and Militarism project, and Truth in Recruiting program with AFSC in Illinois.
  • Pablo Paredes– Founder of Bay Peace: Better Alternatives for Youth also creating the Bay Peace Youth Manifesto; a document created by youth about truth in recruiting. Also a member of NOMMY, Youth & Militarism Task Force and is the first conscientious objector to the current occupancy. 
  • Maricela Guzman – Maricela served in the US Navy. She now works for the Women of Color Action Center and AFSC in the LA area. Her focus is working with women to expose the truth of military service and its effects on young women.
  • Sergio España – Sergio is a young activist from Baltimore who was one of the founders of the Civilian Solider Alliance. Civilian Soldier Alliance is an organization of civilians working with veterans and active-duty service-members to build a GI resistance movement towards a just foreign policy.
  • Wendy Pantoja Castillo – Wendy is a Mexican peace activist from the city of Mérida, Yucatán, where she organized against the Iraq war before she immigrated to the US in recent years.  She continues to be a community organizer, and is currently active in the immigrant rights and the peace movement in Tacoma, Washington.  She supports Coffee Strong, a cafe at Ft. Lewis run by GI war resisters.

The Tour is organized by the Rural Organizing Project, American Friends Service Committee & PCUN.




Why a bilingual Peace Tour?

The wars abroad continue with no end in sight, with people of color & the rural poor increasingly filling the ranks. This tour is an opportunity to connect across cultures, to interweave an analysis of the realities of war with that of the economic struggles facing youth & families, and to bring a new perspective on peace to your organizing.  The wars at abroad are not only affecting the Latino community through recruitment, but they also mirror the wars here at home against immigrants through the militarization of the border, criminalization of people of color & the collaboration between local police and federal agents.  New immigrants in our communities, migrating from places affected by war, can also share invaluable lessons about violence, resistance, and reconciliation.

As the peace community struggles to define the next phase in our efforts to stop militarism and create peace, we have an opportunity to build cross-cultural relationships that will strengthen the movement, provide new perspectives and present options to the most disenfranchised youth in our towns. Check out some of the strategies that were discussed at the Peace Strategy gathering last May.


August 25-30th, 2010 & Sept 27-Oct 1 (very limited dates available on the second leg of the tour)

Who is this tour for?

The peace community, Latino community, youth, & families should all be a part of this important conversation!

Where will the tour stop?

We will bring this tour to as many places as we can in the time that we are able. All interested communities are encouraged to contact ROP to set up a stop. We might not be able to get to every place – so contact us right away! Places that have a plan for cross-cultural representation and collaboration will be prioritized.

How can we host a stop on the tour?

·         Fill out the online form to Sign-Up to host a stop on the Tour. Completion of the form DOES NOT guarantee a stop, but we will do our best to include as many stops as possible!

·         Think about starting (or continuing) to build relationships between peace and Latino communities before the Tour arrives in town. (For example, host a showing of the movie Papers or Frozen Dreams)

·         Start making your plan! All hosts will provide housing for the presenters and organizers (this may include up to three people – community housing is fine), food for the event, thoughtful community and media outreach, and will create an outreach plan that attempts to get at least 25 attendees to the event.

·         The tour is a free opportunity from ROP & our collaborators. However, we encourage groups to commit to fundraising at the event, through a pass the hat or suggested donation, to help cover the costs of the Tour & to meet your group’s financial needs.

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