We begin with the intention of being that informed citizenry necessary to a democratic state, especially to Costa Rica which is committed to resolving conflicts without an army. Our mission is to alert and inform the public about threats to the peace while promoting actions for peaceful resolution and justice around events in Costa Rica as well as over the world as they affect and reflect life in Costa Rica. And to be a source of top quality resources and information.
PeaceWatch is a program that follows key issues in Costa Rica and around the world in order to inform the public and promote actions for peace with justice.
As events unfold new issues are addressed, and volunteers are welcome to join us and contribute to the ongoing work of education and promoting peaceful actions around local problems in Costa Rica and in solidarity with worldwide issues.
We honor the whole human being in our work- body, mind, heart, and spirit, to promote unity, integration, and balance in a world that is ever more fragmented, disjointed, and out of balance. Hopi wisdom warns us of Qoyanaskatsi, the world becoming out of balance.
As a Bribri woman of the Talamanca mountains explains: “the indigenous people have always valued the forests. We don’t try to protect them only for a few people: they are for all. We should learn that the forest is the lungs of the earth and that the color green is the clothing of the earth that we should not continue to tear.” (Eustacia Palacios, Ways of Extinction, Ways of Survival: Testimonies of the indigenous people of the KéköLdi Reserve, Costa Rica. 1992 Paula Palmer, Juana Sánchez, Gloria Mayorga).
The issues that we are currently addressing are:
- Militarization of Central America: e.g. the military coup in Honduras & political refugees and the U.S. warships coming into Costa Rica.
- SOA/WHINSEC and the role of the Costa Rican government in sending police to be trained at Fort Benning, Georgia.
- Banning nuclear weapons and depleted uranium 238.
- Ensuring peaceful self-determination for Palestine.
- Protecting the environment and affirming the rights of indigenous peoples.
As incidents occur, committees or study groups form and dissolve. Members of all the committees meet as PeaceWatch on Wednesday afternoons to inform and coordinate dates and events among ourselves. As of April 2011 we have the following standing committees:
School of the Americas Watch
Our mission is the closing of the training program famous for its manual of torture techniques, and its war criminal graduates; as well as to advocate for the training of Costa Rica’s civilian police in other types of training programs.
The Committee in Solidarity with Palestine
The Committee in Solidarity with Palestine advocates a just peace among the peoples of Israel & Palestine. We are dedicated to spreading the truth about Palestinian suffering under Israeli occupation. We work to inform the Costa Rican public about how the current situation threatens world peace. Ultimately, we hope to encourage citizen and government participation in actions toward a just settlement for both sides.
Also read about: