Aug 23, 2012

a new tactic for North-South international solidarity

For years I have helped to organize speaking tours of activists from Colombia, El Salvador, etc who have traveled across the US and Canada sharing their stories and analysis and weaving connections with activists in the North working for justice.  Usually it's just one person traveling, usually for a couple of weeks, sometimes for up to a month.  At most it has been two people at a time. 

I have also helped to organize and participate in many delegations of people from the US who have gone to Colombia, etc, to meet activists there, see their work, hear their stories and make connections.  Those groups are more likely to be from 6 to 12, with some growing up to 20.  They tend to last ten days to a week.

So now I'm excited to be participating in an effort that does not fit either of those standard ways of traveling to build connections across our movements.  The caravan for peace is a group of some 160 people, about half Mexican, half from the US, who are traveling across the US for a month.  Most of the Mexicans have lost family members in the so called war on drugs, and at stops along the way they are sharing their stories and analysis of what it will take to build peace.  They are also building all sorts of connections as they go - I'm sure some of the most meaningful are with folks who are riding the buses with them. 

You are invited to join the caravan - you can follow along in your car for a day, a week - or just go to one of their powerful events.  See the map here for the route and click on your city for details of events there.   There have been all sorts of events - from holding vigil at a gun show to a recent event in El Paso where the names of drug war victims were projected on the wall and scrolled up as classical music played (photo).  If you can't participate please consider donating to support this work (I would be grateful if you could earmark your donation for Spanish interpreting, which I am helping to organize) or at very least sign up to get their moving emails for the next two weeks of the caravan.