Sunday, July 5, 2015

Day 3: Desperation turns to hope

Saturday, July 4, 2015
Another rough day today. We visited El Mozote, the site of a massacre carried out by the Salvadoran government where 1000 men, women, and children were murdered. We visited the Monument of Peace and Reconciliation. Then we went to the guerilla Museum of the Revolution.
It was eerie to visit these places on the Fourth of July. Instead of fireworks, parades, and the stars and stripes, we saw death, destruction, torture, murder, and desperation. I say this is eerie not only because of how disturbed I felt, but also because the USA contributed a great deal to the war. Salvadoran military troops who were committing such atrocities were brought to the US to be trained in military tactics. The troops were given US weapons and bombs to fight the supposed communist guerillas. They then used these skills and weapons to ruthlessly slaughter thousands of innocent people. Not only this, but our government also provided $1 million per day to the Salvadoran government. In effect, we assisted and aided in the murder of thousands of Salvadorans. Our government even denied what had happened at El Mozote for 12 years. This sickens me, and I feel ashamed.
All that being said, there was also a great deal of hope, faith, and forgiveness in our day. People have moved back to El Mozote after the massacre and honor those who were killed. They strive for a new age where people can live together in peace. Salvadorans hold up those who died as heroes and martyrs. They remember what happened in order not to repeat the future. And above all, their faith remains strong and unshaken. I am honored to be able to spend time around such amazing, strong human beings. I hope and pray for the absolute best for the Salvadoran people.
Please check out my previous blogs on El Mozote, the Monument of Peace and Reconciliation, and the Museum of the Revolution in Perquin.

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