We encourage anone who is interested in the issue to come in and see us, to sit in classes, to talk with students and faculty, and to review our instructional materials. I would suggest waiting until after mid-January, because there will be several courses in session then, and all our people will be here.
I often joke with our Catholic friends that I am from the Southern
Baptist branch of the Catholic Church, but I do so with a purpose--I
then offer contact with other Catholics who know us well and support us enthusiastically. I don't know if you are in acccord with the very conservative Catholic organization that produced the attached article and interview (both are on their website, along with other pertinent documents: www.tfp.org), but they did some rather thorough
investigative reporting of their experiences here in the area, and the interview allowed me to hit on almost all the issues brought up by our opponents.
By the way, the Franciscan who almost ended up on our board was *** *******. He came down and got to know us, so I don't think he holds
the same uninformed views of his brothers, but he was leaning toward
pacifism anyway, so may not have stayed with us long even if accepted.
I don't mind honest opponents who do not think we should be operating because of their own views on doing the training. The only opponents I challenge are those who accept the falsehoods that we teach illegal, immoral, or unethical things here. The facts do not support their views, and I try to introduce them to reality.
Thanks again, and I look forward to continuing this conversation,
perhaps in person!
Mr. Lee A. Rials
Public Affairs Officer
Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation
35 Ridgway Loop
Ft. Benning, GA 31905