Witness to Inhumanity, A Conversation With Rufina Amaya
Witness to Inhumanity
A brief verbal exchange With a Hero, Rufina Amaya
Rufina Amaya survived the bloodbath of 809 human beings at El Mozote, El Salvador, on December eleven, 1981. She died in March 2007 at the age of sixty-four. She become survived by means of her few remaining circle of relatives members and a huge host of ladies and men who fashionable and supported her. She didn’t consider herself a hero, however a easy girl of faith that does justice. And a female, a person of love.
Bearing witness! Presente! She bore loads: the killings of almost an entire village, which include 4 of her kids and her husband, by US educated authorities thugs, ordered through paranoid leaders who did not need their power threatened. The infantrymen wrenched Amaya’s little infants from her arms.
Ronald Reagan’s administration skilled and equipped the Salvadoran military whom he referred to as “Freedom opponents,” and supported a government that Bishop Oscar Romero, on the cost of his very own existence on March 24, 1980, courageously denounced as perpetrators of gross violations of human rights and the murders of harmless humans.
As a lively response to this savage bloodbath of humans, human plant life, Amaya spoke to small organizations approximately her Catholic faith and practice and the need for all, each citizens and their governments, to respect and sell human rights.
may also she relaxation in Ever-Abiding, mild-Bearing Peace.
November 20, 1999 Interview: castle Benning, Georgia
Rufina emanated an charisma of true bearing witness to an atrocity, while last non violent and completely human and humble. I simply loved Rufina when I first noticed her: mild, even in darkness. She had a special splendor, small boned, a round open face, crafted from unbearable suffering met via indomitable spirit. She constant her hair, pulled back and up into a bun, which caught instantly up. She was slightly chubby; youngsters have been extremely drawn to her. She advised us she simply wanted to tell her story in quiet, righteous anger, calling for actual change. She exuded braveness, simplicity. and the Aristocracy; her voice became robust whilst she addressed heaps of humans on the protests in opposition to the school of the Americas (now named Western Hemisphere Institute for security Cooperation).
God saved me due to the fact he wished someone to tell the tale of what happened.-Rufina Amaya, the big apple times, 1996.
MZC: thanks so much, Rufina. I just experience i’d like to be with you. That feeling of sharing this little second with you and trying to aid you. you’re high-quality, a light-complete concept; I pray for you every day.
while the 1981 bloodbath happened at El Mozote, with its 809 victims, it became first denied by means of each the Salvadoran and American governments, in spite of what many network and church leaders had been telling the arena. You, being the sole survivor, had the braveness to tell what came about for your village of twenty homes going through the network rectangular. you’ve informed this story now for eighteen years.
In 1990, you had been the first to testify in a crook grievance against the Atlacatl Battalion (skilled by using American advisors) by Pedro Chica Romero of la Joya, a nearby hamlet to El Mozote. Pedro turned into a witness in his little hamlet to some other killing of a number of his household and buddies by means of the Atlacatl Battalion. It wasn’t until the El Salvador Peace Treaty of 1992 that an Argentine Forensic Anthropology crew became appointed by means of the United countries to excavate the area and subsequently start exhumation.
you’ve got our admiration and love, Rufina.
may additionally I ask you approximately what motivates you to tell your coronary heart-breaking tale?
RA: I sense i’m doing what God needs me to do, what i’ve all my preference to do. it’s part of how I practice being a Catholic, now not a separate hobby. My tale telling and talking with humans come from my heart and additionally from my ache, my struggling the lack of my husband, Domingo Claros, who become twenty-9; my son, Cristino, nine, and my 3 daughters Maria Dolores, five, Maria Lillian, 3; and Maria Isabel, 8 months. I can not even cry anymore. it is real: my body produced such a lot of tears that they’re all long gone. I talk to you; I communicate for them, my circle of relatives, my pals, and my acquaintances who cannot speak any greater. despite the fact that i’m a easy character, i use my voice so human beings will no longer overlook what took place at El Mozote.
MZC: simply more questions might be all proper? what’s your participation in the prepared church? Do you bear in mind yourself an “activist”?
RA: i’m a lay pastor within the Catholic Church in El Salvador; my religion could be very vital as it offers me love, as do my circle of relatives and buddies. My religion offers me courage now not to be afraid to speak out loudly, and my religion lets in me to get refreshed spiritually. i like to steer “mirrored image corporations,” in which we speak approximately the connection of God to our personal lives. i have had such a lot of site visitors from all around the world; I surely feel i’m supposed to talk, and i’m glad and severe to speak. I do exercise quiet prayer and have a few mirrored image time additionally, however i might name myself an activist. i will by no means be quiet about what is proper and what’s incorrect, what’s unjust abuse, unjust homicide in opposition to harmless, good people. i am publicly asking the ones responsible for the murders to publicly ask our pardon. yes, i am an activist and also a Catholic. i am outspoken. i am not satisfied. yet, i am someone of faith too, now not best an activist.