Father Roy: Inside the School of Assassins
The struggle to find and reveal the truth about secret CIA torture training.
Written, directed and produced by Robert RichterTrailer
Telecast in the 2008-9 PBS "Global Voices" series. A fictional adaptation is in development.
Feedback by viewers of the earlier public TV screenings at
"This powerful film presents one person's efforts to change American foreign policy... recommended for all video collections."
Susan Sarandon, narrator
"One of the outstanding documentaries of 1997."
—Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences
Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo are not the first time the U.S. has been involved in torture and torture training. This documentary reveals the struggle to expose the truth behind a CIA secret torture training facility on US territory, now located on the grounds of Ft. Benning, GA.
The story is told through the extraordinary life and daring actions of Father Roy Bourgeois, a Vietnam war hero and activist who has risked his freedom and life many times in the campaign to close the training facility.
Three men who never met, each from a different Latin American country, link SOA to torture training. One, a victim of that training, discovered an SOA torture-training manual in Paraguay. The other two were trained in torture techniques at SOA. In 1996 the White House Intelligence Oversight Board confirmed their explosive charges.
At the risk of his life, the producer was pledged to never disclose the identity of one of these three men, who feared for his own life because of the shocking information he revealed in this documentary.
—Grand Rapids Press
—Dallas Morning News
Called the U.S. Army School of the Americas (SOA) for many years, it continues under a new name, the Western Hemispheric Institute for Security Cooperation. The growing international drive also continues, to expose the truth about this training center and close it down.
"An inspiring tool for education and action."
—Report on Guatemala
"Father Roy" was a primetime telecast on over 150 public stations ten years ago. At that time it screened at human rights and other festivals in Amsterdam (Amnesty Intl opening night), Guatemala, Havana (Coral Award), Leipzig, Brussels, Seoul, Central Florida (First Prize), Columbus, Ohio (Bronze Award), Texas, California, New York; and it was awarded a CINE Golden Eagle.
Study Areas: American studies, religion, Catholicism, U.S. foreign policy, social and political history, religion and politics, contemporary religious thought, biography, developing nations issues, Latin American studies, human rights, peace studies, biography, broadcast journalism.