Ash Kosiewicz

Ash Kosiewicz (Peruvian Forensic Anthropology Team): Ash graduated from the University of Texas at Austin in 2002 with a dual degree in government and journalism. After graduation, he worked for two years as a child support officer with the Texas Office of the Attorney General. In 2004, he moved to Ecuador, where he lived for 10 months working with a local foundation in Guayaquil to raise funds for a health center project in the rural canton of Santa Lucia. Upon returning from Ecuador, he worked for two years as communicators director with Texas RioGrande Legal Aid, which provides legal aid to the poor in the United States. At the time of his fellowship, Ash was studying for a master's degree in Latin American studies from Georgetown University in Washington, DC. After his fellowship, Ash wrote: "The AP experience has given me another incredibly impactful experience in Latin America. It has given me an incredible story to tell, one that truly leaves people interested though unsure how to respond. I feel like I’ve gone through some pretty intense stuff, and I’ve come out of it stronger and more aware. I know I can handle tough environments, and work in a fast paced environment."



Return to Cantuta – Day 2

25 Jul

“Yes, there was a certain influence of subversive groups such as the Shining Path and the Tupac Amaru Revolutionary Movement on campus, but in no way did this mean that every student at La Cantuta was a terrorist. However, a stigma had already been created – to be a student at Cantuta meant you were a terrorist. In spite of these difficulties, we as students tried to challenge these assumptions, we tried to show with our attitudes that in no way were we linked to any subversive movement, even through our good academic performance. It was easy to prove – we were good students and so we had no reason to believe these suspicions would fall on us.” – Gisela Ortiz, sister of fallen student Luis Enrique Ortiz, testimony before the Peruvian Truth and Reconciliation Commission

Watching Gisela Ortiz walk with the coffin of her brother on her shoulder through the campus of La Cantuta was stirring. As I walked beside her, filming her recite every name of the Cantuta 10, I felt the accumulating weight of every subsequent name.

From the moment I jumped out of my car upon arriving to Cantuta, I could acutely feel the Cantuta community. For 16 years, they had suffered the absence of their fallen brethren, and today they had returned. Hundreds of students surrounded the funeral cars, chanting “Spilt blood will never be forgotten!” and “We will not forget, nor forgive. Punish those responsible!” I had stepped foot into an aching community’s fight for justice.

Watch my trip to Cantuta on the 16th anniversary of the massacre …

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Part II

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Posted By Ash Kosiewicz

Posted Jul 25th, 2008