New Jewish Agenda to Send Work Brigade to Nicaragua

The New Jewish Agenda (NJA) is sending a work brigade to Nicaragua next winter in memory of Benjamin Linder, the 27-year-old engineer from Portland, Oregon, killed three weeks ago in Nicaragua while working on a hydroelectric project. Plans for the brigade were announced Wednesday night at a memorial service for Linder at the Stephen Wise Free Synagogue.

The service was arranged by friends of Linder who live in New York, in conjunction with synagogue Rabbi Balfour Brickner, who went to Nicaragua in 1984 as part of a human rights delegation sent by NJA. Linder was Jewish. His parents are members of the Portland chapter of NJA.

The brigade will comprise about 20 people, said Annette Jaffe, NJA associate director and Central American Task Force staff person for the group. Jaffe was in Nicaragua in December 1984 with the first Jewish delegation of Witness for Peace, a nonviolent group that sends people to Nicaragua to meet the local people and observe firsthand the situation in that country.

At the memorial service for Linder, it was also announced that the Abraham Lincoln Brigade of the Spanish Civil War will be sending a new ambulance to Nicaragua in Linder’s name.

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