While the Colombian government is implementing its peace accord, paramilitaries and complicit landowners continue to persecute the victims of the conflict. But the judiciary fails to hold those behind the violence to account.
A NACLA Radio interview with Forrest Hylton and Aaron Tauss about their article “Peace in Colombia: A New Growth Strategy,” featured in the latest NACLA Report, Free Trade 2.0, and the latest developments in the peace process.
A few days ago the Juan Manuel Santos government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) signed off on the second item of their five-point negotiation program: that of political participation. This agreement, alongside the preceding agreement on the agrarian question, elevates the positive expectations that the peace process is moving in the right direction, and that prospects of a final agreement are closer than ever before.
Given the ongoing debate surrounding Edward Snowden and Bradley Manning—and whether or not they committed a crime or acted in the public good—it is fitting to revisit a case which on a much smaller scale. The story of the Cincinnati Enquirer vs. Chiquita Banana showed how the “illegitimate” gathering of evidence was considered a more serious crime than that of engaging in widespread murder, bribery, arms trafficking, and knowingly poisoning the environment of communities throughout Latin America.
The complexities of the armed conflict in Colombia's drug-producing region of Catatumbo are set to garner greater attention from both the Colombian military and the media. This is underscored by the fact that in addition to the presence of the EPL, FARC, and ELN guerrilla forces, the region is also host to the neo-paramilitary organizations Los Rastrojos and Los Urabeños.
Regional elections were held across Colombia yesterday. However, at least 25% of the newly elected governors are alleged to have ties to right-wing paramilitaries. This reveals a deep-rooted problem in Colombian electoral politics in the midst of the on-going armed conflict
There is some disagreement in Mexico as to whether the state and civil society are engaged in a tough battle against organized crime, or whether organized crime has so permeated these institutions that it is no longer a separate entity. The emergence of a group called the Mata Zetas (Zeta Killers) that has sworn to rid Mexico of its most brutal criminal predators, the Zetas, but which has strong and acknowledged links to rival criminal groups, has brought this argument to a head.