Monday, November 17, 2014


Brigadier Alzate
The peace negotiations between the Government of Colombia and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, the FARC, have been abruptly suspended by Colombia, after a general officer, Ruben Dario Alzate, was kidnapped by FARC soldiers, in Choco State. Brigadier General Alzate, who is the commander of the Titan Army Task Force, which operates in Choco, is the first Colombian general detained by the FARC since it began military operations in 1964.

The two-year peace process has now ground to a halt. Though there has been no formal cease-fire between the parties, while it has been in process, the FARC did affirm that it would no longer kidnap civilians for ransom. The general was reportedly in civilian clothes when taken, and with only a token escort. Was he seeking to negotiate with the local commanders ?

Whether this signals a new phase in the 50-year war is not known; the FARC has long been engaged in the lucrative narcotics trade, and some observers fear that some of its leadership oppose demobilization, as they are individually amassing individual fortunes, which are being banked outside the country, notably in Panama, and the remaining Caribbean tax havens.

Progress in the peace talks has been slow, and without any meaningful success, from an objective view. The FARC may be abandoning a good faith effort to brong peace to Colombia.

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