By Peter Chalk, Angel Rabasa
U.S. coverage towards Colombia has been pushed to a wide volume through counter-narcotics issues, however the evolving state of affairs in that South American kingdom confronts the us with as a lot of a countrywide safeguard as a drug coverage challenge. Colombia is a geostrategically vital nation, whose trajectory will impression broader developments within the Andean sector and past. Colombian Labyrinth examines the assets of instability within the kingdom; the targets, method, strengths, and weaknesses of the govt, guerrillas, and paramilitaries and the balances between them; and the consequences of the present U.S. suggestions software. attainable eventualities and futures for Colombia are laid out, with implicaitons for either the us and neighboring international locations. The authors locate that instability in Colombia stems from the interplay and synergies of the underground drug economic climate and armed demanding situations to the state's authority.
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Additional resources for Colombian Labyrinth: The Synergy of Drugs and Insugency and Its Implications for Regional Stability
28 At the beginning of 2000 some 3000 ______________ 25Colombian armed forces briefing, March 2000. 26Rangel, pp. 61–63. 27Rangel, p. 31. 28Or, as Spencer points out, not so thinly disguised, since the consequences of not paying are death, destruction of property, or kidnapping for ransom. Spencer also 34 Colombian Labyrinth people were being held for ransom, mostly by the guerrilla groups. 29 A statistical survey of kidnappings in the 1987–1997 period shows that most of the kidnappings occurred in the agricultural and cattle-raising areas in the eastern part of the country and that the majority of the victims were cattle ranchers, farmers, and merchants, but the threat is very much felt in the cities, prompting an exodus of professional and business people.
19The operation also resulted in the indictment of Fabio Ochoa-Vasquez, one of the former leaders of the Medellín cartel, along with 30 other defendants. 20Quoted in “Drug Cartels Hold Tech Advantage,” Washington Post, November 15, 1999. ”21 This development has expanded the social base of the guerrillas and complicated counter-narcotics efforts in the area. The heroin and cocaine trade has fueled high rates of drug-related crime and violence. During the 1990s, the country was repeatedly wracked by bomb attacks, kidnappings, and shootings designed to intimidate government officials and coerce changes in policy, particularly with regard to extradition of suspected Colombian drug traffickers to the United States.
Department of State, International Narcotics Control Strategy Report, 1999; “A Muddle in the Jungle,” The Economist, March 4, 2000; “The Andean Coca Wars: A Crop That Refuses to Die,” The Economist, March 4, 2000; “Spraying Doesn’t Stem Illegal Drug Crops in Colombia,” CNN Interactive World Wide News, February 21, 2000; “Colombia Expects Peasants to Fight Cocaine Removal,” CNN Interactive World Wide News, February 4, 2000. Chapter Three ORIGINS AND DEVELOPMENT OF THE GUERRILLAS Colombia’s physical and socio-political landscape—a territory fragmented by mountain ranges and tropical forests, deficient infrastructure, lack of national integration, and the tradition of armed revolts against the central authorities—has provided fertile ground for guerrillas.