Colombia: April 1, 2005


The government has allowed the armed forces to create a joint staff. Many Latin American countries have avoid doing this, as a joint (all services) military staff makes it easier for the military to organize an overthrow of the government. The decision to allow a joint staff suggests that the government is getting much more serious about dealing with the FARC and other rebel groups, and trusts the troops to do it without taking over the country. The government has been making steady progress over the last two years. More rebels, and even some of the drug gangs, want to make peace. Two generations of rebellion and civil disorder has caused a popular revulsion to the rebels and gangsters. Millions of Colombians have fled the country because of the violence, and those who have not are fed up with the situation.


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