Colombia: June 11, 2003


 The government war against the leftist and rightist rebel organizations has the rebels on the defensive. The rebels are becoming more like the drug gangs they have been working with over the past two decades. Most Colombians now view the rebels are more gangsters than political revolutionaries. But the struggle is still a civil war, with well funded drug gangs on one side and the government and over 80 percent of the population on the other. But so great is the economic clout of the drug gangs, that they virtually control about a fifth of the population and a somewhat greater percentage of the national territory.


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