Colombia: Exorcising the Past

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November24, 2006: Former AUC leaders, under pressure to confess their many sins (committed before they accepted the amnesty deal), has called for FARC and ELN leaders to join with them in a "truth commission" like operation. South Africa pioneered the "truth commission" angle, where bad guys only got amnesty if they admitted the bad things they had done in the past. Guilt and the desire for revenge is always a problem when you try to use amnesty to end civil are and insurrection. It's a particular problem in Colombia, where the violence has been going on for several generations.

November 22, 2006: The busting up of a major drug organization, with the arrest of 76 people in Italy, Spain, South America and the United States, indicates that the ringleaders were former leaders of the AUC. Most of the AUC has accepted the government amnesty and disarmed, but many of the AUC people are still involved in the cocaine business.

November 21, 2006: In Cali, three bombs went off, wounding 15 people. FARC was suspected.

November 20, 2006: Rewards (of up to $18,000) have been offered in the city of Cali, for information leading to the arrest of those responsible for recent attacks that left two policemen dead. FARC was suspected. Meanwhile, in the Capital, a Colombian journalist, working for a TV news operation owned by the Venezuelan and Cuban governments, was arrested on terrorism charges. Meanwhile, in the south, the army clashed with FARC, leaving eleven rebels and three soldiers dead.

 

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