A Slap in the Face of the ‘Other Colombia’

Gabriel Ángel

No doubt Colombia is a unique and surprising country.

Only here happens what we see happening. Enough to review them a bit to conclude it. First an internal war waged for more than half a century, leaving a toll of about eight million victims, among which officially more than 220,000 killed.

Victims, by the way, that do not include the insurgents, that is to say the guerrillas, militiamen and collaborators eliminated through savage practices, tortured, disappeared, dispossessed, imprisoned by virtue of judicial assemblies. Regardless of the fact that those dead are thousands. Laws of the Republic and zealot officials were in charge to avoid it.

The long confrontation, as had been told by academics of all backgrounds and politicians of the most diverse trends, had as its origin the political exclusion of an important sector of the country. This certainty was so strong that there was no political faction leader who stopped inviting the insurgency to change its arms for votes leaving behind the war.

Even Uribe, as countless videos and recordings show. We could affirm that it was that conviction, which slowly became part of the soul of the entire nation, that moved the search for a political solution to the conflict. In fact, the talks in Havana had that content from its beginning. The guerrillas had to lay down their arms to be able to do politics.

And that was what was finally signed at the Teatro Colón. The Colombian State assumed the commitment to surround the insurgency with physical and legal guarantees, so that it would lay down arms and become a political party. The Constitutional Court determined the manner in which this Agreement should be endorsed in order to obtain full validity.

And the entire Congress of the Republic, by an overwhelming majority, acted in accordance with the Court’s decision, elevating what had been signed to a peace treaty that the State was obliged to comply with. More than once we heard the President affirming that he did not share the ideas of the FARC, but that he would give everything to make them enjoying the guarantees that will bring them to civility.

This effort earned him the Nobel Peace Prize. And earned the country the world recognition. The United Nations, the government of the United States, the European Union, CELAC, UNASUR, the Vatican, innumerable governments and humanitarian organizations from all over the planet, academics and personalities of all sections considered us an example to follow.

The FARC is obstinate in complying with their commitments. Everyone knows the sacrifices we bear with the zones and the way we honour our commitments on the abandonment of weapons and others. Without invoking the defaults and delays of the State to overshadow our seriousness. And in spite of the aggressions of all kind that we have to suffer.

That is why it lacks sense and any basis the attitude assumed by various state agencies. The Prosecutor’s Office and its obstructive and sabotaging work is almost astonishing. The Congress is discouraging. The report that is prepared in the Constitutional Court gives way to light all the alarms.

Is it a general purpose of the Establishment to prevent the FARC from making legal policy? Do they not realise that with that the State as a whole would be totally shameful, that it would eventually be delegitimised nationally and internationally? If the Agreements of Havana sought to strengthen it with a deep democratic injection, legitimising it inside and outside.

The ruling classes in Colombia are about to throw off board the nation’s greatest effort to get out of the swamp it is in. It is inconceivable that they do not respond for it. Half Colombia seriously aspired to true reconciliation, and what it is receiving is a slap in the face. No one can expect nothing to happen.

The FARC is calling on the Colombian people to speak out in order to avoid a new tragedy for the country. It is evident at this point that there is a power in the shadows that yearns to return to times of violence and horror, which little or nothing cares about the suffering of a nation. It is up to us to step out, with the voice of reason, without weapons, with the full force of peace.

Today more than ever a national clamour is required. To stop the senseless hatred, moving towards common sense, to prevent the disaster they want to lead us. It is not even about the FARC reaching power in a forthcoming electoral contest. It is simply that we can all live together in a country without violence, on basic rules of respect.

That, and nothing else was what the Agreements of Havana consecrated. Let us not allow the trouble makers to drown with their poison the beautiful dream of peace in Colombia.

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