Re-colonization Is Still On Schedule

http://www.zcommunications.org/re-colonization-is-still-on-schedule-by-justin-podur

For the months leading up to the April 12 coup in Venezuela, there were reports and rumours coming that a coup was imminent. In December 2001, the San Francisco Examiner ran a story by Conn Hallinan who had detected the 'scent of another coup in Venezuela' (http://www.zmag.org/content/Colombia/hallinanchavez.cfm). This was cause for alarm. John Pilger, and others, made the analogy to Chile.

The War Foretold

Most of the victims of the perpetual war in Colombia are unarmed poor civilians. For every military casualty there are six civilian deaths. In the words of one peasant leader, the Colombian war 'is not a civil war. It's a war against civilians'. Paul Valery put it another way when he said "war is a massacre between people who don't know each other, for the benefit of people who do know -but do not massacre- each other."

Non-Reformist Reparations for Africa

The arguments against reparations for Africa are in the details: How can you possibly measure, and repay, for millions and millions of shattered lives over centuries? When a figure is settled on, and paid, is it all over? Can there be adequate compensation for centuries of slavery, colonization, and destruction? Can one group of people be held accountable for what their ancestors did? Where does exploitation in the present fit in?

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A Snapshot of Colombia

There are stories that get into the news, and stories that don't. Sometimes when stories do make the news, they're provided without context. The recent near-breakdown of the peace process in Colombia is one example of a context-free story, reported in the major media. Worker's and indigenous struggles that are happening right now, in places like Cali and Cauca, are examples of stories that don't even make the news. Here we will provide some context first, and then three stories that you won't hear in the news about Colombia today.

Context: The IMF, the FTAA, and the Crisis

'We mean Dead or Dead'

'If Osama bin Laden were hiding in the jungles of Colombia instead of Afghanistan, whose help would we enlist to find him? U.S. Army Special Forces? The Colombian Army? I don't think so.

Actually, we would enlist the drug cartels. They have the three attributes we need: They know how to operate as a covert network and how to root out a competing network, such as Mr. bin Laden's. They can be bought and know how to buy others. And they understand that when we say we want someone "dead or alive" we mean "dead or dead."'

Thomas Friedman New York Times - 28 September 2001

A Way Out for Colombia

"Who in the U.S. benefits from fumigating Colombians?” the man asked me pointedly in the crowded community hall in a paramilitary-controlled part of Putumayo. Putumayo is a southern department of Colombia where the guerrilla insurgency is strong, where much coca is grown, where paramilitary massacres, disappearances, and assassinations are frequent, and where Plan Colombia is focused. It's also the focus of U.S. military assistance and fumigation programs.