01 March 2016

Colombia's challenging peace process with FARC

Al Jazeera English

Recently on Twitter, Alvaro Uribe, the Colombian President until 2010, took it upon himself to tweet the following line in English: "In Colombia human rights is an exclusive privilege of leftist people."
Never mind that the thousands of "leftist" and other kinds of people summarily executed on Uribe's watch were not in possession of a detectable abundance of human rights.
A pillar of Uribe's deplorable legacy, the so-called "false positives" scandal, saw the Colombian military murder an untold number of civilians and dress the corpses up as guerrillas belonging to the leftist Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC).
Latin America's longest-running civil war has left some quarter of a million people dead and displaced millions more.
It's not clear what precise incident prompted Uribe's Twitter rumination, but a common tactic of the right-wing Colombian elite - and their international allies - has been to accuse opponents of invoking the human rights discourse to get away with terrorism.
Such allegations naturally obscure the role the Colombian state itself has played in terrorising the population.
A 2014 Al Jazeera documentary features testimony by a former female paramilitary commander who describes collaborative village massacres by the army and paramilitary units - the purpose of the latter being to partially conceal government involvement in mass slaughter: "We killed 15-year-olds … and 16, 20 and 50-year-olds." READ MORE AT AL JAZEERA ENGLISH.