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Colombia: Paramilitaries Confess 30,000 Murders


Source : https://dofollownet.com

February 25, 2010 - Colombia is horrified after the Department of Justice published official statistics based on paramilitaries confessions: at least 30,000 people murdered and more than 2500 people "missing" (and probably dead).

Denied for years, the reality of the massacres perpetrated since the 80s by the right-wing paramilitary, mainly on civilians (peasants, indigenous people, students and workers) started to surface in 2003, after President Alvaro Uribe negociated a peace deal with the United Defense Forces of Colombia (AUC), promising a maximum sentence of 8 years to any paramilitary member who disarmed and gave full testimonies.

These numbers are just the confessed crimes, and real number of victims could be much higher, as mass graves are discovered regularly across the country. Luis Gonzalez Leon, head of the Justice and Peace Unit, who receives the confessions, thinks that the total number of paramilitary murders could reach 120,000.

When Ingrid Betancourt was kidnapped in 2002 by the left-wing Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), all the mainstream media worldwide focused on her case and depicted the FARC as monsters and terrorists, while the right-wing paramilitary groups were expelling thousands of Indians in the Sierra Nevada and burning some of their victims in furnaces.

Why were these death squads allowed to act with impunity?

The paramilitary groups emerged in the late 60s from self-defense groups and milicias armed by drug lords or local politicians. At first associated with the drug cartels, they eventually took the total control of the cocaine market, becoming an economic power with a strong hold on politic: presently, one-third of the representants elected in 2002 are under investigation for alleged ties to death squads. Most of them were supporters of now president Alvaro Uribe, including former senator Mario Uribe, his own cousin.

No wonder that Supreme Court judges investigating these cases have been tapped by the Colombian secret services and have even been accused of "bribing a paramilitary leader to implicate President Uribe in a murder scandal..

In the mean time, new death squads are forming in Medellin, Cali and caribbean coast of Colombia to replace the dissolved paramilitary groups, and the killing of opponents seems still in fashion.

Read also on Axis of Logic :

Corporate media silent on Colombian paramilitaries' confession to 30,000 murders

This article by Les Blough explains why the corporate media doesn't consider this report to be newsworthy and explores the connection between President Uribe, the drug cartels and the paramilitary.

This article in Pravda is also worth reading:

Colombian Paramilitaries Admit to 30 Thousand Murders

The Colombian prosecutor announced on Tuesday (16) impressive data on the activity of paramilitaries in the country. According to a report published by the Office of Justice and Peace Promotion, 4112 ex-combatants of the paramilitary United Self Defense Forces of Colombia (AUC) confessed to having committed 30,470 murders in a 20-year period - from mid-'80s to 2003, when it would have begun the process of demobilization.

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Created by Keiros 28 weeks 5 days ago – Made popular 28 weeks 4 days ago
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I've found a related document

Laura 28 weeks 4 days 12 hours 18 min ago

I've found a related document by Victoria Sanford that I'm sure you will find interesting.

Learning to Kill by Proxy: Colombian Paramilitaries and the Legacy of Central American Death Squads, Contras, and Civil Patrols.

Its conclusion is:

Although it is easy to blame the quotidian violence in Colombia on a drug
war and a “violent” culture, archival, field, and testimonial research in the war
zone shifts the focus to more than 50 years of paramilitarism that was
facilitated by the conflation of interests between the U.S. and Colombian
governments and their elites. Viewed in a regional context that includes
Central America, violence has been a means and end for elites who, over time,
have justified their control and use of violence with reference to a “war against
international communism,” a “war against Cuba-inspired revolutionary
insurgency,” and a “war against international drug trafficking and terrorism.”
Indeed, those with power have never viewed all lives as equal. U.S. proxy
wars in Colombia and Central America have imbued the cultural, political,
economic, and legal structures with violence, impunity, and inequality. These
are structural problems with structural solutions. In Colombia, as in Central
America, the rule of law can be established only when human rights violators
are brought to justice and the state defends instead of violates the rights of its
citizens.