With the eruption of COVID, South America risks reliving a history already seen, that of a new lost decade, at the origin of the worst recession of a still-young century, with devastating social and economic effects. One of the most affected nations is Colombia, a hinge country between North and South America, the driving force of the area, the heart of the geopolitical stability of Latin America. In recent weeks, the political and social climate has dramatically deteriorated. Colombia is witnessing the recurrence of scenarios of the past with the widespread violence reappearance. That has accompanied the country life since the day of its independence.
The reasons for this crisis are numerous. The implementation process of the Peace Accords signed in Cartagena in 2016 by President Manuel Santos and the commander of the FARC, Timoleón Jiménez, aka Timochenko, is dramatically bogged down, for a complex series of causes. From bureaucratic-administrative shackles to lack of funding, the firm opposition of political and social groups, headed by the former head of state Álvaro Uribe, who has always been a bitter enemy of dialogue, but above all by the unconvinced will of the government of Iván Duque Márquez to fulfill them.
An impasse invoked instrumentally, which prompted two historical leaders of the Farc, Iván Marquez and Jesus Santrich, to take up arms again, putting together a new underground army of more than three thousand men in just over a year. Thanks to the proceeds of drugs and the proceeds of the illegal minería, the new narco-Farc have re-installed in numerous departments of the country: Antioquia, Huila, Córdoba, Caquetá, Cesar, La Guajira, Arauca and Norte de Santander, giving life to a sort of new parallel state, imposing their oppressive presence on the Campesinos.
Dialogue with the country’s second historical guerrilla, the ELN (Ejercito de Liberación Nacional), was also abruptly interrupted. President Duque conditioned the guerrilla movement’s proposal to negotiate a 90-day ceasefire to reopen the peace negotiations, until the ELN gives tangible signs of its willingness to believe in the peace process, giving up the policy of kidnappings and attacks. On a more purely political level, relations between the government and the opposition, led by the former presidential candidate and former mayor of Bogotá, Gustavo Petro Urrego, are now close to definitive rupture. That following, among other things, the recent preliminary investigation launched by the General Prosecutor’s Office aimed at clarifying the general circumstances that favored the president’s success in the last elections.
The peace accords signed in Cartagena in November 2016 did not favor the hoped-for change of mentality, nor did they initiate a real process of peace and reconciliation. A new climate of fear, resignation, mistrust, and above all, public and private insecurity seems to have taken control over the country again. That is resurrecting the climax of violence, intolerance, and opposition, which saw the death in general silence of more than 442 social leaders, killed for defending their rights and opposing the diktats of the new criminal groups. The last demonstration of this renewed incandescent situation is the indiscriminate attacks against the Comisión de la Verdad and its president, the Jesuit Francisco De Roux, which aimed at discrediting and demolishing the authority and independent character of this institution.