For John, BLUF: We need to focus more on Latin America.
This longish passage is from a member of the Armed Forces of the South American nation of Columbia. He is talking about the insurgency situation in not just his nation, but in his region of South America, and beyond. It came in response to someone's comment that "the Colombians are now exporters of COIN, and have advisors in Central American countries and are helping the Mexicans train up their cops and pilots." (The comment was to show that Columbia is a great example of how the right kind of partnership can pay back many times over.)
I would like to contribute with my point of view regarding the analysis for the purpose of clarifying that according to the "FARC's own statutes" they do not call themselves a military organization but more precisely a "Politico-Military" organization, aligned with the revolutionary theories of popular, prolonged warfare espoused and promulgated in communist China. Therefore, as I understand it, it is not relevant to allude to the reduction of armed members (formal combatants) when the clandestine structure is strengthened, at its best expression and at levels, to a category that no one could categorize.I would like to highlight his comment:
As I see it, at this time the FARC's strength is not, in any way, of a military nature, but rests on its essence or what they themselves call "politics" that translated to the reality is nothing more than clandestine crime materialized in what I have denominated as "the social sentiment of the population" which from an International Human Rights' perspective, is the modern version of SLAVERY. This requires of a prolonged effort, not only of a military nature, but an integrated effort that includes judicial and law enforcement actors, among others. But this also requires the renovation of the State's strategy. On the other hand, not all of the funding/financing of the terrorists is in the country since they are involved and lead in transnational criminal activities, as in the cases of Mexico, Central America, and some countries in the Southern hemisphere.
It is important and interesting to highlight, as you do, the accomplishments made in the military realm, but I recommend not to ignore the variables of the terrorist concept denominated "clandestine" or incorrectly denominated by them as "political", remember that from a revolutionary warfare's theoretical perspective, the ratio is clear; 20% of their effort is military and 80% is "clandestine" or incorrectly called "political".
The aforementioned strengthens your criterion of not to stop supporting the efforts in Colombia (from another perspective) until all necessary objectives have been well established in an integrated fashion in order to flank and undermine the FARC.
...nothing more than clandestine crime materialized in what I have denominated as "the social sentiment of the population" which from an International Human Rights' perspective, is the modern version of SLAVERY.We are seeing this kind of clandestine crime materialize in Mexico, and it is seeping over the border into the Southwestern United States. Where there are large criminal enterprises it is a form of oppression, a form of slavery for the ordinary citizens. Worse, some of them, like Sonderkommandos, actively participate in the enslavement of their fellow citizens.
Two key points out of this is that, notwithstanding our success in partnering with Columbia, we have two key failings in our regional strategy:
- Our interagency response to criminal insurgency, and
- Our inability to respond to the Bolivarian clandestine campaigns in the region.
The Bolivarian issue is a serious problem. How do we as the US respond when a subversive movement infiltrates the democratic system, takes power, and then refuses to leave power through the corruption of the liberal democratic checks and balances. Professor Max Manwaring believes this is a combination of Lenin, Gramsci, and Verstrynge at work...how do we counteract this activity?
We need to be looking South, and not just at Mexico. Joe Kennedy may like Hugo Chavez, but I am not sure the President of Venezuela is a through and through liberal, one who believes in the People making the choices, vice the strong man, Caudillo. Just read the link for Jorge Verstrynge, above.
Regards — Cliff