[News] Colombia - Piedad Córdoba and Her Fight for Peace

Anti-Imperialist News news at freedomarchives.org
Tue Oct 12 12:05:39 EDT 2010

Colombia -

Piedad Córdoba and Her Fight for Peace

October 1, 2010

By Fidel Castro

Three days ago, there was news printed that the 
Attorney General of Colombia, Alejandro Ordóñez 
Maldonado had removed the prestigious Colombian 
Senator Piedad Córdoba from her post and 
disqualified her from carrying out political 
office for 18 years, because of her alleged 
promoting and collaborating with the FARC (the 
Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia).  Faced 
with such an unusual and drastic measure taken 
against an elected post in the highest 
legislative body of state, Piedad has no 
alternative other than appealing to the very 
Attorney General who produced the measures.

It was logical that such arbitrariness would 
cause a mighty rejection, expressed by a wide 
range of political personalities, among them 
former prisoners of the FARC and relatives of 
those who had been liberated, thanks to the 
senator, former presidential candidates, persons 
who had held that high office, others who were or 
still are senators or members of the legislative power.

Piedad Córdoba is an intelligent and brave 
person, a brilliant speaker, with 
well-articulated thoughts.  A few weeks ago she 
visited us in the company of other distinguished 
personalities, among which was a remarkably 
honest Jesuit priest.  They came spurred on by a 
profound desire to seek peace for their country 
and they were requesting Cuba’s collaboration, 
remembering that for years, and at the instance 
of the government of Colombia itself, we lent our 
territory and our collaboration for the meetings 
that took place in our capital between 
representatives of the Colombian government and the National Liberation Army.

However, I am not surprised by the decision taken 
by the Attorney General who obeys the official 
policy of that country which is virtually occupied by Yankee troops.

I don’t like hedging my words, and I shall say 
what I am thinking. Just one week ago, the 
general debate of the 65th Session of the United 
Nations General Assembly was about to begin.  For 
three days they had been discussing the 
embarrassing Millennium Development Goals and on 
Thursday September 23rd the General Assembly was 
commencing with the participation of the heads of 
State or senior officials of each country. The 
first to take the podium would be, as is 
customary, the UN Secretary General and 
immediately afterwards, the President of the 
United States, host country of the Organization 
and the presumed master of the world. The session 
was beginning at 9 am.  Logically, I was 
interested in hearing what the illustrious Barack 
Obama, Nobel Peace Prize laureate, would have to 
say as soon as Ban Ki-moon had concluded. I 
naively thought that CNN in Spanish or in English 
would be broadcasting Obama’s speech, generally a 
brief one. It was on that channel that I heard 
the presidential candidates debating in the city 
of Las Vegas two years earlier.

The time came, minutes went by and CNN was 
running the apparently spectacular news about the 
death of a Colombian guerrilla leader. That was 
important, but not particularly transcendental. I 
stayed interested in finding out what Obama would 
say about the extremely serious problems besetting the world.

Could it be that the state of the planet is such 
that both of them are fooling around and making 
the Assembly wait?  I asked that the other TV be 
turned on to CNN in English and there too, not 
one word about the Assembly.  So, what was CNN 
talking about?  It was broadcasting news and I 
was waiting for the news from Colombia to 
end.  But 10, 20, 30 minutes went by, and there 
was more of the same.  They were talking about 
incidents in a huge combat that was taking place, 
or had taken place, in Colombia, that the fate of 
the continent would depend on that, as the words 
and broadcasting style of the reporter were 
having us believe.  Photos and full-color film 
were being shown about the death of Víctor Julio 
Suárez Rojas, alias Jorge Briceño Suárez or “Mono 
Jojoy”.  The reporter was saying that this was 
the most severe blow for the FARC, surpassing 
both the deaths of Manuel Marulanda and Raúl 
Reyes together.  A devastating action, he was 
affirming.  It was presumed to have been a 
spectacular battle, with 30 bombers, 27 
helicopters and complete battalions of elite 
troops taking part in the fierce fighting.

Really, it was something greater than the battles 
of Carabobo, Pichincha and Ayacucho all rolled 
into one. With old experience about these 
conflicts, I couldn’t imagine such a battle in 
the wooded and remote region of Colombia. The 
mighty action was spiced up with pictures of all 
kinds, both old and new, showing the rebel 
commander.  For the CNN news editor, Marulanda’s 
successor Alfonso Cano was a university 
intellectual who had no backing from his troops; 
the real chief had died.  The FARC would have to surrender.

Let’s be frank. The news referring to the famous 
battle where the FARC commander died (the FARC is 
a Colombian revolutionary movement that came into 
being more than 50 years ago, after the death of 
Jorge Eliécer Gaitán who was assassinated by the 
oligarchy) and the removal of Piedad Córdoba are 
very far from bringing peace to Colombia; quite 
the opposite. They could accelerate the revolutionary changes in that country.

I would think that quite a few Colombian military 
are embarrassed by the grotesque versions of the 
supposed battle where Commander Jorge Briceño 
Suárez died. In the first place, there was no 
battle at all.  It was a gross and embarrassing murder.

Perhaps hampered by the part of the war with 
which the official authorities had released the 
news and other obscure versions, Admiral Edgar 
Cely stated that “Jorge Briceño, alias ‘Mono 
Jojoy’, died ‘squashed’ when [...] the building 
in which he was hiding in the jungle toppled over 
on him.”   “‘We know that he died crushed, his 
bunker falling down on top of him’, [
] ‘it’s not 
true that he had been shot in the head’.”  So 
read the statement by Caracol Radio station 
according to the American AP news agency.

They baptized the operation with the Biblical 
name of Sodom, one of the cities punished for its 
sins, victim of a rain of hell-fire and sulphur.

What is more serious is what we haven't said, 
which by now even the cat knows about, because 
the Yankees themselves have printed it.

The US government provided its ally with more 
than 30 smart bombs. There was a GPS installed 
inside the guerrilla chief’s boots. Guided by 
that device, the programmed bombs blew up in the 
encampment where Jorge Briceño was located.

Why not tell the world the truth? Why are they 
alluding to a battle that never took place?

I observed other embarrassing things on TV. The 
president of the United States warmly received 
Uribe in Washington and encouraged him to give 
classes on “democracy” at an American university.

Uribe was one of the principal creators of the 
paramilitary, whose members are responsible for 
the boom in drug trafficking and the deaths of 
tens of thousands of people.  It was Barack Obama 
with whom Uribe signed the handing over of seven 
military bases and virtually of any part of 
Colombian territory, for the installation of 
Yankee armed forces men and equipment. The 
country is full of clandestine cemeteries. 
Through Ban Ki-moon, Obama granted Uribe 
immunity, appointing him, no less, as deputy 
chairman of the commission investigating the 
attack of the fleet taking aid to Palestinians besieged in Gaza.

In the final days of his presidency, Uribe had 
already organized the operation using the GPS in 
the new boots needed by the Colombian guerrilla leader.

When the new Colombian president traveled to the 
US to speak at the General Assembly, he knew that 
the operation was underway, and when Obama 
learned of the news of the murder of the guerrilla, he warmly hugged Santos.

I wonder whether on that occasion they said 
anything at all about respecting the decision 
made by the Colombian Senate declaring Uribe’s 
authorization to establish Yankee military bases 
to be illegal. The crude murder was backed up by these bases.

I have criticized the FARC. In a Reflection I 
publicly expressed my disagreement with the 
holding of prisoners of war and the sacrifices 
meant for them by the tough conditions of life in 
the jungle. I explained the reasons and the 
experience we acquired in our struggle.

I was critical of the strategic concepts of the 
Colombian guerrilla movement.  But I never denied 
the revolutionary nature of the FARC.

I believed, and I believe, that Marulanda was one 
of the most distinguished of the Colombian and 
Latin American guerrilla fighters.  When many of 
the names of the mediocre politicians are 
forgotten, Marulanda will be acknowledged as one 
of the most honorable and firm fighters for the 
well-being of peasants, workers and the poor of Latin America.

The prestige and moral authority of Piedad Córdoba has multiplied.

Fidel Castro Ruz

From: Z Net - The Spirit Of Resistance Lives

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