The guerrilla and the popular power

  1. el_chavista
    Parts from the text by
    Mario Aguilera Peña
    Profesor del Departamento de Historia, Facultad de Ciencias
    Humanas, investigador Instituto de Estudios Políticos y
    Relaciones Internacionales, Universidad Nacional de Colombia

    In the Protracted People's War strategy of the FARC, in which it seems to be less noticeable the emphasis on political action within the popular
    movement, there are three stages:
    In the first stage, guerrilla warfare is dominant in seeking to build and strengthen the guerrilla forces and the "para-state embryos."

    In the second, it would go to war movement, there would be a "tactical and strategic" offensive; corps and rear areas would be created, and would be a broad use of military resources.

    In the third, a war of positions would develop, the revolutionary offensive will combine "rural insurrection with urban warfare, there will come the seizure of political power".
    The FARC would take Protracted People's War concept, linking it to the so-called "guerrilla agrarian program", discussed, expanded and updated in VII and VIII Conference, held in 1982 and 1993, respectively.

    In his agricultural plan, the FARC proposed:
    settlement of all types of "exploitation of the land behind, systems of sharecropping and leasing in kind and in cash "

    the confiscation of land from large landowners and "imperialist companies";

    pressure on the owners of the properties subject to the reform so that they leave, promoting the direct occupation of land;

    the destruction of the documents showing debts of farmers to the Caja Agraria

    and the relocation of production collectives.
    The idea, apparently, had varying degrees of practical development in parts of Urabá, Middle Magdalena, Meta, Caquetá, Vichada and Putumayo.

    The new joint of armed apparats to rural communities, and
    interest in developing embryos of organizations and people power, derived in large part from the Central American revolutionary experiences.

    Since the mid-eighties, the guerrillas began to lose influence in the
    traditional forms of urban social organization, id est, in trade unions,
    student organizations and youth groups in some of the neighborhoods.

    His political and social action is cut further by the crisis of socialism that in varying degrees affects the guerrillas and the left in general. In this scenario adds that his attempts to form popular fronts were unsuccessful or were exterminated by the "dirty war", as evidenced by the genocide against the Patriotic Union between 1985-2004.

    Against this background, the insurgency appears to abandon the policy objectives in the national order to focus on local power struggles. For 1994, the municipalization of the guerrillas can be seen quantitatively by their presence in more than 600 municipios.

    Guerrilla withdrawal: extinction of the popular power?

    The action of the paramilitaries in areas of guerrilla presence or influence, and the reorganization or strengthening of the military since 1998, led to the withdrawal of the guerrillas to their rear areas. Since the eighties the paramilitaries deployed several strategies to counter the growing guerrilla activity.

    In the military, the paramilitaries achieved significant growth and rapid territorial expansion because of its growing links with the drug economy and the limited concern of the state to halt its development.

    The dispute with the guerrillas was not in the path of military confrontation but by the targeted killing of suspected militants or sympathizers of the insurgency, it was also conducted by the closure of strategic corridors which cuts the chances of military maneuver and raising.

    The guerrillas lost ground not only by the significant expansion of paramilitary between the government of Pastrana and Uribe Velez, but also by the strengthening of the regular armed forces benefited since 1998 by U.S. military aid through Plan Colombia ...

    The guerrillas stopped their territorial expansion, fell back on their rear areas, taking care to keep open strategic corridors. What is seen in this fold, with respect to the FARC, is that, after having taken steps toward an offensive in the war phase of movement, has had to return or did return to a model of war that they thought they had overcome and which focused on irregular warfare defense (Eduardo Pizarro León-Gómez, "The FARC-EP: strategic withdrawal, weakening or turning point ?")...

    As a conclusion:

    In the midst of conflict, the embryo of popular power has remained stagnant, crimped to a guerrilla war phase, thus being exposed to the paramilitary atrocities and state repression. Its pockets, if any have survived violence and displacement, they are likely to have been legally covered or made part of the underground political apparatus of the insurgency. Going forward it is likely that these small organizations and political capitals, are critical, either to resume a new stage of war or to become the social base of a political movement arising from an eventual peace process.
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