Response to "A Nobel for Santos,No Peace for Colombia" by Mary Anastasia O’Grady , WSJ Oct 10, 2016
From time immemorial, the weak and deliberate have pursued the mirage of "peace through appeasement". It never has any outcome other than war and more suffering. This delusion relies on betraying reality by believing what does not exist nor never has and to preserve the lie providing inducements so that the enemy will play along. The ploy by President Santos to impose his "peace plan" on the Colombian people is simply another grotesque example.
The marxist narco-terror group FARC are on the ropes yet live only for their dream to turn the nation into another Cuba. This theater to present these criminals as moderate reformed leaders is suicidal. Any cursory examination of statement and deed should sober reasonable people to their senses. This is the time to insist on a surrender and elimination of this weakened group and sentence their leaders to deserved justice. By pretending that Cuba and Venezuela sponsors are friends simply look at that states of tyranny.
We are proud that 83 per cent of nation abstained or said no to this dangerous nonsense. Standing firm is the only language these hoods will respect. As for Norway they once again prove their metal as useful idiot supplicants to evil.
And as for Obama we hang our head in shame that this appeaser in-chief stands with our enemies against the Colombian people at odds with the majority of Americans who still value freedom and the risk of its loss.
Robert F. Agostinelli
Palm Beach, Florida
A Nobel for Santos, No Peace for Colombia
The world needs a refresher course on FARC terrorists and their evil deeds.
President Juan Manuel Santos, after winning the Nobel Peace Prize, in Bogota, Colombia, Oct. 7.
By Mary Anastasia O’Grady
Some 83% of the Colombian electorate either abstained or voted “no” in the Oct. 2 plebiscite asking them to approve their government’s negotiated settlement with the terrorist Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) to end the insurgency. This should not have surprised anyone since polls consistently find that an overwhelming majority of Colombians oppose amnesty for war crimes and unelected congressional seats for the FARC, both of which were central to the agreement.
The victory for the “no” vote was a crushing blow to the unpopular President Juan Manuel Santos, who bet his presidency on the deal. But the matter is far from settled. The FARC will not give up its quest for power. Worse, Colombians remain under pressure from inside and outside the country to accommodate the unrepentant war criminals, who have pledged to spend “not even one day in jail.” Norway, which was one of the guarantors of the deal brokered by Cuba, is especially sore about the vote by the upstart Colombians. Ergo, the preposterous decision to give the Nobel Peace Prize to Mr. Santos last week. Perfect.
Santos allies have asked the constitutional court for a do-over of the vote, while the prize is meant to boost the president’s stock so he can try again to push through a deal. If both efforts fail he may be tempted to blame Colombia’s problems on the “no” vote. In June he seemed to be suggesting that when he issued a FARC-like threat of urban warfare if his agreement wasn’t approved. There are also expectations that he will demand tax increases soon to ward off a markdown of the government’s investment-grade bonds by credit-rating firms.
In fact, Mr. Santos has done great damage to Colombia by giving the FARC a platform for publicity and helping it shape an image makeover. For four years the world has been pounded with pictures of FARC leaders in the tropics sporting white guayabera shirts, smoking cigars, dining with Colombian officials and holding press conferences. There was even a FARC meeting with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and an afternoon catamaran ride. This nonstop circus created the illusion outside the country that these low-life thugs are legitimate political actors, and that only the unreasonable would refuse to grant them all the concessions they asked for in the interest of peace.
Restoring reality is central to rescuing Colombia. That means calling the FARC what it is.
Its leader is 57-year-old Rodrigo Londoño, alias Timochenko, a disciple of Fidel Castro. Since the age of 17 he has been committed to a mixture of FARC terrorism and cocaine trafficking. The FARC’s ideology-driven plan has been to slaughter, kidnap and extort civilians with a goal of turning the country into a replica of Communist Cuba. It has also made big profits. In 2015 Timochenko was convicted in a court in Bucaramanga for the recruitment of more than 100 minors as FARC grunts, some of whom were used for sex.
The U.S. is offering a $5 million bounty for his capture.
Here’s a small sampling of FARC deeds: In November 1990, it ambushed and gunned down six children from the town of Algeciras, Huila. The children who were part of civic youth organization helping police supervise a cycling race. In April 2002, it kidnapped 12 congressmen in a place called Valle del Cauca and five years later executed 11 of them.
In May 2002, it killed 119 people who had sought shelter in a church in the town of Bojayá during a FARC battle with paramilitary. Many of the dead were children. Also in 2002, in Meta, it murdered a 14-year-old boy and booby-trapped his corpse with bombs.
In February 2003, the FARC detonated a car bomb at Club El Nogal, a social club in Bogotá. Thirty-six people died. More than 200 were injured.
In August 2009, BBC Mundo reported that the FARC had butchered 11 people with knives in a Nariño Indian community earlier that year. A local leader told the BBC that before two pregnant women were slaughtered, their fetuses were cut from their wombs and “kicked to the dogs.”
More than 11,000 Colombians—mostly poor and rural—have been killed or injured by FARC land mines. FARC violence has displaced millions and the FARC has used thousands of child soldiers.
Nevertheless, last week the overfed terrorist Timochenko was thronged by press in Havana when he emerged to opine on the legality of the agreement. Peruvian comedian Jaime Bayly instantly grasped the absurdity of it all: “So now, not only is Timochenko not a terrorist, not only was he nearly a congressman, thanks to Santos,” Mr. Bayly quipped on his television program, “but now he’s a legal expert!”
FARC atrocities rival the barbarism of Islamic terrorists, with whom the U.S. does not contemplate negotiations. Mr. Santos treated the FARC as the moral equivalent of the democracy. Colombians do not agree. Their rejection of the deal was not driven by an unwillingness to forgive the past but by a desire to safeguard the future.
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