Merchant of Death
Money, Guns, Planes, and the Man Who Makes War Possible

Blood from Stones

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Press Releases

A New Look at the Demise of the FARC
Today the NEFA Foundation published a paper I wrote on the overall weakening of the FARC in Colombia and the likely options for its future development.

The new paper, "The FARC in Transition: The Fatal Weakening of the Hemisphere's Oldest Guerrilla Movement," is a followup to one I did analyzing the publicly released documents taken from the computer of the FARC's second in command, Raul Reyes, killed by Colombian troops in raid into neighboring Ecuador.

The paper posits that in the near term, the new FARC leadership-for the first time in its 44-year history dominated by urban, educated leaders rather than peasants lacking formal education-will try to launch a major military strike in order to prove its legitimacy to the rank and file.

In the long term, however, this group may be in a better position to negotiate an end to the conflict. However, in mid-term the FARC is likely to devolve into more isolated, criminal groups. Those commanders who control cocaine production and/or engage in kidnapping for ransom will survive in alliance with criminal groups, and those that have few outside sources of income will likely wither away. The consequences for the government will be the weakening of a major threat to the state, but increased criminal and drug trafficking activity.
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