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

Blood from Stones

Visit Douglas Farah's
author page at

Press Releases

Ortega Steps into the Breach with the FARC
While Venezuelan president Hugo Chávez seem content for the time being to keep is distance from his (erstwhile?) allies in Colombia, the FARC guerrillas-tied to international drug trafficking, kidnapping and assorted criminal and terrorist activities-Nicaraguan president Daniel Ortega seems to have few such qualms.

Nicargua's leading newspaper, La Prensa, is reporting that a six-member FARC delegation visited Ortega earlier this month in Managua.

The aircraft carrying the FARC delegation left from Venezuela, and arrived in time to celebrate the July 19 anniversary of the 1979 Sandinista revolution. The delegation, while keeping a low public profile, met with Ortega, who has a long-standing relationship with the organization.

The flight from Venezuela was carried out despite an Interpol alert sent to Nicaragua and other countries that the FARC delegation that was about to travel was comprised of individuals with pending international arrest warrants, was en route to Managua.

The Interpol report, as reported by Colombia's leading newspaper, El Tiempo, says in part that:

We request your help in alerting immigration posts because these members of the FARC are internationally sought and have Interpol Red Notices pending.

While the Chávez-FARC relationship is the most significant and has received the most notice, the relationship of Ortega to the FARC is long-standing and strong.

In a hand-delivered note from Raúl Reyes (the FARC's deputy commander, killed in March 2008) to Ortega from Feb. 22, 2003,
the FARC leader sends Ortega an "effusive revolutionary greeting."

The note (taken from Reyes' computer after he was killed) goes on to say that the FARC has asked for a loan from Libya, and that the Libyan authorities "explained to us that compañero Daniel Ortega was responsible for carrying out the policies of the Libyan government in the region (Latin America)."

(For a further analysis of the FARC documents, see my paper for the NEFA Foundation here.)

Ortega does not have the weapons, physical sanctuary or cash on hand to help the FARC as Chávez does. But he controls several valuable commodities-access to the Central American pipeline for illicit goods and illegal immigration that runs through Central America and across our border; access to legitimate passports and travel documents; and a safe haven from Colombian military persecution.

Ortega has a long history of aiding and abetting terrorist and criminal groups.

Just before leaving office in 1990 he granted citizenship and passports to dozens of Red Brigade and other terrorists. Those working with the Shiekh Omar Abdul Rahman (The Blind Sheikh, convicted of conspiring to blow up much of New York City) had obtained Nicaraguan passports from the first Ortega regime. And he has supported the FARC since his own revolution triumphed in 1979.

So it is not surprising that, while Chávez seeks to back away a bit, given his well-documented, close and embarrassing with the FARC, Ortega has no such qualms.

Ortega's first years as president (1979-1990) were marked by war, political repression and a lack of democratic institutions. But his world has changed, although he has apparently not. He cannot lock up opponents, censure the press and dominate or intimidate the congress. That is why, little by little, his role in supporting the FARC has become public.

It may not stop him, but it will most likely slow him down considerably.

Congressional Pressure to Pursue Bout's Extradition
The Indictment of Bashir in Sudan, and the Failure to Act
Maintained by Winter Tree Media, LLC