The past fifty years in Colombia have been dominated by the struggle between the government and an organization named Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) or better known as the FARC. Founded in 1964 the FARC was created as a military wing of the Colombian Communist Party to overthrow the government and prevent them from industrializing Colombia (“Revolutionary”). The Colombian government planned to industrialize the country and rebuild them after a bloody civil war that had just ended called La Violencia(“Profile”).La Violencia was a civil war, fought mainly in the rural parts between the liberal and conservative parties. This civil war began with the assassination of Jorge Eliecer Gaitán, a liberal party leader(Rafael de la Cova, Antonio).The FARC was originally ruled by a secretariat system led by Manuel Marulanda and six others, including senior military commander Jorge Briceno (Zalman). Manuel Marulanda was a former member of the Colombian Communist Party who created the FARC when the government helped the large landowners invest in and use peasant land(“Profile”). He had large support from peasants, intellectuals and students because they were the ones who were being affected by the government’s decisions(Zalman). In 2001, it was estimated that the FARC had about 16,000 members in their organization. (“Revolutionary”) FARC is considered the largest Marxist insurgency. Their goals were originally to help the peasants by seizing power through an armed revolution. After this they wanted to create a new government based off of the Marxist- Leninist theory of redistribution of wealth among the country (Zalman). This original FARC group with good intentions has evolved into a terrorist group that has consumed hundreds of thousands of lives. The FARC has evolved into something very different from what it began as, they have become classified as a terrorist organization by the United States and Europe.(“Revolutionary”) In the beginning people were joining the FARC to fight for the cause but now people are no longer joining for those reasons but have joined as a means of finding work. The FARC also gains members for their organization through kidnapping and forcing children to join. This is frequently reported by the website “Impunity Watch”. ”Two child soldiers stated that in the past two months, roughly 15 children between the ages of 12 and 15 years old have been forcefully recruited. Child soldiers are sometimes used in armed combat but more commonly, they act as FARC’s transporters for explosives, rations and anti-personnel mines.”(Gaebler, Emilee) The FARC is also well known for their illegal drug trade. A statistic from PBS shows that Colombia’s civil Warriors expresses that Colombia supplies roughly 800 tons of cocaine to the world markets yearly which makes up almost 80% of the world’s cocaine supply. As well as a rising share of the world’s heroin supply.(“Colombia’s Civil”)The FARC is believed by knowledgeable Colombians to take in as much as $2 million a day in illicit drug proceeds.(“Revolutionary”) The FARC is also well known for using criminal acts in order to attain power and wealth. Examples of the FARC crimes are highlighted in an article on the FARC terrorism is a few of their more notable attacks: “July 17, 2008: Eight civilians were kidnapped and held for a week before being released. FARC is estimated to be holding about 800 hostages. April 15, 2005: A cylinder gas bomb attack killed a child and injured over twenty civilians in the town of Toribio. The attack was part of FARC's ongoing conflict with men for support of right-wing paramilitaries.”(Zalman) FARC has evolved into a ruthless terrorist organization that has caused a disturbance in the government. FARC has frequently been accused of causing unnecessary civilian deaths. June 3, 2004: 34 coca farmers were found bound and shot. FARC took responsibility, and said they had killed the...
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