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Peace Agreement with FARC: Colombia vs. the Irresponsible International Community

By: Carlos Sabino - @Sabino2324 - Oct 26, 2016, 12:38 am
(Publimetro) farc
Representatives of the United Nations and several countries expressed their agreement with the commitments that President Juan Manuel Santos had acquired with the FARC.(Publimetro)

The result of the Colombian referendum held on October 2, 2016 not only has shown that a majority is against treating the FARC as winners. It has also demonstrated that the “international community” is completely alienated from what Latin Americans think and feel.

A narrow majority of the Colombian voters aswered “NO,” arguing that the country’s constitution must be respected, and that the narco-guerrillas have no right to change it to their liking. FARC have not only been defeated on the battlefield, but also the Colombian people — who they claim to represent — have shown for decades that they do not want a socialist model for the nation, and that they do not accept the violence with which the guerrilla have wanted to impose their political proposals.

But what surprises and concerns me the most is that representatives of the United Nations and several countries expressed their agreement with the commitments that President Juan Manuel Santos had acquired with the FARC, ignoring the citizens. From the Secretary General of the United Nations to the king of Spain, passing through the government of the United States, they all enthusiastically supported these peace accords that granted the guerrillas seats they have not won in Congress, and a plan for the country that most Colombians do not share.

And I say this even though the “NO” won by a narrow margin, because we know that many Colombians voted affirmatively although they were against the provisions of the agreements. They wanted peace — as everybody does —, and even though they knew the accords gave undue power to the guerrillas, they accepted these concessions as part of the sacrifices that had to be done to end Colombia’s devastating internal conflict.

This ignorance about what Latin America is facing is not only shown in this case, which can be understood as a search for peace at any price. We can see it as well in the many statements and interventions regarding us that members of international organizations, European and US ambassadors make irresponsibly.

The latter have their own agenda and their own objectives, which do not match our main needs. They insist on the fight against inequality as a first step, since they attribute to it the lack of economic growth we need, when our main problem is actually the lack of security and the excess of regulations that our governments impose to us.

They insist on raising taxes as a magic poison to cure all our problems, when in fact, the most dynamic part of the population already pays taxes that are as high as those of the developed world. Moreover, they do not realize that it is the small formal sector which is keeping afloat asome states that do little to encourage economic growth.

Even worse, anchored in a vision of what Latin America was 40 or 50 years ago, members of these international bodies have managed to virtually eliminate our armies, and impose misjudgments about the officers who fought against communist guerrillas. They assume that the insurgents who tried to lead us to a system that we did not want to embrace, are the ones who were right in the Colombian conflicts.

These people did not want communism for their countries, but with a a colonialist mentality, they still think that Marxist socialism was — and is — the solution for our nations.

The worst is that, whereas they oppose old dictatorships, they close their eyes and almost uncomplainingly accept current dictatorships, such as those of Venezuela or Nicaragua. They accept the despotic Castro brothers in Cuba, but get fussy when any of our countries tries to prevent new dictators (who often use a progressive phraseology) from taking power.

These officials with huge salaries, who do not pay taxes, prescribe and recommend from their jobs at UNDP, FAO, UNESCO, and UNICEF, progressive “solutions” trying to lead us to a socialist model we do not have chosen. The worst thing is that some ambassadors, including several in Guatemala, shamelessly intervene in our internal affairs, and even support those who tried to pass over the Constitution during the Central American nation’s crisis last year.

For all these reasons I am glad for Colombia and the result of their referendum. I dare to say that it is better not to listen to these diplomats and bureaucrats who do not understand our problems, and aim to make us follow a path that we do not want.

Carlos Sabino Carlos Sabino

Sociologist, writer, and university professor, Sabino is director of the masters and doctoral programs in history at the University of Francisco Marroquín, Guatemala. Follow him @Sabino2324