On Sept. 7, Colombian army head Gen. Mario Montoya was forced to announce that high-level government troops, including a captain and a major, were responsible for a July 31 car bombing that killed both 18 soldiers and one civilian in Bogota.
This car bombing was part of a campaign of attacks mounted just before Alvaro Uribe’s second presidential term
The intention of both the media and military campaigns was to bolster the section of the Colombian ruling class that supports Uribe. These capitalists believe that an expansion of the war against the FARC and other revolutionary forces will solve the country’s crisis in their favor.
Some Colombian military officials and government representatives have claimed innocence and vowed to take action against the offenders. But crimes like the bombing are not aberrations. Violent military actions designed to appear as FARC attacks are part of a consistent policy of the Colombian military and paramilitary forces.
Other similar acts taken by the Colombian military recently have been revealed. It was discovered that a regional head of the secret police invented assassination attempts on the president. An army colonel and his platoon also were arrested for a May ambush on an anti-narcotics unit in which 10 police died.
The main reason that these acts are coming to light now—and being reported in Colombia’s bourgeois press—is because a certain section of Colombia’s ruling class disagrees with some of Uribe’s methods.
The Colombian military has a long history of human rights abuses and close ties to right-wing death squads. Yet, the corporate propaganda machines in Colombia and the United States want us to believe that the Colombian military is a force necessary to stabilize the country. The U.S. government has given $400 billion to the Colombian government since 2000. Most has gone to bolster the military.
Meanwhile, the imperialists and their Colombian allies characterize the FARC as “narco-terrorists.” The FARC, however, is part of a militant people’s movement fighting for national liberation and against imperialist interference in Colombia.
The real terrorists are the Colombian military and paramilitary forces beholden to the capitalist ruling class and U.S. imperialism.