Colombia

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Snapshot,
Eduardo J. Gómez

By some measures, the BRICS have squandered their years of plenty. Even as they poured money into building dynamic economies and gaining global power, they neglected to invest in their own populations. Another group of nations -- Mexico, Colombia, and Singapore -- has struck a better balance and, as a result, makes a better model than the BRICS for other emerging economies.

Snapshot,
Malcolm Beith

In reshaping the war on drugs to support the war on terrorism, the United States has found a better way to fight both.

Snapshot,
Anne Phillips

For a little under a year, the Colombian government and the FARC have been holding peace talks in Havana. Two Colombian government negotiators, a prominent opposition member of the Venezuelan National Assembly, a former Cuban diplomat, and two demobilized fighters offer their takes on the negotiations. Their hopefulness about the process varies, but all warn of regional instability should talks fail.

Letter From,
Lina M. Cespedes-Baez

In the United States, LGBT rights activists are debating whether same-sex marriage can most easily be won in the court of law or in the court of public opinion. That debate looks strikingly similar to the one in Colombia, which may soon become the fifth Latin American country to adopt marriage equality.

Snapshot,
Oliver Kaplan and Michael Albertus

Even as Colombian troops fight FARC rebels in the jungle, the two sides are busy negotiating a peace deal. Land reform could pave the way to a lasting settlement and drive down the country’s inequality in the process.

Essay, Nov/Dec 2012
Linda Robinson

With the rise of endless irregular wars playing out in the shadows, special operations have never been more important to U.S. national security. But policymakers and commanders focus too much on dramatic raids and high-tech drone strikes. They need to pay more attention to an even more important task these forces take on: training foreign troops.

Snapshot,
Anne Phillips

Although shooting female FARC members first during battle is not official policy, a retired Colombian colonel told the author in 2009, any sensible soldier would do so. With their "Kamikaze-like" mentality, he said, they are the deadliest combatants. This profile of one former member illustrates how the abuses women face once inside the group create such a mindset.

Snapshot,
Milburn Line

The Colombian government and FARC have agreed to stage a cease-fire in their decades-long battle next week, during which FARC plans to release hostages that it has held since 1998. Washington and Bogotá should use the opportunity to restart talks and seek a negotiated end to the insurgency.

Letter From,
Elizabeth Dickinson

In the run up to this month's elections, criminal groups have funded campaigns, intimidated voters, and even placed some of their own on the ballots. Police might be able to contain the violence that surrounds these groups, but will not be able to prevent them from taking some political power.

Essay, Jul/Aug 2010
Robert C. Bonner

Mexico is currently suffering from the same sort of drug-related violence that plagued Colombia during the 1980s. Mexico and the United States can learn a great deal from Colombia's example, including that they must build law enforcement capacity and not rely solely on military force.

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