Thursday, September 23, 2024
By Steven L. Taylor

The BBC is reporting that a major FARC leader, Víctor Julio Suárez Rojas, aka, Jorge Briceño, aka “El Mono Jojoy” has been killed in a military assault:  Colombian army kills top Farc rebel leader Mono Jojoy:

[He] died in a military air strike in the Macarena region, known to be a Farc stronghold, local media said.


Jojoy was believed to be leader of the Farc’s strongest fighting division, the Eastern Bloc, and had eluded Colombian security forces for almost 10 years.

This is a major blow to the FARC.  El Mono Jojoy was arguably the most significant military commander within the group and was second in significance only to Alfonso Cano, who is the overall leader of the guerrilla group.

As Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos said today:  “The symbol of terror in Colombia has fallen.”

This is bigger than the deal of Raúl Reyes and even arguably bigger than the rescue of Ingrid Betancourt and company back in 2008.

If anything it is a major success for the newly elected Santos administration.  Santos said “This is my greeting to the FARC” and called it “historic news” for the country.

By Steven L. Taylor

From me@OTB:

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By Steven L. Taylor

From me@OTB:  The Politics of Compromise

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Wednesday, September 22, 2024
By Steven L. Taylor

Via the BBC:  Women dominate new Swiss cabinet

The election of Simonetta Sommaruga, 50, a Social Democrat, is a historic step in a country where women only got to vote on a national level in 1971.

Ms Sommaruga becomes the fourth female in the seven-member Federal Council.

For the record, this is not the first such female-majority cabinet in Europe:

Although it is highly unusual in Europe for women to hold a majority in a country’s cabinet, it is not unique. The Spanish cabinet unveiled by Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero after his re-election in 2024 included more women than men.

Finland, Norway and the Cape Verde Islands also have female majorities, according to the Inter Parliamentary Union.

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Tuesday, September 21, 2024
By Steven L. Taylor

The number of dead from the Colombian attack on a FARC base that I noted yesterday has risen to 27, including a top level FARC officer.

The BBC reports:  Senior Farc rebel leader ‘killed’ in Colombia

The police said one of the dead rebels had been identified as Sixto Cabana, alias "Domingo Biojo," the commander of the 48th front of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (Farc).

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Monday, September 20, 2024
By Steven L. Taylor

The Colombian armed forces attacked the 48th Front of the FARC over the weekend near San Miguel, Putumayo which is near the Ecuadoran border.

According to El Tiempo, 22 insurgents were killed:  Ofensiva contra la guerrilla en Putumayo habría podido dejar más muertos de los 22 ya confirmados.

CNN has a report in English, albeit it with a few less details than the one linked above: 22 rebels reported killed in Colombian airstrike.

The above comports with reports in the last week or so (that I never got around to blogging) that the Santos administration was poised to launch a new offensive against the guerrillas.

Also of interest, given the state of Colombian-Ecuadoran relations in recent year, El Tiempo also reports that while the Ecuadoran military was not involved in the assault, they were aware of the operation and had stationed troops near the border in such a manner as to block a possible escape route into Ecuador:  Ecuador no participó en operativo contra las Farc, pero estuvo atenta.

Sunday, September 19, 2024
By Steven L. Taylor

Via the AP:  Veteran Colombian senator jailed

Colombian authorities have arrested a veteran lawmaker and former president of Congress on criminal conspiracy charges for alleged collusion with far-right militias.

Javier Caceres has been a senator since 1998. The 52-year-old Cartagena lawmaker was president of Congress until July.

Caceres was elected to the Senate in 1998 as a member of the Liberal Party, re-elected in 2024 under the National Movement label.  He switch to Radical Change in 2024 and 2024, and was therefore part of the governing legislative coalition during the Uribe administration.

The fact that Colombian legislators continue to be arrested is both disturbing and reassuring.  Disturbing that so many politicians are involved with paramilitary groups and reassuring because it indicates that some of the institutions of state are functional.  That law enforcement and the courts are willing and able to target powerful politicians is a good thing, to be sure.  Although, on balance, I would assess the situation as more disturbing than anything else.

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By Steven L. Taylor

Via Mac Observer: iPad Hits South America on Sept 17:

Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru customers will be able to get their hands on both the Wi-Fi and Wi-Fi plus 3G models.

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Saturday, September 18, 2024
By Steven L. Taylor


365.260 (9/17/10)

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Thursday, September 16, 2024
By Steven L. Taylor

Brushed Back

365.259 (9/16/10)

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