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Other research product . 2022

Desencanto: Land Privatization and Counterinsurgency. The Colombian Armed Conflict from an Alternative Perspective

Godoy, Samuel;
Open Access
Published: 01 Jan 2022
Publisher: eScholarship, University of California
Country: United States
The South American country of Colombia has received much attention in the last decade. This is due to successes in various global stages. Recently, the entertainment giant, Disney, even made a movie about the country. However, not much attention has been given to the harsh reality of the country, and its tumultuous history. For much of the 20th and 21st centuries, the country has been in a deep internal armed conflict that has ravaged through the countryside and has been the cause of many of today’s problems in the densely populated urban areas. Traditionally, the armed conflict has been interpreted as the result of the war being carried out by insurgent guerrillas against the state. The official government explanation has historically relied on positioning itself as a victim in a conflict that began in the 1960s with the creation of campesino guerrillas, especially the FARC-EP. Proper research into the history of the country and its present, reveals a much more complex reality. The purpose of this research is to analyze the background of the armed conflict and its continuing patterns in order to understand the systemic causes that led to the prolongation of the conflict and its intensification in the 1980s through the early 2000s. This research interprets the creation of guerrillas as a response to the violent repression being felt by Colombia’s subaltern classes since the beginning of the 20th century. It also reinterprets the role of the state, as it views the modern capitalist state as the amalgamation of power of the political and economic elite. Thus, the main purpose of this investigation is to trace the role of the Colombian state, and therefore its ruling classes, in the conflict.

History, Latin American studies, Latin American history, armed conflict, colombia, guerrilla, paramilitary, political violence

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