Adam Isacson

Still trying to understand Latin America, my own country, and why so few consequences are intended. These views are not necessarily my employer’s.

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Demobilization Disarmament and Reintegration

“Guerrilla Marketing” in Colombia

Here, at the WOLA Podcast, is a conversation with Alex Fattal, whose 2018 book “Guerrilla Marketing” tells the story of the Colombian military’s employment of advertising campaigns to convince guerrillas to demobilize during the country’s armed conflict. His work explores the overlap between national security, global capitalism, and “branding.” The podcast is above, or download the […]

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An outdated interpretation of counter-terror law has painted U.S. Colombia programming into a corner. The way out is simple.

(Cross-posted from colombiapeace.org. Español) Humanicemos is a non-governmental organization dedicated to clearing landmines in Colombia. Its personnel are former combatants from the FARC guerrillas, who demobilized after the signing of a 2016 peace accord and are now embarking on new lives. It gets support from the UN and the European Union, and works with Colombian […]

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“Infographics” section added to colombiapeace.org

(Cross-posted at colombiapeace.org) We’ve just added a page with nine visualizations of data regarding peace, security, and human rights in Colombia. We’ll update these, and add more, as we make them. At the bottom of each are shortened links to the documents from which we drew the information. The current collection of infographics covers the […]

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It’s possible that 15% of the FARC have re-armed

Note as of June 5: Kyle Johnson at the International Crisis Group reminds me that several hundred of the FARC dissidents never demobilized in the first place: they “went dissident” even before the peace accord was signed. So although this is all very inexact, my estimate here should probably be closer to 10 percent of […]

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Soldiers apparently caught digging a grave for a murdered ex-FARC member

At least 128 former members of the FARC guerrillas have been killed since Colombia signed its peace accord in November 2016. That’s not even counting 7-month-old Samuel David Gonzalez Pushaina, killed in an April 15 attack on his parents, both demobilized FARC members, in La Guajira. But the case of Dimar Torres, a former FARC […]

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The past week in Colombia’s peace process

(Week of September 23-29) Presidents Duque and Trump Meet in New York Seven weeks into his presidency, Colombian President Iván Duque had his first meeting with U.S. President Donald Trump, outside the UN General Assembly meetings in New York. “It was a great meeting,” Duque later told the Washington Post’s Lally Weymouth. “We are going […]

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Disarmament, Demobilization, and LinkedIn

“I remember once, in September 2016, he started to laugh because he tried to sign up on the LinkedIn social network and when he came to the page where you have to put where you worked before, he said: ‘What the [expletive] do I put? Guerrilla leader?’ He tried to skip that part but the […]

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The past week in Colombia’s peace process

(Week of September 16-22) UNODC Publishes Its 2017 Coca Cultivation Estimate The UN Office on Drugs and Crime published an executive summary of its 2017 estimate of coca cultivation and cocaine production in Colombia. The UN agency has usually produced this document, in complete form, in June or July of each year. Among the latest […]

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The past week in Colombia’s peace process

(Week of May 6-12) ELN Talks Restart in Havana Government and ELN negotiators relaunched peace talks in Havana, Cuba on May 10, continuing a fifth round of negotiations that had begun in Quito, Ecuador on March 15. The process was interrupted on April 18 when Ecuador’s President, Lenin Moreno, suspended the country’s hosting of the […]

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Colombia’s Dumbest Trafficker

In mid-March Jeremy McDermott, a longtime investigator of organized crime in the Americas, published a study at the site of InsightCrime, the organization he co-directs. He profiled the thriving new cohort of Colombian drug traffickers, which he calls the “fourth generation” of narcos, or just “the invisibles.” With the FARC’s and AUC’s exits from the […]

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This Week in Colombia’s Peace Process

(Week of March 25-31) “Dissident” Group Kidnaps Reporters on Ecuador Side of the Border The Pacific coastal border region between Colombia and Ecuador has heated up amid an offensive launched by a fast-growing dissident group made up mainly of former FARC members and militias who have rearmed. The “Oliver Sinisterra” group, named for a former […]

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Ex-FARC reintegration is flailing in Colombia, a would-be OECD member state

The chief of the UN mission verifying parts of Colombia’s peace accord implementation has had a rare public disagreement with the Colombian government. On Tuesday, Jean Arnault urged officials to do more to keep former FARC fighters from slipping through the cracks. He pointed out some alarming things: “A very high percentage of ex-FARC members […]

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