Skip to comments.Colombian Rebels Plan Strike in U.S. -Tape
Posted on 09/25/2001 4:07:01 AM PDT by Movemout
BOGOTA, Colombia (Reuters) - A Colombian guerrilla leader has spoken of a plan to attack U.S. interests both here and in the United States in a tape recording that Colombian security sources confirmed on Monday was the voice of the military commander of the Marxist FARC rebels.
Security sources provided Reuters with a copy of the tape which they said contained a message broadcast by Jorge Briceno -- alias ``Mono Jojoy'' -- to his top lieutenants some time during the past month.
``To combat them wherever they may be, until we get to their own territory, to make them feel the pain which they have inflicted on other peoples,'' said the voice -- which Reuters correspondents recognized as strongly resembling Briceno's.
``To take away their economic resources from them by any means in order to defeat them. Reach out to North Americans who are unhappy and organize them. Reach out to black North Americans and make them see how they are discriminated against,'' the voice went on.
The speech, which apparently referred to the formation of a an Americas-wide ``anti-imperialist'' front, made no mention of what was meant by ``combat'' or of when any eventual attacks could be carried out.
With an estimated 17,000 fighters, the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia -- known by the Spanish initials FARC -- is the largest Marxist rebel force fighting in Colombia's 37-year old war, which has claimed 40,000 lives in the past decade.
Like the smaller, Cuban-inspired National Liberation Army, or ELN, and the far-right paramilitary AUC, the FARC is classified by the U.S. government as a ``terrorist'' group.
Colombia's armed forces have been keen to compare their struggle against the FARC with the U.S. campaign against those responsible for carrying out the Sept. 11 terror attacks on New York and Washington.
FARC HAS THREATENED U.S. ATTACKS BEFORE
Human rights groups condemn the FARC for kidnapping hundreds of people a year to raise ransom money, staging extra-judicial ``trials'' and murdering opponents. Rebel attacks on village police stations have also killed hundreds of civilian bystanders.
The FARC has threatened attacks against U.S. military personnel in the past, in response to Washington's provision of about $1 billion in mainly military aid for President Andres Pastrana's ``Plan Colombia'' anti-cocaine offensive.
The United States broke off tentative contacts with the FARC aimed at fostering peace in 1999 when guerrillas killed three U.S. Native American rights activists they accused of being CIA (news - web sites) spies. They later said they had made a mistake.
U.S. firms, like Colombian companies, have also been FARC targets -- notably Occidental Petroleum which runs an oil pipeline blown up regularly by the rebels.
The United States expressed fresh irritation in August when the Colombian army arrested three alleged Irish Republican Army (news - web sites) guerrillas suspected of giving the FARC lessons in explosives.
The Colombian rebels do not have a history of indiscriminately targeting civilians and said in a recent communique that they abhorred the recent terror attacks in the United States. They added that the United States had brought the attacks upon itself with its ``imperialist'' policies.
The FARC has never operated outside Colombia, except for brief forays -- often kidnapping and cattle-rustling -- on the wild borders with Venezuela and Ecuador.
The guerrilla army has been involved in difficult peace talks with the government for almost three years.
Pastrana is widely expected to extend the FARC's use of a demilitarized enclave as big as Switzerland in southern Colombia by an Oct. 6 deadline.
Besides, the FARC also is running drugs. Castano takes drug money, but only because he wants to leave honest people out of this fight. He's 100% on our side, and we ought to back him to the hilt.
I suspect the real problem is the so-called "Human-Rights" idiots, as usual, who are blind to the atrocities of Leftist movements, while whining and pining over killings of guerrillas as civilians. And they must be civilians, since they don't wear have rank, serial number and unit stitched onto their clothing. (Sarcasm/off)
Bring it on, Jorge.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.