Reuters reported Friday that
Colombia's largest guerrilla force, the 17,000-member Colombian Revolutionary
Armed Forces (FARC), has warned that US soldiers will be "military targets"
if they participate in any front-line combat role in that country's decades-long
"The FARC declares United
States soldiers a military target," read the headline of a statement distributed
on the Internet by the FARC.
The FARC, peasant-based leftist
revolutionaries, have been in revolt against the central government since
1964. They currently control roughly 40% of Colombian territory,
including vast tracts where peasants grow coca. The US-sponsored
Plan Colombia, on which US taxpayers have just made an initial investment
of $1.3 billion, is designed to retake the coca-growing regions.
The US has said that it does
not plan a combat role for American troops, but the Colombian aid package
allows for as many as 500 US military advisors, and that limit can be waived
in the event of "imminent involvement" in hostilities. Other US military,
intelligence, and law enforcement personnel are also involved in the muddied
anti-drug/anti-guerrilla conflict. Five US military personnel died
last summer when the plane they were using to overfly FARC territory crashed
for unknown reasons.
"All Colombian or foreign
military personnel in combat zones will be a military target of the FARC,"
said rebel commander Andres Paris in the statement.
"At the moment FARC guerrillas
do not wish to reveal if there are concrete plans to attack United States
military bases in the country," said Paris, but several bases where US
soldiers are stationed are "very close to regions where guerrillas recently
staged intense combat that caused government forces important casualties."
The FARC has stepped up its
attacks on Colombia police and military forces since the US aid package
was passed two months ago, with a combat death toll in the hundreds since
-- END --
Issue #153, 10/2/00
Bolivia: Coca Growers Battle Government Troops as Banzer Regime Totters | Drug-Related Cases On Supreme Court Fall Docket, Tattered Fourth Amendment Again at Issue | More than 100 Leading Medical Professionals Urge US Surgeon General to Protect Doctor-Patient Relationship at Risk in Upcoming Supreme Court Case | Follow That Story: Texas Border DAs Again Tell Feds to Pay Up or They Won't Prosecute | Elections 2000:00:00 Voter Initiatives Address Medical Marijuana, Marijuana Legalization, Sentencing Reform and Asset Forfeiture | Lies, Damn Lies, and Congressman Mica: Funny Numbers on Drug Deaths and Murder | Newsbrief: Colombian Rebels Issue Threat to US Troops | Newsbrief: San Francisco Rejects Seizing Drug Buyers' Cars | Coalition for Jubilee Clemency | Media Scan -- Salon.com Scoop Charges LA Police Chief Had Evidence of Rampart Corruption a Year Before Expose, Arianna Huffington on Drug War in "Jim Crow, the Sequel" Column | Job Opportunities with Santa Cruz Needle Exchange Program | The Reformer's Calendar
Mail this article to a friend
Send us feedback on this article
This issue -- main page
This issue -- single-file printer version
Drug War Chronicle -- main page
PERMISSION to reprint or
redistribute any or all of the contents of Drug War Chronicle (formerly The Week Online with DRCNet is hereby
granted. We ask that any use of these materials include proper credit and,
where appropriate, a link to one or more of our web sites. If your
publication customarily pays for publication, DRCNet requests checks
payable to the organization. If your publication does not pay for
materials, you are free to use the materials gratis. In all cases, we
request notification for our records, including physical copies where
material has appeared in print. Contact: StoptheDrugWar.org: the Drug Reform Coordination Network,
P.O. Box 18402, Washington, DC 20036, (202) 293-8340 (voice), (202)
293-8344 (fax), e-mail [email protected]. Thank
Articles of a purely
educational nature in Drug War Chronicle appear courtesy of the DRCNet
Foundation, unless otherwise noted.