Thursday, July 03, 2008
This was simply another unilateral prisoner release by FARC, after FARC was called upon by Chávez to release prisoners and following a FARC's track record of unconditional prisoner releases earlier this year, which was hijacked by the Colombian Military
She was being released just in time for the presidential elections and she is probably the only person in Colombia that can defeat Uribe
The Colombian military swooped in and fabricated it into a rescue operation. The complicit western media, especially CNN, is reporting that the prisoner release today was actually a rescue by the Colombia military.
Uribe's political triumph will lead stratospheric ratings both domestically and internationally.
It will lead to an even more intransigent refusal to negotiate for the release of the hostages, and insisting on a military solution including invasions of neighboring countries and assassinations of “high value targets”
It will eclipse the many scandals that Uribe's administration has been battling, such as the buying of votes for a constitutional amendment to allow for Uribe's re-election,
The Supreme Criminal Court condemned a Colombian Congress Member, Yidis Medina, for accepting a bribe.
It will eclipse the high level government connections with right-wing paramilitaries, and those many investigations connecting the Uribe regime to the paramilitaries.
It will blunt the human rights criticisms that have been an obstacle for one of Uribe's principal policy objectives: The Free Trade Agreement
It will shove the trade deal with the US through the Congress which was already boosted in part at least by the Free Trade Agreement with Canada, which was the logic of the Canadian FTA in the first place.
With the rescue of the three US contractors, the Colombian president will now have a debt to collect which will lead to more billions of US taxpayers money on top of billions already spent to the end of repression of the Colombian people
It will leave Uribe and the Colombian government with an even freer hand to repress peasant movements.
It will drowned out the voices of other leaders, including the Polo Democratico, the indigenous movement, the labor movements and outsiders like Chavez, who have long repudiated kidnapping and have worked for a fair and equitable economy for all Colombians
The fact that his regime is based on purchased votes, paramilitary violence, selling the country's assets to multinationals, will be lost in tales of the heroism of an operation that bloodlessly saved an innocent and long-suffering hostage
The only storm clouds threatening an otherwise bright political horizon appear to be emanating from the prize itself.
One hope is that Ingrid herself, like some of the hostages that were freed in rounds of negotiation through Chavez, might provide some perspective in the days to come
Betancourt has announced that she still hopes to serve her country as president.