1. I wish more of you all spoke Spanish, because you should really listen to what Gustavo Petro is saying in his speeches. Not that it’s anything super radical in terms of actual political goals, but the way he conceptualizes the popular subject is incredibly refreshing for those of us who spend too much time on Tumblr.

    Additionally: Tumblr SJ, where are you? Here’s a guy who is calling for the convocation of a political movement of the country’s most excluded, a unified front of Afro-Colombians, women from the poor barrios, indigenous people, campesinos, sexodiversas, workers, environmentalists, marginalized youth, ALL TOGETHER to create a new kind of society in Colombia.

    WHY. ARE. YOU. NOT. TALKING. ABOUT. THIS.

     

  2. Brief description of what’s happening in Colombia. There are three main points:

    1. The FARC has reached some critical agreements in peace negotiations which, if actually applied, would create big changes to the political landscape in the country, opening up opportunities for the Left which haven’t existed in over 20 years.
    2. This past August, the campesinos of Colombia undertook a national strike which shut down highways and resulted in massive demonstrations across the country. Popular support for this movement—which demanded the transformation of the terrible living conditions in the Colombian countryside as a result of neoliberal economic policies and state repression—was very high. The state backtracked on its promises to the agrarian movement, and no solutions have been provided to the problems which spawned the strike in the first place.
    3. Just a few days ago, the state Attorney General Alejandro Ordóñez, a hardcore right-winger allied to former President Alvaro Uribe, removed left-wing Bogotá mayor Gustavo Petro from office and banned him from public service for 15 years, all because he gave the city’s trash collection services contract to a state company instead of offering it to private corporations.

    Petro is a former guerrilla of the M-19, which laid down arms in 1990 but, along with the Unión Patriótica (a legal political movement of the FARC, Communist Party, and others formed in the 80s while the guerrillas were negotiating a peace deal with the government), was politically decimated by paramilitary and state violence against its members. Between 1985-2000, thousands of members of these organizations were murdered, including two presidential candidates of the UP and the M-19’s very popular leader, Carlos Pizarro, who would have probably won the 1990 election. Petro remembers this all too well.

    Petro’s removal destabilizes the peace process with the FARC, whose demobilization is based on the conditions that the state provide guarantees of participation and inclusion to popular left-wing forces. The FARC obviously won’t demobilize if the state shows that it will prevent leftists from holding any positions of power, or that it will repress popular mobilizations. There are huge numbers of people rallying in Bogotá’s Bolívar Plaza right now against the mayoral coup, and there are solidarity mobilizations occurring throughout the country.

    The United States props up the extraordinarily violent establishment in Colombia. It’s important that we stand with our sisters and brothers in the streets of Bogotá, Barranquilla, Medellín, Bucaramanga, Popoyán, Cúcuta, and elsewhere demanding a new Colombia. 

     

  3. "Creo que el protagonista deja de ser el alcalde y empieza a ser el pueblo." Con estas palabras el Alcalde Mayor de Bogotá, el izquierdista Gustavo Petro, comenzó su discurso en el segundo día de movilización popular en la Plaza de Bolívar, en contra de su destitución e inhabilitación por el Procurador General Alejandro Ordóñez, reaccionario sumamente vinculado con la ultraderecha colombiana.

    Solidaridad con el pueblo bogotano!

    #PaFueraProcuradorOrdoñez

     
  4. Habla Petro en la Plaza Bolívar. #PaFueraProcuradorOrdonez

     
     

  5. The Mayoral Coup in Bogotá

    The Attorney General of Colombia Alejandro Ordóñez has removed Bogotá’s leftist mayor Gustavo Petro from office, and banned him from holding political office again for 15 years. The reason? Petro decided to revamp the city’s trash collection system, and signed into law that a state owned utilities company would be the provider of the service. Ordóñez claims that this move violates the law of free economic competition, because Petro did not give a private corporation the right to compete for the contract. That’s it.

    Some are speculating that this move is related to the current peace negotiations between the Colombian government and the FARC, which may soon result in a peace treaty that sees the FARC disarm and become a legal political organization. Petro, who is no sympathizer of the FARC but was himself a guerrilla in the M-19 (disbanded in 1990) and has ideas well to the left of Colombia’s institutionalized right-wing, is seen as a possible candidate for the new matrix of legal leftist forces in a future presidential election. Because the mayorship of Bogotá is “a step away from the presidency,” it is possible that the right-wing is attempting to stave off a possible threat to its rule from a post-FARC left united under Petro.

     
  6. Bogotá, Colombia — Dec. 9th, 2013

    A large crowd occupied the Plaza Bolívar today in protest of the Attorney General’s decision to oust center-left mayor Gustavo Petro from office, and ban him from holding office for 15 years. Petro, a former guerrilla of the M-19 (which demobilized in 1990 and has since been dissolved), is being charged with the mismanagement of the city’s trash collection, with opponents claiming that his decision to offer the contract to a state company was “unfair” to private corporations. #DefiendeLaDemocracia

     

  7. Diez propuestas mínimas de las FARC-EP para el reconocimiento político y de todos los derechos del campesinado y definición de sus territorios

    Fragmento del documento Propuesto de paz, de las Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia - Ejército del Pueblo.

    Con el propósito de contribuir al reconocimiento político y de todos los derechos del campesinado se formulan las siguientes diez propuestas:

    1. Reconocimiento político del campesinado y de todos sus derechos.
    2. Constitucionalización de la figura del territorio campesino.
    3. Autonomía política, administrativa, económica, social, ambiental y cultural, y en la administración de justicia.
    4. Carácter estratégico en la protección de ecosistemas frágiles, bosques, biodiversidad y fuentes de agua, para la sostenibilidad socio-ambiental en general, y para la soberanía alimentaria.
    5. Financiación estatal mediante transferencias de origen constitucional y recursos del presupuesto.
    6. Dotación con medios de producción, asistencia técnica, crédito, infraestructura física y social.
    7. Reconocimiento y fortalecimiento de las Zonas de Reserva Campesina.
    8. Creación de Zonas de producción campesina de alimentos.
    9. Procesamiento industrial, encadenamientos productivos, inserciones en el mercado nacional y en el mercado mundial.
    10. Protecciones especiales de los territorios campesinos.
     

  8.  
  9. "Let us not bother thinking about whether the soul can die or not, when we know that hunger kills." -Camilo Torres, Colombian communist priest

    Design by Natalio Perez (selucha.tumblr.com)

     
  10. Just made this, a homage to Latin American liberation theology. Aníbal Sampayo is a well-known Uruguayan leftist musician, best known for his revolutionary folk songs in the 60s-80s. This poem can be found on his 1971 album, Hacia la Aurora. Camilo Torres, much more widely known, was a Catholic priest in Colombia who went underground and joined the ELN, one of Colombia’s guerrilla armies; he was killed in battle shortly thereafter, but became somewhat of a legend among Catholic radicals in the region.

     

  11. i’m laughing at the similarities between the US tea party and the venezuelan right-wing, who are also trying to “prove” that nicolas maduro was actually born in colombia and therefore not a legitimate president… pshhh… escuálidos sinvergüenzas!

     
  12. La lora proletaria by Jorge Velosa (this version sung by Enrique Ballesté) is a Colombian folk protest song from the 1970s condemning exploitation and state repression. The song revolves around a “working-class parrot” that attempts to instigate rebellion by telling people that, united, they can defeat their oppressors. The military kills the parrot for its subversion, and the parrot dies repeating the phrase “why do you let yourselves be screwed over?”

    There was once a parrot,
    and that parrot said to me
    "are they still screwing you over?"
    and I said “yes, still.”

    That parrot said to me,
    "why do you let them do it?
    if you come together to fight them,
    nobody can stop you.”



    Someone who heard the shots
    said that it was a soldier
    one of the ones they are paying
    to come and kill us

    And the parrot, seeing itself injured,
    said to the soldier
    "If you are one of the people,
    why are you on the other side?”

     
     

  13. An interview I conducted with a comrade in Colombia, check it out!

     
  14. A design I put together last night of Piedad Córdoba from Colombia, just for practice.

     
  15. Marta Gómez de Colombia canta a Federico García Lorca en su álbum El corazón y el sombrero.

    ¡Ay qué trabajo me cuesta 
    quererte como te quiero! 

    Por tu amor me duele el aire, 
    el corazón 
    y el sombrero. 

    ¿Quién me compraría a mí 
    este cintillo que tengo 
    y esta tristeza de hilo 
    blanco, para hacer pañuelos? 

    ¡Ay qué trabajo me cuesta 
    quererte como te quiero!