“Radio The Voice of Resistance,” the FARC’s radio station, can be heard along the frontier between Colombia and Ecuador. The FARC’s hymn plays at 9 am, followed by FARC songs, known as vallenatos farianos, and popular Colombian songs until mid-day. It picks up again at 3 pm until 5 pm. Throughout the day, the radio hosts question the Colombian government whom they say “gives itself to the American empire,” and invoke the revolutionary principles of Simon Bolivar. Comrades send hello’s to one another. It is an outlet for Cuban singers as well as FARC talents, like Julian Conrado. Conrado strings a guitar and sings about love that flourishes in the trenches, and trenches, akin to a bird’s nest, made for savouring love.
It seems “Radio The Voice of Resistance” is meant to lure young people to join its ranks, to make it seem like the FARC is about music and dancing, and comradery with one another. There is much propaganda “transmitted from the corner of resistance…” of alleged military victories that will “reach the liberty of the people…” “from this war that bleeds our country..” “Atention! Yanquis out of South America!”
The Colombian and Ecuadorean military say coded messages are passed, and because it reaches a vulnerable population, mostly of disillusioned campesinos, it should not be disregarded. Through the radio, the guerilla befriend those they can later count on for shelter and food. It’s common to hear “FARC is your friend. Do not betray your friend.” It’s also dangerous because it instructs how to clean and fire weapons.
Here is a video that shows the studio of the FARC’s radio station, located somewhere in the jungle under a tarp tent. About four or five people run the radio station, which uses equipment from the 1990s, and they change location every three to four days. There was a three-month interruption in 2007 before it resumed again in 2008.
“Radio The Voice of Resistance” competes for listeners with “Radio Army,” run by the Colombian army, and “Noty Mil,” run by the Ecuadorean army.