Posted by: Paula Delgado-Kling | August 23, 2011

Former ELN Commander asks his former group for peace

Former ELN Commander “Francisco Galán” (born Gerardo Bermúdez) wrote a letter to his former ELN rebel comrades in which, in short, he asked them, When is the end of the war?

Galán said he was moved by photos of his former companions. “I saw them old, growing moss, absent and very distant from this country.” (Well said.)

A few quotes from Galán’s letter:

“… Do not propose any peace process if you are not prepared to abandon the war, if you have not yet taken a collective decision as an organization to look for the end of the conflict. The country will not tolerate more failures in the subject of peace.”

“Resistance is a costume of defeat, it is better to assume with dignity how best to end the conflict.”

“Do not wait for a better government.”

“I believe President Santos has the will to work toward a peaceful ending, … he wants to avoid dispersion and personal protagonisms and he is attentive to your will toward peace. … Vice-president Angelino Garzón on many occassions has expressed his call for peace and conciliation, the Senator Roy Barreras, and the Senate Peace Comission are working together with many other people from social organizations on a Legal Framework for Peace with a wide inclusive frame, the Catholic and Evangelical Church maintain their complete will to mediate or prompt a process of reconciliation, and as if that was not enough, in the regions there are thousands of community organizations looking for peace and conciliation, it is time to bet on a definite solution to the violence in Colombia.”

It seems unlikely the ELN will listen to their former commander

The ELN wrote on their web site, “Santos continues with the imperial politics of state terrorism and the dirty war against the people. … In the ELN we are also readapting our tactics .. and maintaining firm our dreams and ideals.”

Meanwhile, in a speech to the Armed Forces, President Santos said, “I have ordered the Ministry of Defense a revision of the scheme of territorial control of our borders, to more efficiently and more effectively use our forces.”


Professor Pizarro comments on past peace processes in Colombia, Guatemala, El Salvador, and Northern Ireland.

Professor Pizarro further comments on the peace process in Northern Ireland.

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