Columbia's President Santos messed up by sitting down with FARC

We will never know why President Santos of Colombia decided to sit down and negotiate with FARC. 

My guess, and it's only a guess, is that he was looking to earn a Nobel Peace Prize.  

President Santos may have concluded this:  If President Obama can get a Nobel for doing nothing maybe I can get one for actually doing something.  After all, the Nobel Peace Prize crowd loves peace agreements even if they don't actually result in any kind of peace.

The problem with negotiating with FARC is that there is so little to negotiate about.    Fausta Wertz (Fausta's Blog) made some very interesting points this week about the Santos-FARC meetings:

"The FARC are not interested in disbanding. To the contrary, they are seeking alliances with the ELN

  • The FARC are calling for a "restructuring of the Colombian state", including a major redesign of the Colombian Constitution
  • The FARC are not interested in ceasing its operations as a drug crime entity
  • As the O'Grady article states, the FARC's goal is "to force the government to designate the area an autonomous zone that it could control"
  • And, inspired by their Cuban hosts, they are in it for the long run.

What kind of peace, then, could these negotiations yield?"

That's exactly right.  You can't sit down with people like these and expect "good faith" results. They will use negotiations to buy time and regroup.

President Santos should have known that he was off to a bad start when Cuba, hardly an honest broker, was selected as the site for the meetings.

We hope that President Santos will give up and go back to what President Uribe did so successfully:  You don't give FARC and inch!  You defeat them!

Thanks to President Uribe's tough approach, Colombia has bounced back from the days of horrific violence and personal insecurity.  Colombia today is enjoying a good economy and shining in contrast to Venezuela, Argentina and Cuba.

President Uribe, and our Colombian friends, deserve a lot of credit for what their country has accomplished.  It's sad to see President Santos give it away by sitting down with people who are not serious about peace or the rule of law.

P.S. The readers may enjoy this show about Colombia & FARC.

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