Colombia’s history is as complexe as it is fascinating. The country’s size, natural resources and geographic position are reasons for the world’s super power, the U.S.A., to show a continous interest in Colombian affairs.
This photo shows a U.S. military airplane at the airport of Cartagena last week. The U.S. puts respectable amounts of money into the war against the Colombian drug production. More recently, the U.S. has got deeper involved also in the Colombian war on terrorism, i.e. the Colombian government’s battle against the powerful guerilla groups in the country. Immense amounts of money flow from Washington. The military presence of the U.S. is quite limited though – less than 1.000 troops and contractors.
The Colombian Army is visible all over. The current objective is to increase the number of soldiers from around 200.000 in 2004 to at least four times as many by 2008.
President Alvaro Uribe’s investment in military capacity and hard line policies against the guerillas seems to give positive effects. Larger areas are considered somewhat safe, and people I talk to agree that the situation has improved.
But still a lot of problems remain.