They are considered terrorists, and are much more violent than the Zapatistas. They believe strongly in the idea of communism, and often escape to neighboring countries that is open to their political ideas, particularly Venezuela.
This map illustrates by color the levels of involvement with the FARC rebels. The red and orange areas are the areas that have the most activity.
Political violence has started since the late 1940’s. The violence intensified with the formation of armed revolutionary groups in 1960’s.
Government attempts to destroy the guerrillas and the formation of paramilitary forces to help the army fuelled the violence still further.
Desire to control profits from the drug industry has lead to wars between the guerrillas and the paramilitaries.
Colombia is a beautiful place but there are major problems going on.
In 1849, the colonial ruling class split into 2 formal political parties: federalist liberals and centrist conservatives. A prolonged series of regional battles follows when both sides take up arms.
In 1899 a liberal revolt in 1899 sparks the war of 1,000 days and 100,000 were killed.
In 1948, populist liberal leader Jorge Elicier Gaitan is murdered. Opposing party supporters massacre each other; death toll reaches 300,000.
In 1964, Manuel Marulanda Velez forms FARC, the revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia. A second rebel group, the National Liberation Army (ELN), appears in 1966. In response, rightwing paramilitaries are formed. Thousands of civilians are killed.
In the 1970’s, M-19 guerrilla group is formed. It becomes popular for its promotion of reform, and dialogue.
In 1985, under President