The US and Colombia: building an exportable model of security

I have just published an article in Open Security about the past, present and future of the Colombian Armed Forces and their potential role and influence in a future peace and post conflict setting. After a decade of build-up they are the first Army in Latin America and enjoy high degrees of autonomy.

Through the laboratory of Plan Colombia, the US has developed its ‘stabilization’ model for counter insurgency operations. To some extent it has replicated in Colombia its own model of armed forces, counter insurgency and counter narcotics. Now the Colombia forces provide training and specialized services throughout Latin America and worldwide.

With a peace agreement with the FARC on the horizon, what is the future for Colombia’s overinflated military?

Continue reading here.

This article is part of an excellent series, Conflict in Context: Colombia, where you will find analyses in Spanish and English about the array of war and peace challenges faced by Colombia.


Book Review – The Metamorphosis of War, for Global Policy

I have just published a book review in Global Policy.

The book is The Metamorphosis of War, edited by Avery Plaw, and addresses the transformation of war and the changing practices, purposes and languages of warfare, as well as selected current responses to armed conflict and their impact.

The volume aims to illuminate how war has transformed; what are the stakes, mechanisms and consequences of contemporary war; and what resources do we have to break cycles of violence. It does so by mobilizing the knowledge of scholars from a range of disciplines and military practitioners. Deeply rooted in history and philosophy, but addressing some of the most pressing contemporary issues, I strongly recommend it.

If you are interested in the review, have a look here.


My First Post: Welcome!

Well, here we are: my blog and me. This post in the first step in this project, undertaken after a long time thinking “I would like to have a blog where I could about all those issues I’m interested on!”

I want The Making of War and Peace to be a space of analysis and reflection about armed conflict and organized violence in the globalization era. With all their realities and complexities, without simplification. I’ll try to give insights about multi-faceted causes, and consequences, of violence in our contemporary world.

Therefore we’ll talk about wars, like those of Afghanistan, Colombia or the Democratic Republic of Congo. But also about situations of armed violence that do not qualify as war (like Mexico or Central America), and about political armed actors that finance themselves through global illegal economies (like narcotics in Colombia or Afghanistan).

But this is also a venue to talk about peace and peace-building, and about all those actors (many of them unknown) that work to achieve peace, from the local to the global arena.

Of course I don’t have all the arguments. But even if not knowing the answers, I would like to raise the questions. An example? What implications do the ‘wars’ on drugs and terrorism have in terms of peace-building? What about the proliferation of anti-terrorism laws and norms, both at national and international levels? What happens when a political armed group becomes heavily involved in illegal economies? What are the implications for peace-building?

In this blog I wish to analyse those issues and gather the most relevant positions and debates. Maybe we can do it together.

Today my first thought is: Welcome to this blog!