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Colombia: FARC Main Ideologue “Alfonso Cano” Killed

On November 4, 2011, the Colombian government confirmed [es] that Guillermo Leon Saenz (aka Alfonso Cano), the lead FARC ideologist and the man in charge after the death of commanders ‘Tirofijo’ [Fixed Target] and ‘Mono Jojoy‘ [Jojoy Chimp] was taken out in combat with the army in the Cauca department.

This combat situation received the name of Operation Odiseo [es], and even though rumors of the guerrilla leader's death were being spread during the morning, only at night did the first confirmed news break.

As it was expected, there were several reactions amongst netizens.

Manolo Bellon (@ManoloBellon) [es] questioned the celebrations for the guerrilla leader's death:

Buenos días. La muerte de #AlfonsoCano es un avance para la paz del país. Pero jamás se puede celebrar la muerte de un ser humano, nunca.

Good morning. The death of #AlfonsoCano is a move forward towards peace in the country. But we should never celebrate the death of a human being, never.

Alfonso Cano, image of Wikimedia Commons for public domain

Victicor (@CommunityVM) [es] asked about the kidnapped who could die in these operations and who weren't mentioned by the media:

Cuántos secuestrados mataran en esos ataques y el ejercito no dice nada… #AlfonsoCano

How many kidnapped will be killed in these attacks and the army is not saying anything… #AlfonsoCano

Alfonso Cano had already been the focus of attention during regional election day, last October 30, when an ex-M19 guerrilla militant won the mayorship of the capital city, Bogota. Diego Felipe Ariza G (@Diego_Ariza) [es] wrote on that day:

A quien pondremos en la siguiente Alcaldía de Bogota, #AlfonsoCano, el también es populista y tiene ideas que prometen.” #fail

Who will we put on the next Bogota Mayorship, #AlfonsoCano, he's also populist and has promising ideas. #fail

After his death, Neider Negrette D (@NeiderNegrette) [es] mentioned the political role of illegally armed group members:

#AlfonsoCano, camilo torres, vivos ejemplos de ideólogos que tomaron las armas, y sucumbieron ante ellas… El monte no es solución

#AlfonsoCano, camilo torres [sic], living ideological examples who took on the arms… The mountain is not the solution

Journalist Felix de Bedout (@fdbedout) [es] also expressed his opinion on the matter:

En una semana,un ex-guerrillero llega a la alcaldía de Bogotá y un jefe guerrillero muere en el monte.Mensaje a los que optan por el fusil.

In one week, an ex-guerrilla man becomes Bogota Mayor and a guerrilla boss dies in the mountains. Message for those who choose the rifle

Some, on the other hand, took the opportunity to show some humor, like Twichiste (@twichiste) who published:

- Saddam Hussein ☑ – Osama Bin Laden ☑ – Gaddafi ☑ – Alfonso Cano #AlfonsoCano ☑ – Justin Bieber ☐

Maria Fernanda (@mariafernandamp) [es] said:

Gaddafi en el infierno: “Hombre #alfonsocano, no te esperaba tan pronto”.

Gaddafi in hell: “Man #alfonsocano, I wasn't expecting you so soon”.

The blog Consulta previa [Previous consultation] described the developments [es] remembering other guerrilla leaders who have died in similar circumstances:

Murió Alfonso Cano, líder máximo de las FARC. Tropas del ejército colombiano, apoyadas desde el aire, lo cercaron, enfrentaron y mataron. Cuatro altos dirigentes de la longeva organización subversiva han muerto en los últimos años: Raúl Reyes, Manuel Marulanda, el Mono Jojoy (Jorge Briceño) y, ahora, Cano. De ellos, sólo “Tiro Fijo” Marulanda falleció por causas naturales.

Alfonso Cano died, the top FARC leader. Colombian army troops, supported from the air, surrounded him, faced him and killed him. Four high ranked leaders of this long lasting subversive organization have died in the last few years. Raul Reyes, Manuel Marulanda, el Mono Jojoy (Jorge Briceño) and, now, Cano. From all of them, only “Tiro Fijo” Marulanda died of natural causes.

In their opinion,

El gobierno colombiano está a punto de ganar el extenso enfrentamiento, que supera el medio siglo, contra una guerrilla, que insurgió romántica y que degeneró después.

The Colombian government is just about to win the long lasting war, that has been going on for over half a century, against a guerrilla that was born in a romantic manner but degenerated afterwards.

W Radio, one of the national broadcasting stations, transmitted the opinion of former kidnap victims [es] after the news broke. They consider the guerrilla was left broken:

Exsecuestrados y familiares de cautivos de las FARC consideraron hoy que con la muerte del máximo jefe del grupo armado, Guillermo León Sáenz, alias “Alfonso Cano“, se acerca el fin de esta guerrilla, que con más de 40 años de historia es la más antigua de América.

Former kidnap victims and families of FARC prisoners considered today that with the death of the armed group chief, Guillermo Leon Saenz [es], aka “Alfonso Cano”, the end of the guerrilla is near. With more than 40 years of history, it is the oldest in America.

Fred L. Alvarez’ blog republished a note by the EFE news agency [es] that ratifies this opinion:

Con la muerte del máximo jefe de las FARC en los últimos tres años, Guillermo León Sáenz, alias “Alfonso Cano”, esta guerrilla colombiana afronta un camino incierto que la puede exponer a una oleada de deserciones y a una caída de la moral de la tropa.

With the death of the maximum FARC boss in the last three years, Guillermo Leon Saenz, aka “Alfonso Cano”, the Colombian guerrilla is facing an uncertain future that could expose it to a wave of defections and a morale fall among the troops.

Luise Castro felt the same (@LuiiseCastro) [es] and published on Twitter:

Será mejor que se desmovilizen los guerrilleros, porque le están dando plomo duro y no creo que les guste morir. #NoMásFarc #AlfonsoCano

It would be better for the guerrilla fighters to stop their war, because they're being hit hard and I don't think they would like dying. #NoMásFarc [No More FARC] #AlfonsoCano

Nonetheless, Michael Menses (@Mikeoax) [es] doesn't agree, and from Oaxaca, Mexico, he writes that the FARC will stay put:

Las #FARC continuarán la lucha armada en Colombia a pesar de la muerte de su máximo líder #AlfonsoCano. #Colombia #guerrilla

The #FARC will continue the armed fight in Colombia even with the death of their top leader #AlfonsoCano. #Colombia #guerrilla

Jeison Bolívar (@JesionBolivar) [es] voiced the desire for peace of most Colombians:

paz en la tumba de #alfonsocano la misma paz que colombia tanto le suplicó

peace on the tomb of #alfonsocano the same peace that Colombia begged from him so much

The blog Croniquillas questioned [es] the fact that some leaders of illegally armed groups are being given amnesty for laying down their arms and collaborating with the justice:

Mientras el país padece la guerra declarada por la subversión, los altos jurisconsultos deambulan por el mundo en defensa de las altruistas posiciones de la guerrilla, dándoles de hecho una beligerancia que no merecen y sin importar un pito la sangre inocente de miles de colombianos, masacrados por estos inmaculados defensores de la verdad.

While the country puts up with the war declared by subversion, the high justice experts wonder around the world defending the unselfish guerrilla positions, giving them in fact a belligerence they don't deserve and without giving a damn about the innocent blood of thousands of Colombians, slaughtered for these immaculate defenders of the truth.

On that respect, it is worth mentioning the opinion of Manuel Miranda who in 2010 stated in his blog [es] that,

a la clase política de Colombia no le conviene en modo alguno, la desaparición definitiva de las narcoguerrillas…

it is not on the Colombian political class’ interest that the narcoguerrilla desapear definitevely…

Anonymous Colombia [es] mentions the current situation of the public universities in Colombia, and makes the whole coverage of the recent military operations seem like a cover up strategy to prevent people from talking about the Education Reform:

No crean que con la muerte de Alfonso Cano, van a ocultar todo el problema de la educación la lucha sigue!

Do not think that with Alfonso Cano's death you are going to be able to conceal the education problem, the fight goes on!

You can follow more opinions on Twitter under the hashtag #AlfonsoCano

En una semana,un ex-guerrillero llega a la alcaldía de Bogotá y un jefe guerrillero muere en el monte.Mensaje a los que optan por el fusil.

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