Integral Commission for the Colombian Macizo
(Comite de Integracion del Macizo Colombiano)

Note: FUNDECIMA is the over-arching NGO; the CIMA's are regional

Miguel Hernandez is an organizer for CIMA

CIMA was founded in 1987; organizing in communities had begun in 1985, and CIMA wanted to integrate that earlier work.

General Overview of Development of CIMAs:

Municipality of Santa Rosa was the site of the first mobilization, which mostly involved this municipality but also got support from a community called San Sebastian. During the march to Popayan, the army stopped them in a hot area (knowing they were from a cooler climate) in order to have the negotiating advantage.

Between '87 and '91, a number of smaller mobilizations were inspired by the first. But work stoppages were localized, not yet integrated.

'90 - '91: Starting in Almaguer, there began the formation of cabildos (popular councils) and one of these took over a mayor's office for nine days. This was the beginning of CIMA. Earlier negotiations carried out in localities had not been fulfilled. We began to realize that we needed to integrate actions and organizations in order to have a stronger, united force.

1. to organize first regional level blockage of work and transit;
2. to organize cultural encounter, honoring ethnic diversity;
3. to fortify the process of integration;
4. to publish a newspaper (this objective has not yet been attained).

Timeline of municipalities organized and mobilized into CIMAs:

'85 -- Santa Rosa
Leyanov (sp)

'87 -- first mobilization

'90 -- Vega

'91 -- CIMA organized formally (each municipality has own CIMA); first stoppage along Pan-Am Hwy at Rosas; people expressed their needs to government; CIMA the Project of Life and Dignity for Autonomy,
Independence, Social and Political Development;

'92 -- first massacre at Los Uvos (army conducted it as a response to these mobilizations; 17 campesinos massacred by the Jose Hilario Lopez Battalion);
'93 -- Asamblea del Macizo (the first assembly of macizo) in El Maguer:
a. Proposals: Health, Education, Housing. An integrated vision was approved.
b. Principles of Autonomy, Cultural Identity.

'96 -- Government only followed through on 30-40% of negotiations after '87 mobilization. So in '96, the mobilization did not take place on the Pan-Am Hwy. Rather there were two months of negotiations between govt and municipalities, with the latter prepared to take the Hwy if negotiations were to break down. In '96, the mobilization involved greater integration and support from the communities. During this time, there was great dynamism: many meetings, workshops, events. Nevertheless, the '96 mobe ended in commitments that were not fulfilled.

'99 -- Larger mobilization, with 45,000 people mobilized from central Cauca, Narino, and _________.
There was great solidarity, with thousands in the highways. Earlier mobilizations were entirely campesinos; in '99, campesinos were joined by teachers, labor unions (via CUT), barrios, and indigenous groups, even blocking the Hwy. The government negotiated, but the agreement was more a political than an economic gain.

CIMA organizer Chucho

2000 -- Alternative Social Bloc formed:
a. unity;
b. born from '99 mobe; many but not all groups joined;
c. Provided a political party and movement; this led to the election of Floro Tunubala, the first indigenous governor in Cauca and all of Colombia.

TREE DIAGRAM: leafage the FUNDECIMA NGO; branches the Macizo and its political organizations; the political organizations allow flow of nutrients, to produce fruit in the Macizo branches (the integration of Macizo); trunk the regional CIMAs in the municipalities; working for regional integration of Huila, Narino, Putumayo, Cauca, and ____.

Threats: social and armed conflict, militariam and paramilitarism, and Plan Colombia with fumigation.

There has been a longstanding guerrilla presence in Macizo: the ELN for 15 years, and the FARC for three years. Governmentt has always labeled the CIMAs as collaborators, even though they assert their autonomy. Area is a focal point for Plan Colombia.

Response to election of Floro Tunubala (October 2000):
1. paramilitarism in north of department; incursion begins in November 2000;
2. Naya River massacre, Suarez;
3. Santander;
4. enter Cajibio, and continue making their way to Popayan;
5. Focus of paras the taking over of the Pan-Am Hwy; this led to para presence north, central, and south.

Paras had been in central Cauca for about a year; in response to election they flew to Timba in the north and began to work their way south.

Plan Colombia is a terrorist strategy of the state:
1. "dirty war";
2. covers not only the Pan-Am Hwy, but also Macizo;
3. generalizing the war.
Objectives are being achieved by the state. Since 9/11, the real face of Plan Colombia has been shown.

Macizo is rich in water; four major rivers have their source there; also rich in flora and fauna;
since week before meeting, we are in a critical moment of the war, because the guerrillas are not willing to give up Macizo.
[Note: Sgt. Silva had stated that by Presidential Decree the Battalion is to re-take the Macizo.]

Have been monitoring US support to war in Colombia over the last few years. So far aid has totalled $3 billion; another $600 million coming from Bush Administration.

"We want you to understand what is happening here. Political and economic hegemony is the US war goal. This calls us to resistance, and more -- to war. We have been calling for political negotiation, but we have a great problem, the US."

Jesus: Deaths are increasing; "Impunity is the Queen of Colombia." What we can do is denounce and mobilize, including developing a more permanent mobilization. We are up against paramilitarism, Plan Colombia, the armed actors in the Macizo, and the Andean Initiative.

Mobilization for 2002 (southeast): "We will be hit hard, but we have no choice but to mobilize."

Human rights worker Rene and delegation member Margaret Knapke

Rene: Since the 1980's, coca and heroin have been grown, the latter in cold and

high regions. The intention is not to harm the consumers of these products, but to make an easier and more substantial income. Production of crops has increased along with demand. But each campesino has only a small part of the crop; government's laws say that crops will be eradicated with no substitution.

Fumigation planes fly at 500+ meters. They poison the water, food crops, pasture lands. Helicopters accompany the cropdusters and shoot with machine guns.

Due to the fumigation and toxic water, women are having children almost intoxicated, with deficiencies and allergies. Animals, also. Fish, birds, and pets are affected. Extra glyphosate is dumped in the forest.

There have been repeated requests to governmentt for alternate crops; governmentt makes empty promises.

Fumigation has caused an INCREASE in illicit crops, because pastureland and crops are destroyed and people must make quick money.

Meanwhile, the paras are killing civilians, not guerrillas.

Human rights worker Ricardo

Marcella: Paras' actions since 2000: using chainsaws, dismemberment; now trying to win over people with resolving problems such as domestic problems; will give money to people out of work; drawing young men into ranks; they carry out selective killing, including "social cleansing" of derelicts. People are obliged to support them out of fear.

Q. Has there been a lot of fumigation in Cauca?

Extensive areas of illicit crops in Putumayo. Less extensive cultivation in Narino and Cauca (some in northern Narino, and southern and central areas oif Cauca). First fumigation phase in Putumayo; second phase in Cauca (there have been three spraying campaigns in Cauca).

Q. Who trains the paras? Where do they come from?

It is a strategy of the state and the US. Plan Colombia is being accompanied by the paras. Israelis, US mercenaries, and the Colombian army do the training. Many members of paras are retired or vetted army members, and many have been trained at the SOA. Uribe has an historical relationship to the CONVIVIR, private security forces which were formed by landowners.

Uribe regime = Plan Colombia: fumigations + paramilitarism + escalating the war
His platform:
1.neoliberalism, inc. privatization and economic openings
2.economic "reforms"
3. fewer liberties and less democracy
4. anti-terrorism law
a. centralized state presence
b. miinimization of state (a la World Bank and IMF)
5. militarization
6. movement to the right of the state
7. total war

Two Different Mobilizations Coming Up !
1. National mobe on September 16
(CIMA will not participate in September mobilization, because cannot be prepared so soon.)
2. Southwest Colombia Regional Mobilization at the end of 2002, with possible support from Ecuador and Venezuela

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