Congo RDC Colombia Today Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia- People’s Army Reply To: Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia- People’s Army


Pedagogy of peace (II) “We want peace but we are afraid

“In the village where I left the ICRC helicopter had about a thousand civilians from 8 villages in the municipality; them, to learn that someone would Havana, traveled to the place, and there had them before me, asking me to explain to them how this “lay down their arms” era. That night would not let us go, I was not able to leave the villagers with a string of questions, because there were not going to return in a short time .

Yira Castro describes the beginning of the pedagogy of Peace, from his return to the north of Antioquia, after two years in Cuba by the Delegation of Peace FARC-EP. Since set foot in the area of ​​the company Mario Velez, which has been one of its top commanders, was doomed to begin intensive work with fighters, guerrillas and civilians, illustrating the real possibility of reaching a final agreement that meets the aspirations of the most disadvantaged population.

No different thing from these battered communities could be expected for more than 3 decades by the paramilitaries. It was in northern Antioquia and southern Córdoba, when finalizing the last decade of the twentieth century, ACCU, initially, and then the misnamed AUC, spread terror with its strategy of “taking the water from the fish”, consisting of exterminate the social base of the guerrillas. And still today suffer their presence and threat.

“We want peace but we are afraid, I repeated; when I was made to dismiss promised them that neither at war nor at peace let them alone, because, they said, our destination is the same, “he said Yira. Then he was silent, perhaps reflecting on what this means in a posacuerdo possible.

Meanwhile, the commander Mariely Ortíz, the return of Havana, began in the Fifth Front pedagogical work on partial agreements, points of disagreement with the Government and the vision of peace that we have the FARC-EP. With a group of guerrilla fighters and conducts workshops on gender, liberation of women and new masculinity.
“There are women who unconsciously cling to the role traditionally been assigned patriarchy and some men cohonestan with that attitude because it favors them; but there are changes, “he says maryely. He adds that “guerrillas and guerrilla have incorporated gender issues and new masculinities in dialogues with communities when in pedagogical tasks of peace.”
In a different area, with another guerrilla front, he works the commander Erica Montero, member of the Central Staff of the FARC-EP, who also was part of the Peace Delegation in Havana for nearly a year. “The guerrillerada and the controls are very receptive. We favor the chauvinistic backlogs in our ranks are scarce; men are more respectful of the independence and freedom of women and they are more autonomous and safe; He says while sipping an arepa dough made with threshing corn and chocolate cocoa produced by farmers in the region.
Indeed, today guerrilla fighters and speak more properly on the subject. The anti anti machismo and patriarchy are already oriented by comandancias domestic politics, has made very quickly the practical results are visible.
It is very encouraging to feel that it is releasing a juggernaut, coated solidarity, joy, good judgment, dedication and responsibility that characterize the female gender. “It is a silent revolution that is cast off and projecting into the future with noble and generous power,” he chimed a guerrilla listening to the conversation.

However, Erica says, “there are communities where it becomes more difficult internalizing the liberating ideas of revolutionary feminism.” This is the case of the Embera indigenous people who Katío in their culture has traits of a highly pronounced gender asymmetry. In them, the woman after having a child, less than a week delivery, in addition to resuming housework goes to work, while the man stays at home. The role of men in the community is reduced to plant and maintain crops until they are about to harvest; making way for the woman to pick it up.

Other Embera, the Chami, conceive sex in the woman only for reproductive purposes; they practice them female genital mutilation newborn girls. This custom also rooted in African tribes, practiced in companies on five continents for cultural or religious reasons. Many girls or adult women bleed to death or infection in the weeks after surgery, because it is almost always done crudely and inadequate sanitary conditions.

The new masculinity understood as a break with the different roles of men and women to promote gender equality, collides here with cultural features (in our case) so difficult to change in the lives of the people. A complex issue that touches anthropological, sociological and political aspects, but it is imperative to intervene in favor of settling the historical debt to women and justice.

By Matthias Aldecoa, Peace Delegation FARC-EP