FARC – terrorist organization in Columbia

Ahh, the wonderful theory that the Associated Press is an unbiased news organization. Hat tip to Jim Taranto, writing Best of the Web for the Wall Street Journal Online.

Here’s the Associated Press’s “objective” description of FARC, a terrorist organization in Colombia:

The rebels, who have been fighting for more than four decades for a more equitable distribution of wealth in Colombia, fund themselves largely through the cocaine trade, while holding hundreds of kidnapped hostages for ransom and political ends. The drug trafficking and kidnappings haven’t helped their reputation, which is why both [Ecuador’s President Rafael] Correa and [Venezuela’s President Hugo] Chavez have denied supporting them.

So FARC has a benign goal–“a more equitable distribution of wealth”–which it pursues by means that “haven’t helped its reputation,” such as kidnapping and drug trafficking. The AP leaves out FARC’s practice of mass political murder, detailed by a State Department report on terrorism:

  • In February [2006], the FARC killed eight town councilmen in Rivera, Huila;
  • In April, Liliana Gaviria, sister of former-President Cesar Gaviria, was killed by the FARC;
  • In October, the FARC launched car bomb attacks in Bogotá, Villavicencio, and Fusagasuga,
  • In November, the FARC attacked rural National Police post in Tierradientro, killing 17 police officers;
  • In December, the FARC ambushed the military in Ocana, North Santander, killing 17 soldiers; and
  • In December, the FARC killed 15 soldiers near La Julia (Meta).

Apparently “accountability journalism” doesn’t aim to hold everyone accountable.
Here’s a bit more from the State Department’s report:

Colombian based terrorist groups were weakened as a result of aggressive actions by the military and police, but these groups continued to murder, kidnap, and terrorize Colombians from all walks of life. The Uribe administration maintained its focus on defeating and demobilizing Colombia’s terrorist groups through its “democratic security” policy. In the course of an increased tempo of offensive military, intelligence, and police operations, combined with efforts to demobilize combatants, the security services captured or killed numerous terrorists and mid-level commanders, debriefed terrorist group deserters for detailed information on their terrorist cells, and reduced the amount of territory where terrorists can freely operate. The government increased offensive operations against the FARC and ELN along the Venezuelan and Ecuadorian borders, and restarted anti-drug fumigation operations along the Ecuadorian border. Overall, aerial spraying in 2006 covered 425,000 acres of illegal drug crops (coca and opium poppies).

I don’t think Columbia is on my list for a warm weather vacation, and AP certainly is not on my list of unbiased news sources.