SEMANA, November 10, 2020
(Translated by Eunice Gibson, CSN Volunteer Translator)
Former President Álvaro Uribe held it against Biden that the Democrats supported the Peace Process. After he was denounced for the alleged interference, he also said that bipartisanship has to be fortified. “From the denial by Francisco Santos, he went on to try to disguise that meeting that they had,” Senator Iván Cepeda told SEMANA Live.
“In the United States they also listen to people who think differently about the Agreement with the FARC,” Uribe said.
After Joe Biden’s victory over Donald Trump, former President Álvaro Uribe didn’t just recognize the President-Elect of the United States, but he also published a letter headed “Some challenges that are waiting for President Biden.” He was talking about United States foreign policy, and criticizing the Democrats for supporting the Peace Process with the FARC. According to what former Colombian Ambassador to the United States Gabriel Silva told SEMANA Live, the real message is that Uribe will keep on supporting Trump.
“The letter, besides being outlandish, is not just trying to provide President Biden with lessons in foreign policy, is suggesting actions in scenarios that are absolutely no business of former President Uribe. It seems to me that basically, we have to keep in mind what it is that former President Uribe is really saying to Biden: here we will keep on being allies of Trump,” stated the former Ambassador of the government of Juan Manuel Santos.
For the diplomat, Uribe’s strategy is for the long range, because in 2022 the presidential race in Colombia coincides with the beginning of the United States race for President. “Uribe is betting that in 2022 the two candidates—himself, all of a sudden—and Trump, will coincide,” he explained.
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It attracts your attention that Uribe in his letter is rebuking the Democrats for their support of the Peace Process with the FARC, and thus for part of the responsibility for the polarization after the plebiscite. “Without the support of the United States and its delegate (Bernard Aronson) the agreement with the FARC would have been different. When “NO” won the plebiscite, the United States, having the authority of being supporters of the Havana Agreement, could have played a role in support of the agreement that we proposed, but it didn’t. It was consumed by total impunity, so that in the name of peace, more violence was caused by drug trafficking,” Uribe wrote.
In a balancing act, not only the Iván Duque administration but also Uribe himself gambled on saying that there was need to reinforce bipartisan support; this after being denounced for the alleged interference in the United States elections by members of the Colombian government and the Democratic Center Party.
In Colombia, former President Juan Manuel Santos has complained sharply about the interference. Just a few hours ago he said that Colombia’s Ambassador in Washington, Francisco Santos, had called on a contractor in the Pentagon to see how they could help Trump in the campaign. According to what Ambassador Pacho Santos told SEMANA in an interview, those accusations are untrue and he plans legal action against the former President. “I’m going to call on him to make a statement, to tell the truth. I’m sure he doesn’t have any proof,” he warned.
Senator Iván Cepeda (Democratic Pole Party) has also complained about the alleged interference by the Colombian government and “Uribism” in the elections. He did it by showing portions of meetings by the Ambassador with Republican groups. Pacho Santos had said that his efforts at those meetings had been in support of a bipartisan relationship.
“We have been checking on how they were doing this campaigning, with periodic meetings with Congressional aides with the Democratic Center, where they were promoting the group Latinos for Trump and while doing that, on July 20 Ambassador Francisco Santos made a speech, with bipartisan allusions, and he ended by greeting Sr. Díaz-Balart. In the midst of an election, the Ambassador was establishing a presence with a group that was obviously campaigning. Ambassador Francisco Santos’ first reaction when we said that he had indeed been meeting with groups that were working in the campaign, by way of denial he started trying to whitewash that meeting,” said Cepeda.
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The experts agree that there will be consequences for Colombia because of its being inclined to favor Trump, most of all in the United States Congress. According to Jon Lee Anderson, a reporter for The New Yorker, it will be the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi, “She’s furious and she’s going to try to retaliate,” is what a person that knows the undercurrents of politics in Washington told him. “It’s kind of comparable to what happened with Russia in 2016; big countries and small countries that think they can “poke their noses” into election campaigns in the United States.