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Colombia: Updating the Mission

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Journal Article

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National Defense University Fort McNair United States

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With the emergence of the so-called new threats, the worlds perspective on the use of force has changed, and new challenges have developed. Alternative roles for the military have been proposed, and even new philosophies have been developed with concepts such as population-centric warfare and network-centric warfare. All of these revolve around the idea of developing better relations with the people and seeking a better understanding of the environment. However, in Latin America in general and in Colombia in particular, these issues have been part of daily life for many years, and the role of the military has long had a much broader scope than the more narrow conceptions articulated in Western civil-military relations theory. The reality is that the more expansive role has been part of the lives of the Latin countries due to their different historical circumstances. Contrary to what might be happening in other countries, the internal struggle has been the most important issue in Colombia during the last few decades, and consequently the military has been involved in irregular war in all its facets. These have included the participation of the Colombian armed forces as main actors in our counterinsurgency and nation-building strategies, as well as first responders to major natural emergencies and disasters.

Subject Categories:

  • Government and Political Science
  • Military Forces and Organizations

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