Thursday, October 06, 2016
Wednesday, October 05, 2016
I don't normally do this, but only an ogre turned to stone by the morning light could fail to feel something after Sunday's plebiscite vote to reject the peace accords.
A few weeks ago, we went as a family to a musical event organized by our kids' school. The second part of the show was organized by the school's music teacher, Oscar, whom my kids adore. Terry and I were rapt - the collection of songs were an incisive, clever, and heartfelt commentary on Colombia, in that particular intersection of politics and culture that we both find so fascinating. It was so good.
The video embedded below is a small sample, a song about militarization that ends with a vision of the hopes and dreams of all people for a decent life.
On Sunday, I watched people going to Corferias (a large expo center across the street) to vote all day long, even running in at the last minute before polls closed at 4. I was shocked ten minutes later, watching a live feed of the vote counting, to see how narrowly the Yes vote was leading. Every ten minutes a new update showed the gap closing, until 5:00 in the afternoon when it became clear that the No vote had pulled ahead. Honestly, I was stunned, and my eyes were not dry.
It seems like this turn of events was completely unexpected, by everyone; even the opposition had no plan to put forward on Monday when the president asked for a meeting and sent his negotiators back to Havana.
Here is a sample of analysis that I've been reading (as of right now there is still no news on today's meetings between the president and opposition):
Ginny Bouvier, from the U.S. Institute for Peace: Why Did Colombia's Plebiscite for Peace Fail?
Something I'm still trying to get a bead on - how significant was the No vote from churches (Catholic and Protestant)? An article from BBC in Spanish: El Rol de las Iglesias Evangélicas en la Victoria del No.
From a peace church perspective, Michael Joseph gives a synopsis of the ins and outs of what happened and what lies ahead.
There are many more op-eds coming out these days, here's one from the New Yorker with a lot of "I was there" detail from the day of the signing.
This afternoon, university students are planning a silent march through the center of the city, evoking past marches in grief over the violence that has torn this country apart for so long.
|(probably more like 7 million)|