Socialist Worker


Oppression and curse of Coke in Colombia

18 March 2008
On 12 February a brown envelope was left outside the home of Coca-Cola worker José Domingo Flórez. The note inside was from the Black Eagles, a right wing paramilitary death squad.

Colombian paramilitaries kill march organisers

18 March 2008
Four trade union leaders were assassinated in the week following the 6 March day of protests against paramilitaries and state crime. These protests took place across Colombia and in many parts of the world.

Colombia: vicious friend of the West

18 March 2008
Colombia’s government is not just a vicious regime that targets trade unionists and civil activists. It is also George Bush’s key ally in Latin America and on the front line of his intervention in that region.

Venezuela-Colombia conflict sheds light on US imperialism

06 March 2008
George Bush waded into the growing inter-governmental crisis in Latin America earlier this week by expressing the US’s unqualified support for the Colombian president Alvaro Uribe.

Colombian protests hide state violence

12 February 2008
"From above, they looked like a white river flowing through the streets of Colombia’s capital. They wore white T-shirts that read, ‘Yo soy Colombia (I am Colombia). Stop the kidnappings, the lies, the murders. No more Farc’."

Coca-Cola activists face death threats in Colombia

17 December 2007
Three workers at Coca-cola in Bucaramanga, Colombia, face death threats for their trade union activities.

Colombia: Agrifuels and death squads

03 July 2007
In Colombia biofuel projects are expanding in different parts of the country – though now we tend to use the term "agrifuels" rather than "biofuels", since the processes used to make them are no more biological than many other energy sources.

US multinational Chiquita funded Colombian death squads

07 April 2007
The US multinational Chiquita Brands International has admitted funding death squads which unleashed a reign of terror in Colombia.

Protesting for Colombian trade unionists

24 March 2007

US sprays death from the air in Colombia

05 November 2005
I became interested in this issue after speaking to people in Colombia. One woman told me she was working in the fields with her family when aeroplanes came down and started spraying.

Colombian unions take a stand against neo-liberalism

15 October 2005
Colombia’s unions and social movements were set to hold a national strike on Wednesday of this week.

Breaking the silence over Colombian repression

17 September 2005
The delegation was in Colombia for a week, in which time we attended around 20 meetings in both Bogotá and villages in the rural Cauca region, with trade union groups, non-governmental organisations, politicians, lawyers, community groups and human rights’ organisations.

Art inspired by horror in Iraq

11 June 2005
Fernando Botero is Colombia’s best-known painter, famous for pictures of middle class families and plump businessmen. But his latest work is a radical departure from such cosy small town scenes.

Shielding refugees

06 March 2004
Some 100 people in South Shields on Tyneside protested outside local Labour MP David Miliband's office on Sunday in support of a Colombian family threatened with deportation.

Colombia solidarity

29 November 2003
SOLIDARITY WITH workers in Colombia will be the focus of a series of meetings and conferences across Britain. On Saturday the TUC hosts a conference on "Conflict in Colombia: Britain's secret war", jointly sponsored with the Justice for Colombia organisation and the War on Want charity.

Coke takes life

19 July 2003
ON 5 December 1996 paramilitaries gunned down a trade union negotiator, Isidro Segundo Gil, at the Bebidas y Alimentos bottling plant in Carepa in Colombia. They later kidnapped another union leader at the plant, who managed to escape. The right wing thugs then burned down the union offices and set about terrorising the remaining workers into leaving the union. Behind this murder lay one of the world's most famous and profitable companies. Bebidas y Alimentos is a Coca-Cola bottling plant.

'We will defy Bush's plans'

10 May 2003
ALVARO URIBE Velez is a good friend of George Bush and Tony Blair. The right wing president of Colombia was the only South American ruler to back war on Iraq. Uribe now sounds like he wants his powerful backers to send their forces to Colombia.

Colombia solidarity

01 February 2003
"IF YOU keep fucking around we are going to kill you all." That threat was made by the Colombian army to workers at the EMCALI public utilities firm this week. The workers, based in the city of Cali in the South American country, are occupying offices and plants against the threat of privatisation. A year ago they beat off privatisation after an occupation.

Bacardi leaves very bad taste

21 September 2002
Bacardi is one of the most instantly recognisable brands in the world, but behind the sleek image lies a sinister side to this multinational. Hernando Calvo Ospina, a Colombian investigative journalist, demonstrates in his new book Bacardi: The Hidden War that Bacardi has prosecuted a clandestine war against Cuba in an effort to destabilise the Castro government.

In a class all of their own

27 April 2002
I CAME face to face with the global ruling class last week. Along with others from the Colombia Solidarity Campaign, I was sitting in the annual general meeting of Britain's biggest corporation, BP. We became BP shareholders to protest at the company's role in Colombia. Alongside the protest, the event shattered the myths that supporters of capitalism push about how their system works.

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