Colombia's Conflicts: The Spillover Effects of a Wider War

  • October 01, 2002
  • Mr Richard Millett

This monograph is the first in a new Special Series of monographs that stems from the February 2001 and the March 2002 conferences--co-sponsored by the Strategic Studies Institute of the U.S. Army War College and The Dante B. Fascell North-South Center of the University of Miami--that dealt with the "Implementation of Plan Colombia." It provides a careful examination of the so-called "spillover" problems generated by Colombia's three simultaneous wars against illegal drug traffickers, insurgents, and self-appointed paramilitary groups. All seek, in one way or another, violently to change or depose the state. All use the uncontrolled "gray areas" in Colombia and its neighboring states to sustain, conduct, and replenish their nefarious operations without risk of significant interference. And, all these violent illegal entities constitute threats to stability and security that extend beyond Colombia and Latin America to Europe and the United States. Colombia is therefore a paradigm of the failing state that has enormous implications for U.S. foreign policy and military asset management for now and into the future.