Jorge shows his drawing about peace.
The para-militaries rule in Jorge's home region Cordoba
where one hardly ever see the police or army. The para-militaries
who control the area are well equipped with modern weapons and kill
whoever they want to.
The priest in the village was shot to death when he protested against
the para-militaries killing peasants. Another priest ran away to the
capital Bogota, but was shot and killed there. Last year the para-militaries
lined up 20 men in the middle of Jorge's town and killed them.
In Cordoba there are large areas of cocaine bushes and many secret
laboratories which produce refined Cocaine.
Para-militaries earn hundreds of millions of dollars by selling cocaine.
my report from the cocaine jungle
dreams about an
end to the war
Jorge finds it difficult to sleep. He often has nightmares about what
happened at his home in the village that morning.
The sun hadn't yet come up and Jorge was sleeping. The
day before he had helped his father harvest corn the whole day and gone
to bed early. He was exhausted and went directly to sleep.
Suddenly something hard hit the door and when his father opened he saw
men in uniforms with rifles in their hands.
- This is our land now,cried their leader. And we can kill you all.
Is there anyone here who has any objections?
Jorge became very frightened. He thought their last minute had arrived.
These strangers were certainly going to kill him. He saw that his father
was also afraid. The men gathered everybody together in the square.
When a bus appeared everybody boarded it. The leader for the para-militaries
looked at everyone and then pointed at two men with his automatic weapon.
- Both of you - Follow us!
He led the men a short distance away from the bus while everyone looked
- Stay there, he cried, when the men had reached a tree. Then he aimed
carefully and fired several shots. The two men fell dead down.
- That's what will happen to all of you if you don't go from here, called
the armed men to the villagers. They had been there several times earlier,
sometimes to take a cow from a peasant and other times
to lead someone away and kill him a long way from the village.
This time Jorge, his father, mamma, sister and all the
other villagers had to leave everything they owned. They didn't even
have time to take their clothing or furniture with them.
- Dad built a new home for us of old planks here at the edge of town,
relates Jorge. He dreams about there being an end to war and is a member
of The Children's Peace Movement.
- I want to help children so that all of these terrible things don't
happen again, he says.
Read how Juan's caps protect his brain
TEXT & Photo ©: ERLING SÖDERSTRÖM