A Century of Violence in a Red City: Popular Struggle, Counterinsurgency, and Human Rights in Colombia
Terror and Impunity
This chapter documents how counterinsurgent, paramilitary terror unmade Barrancabermeja’s working class by rupturing the fabric of popular solidarity and dispossessing and displacing working people from the late twentieth century to the present. Political violence provided both the preconditions and the bedrock for the expansion of neoliberal capitalism. The chapter considers how the paramilitary takeover of the city created a crisis for working people that tore them from their social and institutional moorings and exposed them to political and economic forces beyond their control. It focuses on how impunity and fear shaped working-class disorganization and defeat.