Colombian coca cultivation in 2005 A deteriorating situation in the heart of “Plan Patriota”
Apr 182006

The main reason Álvaro Uribe dominates the polling for the May elections is security, as one of his opponents, the leftist former supreme-court judge Carlos Gaviria, explained recently.

A public-opinion study carried out by the University of the Andes at the end of last year and released at the beginning of this year indicates that the President is way off course in the fight against poverty, inequality and unemployment. But when people are asked if they will vote for Uribe again, they say yes. Why? Because the great deceiver of the people is "Democratic Security."

President Uribe’s opponents are clearly frustrated to see him coasting toward a second term on Colombia’s lowered violence indicators, particularly when his Democratic Security policy’s flaws appear so evident.

They point to the danger posed by networks of paid informants, mass arrests on flimsy evidence, and reluctance to prosecute human-rights abusers or paramilitary collaborators. They point to continued insecurity beyond cities and main roads, likening Uribe’s policies to sweeping the worst of Colombia’s violence under the rug. They point to the lack of an economic development and nation-building strategy to go along with military “recovery” of territory. They point to a deeply flawed paramilitary re-integration process, and even speculate about the President’s real relationship to paramilitarism.

“This government’s policy has failed in its fundamental objectives, related to the defeat of the guerrillas and advances against narcotrafficking,” says perennial Liberal Party candidate Horacio Serpa. “The strategy of avoiding reality consists of making a rather superficial promise, in the sense that the illegal armed groups will be defeated by military means,” says Gaviria. Adds independent candidate and two-time Bogotá mayor Antanas Mockus, “I think that all of Colombia would like to have optimism about President Uribe. However, [the unfolding DAS scandal] shows that behind Uribe’s power is the enormous power of paramilitarism.”

Many Colombians, including many Uribe supporters, probably share these concerns and criticisms. But Uribe still owns the security issue, and his opponents’ attacks have had zero impact.

Uribe’s main advantage is that people know what he plans to do about security: more soldiers and police, more offensives in guerrilla-held zones, more special powers for the security forces. Voters may be uncomfortable about aspects of Democratic Security, but if they live in populated areas they’ve probably seen somewhat less violence in their communities. These results may be slowing, as Uribe’s policies reach the limits of what an almost entirely military strategy can do. However, voters still lean toward Uribe on security because he has a clear, easily explainable platform.

The same can’t be said about Uribe’s opponents. To the question of “how will the Colombian government protect its citizens if you are elected,” the candidates’ plans are much less clear. Some do not differ greatly from the answer Uribe would give, while others have simply failed to articulate any answer that makes sense to voters.

  • Mockus has the simplest response. He argues that he will continue much of what Uribe has implemented, but will take greater care to stay within the rule of law. A “Democratic Security Lite” that respects human rights and combats paramilitarism would be a dramatic improvement; Mockus’ proposal, however, shares many of the other conceptual problems of Uribe’s strategy, such as the lack of an economic component or a non-military way of speeding negotiations.
  • Serpa has said he would continue much of what Uribe has begun, but would accompany it with more social spending and do more to enforce respect for human rights and to combat “former” paramilitaries. He also speaks about re-starting negotiations with guerrillas. Critics have pointed out, however, that the Liberal Party politician has offered few details to underlie his proposals.
  • Álvaro Leyva, a former government minister and peace negotiator who played an instrumental role in starting the FARC-government peace talks in 1998, offers an entirely different solution. Leyva says he can end the conflict “within six months” by beginning negotiations with guerrillas immediately. While this is certainly audacious, Leyva’s low poll numbers indicate that most Colombian voters are unconvinced. Leyva also has yet to articulate how he would differ from Uribe when it comes to protecting citizens from non-political violence, such as common crime and the activities of organized criminals, whether powerful mafias, narcos or poorly re-integrated ex-combatants.
  • Of all major candidates, the one who needs to do the most to answer the “how will the Colombian government protect us” question is Carlos Gaviria, the pioneering candidate of Colombia’s “democratic left.” Though this is a critically important topic much of Colombia’s electorate, Gaviria normally doesn’t answer the question as much as try to reframe it, portraying security as more of a structural socioeconomic challenge.

El Tiempo: What is your proposal with regard to security?

Gaviria: When security is spoken of, we associate it with the presence of the security forces. The presence of the state should not take this form, but instead should take the form of the presence of hospitals, schools, and all of the institutions that are lacking in the least protected sectors. When this presence exists in all of the country, under the institutions of the rule of law, the security forces can play a relatively small role.

This is true, and we agree with it 100 percent. But this answer is unlikely to resonate with most Colombian voters.

First, most voters do not live in “the least protected sectors.” In fact, residents of cities and town centers – at least 70 percent of Colombia’s population – are those who have benefited most from recent drops in rates of murder, kidnapping and sabotage under Uribe. Second, those who live in Colombia’s vast ungoverned spaces do need schools and hospitals, but they also need their government to protect them from more immediate threats.

Just as Uribe’s security strategy in ungoverned zones has favored a military response and neglected other government functions, Gaviria’s security proposal – on the rare occasions when he articulates it – seems to commit the opposite error. Quotes like the one above easily leave voters with the impression that a Gaviria administration would seek to build hospitals and carry out antipoverty programs in a security vacuum.

Political scientist and El Tiempo columnist Eduardo Posada Carbó – whose opinions CIP rarely shares – said it well when critiquing Gaviria in a recent column.

The security issue – Mauricio García has observed in these pages – ‘has always been a hot potato for the left… They believe that to talk about security is to make a concession to the right wing. That is why they go silent.’ Going silent about the issue is what the platform of Polo Democrático Alternativo candidate Carlos Gaviria does. Except for a mistaken reference to “sovereign security,” the word only appears in reference to job or food security – integral social security. These are noble and fair efforts. But there is not even a single word about the rates of murder or kidnapping. 

Gaviria is right when he calls for an active government role in addressing the root causes of Colombia’s violence, such as poverty, inequality, state neglect and resentment of past injustice. But Colombian voters also want to hear answers about addressing the proximate causes of Colombia’s violence. How can the government reduce citizens’ likelihood of being the victims of a robbery, kidnapping or terror attack right now?

There is no reason why a leftist candidate cannot propose to use the security forces more efficiently to address proximate causes. Gaviria or another opponent could be talking about community policing and efforts to earn the local population’s trust; swiftly punishing abusive or predatory behavior toward civilians, improving response times; managing budgets transparently; improving management and accountability; rewarding exceptional performance; investing in anticrime technologies; and coordinating closely with a reforming judiciary. A leftist candidate could be the only one explaining how to bring the state into neglected zones through a balanced combination of military security and civilian alleviation of “root causes.” (Of, course, to do so would require acknowledging that a military role exists.)

Álvaro Uribe has little to say about proposals like these. Unfortunately, neither do his opponents.

Unless they begin to answer the security question more articulately and distinctively, Carlos Gaviria and the other opposition candidates will have ceded the security issue to Uribe. In Colombia, this is a fundamental concession to make. Any candidate who allows that to happen is guaranteed a first-round defeat.

15 Responses to “Uribe’s opponents’ security problem”

  1. O-Lu Says:

    Excelente analisis. Comparto la idea de que al PDA le hace falta reflexionar sobre el tema de violencia y seguridad. Mockus tiene algunos métodos adicionales (ley zanahoria), aunque su eficacia sea discutible. Uribe monopoliza el tema crucial en un pais extremadamente violento.

    Al ciudadano corriente le interesa que su entorno inmediato esté tranquilo. Oira a quien lo interpele en este sentido. Carlos Gaviria podria comenzar por reflexionar sobre la violencia “ordinaria”, la delincuencia “comun”, el homicidio, el robo, formas de violencia difusas y difundidas y que causan mas muerte y desolacion que la llamada violencia “politica” (ver estudios de Rubio y otros).

  2. Sergio Méndez Says:

    Security is a hot potatoe for the left cause after all, security is administrated by the military, the represive branch of the state, which in Colombia has been seen as allies of paramilitaries and defenders of the status quo ¿How to implement a security policy with an institution like such? In my opinion, as a leftist with clear anarchist trends, state controled armies are one of the less desirable institutions ever, and should be first ones to dissapear with the State. But that day is not close in Colombia. So I agree that the state certainly has the obligation to keep the presure to attain security with its armed forces. But Gaviria is right on target, state MUST have some legitimacy to claim for itself force use. And the legitimacy won´t come from making schools or hospitals but from defending, first at all, the most elementary forms of justice: ¿What about a land reform to give paesants the land stolen by them from large latifundists and paramilitaries? That is some thing Mr Uribe is not willing to do and the reason his security policy is deeply and esentially flawed, and something into which the left can claim some real differences with the actual administration…

  3. Durandal Says:

    You see, my dear friend Sergio, the Colombian State already has the legal legitimacy it needs to use force to protect its citizenry. It’s called the Constitution. I really doubt that the average Colombian shares your view of the military being “defenders of the status quo” – I mean, don’t the Armed Forces enjoy one of the highest approval ratings in the country, higher than that of most political parties and Congress? I think they see them as “the only institution that effectively stands between my family and the goons with the AK-47’s”, and while the left continues to believe that the whole country shares its ivory-towered worldview, it will fail to appeal to security-minded urban Colombians who, as Adam points out, command most of the votes in the country.

    Oh yes, and then you have the crux of the Colombian left’s problem: “Of, course, to do [propose that both the military and the civilian State recover neglected areas] would require acknowledging that a military role exists.”. By this reasoning, Gaviria’s, and by induction most of his party’s (minus Lucho Garzón) failure lies in his reluctance to even recognise that you can’t parachute doctors and judges into areas of conflict without a minimum of security. His naïveté is striking, and in a country where people hate to be taken for fools, that is simply not an electable platform.

    Your [Sergio's] definition of “justice” is slippery, too. Land reform is necessary, but first you start off with the “paramilitaries”, then you go down to the “latifundists”, and then, what? Zimbabwe-style appropriations (performed by the same corrupt government that you love to deride, mind you) don’t exactly seem to be the way to ensure a country’s economic future. Maybe a market mechanism that ensures that large landowners have to pay property taxes that increase as the total property under their control increases would be a better idea? Whatever happened to that land confiscated by Estupefacientes from druglords and their kind? Did we give it away in the name of Justice with a capital J and then proceeded to see how some of the most fertile land in the country became…completely unproductive?

    That said, I will take this opportunity to speak my mind on a certain issue that I find fairly important. Adam, you seem to be cheering with a certain degree of mild enthusiasm for Mr. Gaviria. Maybe this just illustrates once again why Mr. Uribe is so suspicious of NGO’s, and why I actually share some of his suspicions. You guys might be non-governmental, but I for one don’t believe that you’re apolitical. I hate to say this but somebody without the entire repressive apparatus of a State under his command has to.

    BIG DISCLAIMER: Before I am chastised by the Gods of Political Correctness for writing what I just wrote against the Sanctity of the NGO, please bear in mind that in no way shape or form do I advocate or condone the murder, kidnapping, torture, blackmail and extortion that is often performed against NGO activists in Colombia. Please don’t start with the whole “facho paramilitar” story because it just ain’t true.

  4. Adam Isacson Says:

    I don’t think my comments above can be interpreted as electioneering in a foreign country. But of course I’m happy to see Gaviria performing well. For three reasons, and I think you would probably agree with (2) and (3).

    1. I coincide with many of his positions, as any regular reader of this blog can figure out. If he were elected, the Colombian government would be asking for US assistance and policies that more closely resemble what we advocate here in Washington. My job would be easier if the Colombian government were lobbying for development aid, not more helicopters and spray planes.

    2. To see a member of Colombia’s “Democratic Left” able to compete in elections without being assassinated or written off as a guerrilla puppet is a significant indicator of the health of Colombia’s democracy. If Gaviria performs well in the voting, that would be a severe body-blow to the FARC, which insists that their violent path is the only way the left can have any political influence in Colombia.

    3. A second-round runoff campaign between Uribe and Gaviria would likely be won by Uribe in a landslide. But it would mean several weeks of very healthy political debate between two candidates with very different philosophies, the likes of which we’ve seen only rarely lately here in the USA. This would also strengthen Colombian democracy enormously.

  5. Rainer Cale Says:

    This is another good post, and good advice for the “democratic left.” Too bad Gaviria doesn’t visit this blog.

  6. Durandal Says:

    Indeed, I do agree with 2) and 3) wholeheartedly. I actually see a huge Star Wars dimension to an Uribe/Gaviria debate but it takes a geeky mind and a lot of personality to go into such details in a weblog as serious as this one…

    I wouldn’t mind you “electioneering”, as long as you made it clear that that’s what you’re doing. It’s the whole “politicking under the guises of NGO work” that bothers me. I actually don’t mind that “foreigners” have an opinion about our politics, least of all when these foreigners have dedicated so much time working with Colombians of all walks of life. So if anyone’s entitled to an opinion it’s you, I’d say!

    He might not read this, but his supporters seem to. And you never know, a Polo staffer might be in there, lurking in the shadows, so there’s hope…

  7. Sergio Méndez Says:

    Mr Durandal:

    I hope you noted I said I am an leftist with anarchist trends, so to think that I accept the idea of legitimacy comming from a constitution (a piece of paper written by political representatives and imposed on everybody without their consent) is, to say it in a word, weird. But even accepting that, for the sake argument, there is something called “political legitimacy”, and Uribe´s policies lack of it. You can´t go around pushing a masive war in rural areas where peasants have been robbed by the very same state and its colaborators and pretend you have any sort of political legitimacy.

    As for my “definition” of Justice (wierd, I havent defined it, but you seem to think I did) and your comments on it let me say:

    “Land reform is necessary, but first you start off with the “paramilitaries”, then you go down to the “latifundists”, and then, what?”

    Very simple Mr, you start and end with anybody who has stolen the land of peasants. Since they are usually paramilitaries and latifundists I mentionated them in the first place, but when I mean EVERYONE, I mean EVERYONE who has stolen land (check out, paramilitaries ALONE have 2 million of Ha of which they are planning to return only 100 thousend, with the silent aproval of goverment of course). I suppose that you, being a big defender of capitalism and private property (yes, I deducted it reading your blog…) have no problem at all with giving back peasents what has been and STILL is being stolen from them, do you? Or is that private property only counts when, well, is the private property of big buisness, latifundists and of course, paramilitaries, but not of poor peasants? Just to know..

    On the point of the military being the most respected institution, I have something to say:

    1- Its popularity does not change the fact that the military in Colombia has been one of the main and essential parts of the represive aparatus of the state and of the status quo that has ruled the country since the independence. DO you deny this? Do you deny ties between the military and paramilitaries? Do you?

    2- The military is popular, among many things cause the military operates in rural areas, while most of the population in Colombia lives in Urban areas, and the media has been selling out the propaganda about how the military is made of “heroes” who “fight back guerrilla”, while neglecting all its failures and crimes. So I do not think it is surprising at all the popularity of the military in this country. But then again, what is the relevence for the argument I am making?

    Finally, on your comment on NGO´s, you discovered that water makes you wet. Of course NGO´s are not apolitical, and they should not pretend to be apolitical nor BE apolitical. Everybody HAS a political position, and NGO´s shouldn´t be the exception. You may pretend to be a victim of “political correctness” for discovering that, but well I think the whinning against political correctness is so much politically correct position this days…

  8. Rainer Cale Says:

    I’m someone for whom it’s very easy to agree with Adam’s points 1,2, and 3.

    I hadn’t thought about it, but it is remarkable that a candidate as left-leaning as Gaviria has been able to carry forward his campaign with the same freedom and media recognition as the other candidates. I think the last presidential candidate to put a hammer and sickle on his campaign posters was Carlos Pizarro.

    However, I don’t know to what extent this is an encouraging sign. In Pizarro’s case it was clear that he was going to win the election. Gaviria, on the other hand, doesn’t pose even a remote threat to an Uribe victory. In the unlikely event that he does become a contender, I think the chances of something adverse happening to him, including assassination, are high.

    Along these lines, I think it’s essential to call attention to something basic that hasn’t yet been touched upon:

    The election will almost surely not be a democratic exercise–it will not be about people making a free choice. It takes us a while, living in the big cities, for us to grasp this. But come on, let’s get a grip: In zones of paramilitary control electorates will be forced to vote for Uribe. In zones of guerrilla control, electorates will be forced to vote for a leftist. And something like 60% of the population will not even vote. The only part of the country where people might actually vote based on what they want (or on what they have been tricked into wanting) will be in the cities.

    With this in mind, the discussion surrounding this post becomes somewhat moot. If what we are interested in is the outcome of the election and what will lead to that outcome, the focus of the discussion ought to be on the forces that are in reality going to shape that outcome. These forces have everything to do with brute force and political finesse (in which Uribe has a Harvard degree); and just about nothing to do with the fine points of the candidates’ positions.

    I would contend that it is only when one begins to look at things in this way that one comes up with plausible explanations for the otherwise extremely peculiar direction the election is taking. How else to explain, for example, the massive “support” for a president who, as Adam demonstrates in his April 7th post, is spending nothing on social programs?

  9. Javier Moreno Says:

    “How else to explain, for example, the massive “support” for a president who, as Adam demonstrates in his April 7th post, is spending nothing on social programs?”

    The answer to this question lies right above of you: People keep “supporting” Uribe because he provides them with this sense of security they had never had before. That’s enough for most of them. The feel secure, they trust the president, they think that “moving to the left” would be supporting the terrorists, they had been convinced that the paramilitaries rehab process was a success, etc, etc. On the paper (and even in reality) this has been one of the best colombian governments in the last (say) thirty years or so (sad but true). They don’t want to risk what they’ve got, no matter how unstable, ephemeral and fake that is.

  10. Adam Isacson Says:

    One more point, going back to Durandal’s statement that “You guys might be non-governmental, but I for one don’t believe that you’re apolitical.”

    Colombia’s most vocal NGOs don’t even pretend to be apolitical. Daniel García-Peña of Planeta Paz served as a campaign advisor to Lucho Garzón and just ran for Congress as a PDA candidate. Jorge Rojas left the directorship of CODHES to run on the PDA senate list. Gloria Flórez of MINGA has been a top PDA official. On the other side, Alfredo Rangel of the Fundación Seguridad y Democracia just ran for Senate on one of the Uribista party lists.

    These and others do not hide their political preferences. Our objection to President Uribe’s words about NGOs isn’t that they favor some candidates or parties. (Guilty as charged in many cases.) We object when Uribe, without proof, says that they favor or even assist the FARC or ELN. Calling NGOs appendages of the PDA is a criticism I don’t agree with but one that is perfectly permissible. On the other hand, calling them “spokespeople for terrorism,” as Uribe has done, is irresponsible and reckless, and puts at risk critics who work non-violently within the system.

    What happens here at home? In general, groups like CIP try to be as nonpartisan as possible, even though the legislators and candidates we most agree with are usually Democrats. One wants to avoid being perceived as an organization tied to the Democratic Party, because you usually need to convince at least some Republicans if you want to get anything done here.

  11. galactus Says:

    Great post. I also agree with Adam’s 3 points.

    It is worth noting that if Gaviria has been able to do well so far, it is not because Colombia is now an example of democracy where the state guarantees security to those who support any other political view than those defended by the local masters. It is because of the continuous and daily effort of the many people who refuse to let the debate be hijacked by the violent parts.

  12. rainer cale Says:

    To Javier: The illusion of democratic security explains the support of the people living in the cities who use the caravans and guarded highways in December. But if I’m not mistaken that is only a small fraction of all the people who are going to vote for Uribe. How to explain the massive support even among peasants and populations which have suffered under his policies?

    Not being peasants ourselves, it’s hard to say. I would speculate that it has to do with a mixture of abstention, violent intimidation, and Uribe’s Oxford-honed talent for manipulating electoral dynamics and projecting a charismatic image.

    It also has to do with the VERY unique and heterogenous political dynamics from one region of Colombia to another, which are very very complex and which we have little hope of understanding from where we stand. In some zones, for example, paramiltaries have an active “social development wing,” and are behaving as though they were the communist people’s army. Much of our conception of what “Colombia” is doesn’t have much validity outside the city limits of Bogota or Medellin. It is not a homogenous place.

    The issue of the government’s attitude towards NGOs deserves a lot of attention. Adam mentioned last year (January 22, 2005 post) his surprise at finding so many Colombian officers at WHINSEC (School of the Americas), and at their “all-too-common belief that NGOs are partial to the guerrillas, or even in solidarity with them or under their direct control.” This attitude holds even for UN appointed groups like Human Rights Watch, (whom Londono once called “communists” in a face-to-face exchange). It’s all very alarming and still needs to be adequately addressed and cleared up. I was just recently witness to a dispute surrounding the activities of a major logging company in Choco. A consortium of NGOs, including Greenpeace, has accused the company, on behalf of several communities, of being tied to the human rights violations of the infamous Brigada Movil 17 (Gen Rito Alejo) and their paramilitary friends in that area. The first thing out of the company’s mouth was “Es que esos NGOs estan vinculados con las FARC.” This pattern needs to be broken.

  13. Javier Moreno Says:

    Having family in rural Cordoba myself, I have the perception that the illusion of democratic security goes beyond the borders of urban areas. In paramilitary controlled zones (such as Cordoba) there’s now permanent military presence. Uribe’s government has sent troops also to places that were no man’s land for a long while. Again, this is not combined with social investment, but as I said before, people don’t care about that as much as they care about feeling secure. Also, it is important to point out that even the poorest peasants have TV and through it the government can reach them and convince ‘em things are working just fine, paramilitaries have converted, democratic security is a success and victory is on the way.

    The accusation of NGOs being FARC allies is a tragic consequence of the ever more tragic belief, popular among some social sectors, that leftist oriented movements like the PDA are just “political branches” of FARC and ELN. This of course has to do with what Adam noted in that previous post showing how FARC terrorist attacks serve as advertisement for Uribe’s reelection. I don’t quite know yet how such pattern could be broken. I guess it would help if PDA showed a stronger, constant and unified condemn to any terrorist action and were more careful when claiming that the conflic has a social justification. For some (most?) people, those statements are read as claimings of legitimacy of what the guerrilla is doing.

  14. Durandal Says:

    By what Javier is saying, it sounds that the success Uribe’s “democratic security” policy is not so much a matter of “the perception of an illusion” as opposed to an actual presence of the State in areas where it simply didn’t rear its ugly head before. Even if it’s only a military one, hey – I’d say it’s a start.

    NGO’s could start by changing the title of their reports. I mean, “El Embrujo Autoritario“. Seriously. What did you expect from the government, a red carpet entrance and an invitation to celebrate the scathing criticism of its policy at a cocktail party at the Palacio de Nariño? Having removed the offensive title from their work, they could go on and work on the contents of their actual report, and begin by crediting the government with bringing actual increases in security for people who had none before. This includes many opponents of Uribe’s policy and principles. Saying “nicely done” every now and then won’t kill them.

    What confounds me even more was seeing a UN agency’s logo on the report, thus identifying it as one of the report’s supporters. If you fund the opposition to one of your Member States’ government, and then proceed to legitimise it with your prestige as an international organisation, then you should really not expect that government to be very receptive to your kind suggestions and statements regarding its internal conflict!

    Hence, it doesn’t surprise me that Herr Frühling got the cold shoulder from the Uribe government. If “pinko” NGO’s want to be taken more seriously by a conservative government and population they really need to show a little bit more reason and a little bit less political bias.

    And they should really fire the smartass who picked the title on that report. What an idiotic choice, really.

  15. jcg Says:

    Another very well written and very relevant CIP analysis. And I certainly agree with the three points that Adam has outlined too.

    Sergio: I think that you need to take into account that, despite the state’s and the military’s evident legitimacy problems, the reality is that the left still needs to present a coherent security policy, not just a coherent legitimacy policy, if it wants to win the presidency in 2006.

    Defending legitimacy without security creates the perception of impotence and weakness, just as defending security without legitimacy creates the perception of repression and authoritarism.

    Yet, unfortunately, as long as the war continues to be the predominant concern in the minds of many Colombians (and the FARC’s recent attacks only help that process), more than enough people will continue to be willing to choose security over legitimacy. Or even repression over impotence, if it comes to that.

    I definitely sympathize with Carlos Gaviria, I will not hide that, but he needs to present a concrete security proposal that addresses these concerns if he hopes to represent a viable alternative to Uribe this year.

    Also, IMHO, while the success of Democratic Security has definitely been greatly exaggerated, it isn’t entirely fictional. The perception that such a strategy is enough and needs no structural modifications is definitely an illusion, I can agree with that.

    There are certainly many basic flaws, evident flaws even, in this strategy, such as the ones that CIP’s work has outlined. But, as CIP has also admitted, Democratic Security has achieved some limited but not insignificant victories, especially in the eyes of the urban population. And the urban population dominates the electorate.

    So a delicate balance has to be found. One that, IMHO, should lean towards legitimacy without leaving security in a vacuum.

    If anything, I think Carlos Gaviria should propose a completely different kind of Democratic Security, not simply denounce the concept altogether. A new way of understanding Security as an eminently Democratic affair, but without forgetting that Security essentially implies the use of force too.

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