Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center Nonresident Senior Colombia Fellow Miguel Silva writes for US News and World Report on the upcoming elections in Colombia:
Forty-nine million Colombians, many of them part of a growing middle class, demand improvements in public services, education and justice. These citizens are moving towards lending their approval to a negotiated peace with the last standing guerrilla army of the continent. Today, the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or the FARC, has become a lesser, though still important, guerrilla menace.
But Colombia faces enormous risks today. Although they were weakened by the last elections, opposition parties have been successful in dividing the country around the peace process. The consensus that brought about Colombia’s miracle could unravel today because of an increasingly polarized and poisonous atmosphere around the debate on peace.