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Published by: rmzx83 on Mar 10, 2011
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Position: Second in command of the FARC; commander, Eastern Bloc of the
FARC; member, FARC General Secretariat since April 1993.

Background: Jorge Briceño Suárez was born in the Duda region of Colombia, in
the jurisdiction of Uribe, Meta Department, in 1949. His father was the legendary
guerrilla Juan de la Cruz Varela, and his mother was a peasant woman, Romelia
Suárez. He grew up and learned to read and write within the FARC. For years, he
was at the side of Manuel Marulanda Vélez (“Tirofijo” Sureshot), who is
considered his tutor and teacher. Mono Jojoy is a jovial-looking, heavy-set man
who wears a handlebar moustache and who normally wears a simple green
camouflage uniform and a black beret. He is another of the new second-
generation FARC military chiefs who was born in the FARC. Both he and
“Eliécer”created the FARC’s highly effective school for “special attack tactics,”
which trains units to strike the enemy without suffering major casualties. Mono
Jojoy is credited with introducing the Vietnam War-style specialized commandos
that consist of grouping the best men of each front in order to assign them
specific high-risk missions. He is one of the most respected guerrilla leaders
within FARC ranks. He became second in command when Marulanda succeeded
Jocobo Arenas in 1990.

Library of Congress – Federal Research Division

The Sociology and Psychology of Terrorism


Unlike the other commanders who came to the FARC after university-level
studies, Mono Jojoy learned everything about guerrilla warfare in the field. He
easily moves among the Departments of Boyacá, Cundinamarca, and Meta. He is
said to know the Sumapaz region “like the palm of his hand.” He is known as a
courageous guerrilla, who is obsessed with attacking the Public Force, has little
emotion, and is laconic. His great military experience helps to compensate for his
low intellectual level. He is said to be unscrupulous and to advocate any form of
warfare in pursuit of power, including dialoging with the government as a ruse.
Under his command, the Eastern Bloc has earned record amounts of cocaine-
trafficking profits. He is opposed to extradition of Colombians, including his
brother, Germán Briceño Suárez (“Grannobles”), a FARC hard-liner who was
charged on July 21, 1999, in the slayings of three U.S. Indian rights activists,
who were executed in early 1999. He is contemptuous of the prospect of U.S.
military intervention, noting that U.S. soldiers would not last three days in the
jungle. However, he would welcome U.S. economic assistance to rural
development projects, such as bridge-building.

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