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Pablo Escobar (1949 –1993) once said that “All empires are created of blood and fire” [1]. In 1987 Forbes magazine estimated Escobar to be the seventh-richest man in the world with a personal wealth of close to US$25 billion, while his Medellin cartel controlled 80% of the global cocaine market [2,3].
The term narco-terrorism has been exemplified by Pablo Escobar as the classic drug trafficker who used terrorist tactics against noncombatants to further his political agenda and to protect his drug trade [4]. Escobar’s ruthlessness was legendary. He had a way of dealing with his enemies: he called it “plata o plomo” literally, silver or lead.Usually, if a politician, judge or police officer got in his way, he would
first attempt to bribe them, and if that didn’t work, he would order them killed, occasionally including their family [5]. The exact number of persons killed by Escobar is unknown, but it definitely goes well into the hundreds and perhaps into the thousands.
The Medellin cartels continuing struggle to maintain supremacy resulted in Colombia’s quickly becoming the world’s murder capital with 25,100 violent deaths in 1991 and 27,100 in 1992 [6]. Living in the country during this time was associated with a 16 times greater likelihood of becoming a victim of terrorist violence as compared to any other South American country citizen [7]. According to the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) the Colombian murder rate
was 64 per 100,000 inhabitants compared to the 5.6 per 100,000 rate
seen in the U.S. or the even lower figure of 0.6 per 100,000 seen in
England [8].
Escobar was responsible for the 1985 storming of the Colombian Supreme Court, the 1989 murder of Colombian presidential candidate Luis Carlos Galan, the bombing of Avianca Flight 203 and the DAS building bombing in Bogotá. The 1985 storming of the Colombian Supreme Court by left-wing guerrillas from the 19th of April Movement, also known as M-19, resulted in the murder of more than 70 people, including eleven Supreme Court justices. At the time of the siege, the Supreme Court was studying the constitutionality of Colombia’s extradition treaty with the U.S. The M-19 were paid to break into the building of the supreme court, and burn all papers and files on” Los Extraditables” – the group of cocaine smugglers, which included Pablo Escobar, who were under threat of being extradited to the US by the Colombian government. Avianca Airlines Flight 203 was
a Colombian domestic passenger flight that was destroyed by a bomb on November 27, 1989. All 107 passengers on board were killed. The purpose of the attack was to assassinate the presidential candidate for the 1990 elections César Gaviria Trujillo. Gaviria, however, was not on the plane, and would go on to become President of Colombia. The DAS building bombing was a truck bomb attack in Bogotá, Colombia, at 7:30 am on December 6, 1989. The bomb targeted the Administrative Department of Security (DAS) headquarters, which is the equivalent
to our CIA Headquarters in Langley, Virginia. The truck bomb, with an estimated 500 kg of dynamite, leveled several city blocks, killed 52 people and injured more than 1,000. The bombing was an attempt to assassinate DAS director Miguel Maza Márquez, who escaped … http://www.omicsgroup.org/journals/JTM/JTM-1-113.pdf

by

Michael W. Parra1* and José Mauricio Suárez-Becerra2
1International Trauma Critical Care Improvement Project/ Broward General Level I Trauma Center/ Delray Provisional Level I Trauma Center, FL, USA
2Asociación Colombiana de Trauma, Secretario Ejecutivo, Pereira, Colombia

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