¡Alfaro Vive, Carajo!

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Representation of the motto or logo of the group.

¡Alfaro Vive, Carajo! (AVC) (English: Alfaro Lives, Dammit!), another name for the Fuerzas Armadas Populares Eloy Alfaro (English: Eloy Alfaro Popular Armed Forces), was a clandestine left-wing group in Ecuador, founded in 1982 and named after popular government leader and general Eloy Alfaro.[1]

History[edit]

The group was initially formed some time in the 1970s but was not militarily active for the first several years of its existence.[2] An avowedly leftist but non-Marxist organisation, they identified with the Democratic Left coalition.[2] AVC first received national attention in 1983, when it broke into a museum and stole swords which had been used by Eloy Alfaro. Some of the group's leaders were thought to be affiliated with Cuba, Libya and Nicaragua, and the group itself was linked to militant groups from other Latin-American countries, such as the M-19[3] and the Túpac Amaru Revolutionary Movement, establishing a joint operations group called Batallon America with these two groups.[2] From 1986-1987, AVC carried out several kidnappings, robbed banks and a factory, took over a number of radio stations in order to broadcast their manifesto, and killed four police officers while retrieving a group member from police custody.[3]

In response to this activity, the government began carrying out raids against the group. The group's leader Arturo Jarrin was killed during a gun battle with government forces in October 1986.[2] By 1987, a large number of AVC's leaders and members had either been killed or arrested.[3] In 1989, the government of Ecuador reached an agreement with AVC, with the group agreeing to end its violence.[1][3] In 1991, the group officially reformed as a legitimate political party. One year later, eight group members made an illegal, but non-violent entry into the British Embassy in Quito, demanding the release of a group leader who was then imprisoned by the Ecuadorian government.

In popular culture[edit]

The group is the subject of a 2007 documentary film titled ¡Alfaro vive carajo! Del Sueño Al Caos.[4][5]

The post-hardcore rock group At The Drive-In has an EP named ¡Alfaro Vive, Carajo!

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Party Politics in the 1980s". countrystudies.us. 
  2. ^ a b c d Phil Gunson, Andrew Thompson & Greg Chamberlain, The Dictionary of Contemporary Politics of South America, London: Routledge, 1990, p. 3
  3. ^ a b c d "Ecuador: Internal Security". country-data.com. 
  4. ^ "¡Alfaro vive carajo! "del sueño al caos" (Isabel Dávalos / Ecuador / 90 minutos)". Cero Latitud. 
  5. ^ "¡Alfaro vive carajo! Del Sueño Al Caos". Escalon Films. 

References[edit]