Medellín, Colombia

Filling up a valley in the Andean foothills, Medellín is a sprawling but attractive town with a tortuous history. Famous to Americans as the home of the Medellín drug cartel in the 90s, and once racked by political instability and guerilla warfare, the city has taken great strides to tamp down crime (cops and soldiers are everywhere) and to even out the terrible economic inequalities that sunder this society.

10 Comments

  1. Posted November 10, 2010 at 7:41 pm | Permalink

    I have to notice you that it’s a beautiful city, the only risk is wanting to stay. Thanks and Wellcome.

  2. Insightful Ape
    Posted November 10, 2010 at 7:47 pm | Permalink

    Have you met dear ol’ Pablo Escobar yet?

    • whyevolutionistrue
      Posted November 10, 2010 at 7:54 pm | Permalink

      No, but I visited his haunts,the favelas of this town, this afternoon Cocaine trafficking and gangs are still huge business here, I’m told. Escobar, of course, became a corpulent corpse about 17 years ago.

    • Posted November 10, 2010 at 8:02 pm | Permalink

      Dear friend: The Medellín history isn’t pleasant in some aspects, but I can assure you that It’s a wonder. You shoud go to Medellín and realize that really is a city where the culture, family values, friendly people and so on are alive. Just, give the first step and start to know the other side that isn’t reported in the news (Yet).

      • Oscar
        Posted November 10, 2010 at 9:00 pm | Permalink

        Pablo may be long gone, but the reason “cops and soldiers are everywhere” (as noted by Jerry) is for a very obvious reason, that being that “demobilized” paramilitaries and criminal bands trafficking drugs are still a very real (and politically inconvenient) problem. Unless you legalize drugs and deal with social injustice in this country, taking people like Escobar out does nothing at all but create new heads of this cartels, but hopefully not as vicious as that creep.

        • Sergio
          Posted November 10, 2010 at 9:37 pm | Permalink

          well I think the social problems of Medellin and Colombia are undeniable, things are changing here though… Like most cities in the world it has dangerous places and some other places where you are perfectly safe. Colombia is a stigmatized country by the news because of its history. People should also notice that although Cocaine is produced in Colombia by illegal groups it is just one of the drugs that bring problems to society. Other countries are the primary producers of other very harmful drugs.
          Some say to legalize it would be the solution, that would be great, I don’t actually think that would be that simple though.

  3. Ichthyic
    Posted November 10, 2010 at 7:59 pm | Permalink

    OT:

    If anyone missed it, the first day of talks from the NAI conference on origins is available now:

    http://astrobiology.nasa.gov/nai/ool-www/program/

    I caught some of the last 2 days, and thought it a great idea, and there was some great new info I hadn’t seen before.

    Hope they do it again.

  4. Andy
    Posted November 10, 2010 at 8:45 pm | Permalink

    That’s quite a photograph.

  5. Chris Slaby
    Posted November 11, 2010 at 8:09 am | Permalink

    A really wonderful photo!

  6. Posted November 11, 2010 at 6:50 pm | Permalink

    I am loving these Colombia posts, and am really jealous you’re there right now. I was in Bogotá for three days a few weeks ago, and loved it. You should do the bike tour if you can- the slow pace makes them take all day but they are totally worth it: http://www.bogotabiketours.com/

    Wish I could have seen Medellín, but there wasn’t time. I will heartily echo henryarenasc: the only risk is wanting to stay. What a great country.


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