On concluding that I need conclusions

Ok, ok, it’s not that bad. I’m not just swimming endlessly through documents or wandering into purely philosophical musings. What I am, however, is an undergraduate who can create some hypotheses but lacks the means to back them with authority.

I’d say I’ve officially settled into the mid-point, in which the flurry of activity has slowed but I had better not. Those infinite news articles I mentioned? I’ve read them. I can look at articles and already know which ones they are citing because that was the one I finished yesterday. I’ve greatly expanded my Spanish sources to different news publications and books as well, which proved helpful.

I’ve also been able to investigate international drug trade as another linkage particuarly between ETA and FARC. Whereas the FARC has access to the growing process itself, ETA has access to the arms and clients- there appears a much stronger connection and background than the odd training experience together and “solidarity” in their aims.

The point I have reached is personally finding that: ETA and FARC are and have been mutually supporting one another; Venezuela (Chavez?) has allowed FARC to have some roots within the state; and ETA members have definitely lived and at times been active in the Chavez government.   But these many connections are not the same thing as saying that ETA and FARC have met on Venezuelan soil or through Venezuelan efforts.  I do feel that at the least Chavez has turned a blind eye on the activities of these groups (even if they did not come to fruition).

But I’m not there. I’m not interviewing ex-etarras or  FARC guerrillas. I’m not briefed on the measures Venezuela is taking to investigate where the wanted individuals are or whether government members have been involved (though, from most sources, these measures are slim). And so I have to find a way to compensate for these setbacks. That, at least, is the conclusion I’m acting on now.


  1. calesser says:

    Hi Chelsea,

    You recently commented on my post on my research on Guernica. Thanks for the post!

    I actually visited Gernika too! I studied abroad in Sevilla last fall and while visiting Bilbao I found it imperative to make a trip to Gernika. I thought the Peace Museum was extremely moving, and it will definitely be taken into consideration as I continue research and work on my thesis.

    I find your research on ETA extremely interesting and impressive. While I am fairly uneducated on ETA, I have come across the organization on several occasions for example while studying the Basque Country, the 11-M Madrid train bombings, and the inauguration of the Guggenheim Bilbao. It’s such a prevalent aspect of modern-day Spain. I had no idea about the Venezuelan involvement (I guess that attests to how little I know!). The topic seems extremely fresh and interesting and as a Hispanic Studies major, I’d love to see what you come up with. Good luck!