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Short stories

Plata O Pomo.

Named after the greatest explorer and navigator of all time, Colombia, is a Latin American country
with a long history. The majorly Spanish country has suffered and strengthened in the past. When
talking about Colombian history, one can never forget to mention the Drug Lord, Pablo Escobar.
Born in Rionegro, Colombia, Pablo Emilio Escobar Gaviria still haunts the dreams of Colombian
government officials. Also known as ‘The King of Cocaine’, El Padrino (the Godfather) was convicted
for drug trafficking, drug smuggling, assassinations, bombings, racketeering, bribery and
innumerable murders. He threatened officials, built his own luxury prison and did whatever and
whenever he wanted. There is a reason why he’s known as a ‘Drug Lord’ and not a ‘Drug trafficker’.
His story is both fascinating and fearsome. He followed the motto of Plata o Plomo (silver or Lead)
meaning money or bullet.

Escobar wasn’t all that bad to the people of Colombia, at least to his own people, the people of Medellin.
He built houses for the poor, constructed football fields and was actually close to them. This made
him popular in the western Colombia and people often called him the Robin Hood. In 1982, Pablo
showed an interest in politics and became a Congressman. But as soon as his convictions were
revealed, Pablo was forced to resign. He was embarrassed in front of the press and other officials
present in the meeting. This proved to be one of the first motivations for Escobar to move Colombia
out of its place. Pablo did not do much to regain his seat due of lack of desires. But what if he really
wanted to be the Colombian president. Let’s look at an alternate to what happened.

Pablo Escobar walks out of the meeting with his head down and filled with anger. He goes home, dials the Palace of Justice (Colombian Supreme Court) and threatens to attack and bomb the building. He seeks help from the leftist guerrilla groups. Having similar goals, Pablo manages to convince the guerrillas to let him lead. Soon, with bribery Pablo is able to acquire tanks and ammunition; stronger and much more powerful than that of the Colombian army. He has so much money that he is actually able to bribe a few government officials and military heads to resign. Pablo
imposes an attack on the Capitolio Nacional (National Capitol) and orders his army to kill anyone they see. Explosions and firing cause mass destruction, hundreds are killed and murdered. Pablo put the gun on Belisario Betancur (the then President of Colombia) and threatens to kill his family in front of his eyes. There on, Pablo captures the National Capitol and sits on the throne like a mad king while Betancur, his family and some other government officials are taken as hostages in the building itself.
He wreaked vengeance on the Colombian government. But there was something he was worried
about, the United States. US president, Ronald Reagan had already started his preparations towards
Colombia. Pablo knew it was not going to get any better from here. He had all the protection but his
family was still vulnerable. He decides to send them away and with an expert’s advice he finalises
the city of Frankfurt, Germany. About a week later Pablo bids a farewell to his family. The car leaves
for the airport but never reaches there. 3 kilometres away from the El Dorado International Airport,
4 SUV’s exploded, leaving no passengers alive. Pablo was left astonished. The only nightmare he had ever had had now turned true. He knew he had lost his popularity and trust. People’s Robin Hood was just a
worldwide terrorist now.

The US army blasted the National Capitol with 6 tanks, 3 fighter planes and 3000 fully armed
soldiers. None of the Pablo’s defences could stand against the US military. And this time there was
no escape. Even if he did escape, there was no one to follow him. So he stands inside the president’s
office, staring outside the window at the Colombian sky while smoking his last marijuana roll. It was
time for Pablo to stop.
The army, of course was able to get to the office. They break the door open and see an empty room
with the Colombian flag hanging down from the ceiling. No one had any idea where the El Patron
(the Boss) was.
Pablo is very often compared to Adolf Hitler, who is also known as Mein Kampf. They certainly had
different views and lifestyles but were definitely similar when it comes to the paths they chose to
achieve success. And therefore my alternate of Pablo’s story ends just like Adolf Hitler’s, perpetual
and unexplainable.

 

-Apoorv Mathur.

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