tv CNN Newsroom CNN July 20, 2013 4:00pm-5:01pm PDT
these are deep waters my friends no news story or episode of miami vice has ever come close to navigating. it is and always has been a fiercely, fiercely proud country and its people yearn to see international coverage of something other than cocaine and violence. but that isn't a legacy that is easy to ignore. its decades of civil unrest have left vast swaths of colombia relatively unknown even to its own citizens. to reach a place previously considered a no go area, i'll fly out of an airport in villavicencio 45 miles southeast of the capital city of bogota. on first inspection, this is an airplane bone yard where unwanted props from romancing the stone corrode artfully.
but in reality, this sleepy hangar is an important gateway to the more impenetrable parts of the country. the remote settlements in the amazon basin are cut off from the country with neither rail nor roads connecting them. there are only two ways in, either boat for several days down river or aboard a jungle bus which is what locals call the world war ii era d.c. 3. >> i've been brought here by pablo mora a teacher at the university and a particular enthusiast for this classic of golden age aviation. you've taken this flight before? >> yes. every time i have a chance i come here and fly one. it is a romantic thing. >> he sees the work these hulking great air ships and their pilots do as daredevil humanitarian missions for the more remote colombians.
>> an in flight movie? >> no. nor first class either. >> what? >> no, no. >> the planes travel with their own mechanic to cobble together anything that might go wrong and stuff can go wrong. the risk is that we'll be able to land but not take off again. so this guy is our return ticket out of the jungle. our captain is something of a legend in these parts and his copil copilot. >> it's mystical. they develop this sensibility with the plane. there is no intel, no software.
they have gps but that's about it. it's beautiful. they have to sense everything. they know when the sound of the plane is not right. it's just man and machine. >> the weather is the big unknown and it is changeable enough to ground planes in remote places if they hang around for too long. we have to make one stop on the way to pick up more cargo. vital cargo, by the way. while we're passing over this
beautiful and lush area the life of those below has been anything but. >> colombia seems to be trapped in a vicious circle. >> the territory is used as a haven for kidnappers. >> until recently most of the news out of this part of colombia was not good. it was a front line in the war on drugs, for lack after better term and colombia's long struggle with the marxist drug cartel with kidnapping and assistance from venezuela. 50 years of very dirty war. the stakes not about drugs per se but about the ability of ordinary colombians to live without fear. we land in the jung the out post of mirraflores in the amazonian forest preserve. the heavy presence of army and
special police is a result of the strategic location and recent history as a one-time center of coca production. farmers would grow the stuff and make the leaves into paste. traffickers would come and buy it. the farc had this area under its sphere of influence for years. nine years ago the government moved to expel the farc, traffickers, and any paramilitaries with apparently much success. overnight, however, its population shrank by 85% and what remains struggles to survive. you're telling me the people were born here? >> most of the people came from elsewhere. in the beginning in the 1950s and '6 os they were escaping from the violence, from the
political violence between the two parties in colombia. >> so if you were having problems in the city or in wherever you were from you came out here. >> yeah, yeah. >> so what did you do for a living out here? >> cattle and some agriculture and after that the drug trade began and everything with the coca plantation. >> this climate is good for it? >> very good. since 1999 there was no police or army force here so it was just occupied by the farc. and then by the paramilitary. >> yeah. >> so that is when the real violence began. >> so the problem preexisted the drug trade. >> the drug trade just made everything more. there is no judge here, few institutions. basically you know the state is here just because the army is here. so i think when i met the major --.
>> anthony, this is the major. >> julio cesar gonzalez is the current mayor of miraflores which has seen much better and much worse days. how many people live in this town? >> around 1500, 2,000 in the community. the farc were here for 20 years and they were the central authority here. >> not doing particularly well, not particularly happy with the government. somebody comes along and offers you a nice machine gun and a cool scarf. >> yeah. especially if you're 15, 16 years old. that's a pretty attractive offer. >> of course it is. >> even if they say you'll probably be dead by the time you're 25. >> it is. and they offer you a salary. >> so what is the future of this town? >> they're providing free education but there is a little
potential of diversity and eco tourism as well. >> without the customer, there is no cocaine trade and no violence. right? so is the united states and europe still buying cocaine? >> i can't think about the situation where the demand is not going to be there. >> but the demand in the states is down 40%. >> as long as there is a market there will be people ready to do it. the united states puts how many billions of dollars a year paying for guns and uniforms and training, etcetera. where should they be spending it? >> i would say health is very important but more important is to end the war on drugs. it's just, it doesn't work. >> here is my problem. if crack didn't exist i would have no -- i have absolutely agree with you. but as a former coke addict and crack head, that is a problem.
>> yeah. the thing is that people think that if you think that drugs should be legalized you're saying they're good. no. we're not saying that. but just we're just getting rid of one problem. the problem the major has here. >> a lot of money you could divert. >> we have two problems. >> i agree. >> one is drug addiction and the other is drug trafficking. we'll get rid of one. we won't get rid of the other. we have to deal with it forever. >> it is a beautiful country. the people here are, from i've seen are really nice. even the bad guys are charming. >> yeah. that is true. >> the food is delicious. the problem is the united states will never leave. complicated issues. >> yeah. >> so the good people of this town can thank us for bringing in their fresh supply of -- >> yeah. >> coca. >> nothing of it, gentlemen. it was really our pleasure. the great outdoors...
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ambitions. where previously a restaurant scene didn't really exist. now young restaurant owners such as this musician turned chef are beginning to make a name for themselves in colombia. >> one of the biggest markets in bogota. i love this place. it is very beautiful. the colors. my mom comes here to buy flowers. my grandma also. >> did i mention this city is over 8,000 feet up? hence the altitude sickness i'm feeling. not good. tomas comes here a few times a week for an early breakfast which i'm hoping will make me feel better. this market has been running in one form or another since the 1940s. this place is huge.
>> want some juice? >> yeah. what do you have? >> i love it. orange juice with carrots. >> probably the healthiest thing i've had in a while. >> good for the high altitude. >> yeah. >> this is better. >> i'm feeling better every hour. >> yeah. >> the first hour is killing me. >> but you have a better face. >> i didn't think i was gng to make it out of the airport. >> most of the mornings, early in the morning 5:00 to 6:00 in the morning i climb the mountain. >> why? fresh air. >> okay. >> you have to come with me. >> hell no. ain't happening. >> you want to taste this? this is made with corn. it is fantastic. i love it.
tucked in the back corner of the fish market is a place that serves breakfast to the market's workers and shoppers. we're talking beef short ribs simmered in an oily broth with potatoes, salt, and scallions. tomas swears by this stuff, the traditional breakfast soup from the region. >> there we go. okay. gracias. >> would you like chili? >> i do. >> gracias. yeah. now we're talking. >> this is perfect when you have a good party last night. >> i was just going to say, this is hangover food. i know hangover food well and this is good. >> perfect. >> some meat in there. >> yeah. >> good broth.
>> yes. good. so what is this dish called? >> beef stock -- >> broth over rib. >> yes. with potatoes of course. even with potato. [ speaking in other language ] >> very good spanish. >> i don't speak spanish. i speak a little mexican. [ laughter ] bogota, back in the '90s a very dangerous and violent place to be. today, not so much. today in my repeated experiences here kind of awesome.
this is the recently renovated old city where i meet up with hector, distinguished author and one of the most important and supremely talented writers in latin america. hector's recent work, a memoir called "oblivion" is about his father who was killed for his outspoken attempts to change things for the better. >> first of all, where are we? >> this is a place where many bogotans come to eat something in the middle of the morning or the middle of the afternoon. >> the tomales here are made with chicken and pork belly combined with vegetables, rice, and massa wrapped in a banana leaf and slow cooked for hours. this place has been serving chocolate to the politicians of nearby plaza for a couple hundred years. >> here are the tomales. >> beautiful. it is a thing of beauty isn't
it? >> let's see if it is like my mother's. >> oh, that's a high standard. >> i suppose it is not. i was just to the market yesterday. what economy there was at miraflores was a drug economy. now the drugs are gone and there is no economy. it is a ghost town with the military and people sitting there staring at space waiting for beer to arrive best i can understand. tell me something hopeful. >> i think we are becoming more and more conscious that this past decades of violence have been absolutely useless. and that we have to change many, many, many things. so i think it is not as good as my mother's. i'm sorry. >> well, it never is. >> if you remove cocaine from the equation, remove the drug trade as a financial engine, you
would still have serious divisions over ideology here. is that improving? >> things are changing in a good direction, but very slowly. i think. you know, ten years ago they killed 7,500 people every year. and three years ago this number came to 700 people killed. so the situation changed. >> right. >> i have only questions. i have no answers. i'm so sorry. if i were the president, i really -- i don't know. >> you wouldn't know what to do. >> no. i wouldn't. i wouldn't. >> to suggest that a nation should expand its social services, do its best to lift people out of poverty, to provide medical care for everyone, as you well know, that may be in the minds of many.
are those as dangerous and potentially ideas as they used to be? >> well, 25 years ago my father was killed just because he was asking for these basic things like clean water, a glass of milk, and a bath for every child. that was -- we still don't have that and we need that. now we in colombia, maybe we are trying. i think there are some people here even in the government who are working for that. upport bon. [ ding! ] ...the immune system... [ ding! ] ...heart health... [ ding! ] ...and muscles. [ ding! ] that can only be ensure complete! [ female announcer ] the four-in-one nutrition of ensure complete. a simple choice to help you eat right. [ major nutrition ] nutrition in charge. diarrhea, gas, bloating?
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bogota is the largest city in colombia and the economic heart of the country. about a fifth of the population lives here many of them very well. but some not so well. it's a city with a marked north/south divide. chef tomas and his restaurant sit side by side in the macarena neighborhood where the city center meets the north. the lunch tomas is serving us
here is defined more by high quality fundamentals than by high concept theories. if there is a theme here, it's that ingredients this good, meticulously prepared, are the essence of great eating. >> it's a beautiful space. >> so how is the restaurant business in bogota? >> it's a big business. a lot of people don't know how to cook. >> nobody cooks at home. maybe their cook does. they eat out a lot? >> yeah. it's a new culture. everybody wants to go to the restaurant. >> ten, 15 years ago what, traditional, casual food? >> yeah. >> a few fine dining, white table cloths, continental or italian, but this is new? >> this is a new business. a new world. it is the mixture of the
cultures. it's beautiful. the other thing is all of the region with the rivers and the sea we are like a big farm, a beautiful farm to send all this produce to the world. i believe more in a beautiful carrot than a great recipe. >> yeah. >> right. this is pasta. >> thin sheets of hand made pasta are filled with cheese and finished with a cherizo sauce. yum. so you used to be a musician. >> yeah. i am still. >> still. so what happened, man? how did you go from music to restaurants? >> money. >> good. >> good, yeah. really good. >> it's great business is good
because generally speaking the only worse idea i think i'll try to make a living making music is i think i'll make a living opening a restaurant. i see why that's so popular. good stuff. >> thank you, tony. >> tomas's take uses beef shank instead of veal which is braised overnight with wine and broth in a wood fired oven. >> oh, wow. it's huge. yes. >> you don't need the knife. only the spoon. >> right. hum. do you cure this first in salt? >> no. >> dry it, salt it? >> no. >> just fresh?
>> yes. >> delicious. you'll have to keep this on your menu forever, right? >> forever. >> yeah. >> the best part. >> mama didn't raise no fool. santiago decali is a city of southwest colombia known for its proximity to the pacific coast and its semitropical temperatures. but i'm not really here for the climate. i'm here for taiho. it involves alcohol and explosives. colombian will and their
bandmates are to be my guide to this ancient and traditional colombian sport. >> ah! >> thank you. how do you play this game? >> i guess that's how it's done. what do you call this object? >> taiho. >> hence the name -- >> taiho. >> i should be good at this. i've been throwing pots into the dish sink from across the room for years. >> you win more points if you get it in the middle without hitting it. >> oh. that doesn't sound like any fun. >> everyone has a different style it seems. you've got to do like one step and then another and swing.
>> i don't believe that style is going to work for me. after early success it turns out we all pretty much suck at this. >> time to bring in some outside muscle. >> these guys. >> holy crap. two in a row? this is dismaying. one of those guys had to be on my team, right? >> the guy in the white. his name is "the old chicken."
>> he's calling himself the old chicken. i should be the enormous one. he's killing it. >> every time. ♪ >> must beat the chicken. wanted something to blow up. >> hungry work but the kitchen is up to the challenge making the colombian food. this is a huge selection of fried pork, pork rib, steak, potatoes, and deep fried plantain. i smell food. >> oh, ho. thank you.
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style is actually coomya. ♪ if there is one type of music that can be classified as distinctly colombian, this is it. ♪ it draws other music of the african, indigenous, and european mix that makes up the country so will and mario created something a long way from the pop music that's a staple here. they brought together musicians who had been famous on the scene in the 1950s and 1960s and matched them up with younger counterparts. as if the impressive amount of fried meat we ate wasn't enough, we go for dinner at one of the band's favorite spots. >> the recording we made which we did for three weeks was a big sort of ensemble and there were
musicians from, i think the youngest was 25 maybe and the oldest 82. >> old school and new school mixed. >> yes. >> so we can meet not only doing music but also exchanging lots of information about how music was made, how music was recorded. >> right. >> what was the spirit of the music. >> that's the idea is to get back to the roots. >> first up the cali version of cooked shrimp slathered in mayonnaise, ketchup, and worcester sauce. a '70s shrimp cocktail, essentially. leave it to the mangroves of the pacific coast, a stable used in everything from tomal eces to stews. rice, not a clam. ah. like a rock mollusk pretty much.
>> hum. it's delicious. wow. so this is from the pacific. this is red snapper. steamed shrimp. >> oh, very cool. >> and some nice green tomatoes. you always find it everywhere. with all of this food you have to accompany it with this. >> i'm learning that. >> it is the best way to handle this. from cane sugar like home made. so i'm just going to take mine. >> so what are your favorite places in colombia? >> colombia is like five countries in one. when you come to colombia you definitely have to go to some pacific experience either in cali or go straight to the coast to have a caribbean experience. you definitely have to have a
mountain experience like bogota. >> right. >> another would be like go to the amazon. go to the jungle. >> so i'm planning a vacation. >> yeah. >> should i come to colombia? should i come to cali? >> most definitely, man. you will find great music, great party, great food, beautiful views, beautiful nature around. >> yeah, yeah. look. the country is beautiful. we know this. but most americans are afraid to come. is colombia any more dangerous for a tourist than rio or puerto rico or -- south central? >> my impression is no. when you go to rio you don't wear a big watch. you don't wear an expensive suit. you don't behave like an idiot and life is going to be good. >> like maybe i've been lucky but i've never been mugged or robbed. most people tell you we had an amazing time. we heard great music.
we met beautiful girls or guys. we drank some great drinks and we just hung out and we went to the beach and we, it was great, and we want to come back. you know? >> i mean, there's a lot of heart here. people feel very, very deeply. >> yeah. >> about things. it is the most welcoming country in latin america that i've been. >> salud, salud! all business purchases. so you can capture your receipts, and manage them online with jot, the latest app from ink. so you can spend less time doing paperwork. and more time doing paperwork. ink from chase. so you can.
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i leave the sub tropics for more extreme climes a city northeast of cali on colombia's caribbean sea. this is the most northern part of south america and borders venezuela in the east. it is home to the seminomadic people of colombia. they are a tough, autonomous tribe who have never taken sides with either the government or farc or paramilitary. as a result they remained independent politically and live pretty much by their own code. i'm meeting juan pablo, a chef from bogota who comes to this
spot on a regular basis. this is not another country. this is colombia but a very different part of colombia. >> a very rugged terrain, desert. there is not that much water. so that is part of why the spaniards weren't able to colonize it. >> you've been coming here for some time. >> i became very interested in the area because i like the fresh fish, fresh lobster and fresh shrimp and goat meat to take back to golden gatea. is it good? >> very good. >> goats are important. they're used for bart aring and even doury payments. ranch owners come to sell, saluter, cook goats in the mornings. today we're having frichi. >> it is a traditional fish. it consists of the heart,
intestines of the goat. they slaughter them back here and this is where the women cook it. this is tradition. >> this is breakfast. >> this is breakfast. the frichi. >> a little bit of everything in there. >> yes. we have hearts. we have a little bit of meat, of ribs. >> now it's interesting, because this one is for breakfast, and it's almost done where they are slaughtered. they have to eat this fresh. >> fresh, this is delicious. if not fresh, this would not be so good. >> no. >> this is where i say something that takes us seamlessly from a discussion about fresh meat to me hauling my aging carcass on to an atv, sugar bear style. ♪
tribal members of the wayuu have dual citizenship and can cross the border into venezuela to live or trade there whenever they need to. luckily for us, it means that cheap gas is easy to come by in these parts. there are no stations as such. you just keep an eye out for the can. >> most of this gasoline is from venezuela. it's extremely cheap. it's like 50 cents a gallon. the government subsidizes a lot of it. they're able to buy venezuelan gasoline and sell legally venezuelan gasoline in colombia. >> having taken on as much gas as can be mouth-siphoned into one sitting, we're off again. let me set the scene. it's hot out here, desert hot. we plan to ride three hours
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...and we inspected his brakes for free. -free is good. -free is very good. [ male announcer ] now get 50% off brake pads and shoes at meineke. a momentary concussion is seldom a good thing. waking up in colombia on a beach almost always is. ♪ having abandoned the epic ride, we're back where we started in the guijira at the blue sea restaurant. how come you're all clean? >> i changed. >> you brought a change of clothes? >> yes. >> i'm hurting now. i'm feeling every minute, every hour, every month and year of my age. >> so you're ready? >> yes. i trust it will make me feel all better. >> much better. it's a good end to a fun day. >> you can't ask for better scenery.
it's beautiful here. >> a beer. >> i need the anesthetic qualities of the local fire water. that's probably a really good idea. >> that's going to be a good start for tonight. >> a good start. i'm done. oh, man. that dog has the right idea. see, i'd be very happy if that was me right now. just like laying down in the sand with my chin out like that. man, it's so beautiful here. who comes here? >> basically tourists from colombia and backpackers that are making their way up to the north. >> right. >> we saw one tourist all day, and it's nice, really it's completely off the grid. >> this used to be a fisherman village. >> there are definitely worse places to eat seafood than beachside in a fishing village, and the strength of this area lies in the variety of fish available. >> basically it's like a fish
chowder, made with shrimp, clams. >> right. >> a small kind of clam, a lobster, fish. >> yeah. >> and conch. >> i need a bath. very clear sky for the caribbean. oh, yeah. oh, man. >> always accompanied by lemon and coconut rice and plantain and some hot sauce in there. ♪ >> some good food, a few shots, the sounds of waves in the background, and a nice sunset. these are things in my experience that will set most things right. thank you to guajira. >> and colombia. >> salud. >> cheers. ♪ >> we had good fun. >> we had good fun.
>> cheers. snoes . >> i always find colombia encouraging. they face problems more extreme and seemingly more intractable than many of us can imagine, and yet every time i come here it gets better. don't get me wrong. problems, serious problems, remain, which is particularly heartbreaking in a country so beautiful, so generous, so proud, so eager to love and be loved back. i come back to my own country from colombia, and i think if they can fix that, if they can make things better, then surely there's nothing we can't do.
for now, however, i'll settle for fixing my headache. that hurt. welcome to this "a.c. 360 special lon not guilty the zimmerman trial." the world knows george zimmerman has not found not guilty of all charges for killing trayvon martin. six jurors made that decision. this hour, my exclusive interview with one of those jurors, the first juror to speak publicly. she wanted to be known by her official designation juror b-37. she reveals a lot, what persuaded here, what moved her, what role if any race played and what she would say to the parents of the young man. >> it was unreal. it was unreal. it was like something that, why would they want to pick me?