Colombia has paired the economic momentum with institution building. The country's democracy has rapidly matured. Yet, there is no guarantee that this momentum will continue. Any future success would greatly benefit from Colombia successfully implementing a peace agreement with domestic guerillas.
Peace has been and will always be the most desirable and yet difficult achievement that any leader can aspire for his fellow citizens. Peace requires courage, perseverance, taking risks, and yes, engaging with the enemy across a table.
For decades, policymakers have pursued a sustained program of education reform, recognizing that positive results require long-term commitment. It is even more impressive when the context -- one of near-constant guerrilla warfare and drug-related violence -- is taken into account.
At a time when violence and killing seem to break out everywhere around the world, an increasingly strong beam of hope is being cast from Colombia where a 60-year old conflict between the government and marxist guerrillas may be coming to an end.
During the speech that acknowledged Juan Manuel Santos' victory, he spoke about the peace process with the FARC and the ELN and said that without the weight of the conflict Colombia will be a great nation.
The future of Colombia had never been so dark and uncertain. Two years ago, President Juan Manuel Santos embarked the country into a negotiation process with the terrorist organization FARC in Habana, Cuba.