This paper examines the tactical redistribution of public resources by an incumbent seeking reelection in a country in the midst of an armed conflict. The illegal armed groups in Colombia are known to have extreme ideological beliefs; the guerrillas lean far to the Left, and the paramilitaries, far to the Right. The model and the empirical results show that regions with powerful groups who have a defined political ideology are less strategically attractive when it comes to the distribution of government resources. Nevertheless, when an illegal group can coerce voters to support a candidate and decide between candidates, as in the case of paramilitaries, redistribution is targeted to the illegal group. As a natural experiment, this paper empirically tests the effect of a policy to demobilize and reintegrate the members of paramilitary groups into society, so as to show the decisions on redistribution change when paramilitary forces do not exercise control in the municipalities.