June 1, 2017

A Path to Dictatorship in the Philippines

President Duterte soliciting assistance from Muslim rebel groups, and communist insurgent groups, to fight against IS-affiliates

by Richard Javad Heydarian

"Until the armed forces and the police say that the Philippines is safe, this martial law will continue," Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte said during a crisis management visit to Mindanao, suddenly the epicenter of terror group Islamic State"s thrust into Southeast Asia.

. . . Duterte has repeatedly warned he may extend martial law beyond his home island of Mindanao across the entire country if Islamic militants strike other areas.

. . . The comments also likely aimed to strike fear into the hearts of his opponents, namely the Islamic State affiliated groups which have laid a bloody siege to the city of Marawi. . . .

The government is perturbed by reports that foreign fighters, possibly even from the Middle East but definitely from neighboring Indonesia, Malaysia and even Singapore, have been involved in the Marawi clashes. . . .

As the first Filipino president from Mindanao, Duterte is under extraordinary pressure to not only eliminate the threat of IS infiltration into the Philippines, but also to end the conflict in his home island, . . .

Duterte is now focused on soliciting assistance from other major rebel groups, including the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, the Moro National Liberation Front, and communist insurgent groups, to fight against IS-affiliates like Maute Group and the Abu Sayaff Group, both involved in the Marawi city siege.

The government has peace deals in place with MNLF and MILF, Islamic groups that would on the surface appear to be natural allies with IS-affiliated militant groups. . . .


Swish Kris [Moroland marked the beginning of the end of one of the most remarkable resistances in the annals of military history.--G. V. Hurley, "Swish of the Kris, the Story of the Moros," 1938

Fred Hill, "Ethnic Cleansing In Mindanao, Philippines," Islamic Horizons, April 17, 1996

Eric Margolis, "Philippines, Next Target of Bush's War," Toronto Sun, January 26, 2002

Naomi Klein, "Is the Philippine Government Bombing Its Own People for Dollars?," Guardian (UK), August 15, 2003

"Philippine Autonomy Deal Scrapped," BBC News, August 21, 2008

Noel Tarrazona, "US-Philippines Joint Operations Raise Grassroots Suspicions," Asia Times, May 8, 2012

"ISIS Created by Qatar, Saudis, Britain, U.S.," The Wisdom Fund, September 24, 2014

Federico Pieraccini, "A Real Threat to Washington's Interests in Asia, Triggers 'Operation ISIS',", June 19, 2017

Noel Tarrazona, "Under terror assault, Duterte reconciles with US,", June 22, 2017

William Engdhal, "Washington is not Amused, Another CIA/ISIS Joint Destabilization Campaign Underway,", June 26, 2017

[the future in the Visayas of the Philippines looks difficult. Of all people, Rodrigo Duterte is uniquely qualified to deal with it. He is part Moro himself and successfully kept the fighting outside of Davao City for over 20 years while Mayor.--Robert Logan, "Understanding ISIS in the Philippines,", June 27, 2017 -- Re author's statements on 9/11, see American Patriots Question 9/11]

"Philippines Duterte: Martial law extended in Mindanao,", July 22, 2017

[The Philippines was the first imperial war fought by the United States . . . and the pattern of "shock and awe" inflicted on the Moro people was to be repeated, as we know, in the Middle East.--Robert Fisk, "Trump's claim that a general dipped bullets in pigs' blood is fake news - but the US massacre of Moro Muslims isn't,", August 18, 2017]

[Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte on Thursday approved a long-awaited law to allow minority Muslims in the south to start moving towards self-rule by 2022, a bid to tackle extremism and defuse a half-century of separatist conflict.--"Philippine leader approves autonomy law for troubled Muslim region,", July 26, 2018]

"Moro conflict explained," TRT World, August 18, 2018

Bong S. Sarmiento, "Philippine rebels clinch the spoils of a bloody war,", January 24, 2019

[America's Moro War, fought from 1899 to 1913, but it was, until Afghanistan, one of America's longest sustained military campaigns.--Danny Sjursen, "Remembering America's First (& Longest) Forgotten War on Islamists,", December 23, 2019]

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