RealNews

Philippines bombing highlights complex web of terror

In the wake of a bomb blast that killed an American missionary and 20 others at an airport in Davao in the southern Philippines Tuesday, confusion reigned as to who was to blame. The military quickly fingered the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) and said it had arrested five members in connection with the attack. MILF spokesman Eid Kabalu denied the charge, said none of its members had been arrested, and described the attack as “barbaric.” Other Philippine security officials said the blast might have been the work of the “Pentagon,” a kidnap-for-ransom gang with ties to Islamic militants that operate near Davao. Then on Wednesday, a senior member of a separate kidnapping group, Abu Sayyaf, told a Philippine television station that his organization had carried out the attack. But the country’s worst attack in more than two years has made one thing clear: The Philippine terrorism problem is as complicated as any in the world. The southern island of Mindanao, where most of the country’s Muslim minority lives, is crisscrossed with competing criminal gangs, separatist organizations, and freelancers who cultivate multiple alliances. Many residents say police and military corruption have contributed to the problem. Full Story

OODA Analyst

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