Page 1 of 4 123 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 118

Thread: Philippines (2012 onwards, inc OEF)

Hybrid View

Previous Post Previous Post   Next Post Next Post
  1. #1
    Council Member Dayuhan's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Latitude 17° 5' 11N, Longitude 120° 54' 24E, altitude 1499m. Right where I want to be.
    Posts
    3,137

    Default Philippines (2012 onwards, inc OEF)

    This little encounter...

    http://www.abs-cbnnews.com/nation/re...rovince-ambush

    Happened a few days ago a few miles from home, in an area where I often ride the bike and hike.

    Certainly not notable in any way, and isn't going to change any games, just one more sporadic flare in a sporadic fight that's been going on for decades.

    What I never quite understand is the predictability of it all. The NPA appear in a moderately remote village. The Philippine Army dispatches troops, invariably by land and by the most predictable route. The troops are ambushed. The NPA leave the area immediately, and long after they're gone military reinforcements descend on the place, accusing the locals of complicity and generally pissing everyone off. Right now, 3 days after it happened, I can hear a couple of UH1s clattering around over the ambush site... I can't imagine what they expect to see, you can hear them coming miles away and the guys who staged the ambush are far far away on the other side of the mountains by now.

    So it goes. I'll have to ride a different trail for a while!

  2. #2
    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    UK
    Posts
    13,189

    Default OEF Philippines (2012 onwards)

    Moderator at work

    I have merged a number of threads in this arena, so have locked several up: Catch All OEF Phillipines (till 2012), The US role in the Phillipines (catch all) and leaving a couple open for updates: Small War on Basilan (catch all), The Islamic Insurgents (catch all) and Communist Insurgency in the Philippines (catch all).

    This thread is for updates in 2012 onwards, prompted by the next post.
    Last edited by davidbfpo; 02-04-2012 at 10:15 AM. Reason: Amendment
    davidbfpo

  3. #3
    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    UK
    Posts
    13,189

    Default Joint action three terrorist leaders dead

    The BBC News report:http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-16867193

    Washington Post:http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/...djQ_story.html

    The Philippine military said it killed three of Southeast Asia’s most-wanted terrorist leaders in a U.S.-backed airstrike that significantly weakens an al-Qaida-linked network that had used islands in the southern Philippines as a hideout and training base....Malaysian Zulkifli bin Hir, also known as Marwan, a top leader of the regional Jemaah Islamiyah terror network...the leader of the Philippine-based Abu Sayyaf militants, Umbra Jumdail, and a Singaporean leader in Jemaah Islamiyah, Abdullah Ali, who used the guerrilla name Muawiyah...
    I note the air strike was 0300hrs by two OV10s dropping 4 x500lb bombs and no-one is being specific what the US help was.
    davidbfpo

  4. #4
    Council Member Dayuhan's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Latitude 17° 5' 11N, Longitude 120° 54' 24E, altitude 1499m. Right where I want to be.
    Posts
    3,137

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by davidbfpo View Post
    I note the air strike was 0300hrs by two OV10s dropping 4 x500lb bombs and no-one is being specific what the US help was.
    The Philippine Air Force does not have much recent history of night strikes or employing guided weaponry. This would seem a substantial upgrade from what they've done in the past, especially as reports suggest direct hits on the target houses.

    Local speculation along two lines...

    1. The US provided targeting information and has been providing equipment and training to build this capacity.

    2. The US did it and said they didn't.

    Take your pick, not like we'll know.

    Should be noted that Marwan is presumed dead, body was not found.
    “The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary”

    H.L. Mencken

  5. #5
    Council Member Dayuhan's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Latitude 17° 5' 11N, Longitude 120° 54' 24E, altitude 1499m. Right where I want to be.
    Posts
    3,137

    Default More on the strike...

    http://www.seattlepi.com/news/articl...st-3043242.php

    Surviving militants suspect that villagers secretly working for the military helped track down Jumdail, said a Philippine military intelligence official who had been helping monitor the militants. The official said militants believe villagers pretending to seek medical treatment traveled to Jumdail's hideout and left some kind of sensor that the military used to target his Abu Sayyaf lair....

    ...The Philippine military announced that the long-hunted Marwan and his Singaporean ally Abdullah Ali, better known as Muawiyah, were killed in the air raid along with Jumdail and other Filipino extremists. But two security officials said Sunday that new intelligence shows that Jumdail was killed but that the two foreign terror suspects are still alive and were not in the Abu Sayyaf lair that was bombed.

    The military continues to insist that Marwan and Muawiyah are dead and are searching for their remains. Not a single body was retrieved by police in the bombed hilly jungle lair near Lanao Dakulah village, fueling different versions of who was killed.
    “The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary”

    H.L. Mencken

  6. #6
    Council Member Dayuhan's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Latitude 17° 5' 11N, Longitude 120° 54' 24E, altitude 1499m. Right where I want to be.
    Posts
    3,137

    Default

    The attack referred to above is now being openly referred to as a US drone strike:

    http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/opi...732969894.html

    http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Southea.../NB29Ae01.html

    These are in no way impartial sources and the reports are definitely agenda-driven. They will be widely believed. They are also not entirely unbelievable: as I mentioned above, the official account of the operation does not seem at all consistent with the observed capacities of the PAF.

    It's unlikely that there will be any official word on the subject, so speculation is all there is.
    Last edited by Dayuhan; 03-06-2012 at 01:21 AM.
    “The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary”

    H.L. Mencken

  7. #7
    Council Member Ken White's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    8,060

    Default The more things change, the more they remain the same...

    Quote Originally Posted by carl View Post
    Once upon a time, we knew how to fight small wars.
    Mmmmm. Don't disagree, I agree with you and so does the author of "Savage Wars of Peace: Case Studies of Pacification in the Philippines, 1900–1902" (LINK) from Leavenworth. He ends:
    "As the most successful counterinsurgency campaign in US history, it is the logical starting point for the systematic examination of military intervention, civic action, and pacification operations."
    However, before he gets there he also notes:
    "When the guerrilla or ladrone problem persisted, the American Army sought to do what it was trained to do—destroy the armed insurrectos."
    Notably, as shown below and unlike today, with few restrictions. Also:
    "As a Philippine veteran noted, “The American soldier in officially sanctioned wrath is a thing so ugly and dangerous that it would take a Kipling to describe him.”
    Comment similar to that were often made by other opponents -- until the mid 1970s. We used to be not noted for good behavior. Today, we're the good guys (By Order Of...).

    From the Wiki (LINK):
    "The use of concentration camps or "zones of protection" theoretically prevented an undue loss of civilian life that would have occurred had the US Army engaged in total war on the Filipino population. However, due to unsanitary conditions, many of the interned died from dysentery."
    Why were we there?
    "Support for American actions in the Philippines was justified by those in the U.S. government and media who supported the conflict through the use of moralistic oration. Stuart Creighton Miller writes "Americans altruistically went to war with Spain to liberate the Cubans, Puerto Ricans, and Filipinos from their tyrannical yoke. If they lingered on too long in the Philippines, it was to protect the Filipinos from European predators waiting in the wings for an American withdrawal and to tutor them in American-style democracy." (emphasis added / kw)
    My, my. We're still quite moral -- in that respect...

    On Armies as servants:
    "General Otis gained a significant amount of notoriety for his actions in the Philippines. Although multiple orders were given to Otis from Washington to avoid military conflict, he did very little to circumvent the breakout of war. Notably, shortly after fighting began he turned down a proposal from Emilio Aguinaldo to end the fighting, stating “fighting, having begun, must go on to the grim end.” Otis refused to accept anything but unconditional surrender from the Philippine Army. He often made major military decisions on his own, without first consulting leadership in Washington at all."
    Pesky servants just won't behave. Difference between then and now is that public attitudes have changed. A combination of Otis, some WW II incidents and MacArthur changed the rules.

    The Army in the Philippines in 1900 (and up until the mid 1960s...) believed in doing something even if it was wrong. Since Viet Nam the attitude is to do nothing; particularly if it even might possibly consider going wrong. That's not the Army, that's the society from which it springs. Picture trying to do this today:
    "The shift to guerrilla warfare drove the US Army to a "total-war" doctrine. Civilians were given identification and forced into concentration camps with a publicly announced deadline after which all persons found outside of camps without identification would be shot on sight. Thousands of civilians died in these camps due to poor conditions."
    Hundred if not thousands more were shot for being where they would have been better off not being. We followed much the same rules in Korea and early on in Viet Nam. Different times, different rules. Can't do that or anything approaching it today.

    Then there's this:
    "On July 2. the U.S. Secretary of War telegraphed that since the insurrection against the U.S. had ended and provincial civil governments had been established, the office of military governor was terminated. On July 4, Theodore Roosevelt, who had succeeded to the U.S. Presidency after the assassination of President McKinley on September 5, 1901, proclaimed a full and complete pardon and amnesty to all people in the Philippine archipelago who had participated in the conflict."
    Oops...
    Beginning with the Taraca, which occurred on April 4, 1904, American forces battled Datu Ampuanagus, who surrendered after losing 200 members of his people.[1][78] Numerous battles would occur after that up until the end of the conflict on June 15, 1913..."
    Took a while...

    Back to the original link:
    "In his 1902 annual report, Chaffee wrote of the need for language skills:

    'An important duty as yet not taken seriously by the officers of the Army serving in the Division, but which ought not be longer neglected if they would meet to the full the demands which the situation requires and may be reasonably expected of them as enhancing the efficiency when serving here, is the acquirement of a workable knowledge, both oral and written, of the native dialect where stationed. . . . I believe that the interests of the government are deeply involved in this matter. . . . I recommend . . . a bonus of two hundred dollars to each officer and intelligent enlisted man who shall attain a state of proficiency in a native dialect, and one hundred dollars additional for proficiency in Spanish.' "
    Lot of things changed, some did not...

    We still know how to fight small wars -- we just aren't allowed to.
    Last edited by davidbfpo; 03-31-2012 at 10:44 AM. Reason: Moved here from the Toulouse thread as it sits here far better

  8. #8
    Council Member
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Calcutta, India
    Posts
    1,124

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Dayuhan View Post
    I wouldn't make assumptions about sectarian conflict in the Philippines based on observations in the Middle East and South Asia, very different environment, very different conflict. The US presence in the south has been in place for over a decade and it has not in any way raised a hornet's nest or provoked more conflict. It's actually had a calming influence and has been well accepted by the local Muslim populaces, mainly due to the perception (accurate IMO) that the Philippine military and government behave better with Americans watching them. The larger Muslim groups see the US less as a rival than as a potential mediator that has in the past tried (albeit ineffectually) to persuade the Philippine government to take a less hard-line stance on many of their core issues.

    It should be noted that there is not and has never been any intention to eliminate the Moros: the US forces have been scrupulously kept away from the MILF, the larger and more influential rebel group. The mission was more to disrupt one of the smaller group sand attempt to neutralize its connection to the AQ/JI trunk line, a mission that has been fairly successful, though attempts to resolve the underlying drivers of insurgency have been far less effective.



    A "threat in being" to whom? Certainly not to the Chinese.

    I don't see the presence in the south as a core group on which a larger force can be built on: the location and environment would be most unattractive for basing a larger force. Port and airport facilities are grossly inadequate and there'd be all manner of security/force protection issues. if the Philippine government ever decided that it was necessary to invite more Americans in, I doubt it would be built on that base, more likely they'd be positioned in completely different locations. I don't think that's very likely to happen.



    Viewing external issues and indicators alone will give you a very inadequate understanding of the local issues and of why local decisions are made.



    I wouldn't say the Government is idiotic, though they sometimes do idiotic things and often stray annoyingly close to idiocy. Fickle they certainly are, by design: fickleness is unavoidably built into the US political system.



    I wouldn't know about India, but I don't think the Vietnamese have "aligned with the US", nor do I think they've had to sink their pride to deal with the US. They are pragmatic; they won their war and have no reason to shy away from engagement if it suits their perceived interests, whether economic or military. If it suits them they'll deal with the US or anyone else, but they'll do it for their own reasons and at their own initiative and to the extent that they see fit. They are not in the US camp, they are in their own camp.



    They also have no reason or need to "take on the US and its allies".



    For another thread perhaps, but it illustrates a point: just because things happen that suits the US doesn't mean that the US made those things happen. Eastern Europe and ultimately Russia rebelled against communism; that suited the US well, but it wasn't the outcome of a US strategy or of any US action. People simply got sick of submitting to a system that didn't provide for their needs and their desires. Communism didn't fall because the US brought it down, it fell because it sucks and people hate it. Similarly, people who take actions that seem to fit in with US objectives aren't necessarily pawns of US strategy, they aren't joining the US camp, or being directed by the US... they're simply following their own perceived interests, which happen, for now at least, to be at least tangentially compatible with those of the US.
    Not having seen the Moro rebellion first hand, as you might have experienced being there, I would like to believe that you are right.

    However, from a purely academic standpoint, it is said that Modern Muslim rebels of the southern Philippines see the Moro Rebellion as a continuing struggle against foreign rule.

    As you will be well aware of the history of this area, where for a variety of reasons, the Muslims or Moro were never comfortable with the manner in which their sovereignty of the area was usurped, there is no requirement for me to elaborate.

    The indicators in the open forums suggests that while the Moro Independence Movement was basically that and nothing more in earlier times, it is believed that it has been touched by the Pan Islamic fervour that has swept the world. It has also transmogrified an Independence Movement into a religious one in addition!

    It is well known that Islamist groups such as the Abu Sayyaf and Rajah Sulaiman movement, have been supported by groups outside the Philippines such as Jemaah Islamiyah and Al Qaeda. The fact that Islam is slowly digging in and expanding in Philippines is borne out by the fact that hard core Catholics have converted to Islam, giving rise to such movement as the Rajah Sulaiman Movement. Islamic expansion should not be taken lightly because the founder of the Rajah Sulaiman movement was converted while working in Saudi Arabia and could return to convert a whole lot of other hardcore Catholics to join the folds of Islam and fight their own (before conversion)!

    While the Philippines Forces maybe ruthless in their handling of the Moro rebels, if one observes that history of this area, they are not well disposed to the Americans either. In fact, history indicates how the Spanish having lost to the Americans, through a sleight of hand, handed over the area to the US, when in actuality the Spanish had a tacit understanding wherein control of the Sulu archipelago outside of the Spanish garrisons was that of the Sultan. In fact, the Bates Treaty signed by the US assigned to the US greater power than that what the Spanish exercised. The rest is history.

    In so far as the US and MNLF/MILF is concerned, suffice it to say that from January 2002 until July 31, 2002, the United States committed nearly 1,300 troops to the Philippines and $93 million in military aid to assist Philippine armed forces (AFP) in operations against the Abu Sayyaf terrorist group in the southern Philippines, on the island of Basilan southwest of Mindanao. The U.S. action was Operation Balikatan. The CRS Report to the US Congress corroborates the same.

    Is the US now merely a spectator?

    No Muslim group would ever think of the US being a mediator, more so in the Philippines, they having had an unfortunate history with the US in Philippines.

    In so far as the issue of the US forces in the Philippines being a ‘threat in being’, taking the aggregate of US activities in the Asia Pacific Rim, any accretion anywhere is a 'threat in being' to the Chinese since it becomes an impediment to a free run on the affairs in the region.

    That apart, for the Chinese to have access to the Indian Ocean if the Malacca Straits is made inaccessible to the Chinese, the other route is through the Lombok Straits of Indonesia. Philippines and Indonesia stand as sentinel over this route.

    Zamboanga and Siasi have port facilities. Jolo and Zamboanga have airfields. The C-17 is designed to operate from runways as short as 3,500 ft (1,064 m) and as narrow as 90 ft (27 m). In addition, the C-17 can operate from unpaved, unimproved runways.

    So, the build up is no issue.

    Local issues are important, but to believe that external threats are not taken into account, would be incorrect an assessment.

    All Govts appear to be fickle when they do not subscribe to one’s pet hobbyhorses.

    To believe that Vietnam is the Vietnam of the Viet Cong days would be dangerously incorrect. Communism has lost its sheen. Globalisation and economic advancement has taken its place. That is the reality and that is why Vietnam is entering into commercial propositions with foreign countries, to include oil exploration, much to the chagrin of their fraternal brothers of China and even clashing militarily with them. One should not forget the role AmCham Vietnam is playing to foster US Vietnam commercial ties. The world order has changed. It is no longer ideology driven and instead is economy driven. No country is willing to be left behind in the race. What is important to note is that the World economy is US business methods based.

    As you have yourself stated the Asia Pacific region is no longer alliance based. It is need based and right now, whether you accept it or not, the need is to ensure economic progress without the threat of being disturbed by hegemonic tendencies of giant neighbours. It is here where the US plays an important role. US may not appear, for the moment, anything beyond an undesirable and yet unavoidable necessity to many a country in the region, but then the US grows on you, more so, now that the US plays its role as a partner and not as the monitor of the class.

    US foreign policy, after Bush, has undergone a sea change and it is to the liking of those who were averse to the US. I have seen the change in attitude towards the US in India, a country that was not comfortable to say the least, of the US!

    The US is no longer the hated bogeyman of the past.

    Indeed China should have no reason or need to "take on the US and its allies". And yet, there are shrill protestations from China, even when, as you say, US undergoes routine military exercises that are no threat to China. One wonders how one should reconcile the issues that while China has no reasons to take on US and its allies and yet howls with indignation when US and its allies undertake routine activities that are not aimed at China (as per you, that is!)
    Last edited by Ray; 03-31-2012 at 07:59 AM.

  9. #9
    Council Member Dayuhan's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Latitude 17° 5' 11N, Longitude 120° 54' 24E, altitude 1499m. Right where I want to be.
    Posts
    3,137

    Default Part one (it's a subject I get verbose on)

    Quote Originally Posted by Ray View Post
    Not having seen the Moro rebellion first hand, as you might have experienced being there, I would like to believe that you are right.
    I've spent some time in the affected areas. I've been interested in the conflict since living in Mindanao (79-83, more or less) and have been following it closely and digging into the history ever since, aside from going back occasionally. I've written about it now and then. It's difficult to get a handle on that conflict through Google: there's a great deal of nonsense that's been published, and without a good understanding of the context it's hard to sort out what actually fits in the picture and what's being pushed in to support somebody's agenda.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ray View Post
    However, from a purely academic standpoint, it is said that Modern Muslim rebels of the southern Philippines see the Moro Rebellion as a continuing struggle against foreign rule.
    Yes, but the "foreign rule" in question is that of Manila.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ray View Post
    The indicators in the open forums suggests that while the Moro Independence Movement was basically that and nothing more in earlier times, it is believed that it has been touched by the Pan Islamic fervour that has swept the world. It has also transmogrified an Independence Movement into a religious one in addition!
    Touched, yes, but only peripherally. it remains primarily a nationalist movement thoroughly rooted in local issues. "pan-Islamic" issues have limited traction with the leadership and virtually none with the masses; connection to the movement is seen primarily as a way of gaining support for the local cause. The connection to "pan-Islamic" movements is IMO consistently overstated by many sources, and not by accident.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ray View Post
    It is well known that Islamist groups such as the Abu Sayyaf and Rajah Sulaiman movement, have been supported by groups outside the Philippines such as Jemaah Islamiyah and Al Qaeda.
    Again, the extent of this support is widely overstated.

    ASG is best understood as a failed attempt to develop an AQ "franchise". AQ, through Mohammed Jamal Khalifa, was directly involved in the group's founding. Almost from the start, though, there was conflict within the group between jihadi and purely criminal elements. Funding from Khalifa largely ceased after the killing of key link man Abdul Asmad in 2004, and when Abdurajak Janjalani was killed i '98 the AQ connection was severed. Janjalani's brother took over nominal control of the organization but was completely eclipsed by men like Aldam Tilao and Galib Andang. From this point on the ASG was effectively a purely criminal enterprise, receiving protection from and sharing proceeds with local government, police, and military. The group achieved its greatest notoriety during this period, and was inevitably described as "AQ-linked", despite the minimal to nonexistent connections at that time.

    Ironically, the intense pressure that came on the criminal factions as the US got involved was partially responsible for an attempt to bring the group back to its jihadi roots. Military pressure effectively ended the KFR revenue stream, Tialo was killed and Andang captured and their followers largely scattered. Janjalani left the area and took refuge in MILF territory, where he made contact with RSM (more on them below) and initiated a campaign of terror attacks in the Manila area. That phase was effectively ended with the killing of Janjalani and the capture of Ahmed Santos.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ray View Post
    The fact that Islam is slowly digging in and expanding in Philippines is borne out by the fact that hard core Catholics have converted to Islam, giving rise to such movement as the Rajah Sulaiman Movement. Islamic expansion should not be taken lightly because the founder of the Rajah Sulaiman movement was converted while working in Saudi Arabia and could return to convert a whole lot of other hardcore Catholics to join the folds of Islam and fight their own (before conversion)!
    That's exaggerated. There have been conversions among Filipinos working in the Middle East, and some have recruited other converts after coming home. The number is small and there's no evidence of significant growth. Most of the conversions are opportunistic, aimed at getting or continuing employment in the Middle East. A very small number of these did emerge as radicals, and the RSM core was drawn from this group. The group was very much centered around the person of Ahmed Santos and never recovered from his capture; it's been dormant for years. There are small groups of converts in a number of locations in Luzon, but little evidence that jihadi organizers are exploiting them; it's widely (and I think accurately) believed that Philippine security forces have informers in place throughout the network.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ray View Post
    While the Philippines Forces maybe ruthless in their handling of the Moro rebels, if one observes that history of this area, they are not well disposed to the Americans either. In fact, history indicates how the Spanish having lost to the Americans, through a sleight of hand, handed over the area to the US, when in actuality the Spanish had a tacit understanding wherein control of the Sulu archipelago outside of the Spanish garrisons was that of the Sultan. In fact, the Bates Treaty signed by the US assigned to the US greater power than that what the Spanish exercised. The rest is history.
    That's a small part of the history. It is of course true that much of the territory Spain sold to the US was not under Spanish control when it was sold. (Mark Twain, among others, made the point that the sale and purchase of people was a poor basis for claimed sovereignty, but that's another issue.) It's also true that there was considerable conflict in the early years of the US occupation. By the 1930s the US had, however, achieved a quite amenable working relationship with Muslim leaders, many of whom actually asked the US not to include them in the grant of independence, which they referred to as "turning them over to the Filipinos". Even at that time rule by Manila was widely (though of courser not universally) seen as a greater danger than rule by the US.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ray View Post
    In so far as the US and MNLF/MILF is concerned, suffice it to say that from January 2002 until July 31, 2002, the United States committed nearly 1,300 troops to the Philippines and $93 million in military aid to assist Philippine armed forces (AFP) in operations against the Abu Sayyaf terrorist group in the southern Philippines, on the island of Basilan southwest of Mindanao. The U.S. action was Operation Balikatan. The CRS Report to the US Congress corroborates the same.

    Is the US now merely a spectator?
    As you say, US assistance has been focused on efforts against the ASG, not the MILF or the (now largely dormant) MNLF. The MILF has not made a major issue of this and would just as soon see the ASG dismantled, which would open the way for them to achieve a dominant position in the west... if they can overcome the legacy of internal conflict between the Maguindanao/Maranao and Tausug/Sama factions, again another story.

    In actual practice, US forces have been generally well received even in the ASG areas, largely because of the perception (IMO accurate) that Philippine forces behave better when he Americans are around. That may seem contrary to some interpretations of regional history, but the observed reaction remains.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ray View Post
    No Muslim group would ever think of the US being a mediator, more so in the Philippines, they having had an unfortunate history with the US in Philippines.
    Consider this:

    http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/inquire...in-peace-talks

    The US government, through USIP, played a significant role in drafting the Arroyo government's "peace agreement" with the MILF, which would have granted the MILF official recognition and a degree of control that many Filipinos saw as effectively establishing a Moro substate. The agreement was torpedoed by the Philippione Supreme Court and the US role in it widely criticized. The entire episode could be considered a failed attempt at mediation, failed not because the Muslim group rejected it, but because the government rejected it.
    “The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary”

    H.L. Mencken

  10. #10
    Council Member Dayuhan's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Latitude 17° 5' 11N, Longitude 120° 54' 24E, altitude 1499m. Right where I want to be.
    Posts
    3,137

    Default Part 2

    Quote Originally Posted by Ray View Post
    In so far as the issue of the US forces in the Philippines being a ‘threat in being’, taking the aggregate of US activities in the Asia Pacific Rim, any accretion anywhere is a 'threat in being' to the Chinese since it becomes an impediment to a free run on the affairs in the region.
    The US has had a presence in the southern Philippines for over a decade, and this does not seem to have deterred the Chinese from asserting maritime claims. I see no evidence to suggest that the US presence has kept the Chinese from doing anything they want to do.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ray View Post
    Zamboanga and Siasi have port facilities. Jolo and Zamboanga have airfields. The C-17 is designed to operate from runways as short as 3,500 ft (1,064 m) and as narrow as 90 ft (27 m). In addition, the C-17 can operate from unpaved, unimproved runways.
    These are extremely basic facilities even by developing world standards. They are adequate for the US to maintain a very limited level of operations in the Philippines, completely inadequate as a base for regional force projection.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ray View Post
    To believe that Vietnam is the Vietnam of the Viet Cong days would be dangerously incorrect. Communism has lost its sheen. Globalisation and economic advancement has taken its place. That is the reality and that is why Vietnam is entering into commercial propositions with foreign countries, to include oil exploration, much to the chagrin of their fraternal brothers of China and even clashing militarily with them.
    China and Vietnam have never been anything remotely like fraternal brothers, even at the peak of Communist rule.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ray View Post
    One should not forget the role AmCham Vietnam is playing to foster US Vietnam commercial ties. The world order has changed. It is no longer ideology driven and instead is economy driven. No country is willing to be left behind in the race. What is important to note is that the World economy is US business methods based.
    I'm not sure capitalist business methods are "US" by definition, but even if they are, the mere use of the methods doesn't mean the US is in control of those using them. Many people outside the US are using capitalist methods as effectively as the US, if not more effectively.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ray View Post
    As you have yourself stated the Asia Pacific region is no longer alliance based. It is need based and right now, whether you accept it or not, the need is to ensure economic progress without the threat of being disturbed by hegemonic tendencies of giant neighbours. It is here where the US plays an important role. US may not appear, for the moment, anything beyond an undesirable and yet unavoidable necessity to many a country in the region, but then the US grows on you, more so, now that the US plays its role as a partner and not as the monitor of the class.
    I'd say interest based, rather than needs based. Certainly the nations in the region see a role for the US, but they certainly aren't interested in having the US "call the shots", nor do they want to join a US-dominated camp. They'll manage relations according to their own perception of their interests, which will change with time.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ray View Post
    US foreign policy, after Bush, has undergone a sea change and it is to the liking of those who were averse to the US. I have seen the change in attitude towards the US in India, a country that was not comfortable to say the least, of the US!
    That's largely true, but I don't think it's only because US policies have changed. Asian nations are also increasingly confident in their own capabilities, especially on the economic side, and more confident of their own ability to enter into peer-to-peer relations with larger countries.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ray View Post
    Indeed China should have no reason or need to "take on the US and its allies". And yet, there are shrill protestations from China, even when, as you say, US undergoes routine military exercises that are no threat to China. One wonders how one should reconcile the issues that while China has no reasons to take on US and its allies and yet howls with indignation when US and its allies undertake routine activities that are not aimed at China (as per you, that is!)
    The ritual of exercise and protest, provocation and resolution, has been going on a long time... just because media are paying more attention now doesn't mean it's a recent development. It's not about anyone "taking on" anyone else, just a bit of chest thumping; everybody involved reminding everybody else that they are around and they've made claims. Nobody wants to relinquish the claims, but nobody's in a big hurry to fight over them either. It's not an entirely calm situation, but it's not nearly as threatening or as unstable as some are cracking it up to be
    “The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary”

    H.L. Mencken

  11. #11
    Council Member
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Calcutta, India
    Posts
    1,124

    Default

    Very interesting.

    The situation thicken.

    Wonder why after such a strident support for the benign activities of China, old Panetta is asking Vietnam to allow the US ports in Vietnam.

  12. #12
    Council Member carl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Denver on occasion
    Posts
    2,460

    Default

    Try this site also, very interesting.

    http://www.morolandhistory.com/

    The war in the Philippines and Moroland in the early 1900s is fascinating. I don't know if you can easily get books about that in SA but if you can I think you would find it interesting. Once upon a time, we knew how to fight small wars.
    Last edited by davidbfpo; 03-31-2012 at 10:42 AM. Reason: Copied here due to link and edited down.
    "We fight, get beat, rise, and fight again." Gen. Nathanael Greene

  13. #13
    Council Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    11,074

    Default Philippines: Bangsamoro, A Triumph of Western Diplomacy?

    Philippines: Bangsamoro, A Triumph of Western Diplomacy?

    Entry Excerpt:



    --------
    Read the full post and make any comments at the SWJ Blog.
    This forum is a feed only and is closed to user comments.

  14. #14
    Council Member Dayuhan's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Latitude 17° 5' 11N, Longitude 120° 54' 24E, altitude 1499m. Right where I want to be.
    Posts
    3,137

    Default

    Got two MG520s (Philippine Air Force variant of the AH-6) shooting up the ridge just north of here, can see them from the upstairs window. There was an encounter yesterday morning one ridge over, 2 reported wounded from a police counterinsurgency unit. It would be surprising if the NPA unit was still in the area, but I guess possible that they could have been lying low in the mossy forest (easy place to hide, hard to move).

    Just on the edge of too close for comfort...
    “The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary”

    H.L. Mencken

  15. #15
    Council Member jcustis's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    SOCAL
    Posts
    2,152

    Default

    Yeah, that is close!

  16. #16
    Council Member Dayuhan's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Latitude 17° 5' 11N, Longitude 120° 54' 24E, altitude 1499m. Right where I want to be.
    Posts
    3,137

    Default

    This is how it hit the news:

    http://www.interaksyon.com/article/6...-npa-in-sagada

    That's kind of over-dramatized, it wasn't really that close to villages. I was out there yesterday morning and it seemed like half the village was out watching. School was effectively out, the kids were all out checking out the helicopters. Didn't see anyone cowering in terror, though it does make people uneasy. They weren't shooting at "suspected lairs" of the NPA; it's a place they pass through, not a place they stay.

    It's near and at the same time not so; that are is just north of us and the fighting generally moves away north into the wild country, not south into the town. That area is a junction of main trails running through the mountains and linking a number of areas; it's always a focus of attention after any kind of encounter, as the routes the NPA take to get out splinter off from there. I have some doubts about whether this morning's strikes were actually hitting anyone. They were shooting at a fairly open ridgetop with loose pine cover. The main trail runs right through it but it's hard to imagine an NPA unit moving through such exposed country in broad daylight the day after an encounter with helicopters known to be in the area. Normally they'd scoot at night or through heavy cover. Guess anything's possible though.

    This one, late June, was more of a worry. Farther away, but south, which means the access/egress route was really close:

    http://manilastandardtoday.com/2013/...killed-9-hurt/

    It's not really getting worse, or better, just seems to ebb and flow. NPA is strongest in Abra, north of here, but they come over the mountain and stage an ambush now and then, I think largely to show they are a presence, and in hope that the military will get out into the villages and piss people off. The populace is pretty sympathetic and generally thinks better of the rebels than of the military (consequence of past abuses), but also prefers not to have the NPA around, as when they show up the military shows up too, and nobody wants the soldiers around.
    Last edited by Dayuhan; 08-30-2013 at 10:21 AM.
    “The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary”

    H.L. Mencken

  17. #17
    Council Member AdamG's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Hiding from the Dreaded Burrito Gang
    Posts
    3,096

    Default

    You allowed privately owned small arms?
    A scrimmage in a Border Station
    A canter down some dark defile
    Two thousand pounds of education
    Drops to a ten-rupee jezail


    http://i.imgur.com/IPT1uLH.jpg

  18. #18
    Council Member Dayuhan's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Latitude 17° 5' 11N, Longitude 120° 54' 24E, altitude 1499m. Right where I want to be.
    Posts
    3,137

    Default

    Small arms can be legally owned here, with a fair number of restrictions. Illegal arms are commonplace. The NPA is of course illegal by definition. The citizenry is fairly well armed, though discreetly so. A bit northeast of here it's pretty common to see illegal arms openly displayed; here they are generally kept stashed. Police and military are aware of this but generally don't want to mess with it; they stirred up the hornet's nest once before and it didn't go well. The populace mostly stays neutral in the NPA/military fighting; they are (largely, not entirely) sympathetic to the NPA but not to the extent of going out to fight for them in the absence of any direct threat to their clan, village, or tribe.

    As elsewhere in the Philippines, the main source of illegal arms and ammunition is leakage from police and military stocks.
    “The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary”

    H.L. Mencken

  19. #19
    Council Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    11,074

    Default Five Myths About Helping the Philippines

    Five Myths About Helping the Philippines

    Entry Excerpt:



    --------
    Read the full post and make any comments at the SWJ Blog.
    This forum is a feed only and is closed to user comments.

  20. #20
    Council Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    11,074

    Default U.S. Phasing Out Its Counterterrorism Unit in Philippines

    U.S. Phasing Out Its Counterterrorism Unit in Philippines

    Entry Excerpt:



    --------
    Read the full post and make any comments at the SWJ Blog.
    This forum is a feed only and is closed to user comments.

Similar Threads

  1. Sudan Watch (July 2012 onwards)
    By AdamG in forum Africa
    Replies: 23
    Last Post: 02-09-2019, 11:55 AM
  2. 2005 and 2012 Strategic Partnerships
    By jmm99 in forum OEF - Afghanistan
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 05-02-2012, 12:47 AM
  3. Catch All OEF Philippines (till 2012)
    By SWJED in forum OEF - Philippines
    Replies: 72
    Last Post: 09-30-2011, 01:46 AM
  4. Iraq Isn't the Philippines
    By SWJED in forum OEF - Philippines
    Replies: 38
    Last Post: 01-26-2007, 07:21 AM

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •