Saturday, April 4, 2009

It Ain't Over

The Abu Sayyaf terrorists led by Al Bader Parad are still holding Swiss Red Cross worker Andreas Notter and Italian Eugenio Vagni and have now threatened to behead them unless the government basically surrenders the entire island of Jolo to the band by withdrawing all police and military personnel into the capital city.  Interior Secretary Ronaldo Puno has said this is a physical (and surely a legal!) impossibility, and would be tantamount to handing over the keys to the island to the terrorist band.  Nonetheless, Philippine National Red Cross Chairman Senator Dick Gordon has openly called upon the Palace to comply with the demands of the kidnappers in order to save the lives of the hostages.  There is of course no guarantee of that.  In deed things have got to be looking mighty grim for the pair of captives.  Having already released Mary Jean Lacaba (a Filipino woman), anything that happens to Vagni and Notter can easily be blamed on government action, or inaction, or upon contrived excuse by the Abu Sayyaf.The two remaining hostages now become chips in a high states political poker game between the Abu Sayyaf and the government.  Recently I reviewed the history of previous hostages who've met a terrible fate at the hands of these savages for Filipino Voices


It never fails to surprise the ever-urbane modern Filipino, (in whom outrage can be sparked by a little Chip Tsao) how very many persons have actually been beheaded by the Abu Sayyaf Groups in the Southern Philippines in the 21st Century alone. The list of names I have compiled below is incomplete but ought to stand out as bloody violations of Philippine sovereignty, if not Philippine self-respect. That these serial acts of inhumane illegal detention, kidnap for ransom, torture and murder have continued unabated, and are even rationalized, justified or defended by some seriously deluded folks, suggests a major mental dysfunction in the Philippine body politic.



GUILLERMO SOBERO
The Atlantic Magazine's article, Jihadists in Paradise tells the story of Guillermo Sobero, who was the first person I had ever heard about to have been beheaded by the Abu Sayyaf, way back in 2001, several months before the September 11 attacks in New York. This is a very long article that spans the Dos Palmas raid and the year of agony for the whole nation that ensued, including the story Martin and Gracia Burnham, and the dozens of Filipinos that suffered with them (though not GMA's billionaire pal, Reghis Romero).



ELMER NATALARAY and eight other Juan de la Cruzes

Among these lesser known persons was 24-year old Filipino Elmer Natalaray who was beheaded by Commander Robot (UK Telegraph) along with eight other hostaged Christian males after they did Sobero in a ritualistic murder, memorably chronicled at the Belmont Club as a "ribbon cutting ceremony."


VISAYAN SUMMER STUDENTS
One of the most senseless of the ASG Al Bader Parad's decapitation sprees--and the most heartbreaking--is the one involving six hapless and totally innocent summer students from the Visayas working on a Sulu road construction gang, and a dried fish vendor who just happened to be taken with them, whose name is however unknown, though the six students were:



ROGER FRANCISCO,
WILNER SANTOS

JELOWIE TEODORO

NONOY AMPOY

TOTO MILAS

DENNIS DE LOS REYES.



UNNAMED DRIED FISH VENDOR




PHILIPPINE MARINES LOOKING FOR FR. BOSSI

ABSCBN News first posted the list of the TEN PHILIPPINE MARINES who were ambushed, killed and beheaded whilst searching for the later ransomed and vamoosed Fr. Giancarlo Bossi...

EMMANUEL BEUP

REUBEN DORONIO JR.

FREDDIE PALMA JR.

ELIZAR SEMENIANO

ARJORIN ALEZAR

JHONARD ALLANZA

WILFREDO LAMBAN

EMILIO LACHICA JR.
RUSSELL PANAGA

REY CALAUENG

GERARDO LICUP

CAYETANO SIMBANGON

BERNARD ABES

NOEL BAUTISTA




Picture Writing (Rizalist MP3 at the Internet Archive)



1 comment:

Steven said...

Interesting, but incomplete.

If you want to understand the evolution of the ASG, you need to go back a bit further, to the connection between Abdurajak Janjalani and Mohammed al Khalifa in 1990, which is where the ASG formally came from. This is the connection that's referred to in the constant references to "links" between the ASG and Al Qaeda.

Janjalani was killed in 1998, and it's widely believed that it was other elements in the ASG leadership that turned him in. Since that time the ASG has been controlled by individuals who have their roots more in the criminal underworld than in Islamist ideology, and there is little or no evidence of connection to AQ after Janjalani's death.

I personally do not think the ASG should be dignified with the "terrorist" label. They might be more accurately termed a bandit group claiming a very nominal Islamist agenda in an attempt to legitimize what is essentially a criminal enterprise.