I have been following the Maguindanao situation closely, or as closely as I can. The media here in the States is not too interested in the affair, it provided initial reports on the affair and has passed on the imposition of martial law in Maguindanao. I have answered some questions about this.
First, I detail the events of the massacre. I then add in the item about 2004 voting "irregularities" in Maguindanao favoring PGMA. Then I note:
Another angle I have seen talked about is that of rido. While there is much about this event that does not fit that model, can anyone doubt the dynamics of rido will be present? The whole situation is likely to lead to a large number of reprisals which will be returned in kind. Of course, a bigger boss could prevent such reprisals, and this report indicates a bigger boss is definitely going to be stepping in.Note, my statement about a bigger boss is not about martial law but about arrests, which were just kicking off when I wrote the piece.
Now, I have seen some (seemingly) reliable reporting that Malacañang was warned of the potential of political violence in the region. this report is documented and is not vague or general.
Per Ben's previous post, martial law is only to be used to suppress rebellion and foreign invasion. I think it a stretch to say what is going on here resembles rebellion, but not a huge one. Apparently, up until the recent event, the Amputuans were not at all rebellious. Perhaps, Malacañang expects its prosecution of Andal to be successful and significant leading to rebellion? Even then rebellion is a stretch, but I believe it reasonable to fear a vicious cycle of reprisals. Reprisals that will not withhold attacks due to fear of the innocent. After all, while most of the Maguindanao victims are innocent, there were a few who were not involved in the dispute. In any event, I don't believe the Mangudadatus will bes any more concerned about innocent lives.
I surmise Malacañang is claiming the Amputuans were fomenting rebellion in order to justify the use of martial law in an attempt to tamp down the inevitable reprisals and counter-reprisals. The imposition of martial law is narrow and PGMA is providing the required justification to congress. We will see what happens when the term of martial law is up.