In for the long haul

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When some ingratiating lackeys invited the US Special Forces to help us during the siege of Marawi City, this column made a prediction that the country would be in for a long haul in combating Islamic terrorism. It was not a guess but a dreadful premonition.

Thus, when it came to the knowledge of the terrorists that the US has officially joined the war, that gave the Maute and its ISIS confederates reason to create a diversionary tactic to prolong the conflict and make it more bloody and costly for President Duterte and to our patriotic soldiers.

Evidence has been piling up that the US is engaged in a double-dealing game of openly fighting against Islamic terrorism but covertly supporting it. Notably, US involvement has always been confined to securing the arrest, dead or alive, of terrorists that crossed the red line of kidnapping and killing (beheading) Americans citizens like the costly mission to get Zulkifli bin Hir alias Marwan and Basit Usman in May 2015. Outside of that framework, the US remains open to anybody willing to buy arms.

In fact, it tried to cover up its participation in bagging the two terrorists. Even if our SAF were successful in getting Marwan and Basit, we nonetheless paid a costly price because 44 of our men were killed. Accordingly, the firefight lasted for ten hours and the ewan-ko-ba President just waited for instructions, probably from US officials overseeing the operations. Some say Noynoy was watching the beleaguered SAF desperately holding on to their position in “real time” because US drone in the area was monitoring the fight. Whatever one says, the fact is that 44 SAF members were killed because of the $5-million bounty for Marwan and $2 million for Basit.

The decision of Noynoy not to prosecute the killers or even point the blame to the members of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front told us that his policy was what the US wanted him to do. Some political analysts are even of the belief that the problem that has spilled over to our country has nothing to do with ideology. Instead it is caused by the need to sustain the sagging US economy considered to be on the verge of collapse. The US is using the historical enmity between Christians and Muslims to fuel a continuing war in what Professor Samuel Huntington called “Clash of Civilization.”

The situation now in Marawi City is no different. US participation is without the permission of President Duterte. What is strange is, as soon as it became clear to the terrorists that US Special Forces are present and giving their technical support to our soldiers, they opened a new front. Later they launched an attack in North Cotabato. The attack was initiated by elements of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters.

There is much evidence to support this theory. After the collapse of communist bloc, the merchants of war have to look for another enemy to sustain their business. Fervor and ignorance make many Muslims ideal disposable soldiers. Where there is conflict, Wall Street and the US military industrial complex see an opportunity to make money, and money serves to cover the deep crevice caused by increasing foreign debt, continuing erosion in the value of the US dollar, widening trade deficit and an overall decline trade dominance.

The US today is the only country that relies on arms sales to prop-up its receding global economic dominance that unavoidably would require the maintenance of a big and strong armed forces. It is the number-one trader of arms to the leading autocratic and barbaric governments known to openly support international terrorism to advance one fanatical variety of Islam known as Wahhabism. It is paradoxical for while Saudi Arabia is America’s number one buyer of arms, the US is spending much to maintain the military superiority of another barbaric state—Israel.

In the post-Cold War era, the ideology that was committed to waging “wars for national liberation” was substituted by theocratic ideology led by bigoted religious leaders bent on restoring a caliphate. It is this intensifying religious war of attrition that the US has been exploiting to sustain the need for arms. The only drawback is that both sides are so obfuscated in their hatred that they could no longer see that the US is making profit out of the lives and blood of their children.

For instance, events in Syria are telling that the US is openly supporting ISIS and Jabhat al Nusra against the government of Bashir al-Assad in Syria. The US downing of a Syrian Su-22 fighter-bomber on mission to bomb ISIS position in Tabqah is more than enough to remind us of the danger in seeking US assistance. All attempts to prevent Syrian planes from bombing ISIS positions is to write on the wall that US planes will provide air cover to terrorist lairs in Syria and is determined to secure their supply lines.

The US defense that the downing of the Syrian jet was an act of self-defense is preposterous and just crazy. How could the US raise that when it has no right to be there as it was not invited by the legitimate and sovereign Syrian government? The situation has reached a critical level that Russia has to cancel all agreements on military cooperation with the US in Syria.

The same possibility could happen here. The entry of the US gave it a bargaining leverage to derail President Duterte’s much talked-about independent foreign policy. Given this situation, we can conclude that the conflict in Mindanao is an extension of the business of war the US has been promoting—one that pits Muslims against Muslims.

It is a transaction of guns for oil. As trader, the US does not question the religious affiliation of its buyer, but only asks if it has the money. This explains why US arms sales end up as the standard weapons for both the MNLF and MILF. Although the MILF has been fragmented into several factions sporting different names, they remain one and committed to creating an Islamic state dominated by Sunni followers and ideologically guided by those autocrats in Saudi Arabia.

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