May 24, 2017
This is a good idea.
Though personally, I think martial law is always a good idea.
Here’s a map:
The red-highlighted area is where the main Moslem areas are. In fact, they’re pretty much entirely concentrated there.
The rest of the island of Mindanao is mainly Christian and various pre-Christian tribal religions. It’s just the parts right near Malaysia that are Islamic.
There used to be more Moslems on the island, but they did a pretty good job of marrying them out and urging conversion through social shaming. A lot of them also fled to Malaysia.
Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte said his martial law declaration for the country’s restive south was necessary in order to fight militants there.
“I had to declare martial law in the Mindanao group of islands,” Duterte said at a news conference Wednesday. “It is our constitutional duty to enforce the law and provide security.”
Duterte’s order — which covers both the city of Marawi and the wider island of Mindanao, of which Marawi is a part — came after deadly clashes broke out between Filipino government troops and Islamist militants Tuesday.
If the terror threat spreads, Duterte said he’s not afraid to go further.
“If I think that the ISIS has already taken foothold also in Luzon and terrorism is not really far behind, I might declare martial law throughout the country to protect the people,” said the President, who cut short a visit to Russia to come home to deal with the violence.
Here he is meeting Putin.
He was very excited to meet his “hero” Putin, so it says a lot he cut that trip short to deal with this issue.
But he did get the weapons he wanted.
Fighting between government forces and the Maute group, an Islamist militant organization based in Mindanao, began in Marawi, a city of about 200,000 people.
ISIS’ media wing, Amaq Agency, put out a statement announcing that “fighters of the Islamic State launch a wide-scale offensive on positions of Philippine troops in the city of Marawi.”
Presidential spokesman Ernesto Abella confirmed that the fighters had taken over several government buildings in the city, and had torched others, including a church, a school and the city jail. It was not clear from his statement how damaged the buildings were by the arson.
Marawi is right on the edge of Moslem territory.
Illigan City to the north of it is 95% Christian. The capital of Moslem Mindanao is Cotabato City, to the South. Below that is a mix of tribalists, Moslems and Catholics. The big peninsula to the West, Zamboanga, is mostly Islamic. It leads to a series of islands which provide a direct route to Malaysia.
It is relevant that the fighting is on a border of the Moslem area, as it implies a plan to expand territory.
I’ve personally been to all of these places. Even back in the 00s, there was a relevant amount of low-intensity conflict in Cotabato, though not really in the city itself.
Mindanao is home to a sizable Muslim population, in contrast to the remainder of the country, which is overwhelmingly Catholic.
The militants also reportedly took over a medical center and replaced the Philippines flag with a black, ISIS-style banner.
Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) spokesman Lt. Col. Jo-Ar Herrera said that Isnilon Hapilon, the leader of the Abu Sayyaf Group, which has pledged allegiance to ISIS, was among the armed men.
Three government troops died in the fighting, said Abella, and 12 were injured. Martial law was declared about 10 p.m. Tuesday night, and reinforcements were expected.
“Our operation is still ongoing in Marawi City and sporadic fighting is still continuing,” a statement from the Armed Forces of the Philippines said.
“The joint AFP-PNP team that is after Isnilon Hapilon and his cohorts is determined to finish him off,” the statement said.
…The violence prompted Duterte to cut short a visit to Moscow, during which one of his top priorities was to acquire Russian-made precision armaments to use against the militants in the Southern Philippines. It’s highly unusual for a US ally to purchase arms from Russia, an adversary, though Duterte said in October he planned to “break up” with the United States and turn to Russia and China.
Speaking from Moscow, Philippines Foreign Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano said that the violence in Mindanao, one of the Philippines’ southernmost islands, was Duterte’s priority, despite the high-profile visit to Moscow and St. Petersburg.
“(The Russians) understand that the security of the Filipino people, especially in Marawi and in Mindanao, is a priority,” Cayetano said. “I will be staying behind. The agreements will be signed.”
Martial law will be in effect on the Muslim-majority southern Philippines island for 60 days “to suppress lawless violence and rebellion and for public safety,” said Abella, according to PNA.
Under the 1987 constitution, the president has the ability to place the country under martial law, though Congress has the ability to revoke the proclamation. The period should not last more than two months.
However, Duterte says martial law in the southern Philippines could last a year.
“If it would take a year to do it, then we’ll do it. If it’s over within a month, then I’d be happy,” Duterte said in a video posted on Facebook by Mocha Uson, the assistant secretary to the Presidential Communications Operation Office.
Now let us allow CNN to tell us how evil martial law is – even when you’ve got a literal Islamic uprising taking over cities.
The country suffered 14 years of martial law under former dictator Ferdinand Marcos, who was ousted in a peaceful revolution in 1986.
During those 14 years, perceived opponents of Marcos were subjected to numerous human rights violations, including imprisonment, forced disappearances and torture. Extrajudicial killings carried out by Marcos’ secret police were also common.
Many young Filipinos have little or no knowledge of the period under Marcos, and of life under martial law.
Duterte praised the use of martial law by Marcos, calling it “really good” at his news conference.
Of course it was really good.
All martial law is really good.
Marcos was not overthrown by a “people’s revolution,” he was overthrown by a Jewish orchestrated “color” type revolution. Paul Wolfowitz was literally in Manila when Marcos was forced to flee.