Wednesday, February 13, 2008

U.S. Military Aid To The Phillipines Found Effective In Separatist Clash

From The Washington Times:

U.S. military assistance to the Philippines has been effective in building counterinsurgency capacity, according to a U.S. military study, but critics say it has come at the price of a U.S. blind eye to extrajudicial killings there.

The government of the far-flung archipelago nation has been locked for decades in a conflict with separatist groups in the southern region of Mindanao, home to the Philippines" Muslim minority.

Peace deals and cease-fires were negotiated with the mainstream rebel groups in the 1990s, and Mindanao was granted autonomy in 1996, but more radical elements, some linked to al Qaeda and other Islamic terror groups, have since emerged.

Read more ....

My Comment: Conflict in the Philippines is nothing new. But the fact that the central government is starting to be successful against many of these insurgent groups is new. Concerns about extrajudicial killings is an area of concern. Unfortunately, civil war and conflict is never clean, and the prospect of brutality and war crimes being committed is almost a given.

Will the Philippines ever achieve a level of peace .... maybe ..... but like all low level conflicts this is a very long term prospect. The only hope is to minimize it and localize it to the regions that have always bred this level of violence.

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