Philippines: July 23, 2005

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In the southern Philippines, a major operation to capture Abu Sayyaf leaders has included some American Special Forces and air force units. The operations are being conducted in areas controlled by the MILF, with the permission of the MILF.  However, the MILF is complaining that they were not told of American participation, and would not have agreed to cooperate if they knew of American involvement. The MILF buys into the idea that the American war on terror is actually a war on Islam. But the MILF also does not want to be closely associated with Islamic terrorists, and it's generally accepted that radical factions of the MILF, like Abu Sayyaf, are supporting Islamic terrorist operations, including terror attacks in the Philippines, and training camps that instruct about a hundred local and foreign terrorists a year. 

Opposition parties and groups are still trying to get  president Arroyo to resign, or impeach her,  for corruption and rigging elections. But corruption is all too common in the Philippines, and Arroyo's many supporters have managed to stop the removal efforts so far.  

 

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