Monday, March 04, 2002

The Americans are back in the Philippines, specifically on the island of Mindanao. This must bring a tear to the eye of old CIA hands, who can hearken back to the days of Edward Landsdale, the 'Ugly American', who developed the modern concept of 'psy-ops' in the early 1950's in the Huk Rebellion in the Philippines. The U. S. is now claiming that the Abu Sayyaf terrorists on Mindanao are connected with bin Laden, and using that rather flimsy excuse to invade Mindanao (the actual story of insurgency in the Philippines is very complicated). Why are the Americans really there? The Abu Sayyaf terrorists are interfering with the development by U. S. oil companies of the petrochemical reserves that are under Mindanao. The social problems that caused the rise of insurgency won't be addressed, but another God-foresaken part of the world will be safe for American capitalism. The parallels to Landsdale's involvement in the Huk Rebellion are sobering. The Huks were a rural 'socialist' movement that wanted land reform. Landsdale used his psy-ops against the Huks and played the Huks off against Ramon Magsaysay, who became a hero by saving the Philippines by putting down the Huk Rebellion. He then easily won election as Philippine President, and U. S. puppet. Then, following Landsdale's plans, Huk insurgents who surrendered were resettled in Mindanao, a resettlement that has created some of the problems faced there today (the Americans loved big resettlements - it was their resettlements of northerners into south Vietnam that created a lot of the problems there). Now we have the Abu Sayyaf terrorist group, who are (probably inaccurately) labelled as bin Laden associates (but really appear to be a criminal group of for-profit kidnappers, the number of which is impossible to determine, chosen because they will be easy to exterminate). Supression of socialism is now suppression of terrorism. Thus U. S. geopolitical goals are obtained by the psy-op of tying the rebel group to bin Laden, and using the 'war on terror' to introduce U. S. special forces into the Philippines (of course, any 'assistance' by the U. S. military would never be tolerated without an excuse). The American military will then stay on to continue to suppress Islamic fundamentalist terrorism, provide protection for oil exploitation, and rebuild the U. S. military base which was lost when the American military was kicked out of the Philippines. The irony in all this is that the CIA became very good at the exercise of psy-ops, assassination, and government replacement, all at the expense of its ability to actually gather intelligence, a skill which would have come in handy before September 11.