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Time Pretends Manila Bombing Not Terrorism

From the former news magazine Time:

Police investigators inspect the damage after a powerful explosion went off in the south wing of the Philippine lower house in Quezon city, suburban Manila November 13, 2007.

Manila Bomb: Terror or Vendetta?

By Adrian Addison / Manila

Wednesday, Nov. 14, 2007

On Tuesday evening, a suspected nail bomb blast ripped through the south entrance of the Philippines’ House of Representatives, killing a congressman and two others. But by Wednesday morning, it was back to business as usual: debating the latest attempt to impeach embattled President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo…

At least 11 people, including two legislators, were wounded in the blast, which occurred as congressmen and women left the building following Tuesday’s session.

Police investigators have recovered a mobile phone they believe was used to trigger the device, said to have been packed with nails and strapped to a motorcycle. Investigators said at a police press conference that the trigger is similar to those used before by Abu Sayyaf, an Islamic extremist group linked to Al Qaeda.

Representative Wahab Akbar, one of the bomb’s victims, is believed to have been the target of the attack — making it an apparent assassination rather than a wider attack on the Philippines political establishment.

Akbar, whose body was flown home for burial Wednesday, was a prominent figure in the Philippines’ restive Basilan province, the stomping ground for Abu Sayyaf as well as Muslim separatist groups like the MILF and MNLF.

He was elected governor of the province twice before becoming congressman in May; one of his three wives has succeeded him as governor, while another is mayor of its capital, Isabela City. The third wife ran, and lost, the race to be mayor of another city.

Akbar was widely rumored to have strong ties with Abu Sayyaf, with some reports even claiming he was a founding member and a commander until he had a falling-out with the group

The bomb attack comes at an unsettled time for the Philippines…

And a month before the House of Representatives attack, another explosion at a shopping mall in Manila’s upmarket Makati district killed 11 people. While recent findings indicate the explosion was the result of a gas leak, initial reports blamed the blast on terrorism, and police have yet to announce the results of their full investigation.

But regardless of the true cause of the Makati blast or the identity of the culprits behind the latest attack, “The political situation in the Philippines is in a state of flux,” says Casiple. “And that is always very, very dangerous here.”

Of course Time wants us to believe that it was some vague “vendetta,” and that Muslim terrorism (which has already killed thousands in the Philippines) had nothing to do with it.

Indeed, reading this one would be led to believe that Mr. Akbar (who is clearly a Muslim) is still in bed with the “Islamic insurgency” in the Philippines.

Therefore any such nonsense about this being a terrorist attack is just an uninformed knee-jerk reaction, like the aforementioned explosion at the shopping mall.

Well it turns out that Time Magazine left out some important pieces of information that might help its benighted readers form their own conclusions about the people behind the attack.

Behold the minor details that even the Associated Press managed to report in their article on this self-same attack:

Bomb kills 3 outside Philippine Congress

By OLIVER TEVES, Associated Press Writer Tue Nov 13

MANILA, Philippines – A bomb exploded outside the House of Representatives late Tuesday, killing a former Muslim rebel-turned-congressman who had backed a U.S.-Philippine offensive against Islamic militants. A lawmaker’s driver and a legislative staffer also died…

Interior Secretary Ronaldo Puno said the target appeared to be Rep. Wahab Akbar, a former rebel who as governor of southern Basilan province gave his support to military operations against al-Qaida-linked Abu Sayyaf guerrillas. Akbar died of wounds in a hospital, police said.

Akbar joined the extremist Abu Sayyaf group in the 1990s when it had just embarked on a campaign to establish an Islamic caliphate in the southern Philippines, said metropolitan Manila police chief Geary Barias.

But as the group gained notoriety for attacks on Christians, ransom kidnappings and beheadings of hostages, Akbar disassociated himself and joined U.S.-backed military operations against the militants on Basilan, Barias said…

[Akbar] said the group violates Islamic teachings by stealing and attacking innocent civilians

Akbar, 47, was a member of the Moro National Liberation Front, a Muslim rebel group that dropped its secessionist goal and signed a peace accord with the government in September 1996.

Akbar was Basilan governor when U.S. troops arrived on the island in 2002 to train Filipino soldiers battling Abu Sayyaf. Over the years, the island was gradually transformed from a militant hotbed into a showcase of counterterrorism success and humanitarian development…

Could someone explain why our watchdog media always are so desperate to find “nuance” in these terrorist attacks?

Are they worried that we will begin to look upon Islam as something other than a “religion of peace”?

Whatever happened to just reporting the news so that we can make up our own minds?

(As usual, these are all rhetorical questions. We know the answers all too well.)

This article was posted by Steve on Wednesday, November 14th, 2007. Comments are currently closed.

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