Friday, May 30, 2003

Moros attack during their own truce

Yesterday, the Belmont Club predicted that the Moro Islamic Liberation Front would "keep on negotiating even while they keep burning towns and setting off bombs". If you are reading this, don't even bother to click on the link to the prediction, it  is only a couple of posts down. And today, with the electrons of the post still settling onto the page, it comes true:

"COTABATO CITY-A day after raising hopes for peace in Mindanao with its declaration of a unilateral 10-day ceasefire starting next week, the Muslim separatist Moro Islamic Liberation Front killed at least five civilians Thursday in an attack on two army detachments in North Cotabato province, the military said.

The Moro Islamists acknowledged the attack and pleaded the lamest of excuses "MILF spokesperson Eid Kabalu acknowledged MILF rebels launched the attack, but he said the MILF field commanders had not yet been informed about the ceasefire." Anyway, it didn't matter because the dead civilians deserved it. "If there were houses burned, that's because they are situated beside the detachment and are owned by soldiers or (militiamen)," he said.

The Belmont Club also predicted that negotiations would continue, no matter how many houses the Moro Islamists burned, no matter how many civilians they butchered, no matter what and however often. The reason? The Armed Forces of the Philippines has no victory option to offer and the peace lobby is like a broken food vending machine which keeps dispensing snacks (especially pancit) onto the negotiation table, whether or not coins are deposited; whether or not the machine is kicked, shot at, sledgehammered or burned, however covered the table is with gore. The wolf is in the sheepfold, and the shepherd his waiter.