Saturday, May 14, 2011

Face to face with Osama bin Laden Part 2 (Inside the Philippines)

The more horrifying scene would be Osama bin Laden in flesh, stepping within the Philippine soil itself. It happened almost two decades ago, in 1992.

“Bin Laden presented himself as a wealthy Saudi who wanted to invest in Muslim areas and donate money to charity. Then President Fidel Ramos even allegedly authorized the use of C-130 airplane to fly bin Laden from the capital, Manila, to Mindanao. Others said bin Laden allegedly met with several government officials who helped him purchase property and set up bank accounts.  -Ressa, 2003

Bin Laden inside the Philippines could only mean one thing, his war against the United States of America is once again spinning fast; a huge step in what would later the world will dub as the 9/11 attack.

I felt sad that once again the extreme level of poverty of the country is used for these men’s plans and so once again, we are helpless. And the worse, we are clueless.

It was here in the Philippines that the plan to attack the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York was set in motion. Soon to be high-jackers actually trained here. And for finance, members of the al-Qaeda cleverly used women from the red light districts of Manila. They courted them, gave them all the promise every Filipina dreaming of catching some foreign prince to whip them away from poverty would want to hear. Every count of dollar means a favor like opening a bank account and transferring of money using the names of those poor women. The girls did so obediently. But the papers of the accounts they opened, they never saw it again. So are the guys.

Philippines became a haven for terrorist plots. Not only the 9/11 attack but even the plot to assassinate then Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto. While in preparation for the United States attack, more al-Qaeda members entered the country through the back door that is Basilan, known to be headquarter of the Abu Sayaf Group. Together, they plotted more terrorist attacks and sad to say, some of the plans were actually realized later. Like the bombing of a church in Jolo in 1991, the bombing of Fort Pilar in Zamboanga City that killed five people and even an assassination attempt during Pope John Paul II’s visit to the Philippines in 1995. 

Most of the bombings are made just to test the bombs created by al-Qaeda experts. Not only that they are concocting those elaborate mixtures of chemicals within the bounds of our country, they are actually testing them on us.

“Intelligence officials now know that two al-Qaeda members were inside the Abu Sayyaf base camp on Basilan Island one day after the September 11 attacks. Yousef spent only a few weeks in Basilan in August and September 1994 before deciding to do his own bombing. He returned to Manila, established contacts with the members of the network in place, and began to fine-tune his bomb plans. Yousef was an expert and an innovator; the bomb has set off at the World Trade Center in 1993 had been used only once before 73, 000 explosions recorded by the FBI. In Manila, he developed and tested what became known as his specialty. -Ressa, 2003

And so the Philippines is sitting on a series of well orchestrated time bombs.

Face to face with Osama bin Laden Part 1 (Target: The Philippines)


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