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Abu Sayyaf

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Here is a piece I wrote on the Abu Sayyaf.


Section I: Overview


The purpose of this research paper is to analyze and explain how the Southeast Asian terrorist organization, the Abu Sayyaf Group, is financed. The conclusion or conclusions of this paper are designed to aid the joint efforts of the United States Joint Special Operations Task Force in the Philippines and the Philippine armed forces as well as the new president of the Philippines in combating the Abu Sayyaf Group. The new president will take office on June 30, 2010. The analysis undertaken will attempt to highlight a particular counterterrorism strategy. The strategy I suggest is the financial starvation of the terrorist organization through the attrition of its underlying financial networks. Geographically, the Abu Sayyaf Group is primarily active in the Sulu archipelago, a small chain of islands, islets, and atolls in the southern Philippines which was once an independant Islamic State, the Sultanate of Sulu. There are three main islands in the Sulu archipelago: Tawi-Tawi, Jolo, and Basilan. The biggest factor that limited my research was finding current and unclassified information. Financial networks are fluid and dynamic and may change as transformations in organizational structure of the terrorist organization occur, and specific information (such as dollar amounts) are hard to find in public documents. I adapted by focusing on the changes between current and past information to establish the direction Abu Sayyaf is taking it its evolution. I also adapted by focusing on the general things and

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You would think that hundreds of millions of dollars spent on this effort


and no one is proposing a blockade of the ocean ports of entry?

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I have not researched them as you have, but have my opinion. I have been reading virtually all the newspapers and other periodicals there for over two years. To me, primary funding is kidnapping (except during election times). Secondary is corrupt officials that use them for terrorist acts against their own enemies or political rivals. Recruiting? There is a lot of fear of these people, not only in the areas they live, but anywhere the public thinks they are. I read that in Basilan, if you do not have a reputation, you do not get anywhere, big time survival of the fittest. So, violence is a way of life in certain areas as we all know. Last month, there was an article about young people in Mexico. What do they want to be when they grow up. Majority said to work in a drug cartel. Idol worship... who has the most? Cars, women, money? Though the terrorist sect there seems to be always on the run, they can pay their recruits.. more than what they can make growing or making things. There must be some pretty good salesmen with the extreme ideology needed for these actions. Same with the Ampatuans. Having the ability to support your family means more then ideology and in areas where reputation means respect<?>, what do you expect. It will breed not only support but loyality. History has shown this, too. Unless they are caught or the support to the population there is given, fear and poverty will give them continued access to covert movements. I thoroughly believe if the average person in those areas feel free of intimidation and fear, they will give all of them up. No one in the general population I believe is willing to live like that. beheadings, hostages dismembered with chain saws, executions, families and towns threatened and attacked...and almost all are filipino's

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