The Philippines' Terrorist Refuge

Poor and lawless, the southern Philippine region of Mindanao has for decades hosted criminal gangs engaging in everything from gunrunning to extortion to kidnapping. It has also provided a haven for insurgent groups seeking to establish Islamic or communist states. Hardly a week goes by without a firefight, a bomb attack or a snatching. Just last Tuesday, the Philippine military unleashed yet another full-scale offensive near the town of Pikit against Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) militants, resulting in the deaths of at least 160 guerrillas and eight soldiers, and prompting the exodus of some 40,000...

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