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Saturday, September 1, 2018

Security Forces Culture of Defending the Base and American Anti-Terrorist Campaigns 1908 - 2008

Security Forces has a strong culture and history of "Defending the Base." The AF/A4S has implemented the Reconstitute Defender Initiative to enable Defenders to be more lethal and more capable of completing mission sets. Hear directly from Lieutenant General Cooper, AF/A4, and Brigadier General Tullos, AF/A4S, on how your leadership is working to modernize training, weapon systems, and resources. While these and other initiatives aim to enhance your capabilities, it is equally important that you understand your core responsibilities, get back to the basic fundamentals, and build future Defenders. Defensor Fortis. For additional information and videos on United States Air Force Security Forces, visit:

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American Anti-Terrorist Campaigns 1908 - 2008
By: Bernard Fleury

The capture of badly wounded Papa Faustino Ablen, his subsequent recovery, trial for brigandage (thievery, abduction, extortion, etc.,) and his execution in August of 1907 broke the back of the Dios-Dios Pulahanes as a major insurgency.
His principal sub-chiefs, Felipe Ydos, Espiridion Rota, Afroniano Fernandez and other sub-chiefs were also hanged. Lesser officers were sentenced to long prison terms. Recruits received lesser punishments.

Many Pulahan members from Leyte and Samar, to put some distance between themselves and their former enemies they had preyed upon, moved to Mindanao. They continued to live in small remote communes and to practice their apocalyptic beliefs of the "golden heaven" they’d seen in Ablen’s dagger handle.

Continuing government harassment resulted in more conflicts such as the 1924 Colorum Uprising in Surigao. To this year 2008, the influence of the Pulahanes is still found in Christian sects throughout Mindanao.1.

Millenarianism took root in the Philippines as a result of oppressive Spanish policies during the colonial period. The Dios-Dios movement was really driven by a desire to radically change their society. They awaited the appearance of the "great city" they saw in Ablen’s bolo handle, the resurrection of the dead, the victory over their enemies through their magical prayers and amulets. At first they just withdrew to their mountain retreats and lived passively.

When America defeated Spain in the Spanish American War, the Pulahanes helped the Philippine insurgency under Emilio Aguinaldo y Famy in the anti-colonial American struggle. But after Aguinaldo surrendered they continued their insurgency until the capture of Faustino Ablen. They targeted not only Americans but also their fellow Filipinos who had been their enemies before the Americans came. It is interesting to note that the Pulahanes, as a group never (to this day) surrendered.2.

America’s Future – The Terrorist Threat In The Late 20th And Early 21st Centuries
Newspaper and television reports continue to allude to Al Qaeda Terrorist cells in the United States. Some accounts center them in radical Islamic Mosques led by Fundamentalist Imams like the Mosques in Los Angeles and San Diego among others. Islamic terrorism is a serious threat not only to American and West European values but also to the rest of the Islamic World, most of which do not hold Fundamentalist radical views but are terrified (with some exceptions) to take a public stand against the Al Qaeda and Taliban brand of Islam because Islamic terrorists have demonstrated in Iraq and Afghanistan that they do not hesitate to blow up fellow Muslims who do not support their radical beliefs.
As many as seventy-seven thousand terrorist targets, are currently listed, with our seaport areas having major vulnerability.
Reform of our terrorist-fighting infrastructure is an urgent ongoing endeavor in which both candidates for President in the fall of 2008 endorse though each of them has his own specific plan that differs from the other candidates plan.


The American Anti-Terrorist Campaign of the first eight years of the twenty-first century came gradually. It received its most significant "push" with the bombing of the twin towers in New York City in September 2001.
This time we have groups like the Taliban and Al Qaeda. They too have their charismatic leaders, principal of whom is Osama Bin Laden.
Bin Laden is similar to Aguinaldo and Ablen in several ways. He wants to "free" his people who are Conservative, Fundamentalist Muslims, to preserve their way of life and culture, from the "infidels" who collectively are non-Muslim or what he considers to be liberal Muslims who have betrayed their faith.
Bin Laden also has the support of many Muslims, both the elite and wealthy as well as ordinary persons of modest means.
Like Ablen, Bin Laden promises his people who give their lives for the cause a glorious life in heaven.
But there the similarity between the American Anti-Terrorist campaigns of 1900-1902 and 1903-07 in the Philippines, and the 2001-2008 (and still ongoing) end.
The current Anti-Terrorist Campaign is much broader in scope and intensity. Unlike Aguinaldo and Ablen whose focus was to "free" the Philippines from the American invaders, Bin Laden wants freedom from all non-Muslim political and religious ideas and to impose his version of Islam on the entire world.
Many more people have been and are being killed. Many more nations are involved. It is really a clash of cultures, radically different ways of life. It is a struggle, the end of which, no one can accurately predict.
The current struggle grows increasingly more and more worldwide, and no one has yet found the way to end it and restore peace.
We are in the midst of another American led Anti-Terrorist Campaign but this one is a world-changing event in human history!

1. Page 42, George Emmanuel R. Borrinaga, The Pulahan Movement in Leyte, unpublished paper
delivered as a lecture at the University of San Carlos, Cebu City, Philippine Islands, 2008.
2. Borrinaga, op.cit., pp. 43-44.

Bernard J. Fleury, B.A. History and Classical Languages, Ed.D. Philosophy, Government, and Administration, is Professor Emeritus of Philosophy and Educational Administration. Dr. Fleury's lifelong interest in history from the perspective of the people who lived it, is evident in Chap. IV and V of A Bee in His Bonnet  that is his grandfather Frank King's Great Generation story as he recorded it, and told it to his daughter and grandchildren.

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