• ‘US soldier among dead’

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    Human rights group claims body of American retrieved from clash site
    A “blue-eyed” Caucasian believed to be an American soldier was reportedly among those killed in the deadly gunbattle between elite policemen and members of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) and Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) on January 25 in Mamasapano, Maguindanao province.

    Suara Bangsamoro, a Muslim human rights group, quoted witnesses as saying that at least one “white” soldier was recovered after the duel. It said the witness, a 40-year-old farmer, was even able to touch the nose of the dead serviceman.

    Suara spokesman Jerome Succor Aba said they were able to interview the farmer in Barangay Tukanalipao, Mamasapano. The witness said he saw the body of the American minutes after the encounter that led to the deaths of at least 44 members of the Special Action Force (SAF) of the Philippine National Police (PNP).

    Aba declined to reveal the name of the witness for security reasons.

    “They (civilian residents of Barangay Tukanalipao) were the first ones to arrive in one of the two areas where the encounter happened,” he said in a report carried by Pinoy Weekly Online.

    Aba added that civilians arrived in the area after troops of the MILF withdrew to the Islamic Center in Sitio Inubog, Barangay Pembalkan, also in Mamasapano.

    On Sunday, however, an official who is privy to ongoing investigation by the Board of Inquiry designated to probe the incident belied claims that an American was among those killed in the massacre.

    “They could be dreaming. I was there for four days and no such story surfaced. Civilians were the first to arrive in the area. Don’t you think not one of them would have thought of taking a photo or a video of any American there? That is not true,” the source, a ranking police officer, told The Manila Times.

    The SAF operation was believed guided by US troops who reportedly provided vital intelligence to the elite police unit. The US military was reported to have deployed a drone that allowed American Special Forces to monitor in real time the situation on the ground and allegedly provided Filipino commandos with information about the hideout of Zulkifli bin Hir, alias Marwan, leader of the Kumpulan Mujahidin Malaysia or the Malaysian Mujahideen Movement allied with Jemaah Islamiyah.

    It was unknown if President Benigno Aquino 3rd was aware of the US military role in the hunt for Zulkifli, who was on the FBI’s Most Wanted List and Washington offered $5 million bounty for his capture—dead or alive.

    US troops were also spotted in Maguindanao evacuating wounded SAF commandos from Mamasapano town. No security officials have come up in the open to talk about the role of US military in the clandestine operation.

    The MILF said 18 of its members were killed and over a dozen wounded in the fighting that government and the former rebel group called a “misencounter.”

    Meanwhile, the farmer as well as other civilians who arrived in the area said they saw one particular helicopter, among others that shortly arrived in the area, hover over the bodies to carry “specific casualties.”

    The witnesses were not able to identify to which specific military units the bodies of the supposed US troops belonged.

    The US Embassy in Manila had said the American soldiers in Mamasapano were there to “assist in evacuating the dead and wounded” and were not directly involved in the operation, it was reported.

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    12 Comments

    1. This talk about if, or if not, the Americans were involved . Did they just happened to be there in the neighborhood with the helicopter to help evacuate bodies? Do the American show up at every other incident that occurs in the Philippines to help evacuate? This is what you have your military or police and all your other forces that are in Philippines. Does anyone even have to question that American helicopters were there assisting in the evacuation is evidence enough.

      There’s been so much information about how the military stood down and how they had no coordinates- had no idea where anyone was – that no communication was occurring – that no one was able to know anything because nobody knew anything, but American helicopter and some American personnel happen to know exactly where to go to help evacuate bodies when everyone in the Philippines had no clue? Really, and people are still questioning whether or not there was any US involvement. This is the play of media and how we fool ourselves to believe whatever we need to believe when the facts are usually right in front of us

    2. Most people know that President Noynoy knows about the plan mission of PNP-SAF commandos to capture the 2 bomb-expert terrorist at Maguindanao, the reason the president stayed in Zamboanga too confident with Gen. Allan Purisima’s assurance of victory as PNP-SAF COMMANDO combat-readiness for the mission but in the course of action, they were trapped/outsmarted by MILF/BIFF collaboration ,knowing the situation, the president left.

    3. This is a covert operation so it normal for the allies like the US to send an observer when they got an stake on it,US pays the reward money on this terrorist Marwan and Usman dead or alive.US DONT give the reward money to any law enforcement or the miltary,they GIVE it to civilian informants who provide the information where this terrorist are.

      • since it was the US that had the info of marwan’s whereabouts, they should keep the reward or donate it to the families of the men who killed him.

    4. They may be aremicans but they are never US soldiers – they are security contractors. The State Department are very careful on that distinction. They will never let any of their soldiers go in harm’s way. Hence, the US Embassy was not lying.

    5. “Finder keepers,losers weepers….Ha ha!!! No way, we won’t give them back….” apparently said by Murad and Jaffar — refuse to surrender the jackets, rifles, cell phones, magazines, they got from the SAF-PNP troops.

    6. Alfonso Dubouzet on

      CIA Clandestine operations are known everywhere. When it is successful, it is claimed by the government such as the killing of Bin Laden. However if it fails, there goes the washing of hands. Special Ops units are pawns of the US govt. They know that they are on their own if their mission fails and the US govt will disown them if captured. That is part of their signed contract. These brave soldiers are very willing to do the sacrifice for their belief. Can you compare them with suicide bombers? (Doing in what they believe in) It’s your call.

    7. Ruben V. Calip on

      Leftists, including leftwing human rights activists Suara Bangsamoro, are playing their anti-American tune again to cnfuse the issue of PCOS-made President Aquno’s treason and support of the MILF against our own PNP-SAF heroes.

    8. Has it been reported that last month or in November, Malaysian troops plus one or two Norwegians were in the area?