Pangan: A clear and present danger

PRESIDENT Benigno Simeon C. Aquino II downplays the imminent threat of terrorists to our external security by saying: "No credible threat has been monitored in the country despite the recent terror attacks in Jakarta Indonesia".

How sure is the president that there is yet no presence of the dreaded Islamic State extremists in Southern Philippines? There is a thing like failure of intelligence, Mr. President if you rely heavily and solely on intelligence reports.

Zachary Abuza of the US National War College declared: Philippine military officials have always flatly denied that Islamic State has any foothold in the country but they should now admit that the group has a small but dangerous presence in the Muslim South.

ISIS is reportedly recruiting adherents, via the dreaded Abu Sayyaf group which has changed alliances, first with AlQaeda, then Jemaah Islamiyah and to Isis. Is the military intelligence considering this?

The present president is docile as compared to former president Joseph Ejercito Estrada who vowed to crush the rebel groups down south, leaving no survivors from will spring sons who would someday rule in terror. As they say the scepter of terrorism is passed on to the next generation. Indeed, it has and more, violently.

President Aquino boasts: The government has long bolstered the hardening of targets and other security measures in vital public installations, yet admits that the peace process should now be given top priority to avoid playing into the hands of Islamic State by giving disaffected young
Muslims a reason to flirt with the Middle East group's extremist ideology.

The big Filipino working community in the Middle East numbering some 2 million is a rich recruitment ground for the Isis.

We have several threats befuddling us-internal and external-drought, flooding, criminality and poverty and, of course, China. The present administration, alas, is remiss in some, if not all, of them.

* * *

We have a notorious and bad habit of preparing on the 11th hour and only when accidents happen or when disasters or calamities strike. We never learn, sad to say.

* * *

During the meeting on Tuesday, January 19, GSO Chief Jun Magbalot announced activities surrounding Caragan an annual event in the City of Mabalacat. Trade fairs will be installed showcasing food and souvenir items and other goods indigenous to the city. Employees will be given free booths where they sell their wares and augment their income.

Preparations are underway for the Miss Mabalacat 2016 pageant with Douglas Nieras helping out in the technical aspect of the event. Expect a grand celebration!

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