Islamic State may regroup in the Philippines

While the Islamic State may be finished in Syria and Iraq, the caliphate may live on elsewhere, and the Philippines is a prime landing spot.

While the Asian nation is a long way from ISIS’ origins in the Middle East, fighters from the group have already seized, and then held, a city there for three months, exacting a heavy toll on government forces in retaking it.

Plus, the Philippines has a lengthy history of Islamic militarism, dating back to the 1970s when the Moro National Liberation Front began battling the government in its quest for greater autonomy.

More recently, “another Islamic militant organization, the Abu Sayyaf Group, formed in the early 1990s and has formed links with al Qaeda and other Islamic militant groups throughout Southeast Asia, including Jemaah Islamiyah.” [source]

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Jon E. Dougherty is a political, foreign policy and national security analyst and reporter with nearly 30 years of experience in both fields. A U.S. Army veteran of Operation Enduring Freedom, he holds BA in Political Science from Ashford University and an MA in National Security Studies/Intelligence Analysis from American Military University.

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