This is a blog dedicated to a personal interpretation of political news of the day. I attempt to be as knowledgeable as possible before commenting and committing my thoughts to a day's communication.

Monday, May 16, 2016

God Is Great!

"I appeal to my government and the Philippine government, as I have appealed before, for help."
Robert Hall, Canadian abductee, southern Philippines

"We say to the governments of Canada and the Philippines not to play games, for we are determined to slaughter all the captives if you do not comply with our demands."
"We are not scared of you or your soldiers or airplanes."
"Allahu Akbar!"
Masked Abu Sayyaf jihadists

The price levied as ransom for the three remaining hostages in the wake of the beheading weeks ago by John Ridsdel after an earlier warning that the abductees would be killed if the ransom was not forthcoming, is the same. The price for the release of Norwegian Kjartan Sekkingstad and Robert Hall is $16-million. The video spoke only of the release of the two men whose head-tax would be $8-million apiece; no word of the release-for-payment of their companion, Filipina Marites Flor, all four taken by the terrorist group in a raid of a marina operated by Mr. Sekkingstad near the city of Davao.

After the grisly death of an exhausted and hope-drained John Ridsdel, when his ransom had not been forthcoming at the stated due date, the Philippines government was resolute in stating its intention to finally clear out the Islamist group affiliated with Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant to give their abductions-and-consequences greater gravitas. Although the military has been dispatched with the intention to accelerate their operations against Abu Sayyaf, their difficult-to-access hideouts in thickly forested mountainous terrain has succeeded in concealing their presence.

The Site Intelligence Group had come across the video posted a day earlier, alerting the governments concerned. The Government of Canada relies on the time-worn fiction that it will not deal with the demands of terrorists, for to do so only encourages them to continue abducting foreign nationals for profit, while financially fueling their jihad. While negotiations by key intermediaries are ongoing in an effort to satisfy the demands of the abductors in a reasonable effort to rescue increasingly desperate hostages, the situation does not appear to have moved forward.

Robert Hall, a native of Calgary and an independent businessman and entrepreneur, sold all his possessions in 2014, and bought a 35-foot sailboat named the Renova. It is a kind of dream shared by many people who imagine a carefree life with a boat that will take them to exotic places and transform their lives. With his ship Mr. Hall sailed across the Pacific. And it seems he found the Philippines to represent the Eden he was in search of. Until it turned into a Hell-on-Earth he would much prefer to be done with in a hoped-for release from the hands of Islamist jihadists more interested in extortionate wealth than faith, even while declaiming "God is Great!".

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