Thesis: I want to discuss what has driven the rise of militant Islam in the Southern Philippines, steps being taken, and the future. The lack of understanding of the Muslim culture has been the problem since the Spanish and American rule. I originally focused on the effects on the Philippines as a whole but I kept focusing on geopolitics. Below is my Thesis Statement.
Thesis Statement: Colonial rule has played a lasting effect in the development of militant Islam in the Southern Philippines, which hinges on the misunderstanding of the Muslim culture through forced assimilation, a lack of inclusion of religion, and armed conflict.
• Part I: Understanding key events in the history of the Southern Philippines (Pre 9/11)
1. Discuss the early establishment of Islam in the Southern Philippines.
2. Discuss major events such as the colonization of the Philippines by the Spanish and United States.
a. These cultures were very different than Islam and often clashed.
3. Discuss the creation of the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF).
b. This is the first unified terrorist organization with a mission to cede from the Philippines.
c. Analyze how this group led the way for other extremist groups and splintering of the group. Zachary Abuza will provide much information throughout the paper and his work will play a vital role in this section.
• Part II: The United States’ involvement in counter-terrorism post 9/11 in the Southern Philippines.
1. Analyze how the current involvement continues the divide of cultures.
2. In this section I will provide interviews with prior co-workers who can provide real world experiences in the Southern Philippines. The interviewees worked with the lowest of levels all the way to parts of national level counterparts.
• Part III: The current situation, the development of the Bangsamoro Basic Law, and the future.
1. Analyze the effects of the Bangsamoro Basic Law. Will the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao succeed? Though I do not fully agree with an autonomous region. In this situation I believe it is one of the only ways for peace to be accomplished. Many of the authors fully support the autonomous region.
2. Provide recommendations on how the Philippine Government can further the relationship between the capital and Southern Philippines.
Manila’s support of the BBL.
Further inclusion of the BARMM in the capital region.
Muslims in Southern Philippines vocalize their dissatisfaction for the extremist.
I will conclude the paper with summarizing the main points. Additionally, I will provide recommendations for how the Philippines can strive for a peaceful future. However, this will not be easy as Sumpter and Franco’s closing sentence which suggests Islamist extremist are resilient due to their indigenous roots. I would have to agree with this statement.
I am currently reworking my week 3 assignment. I will submit the references in an email directly to you.