I am amazed at the hyperventillation of terrorist attacks in the Western news media.

So today, I read about a terrorist bus bombing in the Southern Philippines.


Reuters reports: A powerful blast ripped through a commuter bus at a transport terminal on the southern Philippine island of Mindanao…

“We’re still investigating whether this was the handiwork of extortionists or terrorists,” Kuinisila told reporters. “Let’s not speculate, we’ll identify the perpetrators based on the pieces of evidence we would gather on the scene.”  Last month, 10 people were killed when a bomb exploded inside a Davao City-bound bus as it was leaving its terminal in Bansalan town in Davao del Sur, the third bus to be destroyed by crude bombs blamed on Islamic militants.

Ah, but I had to dig to find any reference to the bomb in the local papers.

And when I did, I found what I expected:LINK

Investigators said they are looking into extortion as the likely motive behind the bombing.

On the other hand, Sun Star Davao reported Saturday that Yellow Bus Line Inc. faces operations disruptions after its workers filed a notice of strike with the Labor Department…

Yup. Maybe terrorism, but more probably related to the strike, or maybe extrortion like last month’s bombs.

So the US embassy wants Americans to stay away from bus stations in Mindanao. Gee.

First of all, most Yanks are rich enough to drive a car. Second, if you live in Mindanao you are probably aware that bad guys see you and think: “MEAL TICKET”.

Indeed, the big “terrorism” news is speculation on how much ransom the Italians are going to pay for an Italian priest who got snatched. Kidnapping businessmen here is a business, and usually the group will give you back after your family pays a small ransom.

But the US Government won’t pay for a yank if you get kidnapped here, and the presence of US military advisors to help locate you for the Philippine Army is well known. So Italians are safer, and they not only have families but a government who will pay lots and lots of money, not to mention pressure the Philippines not to interfere.

But if the Italians want to get him back peacefully, but the local military has had it with this type of appeasement that didn’t work in the past and want to go in and get him…with a little help from their friends:

Dozens of U.S.-trained commandos have joined the search for an Italian Roman Catholic priest taken captive by Muslim gunmen in the troubled southern Philippines, the country’s military chief said on Thursday.

General Hermogenes Esperon said nearly 2,000 soldiers, backed by four navy boats and four helicopters, had been searching for nearly a month now in the Zamboanga peninsula to free Giancarlo Bossi, held by a rogue faction of Muslim rebels.”We have limited our operations in a few areas in the south,” Esperon told reporters.

The bad news for the kidnappers is that the US may pay better than the Italians…and there are a lot of people out there who need the money.

Nancy Reyes is a retired physician living in the rural Philippines. Her website is Finest Kind Clinic and Fishmarket

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