Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Political Killings in Maguindanao, Mindanao, Philippines

Vaudine England, BBC Asia analyst
The brutality of the killings in Maguindanao has highlighted the domination of Philippines politics by guns, warlords and lawlessness.

It has also changed the nature of "rido", the local word for clan wars and vendetta. Rido has long focused on election disputes or land conflicts and has involved killing, but usually of one person at a time and avoiding the killing of women or non-relatives. This incident targeted women and journalists who were not members of either powerful family involved.

Complicating the mix in Mindanao is the ongoing Muslim and communist insurgencies which have long been used by the authorities to justify new sources of funding for local favourites.