Author Topic: Spent a week in ARMM areas of Mindanao and saw things that will make you SICK !  (Read 6249 times)

Offline c_a_p_t_a_i_n_r_o_n

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Looks like this is gonna be the biggest revelation of the forum ;;; 
Lets have the first page with the briefing on the story

Or the biggest let down  :-[

Offline dylanaz

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Looks like this is gonna be the biggest revelation of the forum ;;;  
Lets have the first page with the briefing on the story


Or the biggest let down  :-[


Not really - I lost 10 years of data including the source photos etc in this thread http://livinginthephilippines.com/forum/index.php/topic,3644.msg29070.html#new

Got them back (last nite at midnite) thanks to a FIlipina computer tech who showed me how on youtube !

But lost 3 days of what I thought would be resting and slowy writing at the same time . . . ;) Starting that again now...
But wow.. im burnt out... needed rest from almost dying on that trip - and no rest yet....  Where does a guy get a break around here ...

I need a beach, umbrella, ice cold coconuts with a straw and an iPad 3G ! Hehehe





Reply to ABOVE post:
WHen you hear those bells on my roof... its just me yelling SANCTUARY !  :P
I have seen so much conflict while in the Philippines - amazingly 99% of it was merely online computer experiences :D

Offline coutts00

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Thanks Dylan,

We all promise to be patient and allow you to finish, and if you don\'t we know where you live... ;D
Wayne  ;D ;D

Offline fred

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Dylan..Your main priority is to stay safe which leads me to the question of why you are there in the first place!! Why?
Anyway..Im sure you have seen enough to write ample anecdotes of your journey so just get the hell out and in one piece!!
Ive met a few US soldiers that were assigned down there for around 3 years..They couldn\'t stop talking about their experiences either and they were protected and well armed..You are not.  Once again.. Stay safe via a quick exit.


Offline dylanaz

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Dylan..Your main priority is to stay safe which leads me to the question of why you are there in the first place!! Why?
Anyway..Im sure you have seen enough to write ample anecdotes of your journey so just get the hell out and in one piece!!
Ive met a few US soldiers that were assigned down there for around 3 years..They couldn\'t stop talking about their experiences either and they were protected and well armed..You are not.  Once again.. Stay safe via a quick exit.



Thanks Fred. I made it out... here is the first part of my multi part series... geez... its really taxing to actually write when you have to actually thing to do so...  :D
I have seen so much conflict while in the Philippines - amazingly 99% of it was merely online computer experiences :D

Offline dylanaz

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Or why they chose any belief at all when they often fly in the face of science and logic.


I keep sitting at my PC and TRYING to start my post.... its just so damn HUGE I get tired just thinking about typing all the information in.... I guess I will just post a few 1 paragraph headings and spread it across several posts now that I have determined how to discuss it without sounding all tele-preachy  ;D
I once heard that Rome was not built in one single day – and only now do I begin to really understand that. Trying to write my story in one take is simply impossible as I realized even the great writers of our time sometime seclude themselves for months or years to write a book, novel or what have you. There is not too much difference in this text I write.

NOTE: In my postings under this subject I will often refer to \"Muslim\" items/traditions/clothing etc as a way of identifying people places or things - there is no \"Muslim\" religion - their religion is called Islam - Muslim people, food, clothing are not mentioned by me in this thread for religious purposes but rather easy identification as there is simply no more efficient way to get these ideas across.

If I were to say  \"I was wearing a white Muslim cap on my head\" many people can easily visualize that - however if I did not use that word it would take countless words just to identify each person, place, thing I will refer to in these writings. It is used for identification and not religion in this context.
Some have asked why would I venture into an area that is known to be dangerous.I do believe that even the US Embassy posted a warning to Americans not to travel to that area!

Well… I decided that I had no choice but to go there after a little misunderstanding with one of the natives of the ARMM region. As I mentioned in previous writings people from the ARMM region tend to view anyone who is not from their territory as an outsider. They have divisions and social lines within their own society that are not to be crossed unless certain penalties are addressed. That’s within their own reign… so a person from the ‘other’ place…. Really stands no chance of mingling or blending in.

I posted some time last year that my utility meter had exploded in a storm and the local power company (Meralco) did not have any stock of meters to replace my dead unit. That ended up costing me a lot of money by staying in hotels for about a month and even more money getting the required permits and approvals to order a new electricity meter box and have my house approved as safe for installation! After about 2 weeks of running back and forth to permit offices and utility companies I was given a list of non-regulation items that needed to be corrected before they submit even a request to order a replacement meter (that was also out of stock at their warehouse). I hired a worker and began making the required adjustments to my house. Apparently the main line from meter to house had a splice at ground level and that’s what caused the original explosion – now I was tasked with laying a new main line and bringing it up to par.

Several hours into my work we had unexpected visitors from the ARMM region (my wife was actually born there but raised in Manila, but we will hear more of that story in a later installment) . Everyone I had met was informed to always text me first before visiting so I can fit them into my schedule and that day was a prime example of why I make such requests to everyone – even biological family. They informed me that they have just arrived and wanted to visit us for awhile and I kindly informed them that they should have send me a SMS message first so I can tell them we are busy on that day. I don’t think they fully understood the impact of a “westerner” not having electricity as some of them do not have electricity in their homes and it’s merely a luxury so in their minds I was simply being rude. You can compare it to a guest coming over for dinner and you telling them that they have to leave without eating because the food is too cold to eat. That is how they saw my weeks with no electricity and being stuck in the middle of a repair with an in$pector on his way to give me a “yes” or “no” decision.

Dripping with sweat, wearing just shorts and sandals I climbed down from the utility pole and informed them that I will contact them in a few days when I have fixed the problem. Well – that did not suit their needs and they began cursing in their native dialect and left.

Apparently they told everybody and his brother that I was rude and disrespected them and from then on every vendor in open markets looked at me all shifty-eyed. Most of them are related and they ALL stick together. Not really much I could do. When I telephoned the few people inside the ARMM region I knew personally they also informed me that so and so was waiting for me to arrive to “box me”. Im young, 6’ and 90kilos so not too many people would offer to “box” me Manny Paquiao style… So I got the idea…

I basically just ignored it until I started getting hit up for money. Basically the story went that if I contributed a little they would tell the others that I am a nice guy and all would be well. Actually that COULD have worked, but they never told anyone the 2 or 3 times I donated between P3k and P6k to this ‘cause’.  Word spread like wildfire and soon my wife was too shy to go near ANY vendor in most markets that I frequented (Electronics, DVD’s, textiles) as most have relatives from the ARMM region and almost every one is a 2nd or 3rd cousin of another. I realized there was absolutely nothing I could do but go to the source and personally address the issue with their “tribal leaders”. That is exactly what I did, and this is the story.

If you fight one – you must fight them all – and you will never win. I decided to contact some of the people I knew in that region and inform them I wanted to have a public hearing to clear my name and show that I am not a rude or unaccommodating intruder. Their laws are different in that region and they adhere closely to texts we “westerners” read about in history books. Their laws can be likened to the ancient texts of Hammurabi (Leader of Babylon, which was located between the Persian gulf and Israel). This Hammurabi code of 1790 BC is part of what helped shape western civilization today. Modern civilizations simply numbered each of their laws, rules and torts and gave tem names such as a “penal code”. The original text includes rules such as “If anyone ensnares another, putting a ban upon him, but he cannot prove it, then he that ensnared him shall be put to death”. Even as it is very similar in some aspects to the code of Hammurabi the actual code followed by the ARMM region is actually called “Sharia Law”.



Can you imagine how many “westerners” have successfully gone inside the ARMM region to file a case with ARMM leaders against an ARMM citizen? If you can count to zero then you are probably correct. That however is simply my guess.

I arrived at the Cagayan De Oro airport with my wife and son and was met by my driver. A little chika chika and a few hours later we were getting close to the mountain retreat that is the heart of ARMM territory. Amazingly I counted at least SIX armed military checkpoints on the way into the ARMM parent city of Marawi. Each one of these military checkpoints visually inspected the vehicle and twice the contents of the vehicle were casually looked over. They were looking for something and fortunately we did not have that ‘thing’ they are there for.



The Military knows EVERYTHING that goes in or out of that place. That was the setup for my adjusting to the “rebels” I would soon meet.

I have heard about this city where women are fined P500 or so for not wearing proper head covering in public at all times and I decided to wear a nice traditional Muslim suit in order to blend in. I unknowingly overdressed for the area and ended up standing out just a little bit more than I desired upon arrival. I did not realize that until a few people asked my wife if I was a Sultan of a nearby province. I guess its better to overdress than to be asked if I was a mere squatter… I also wore the hat on the photo ALIF and AMER have - apparently you must have a certain status to wear the type I was wearing. And coincidentally it was given to me last year by a Sultan(he took it off his head and gave it to me when I admired it - would have been an insult to not accept) - so that explains it.





-----------TO BE CONTINUED -----------

(few days or a week or so – after I get some rest and lose this fever that I get when I have too many things to do – back to scrabble for awhile…)

NOTE: Almost every photo taken in public had to be done in secret. No quicker way to be identified as an outsider than to take photos of things locals see everyday !  Running from a mob would probably follow   :P
I have seen so much conflict while in the Philippines - amazingly 99% of it was merely online computer experiences :D

Offline Bill

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 ???  and the end of the story is....???

Offline dylanaz

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???  and the end of the story is....???

I was really hoping someone else who spent time there would finish it - then I could just be an innocent bystander  :P
I have seen so much conflict while in the Philippines - amazingly 99% of it was merely online computer experiences :D

Offline c_a_p_t_a_i_n_r_o_n

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???  and the end of the story is....???

I was really hoping someone else who spent time there would finish it - then I could just be an innocent bystander  :P

But that would be their experience NOT yours and NOT what you saw......

Offline Lucky_Ray

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wow --that is scary stuff.  I can\'t wait to hear more.  \'Cause that\'s the ONLY way I\'ll learn about anything that far South.

Offline tom.inbigdtexas

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???  and the end of the story is....???

I was really hoping someone else who spent time there would finish it - then I could just be an innocent bystander  :P

Dylan, I feel your pain... and having a little extra time... I\'ll see if I can help you out.

My plan is to find a good spy novel... rip off the last few chapters and insert your name, Mindanao places, etc., in place of those used in the book.  Perhaps this Daniel Silva novel, \"The Kill Artist,\" will work:

\"Former Israeli intelligence operative Gabriel Allon is drawn back into the game to take on a cunning terrorist on one last killing spree, a Palestinian zealot who played a dark part in Gabriel\'s past. And what begins as a manhunt turns into a globe-spanning duel fueled by both political intrigue and deep personal passions...\"

I\'ll send you the initial galleys for your edits before I set up my final typesetting (yes, being techtarded I will be doing this on the old hand-operated offset printer down in my dungeon) for the final printing. 

If this is well received on the Forum - we\'ll probably want to seek out a publisher, so we\'ll need a name... maybe something that will [strike]steal [/strike]... invoke memories of other best sellers... maybe \"The (non)Occidental Tourist,\" or \"CDO Royale.\"

I\'ll proceed as set out above unless I hear further from you (a polite \"no thank you\" will suffice - no need for profanity). ;D

Tom in Big D
Dallas, Tx, USA
Mactan, Cebu, PH

Offline mikek1

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What is ARRM ? When are you going to complete this riveting story?

Offline GregW

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What is ARRM ? When are you going to complete this riveting story?

Mike, it\'s ARMM not ARRM.  It stands for Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao.

Ako si Goyo.   Amerikano akong lawas pero Bisaya akong kasing-kasing

Offline dylanaz

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My plan is to find a good spy novel... rip off the last few chapters and insert your name, Mindanao places, etc., in place of those used in the book.  Perhaps this Daniel Silva novel, \"The Kill Artist,\" will work:

Nice idea ! Like Zohan retires to the Philippines !

hehe
I have seen so much conflict while in the Philippines - amazingly 99% of it was merely online computer experiences :D

Offline tom.inbigdtexas

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My plan is to find a good spy novel... rip off the last few chapters and insert your name, Mindanao places, etc., in place of those used in the book.  Perhaps this Daniel Silva novel, \"The Kill Artist,\" will work:

Nice idea ! Like Zohan retires to the Philippines !

hehe

Great idea (you really do have good business sense)... if we pick up a movie deal for the book... this title will already have a good box office following built right in.

If Sandler and Chriqui are not available... maybe we can cast Brad and Angelina. ;D

And... to stay on topic for this thread... Eureka Moment ---- we can cast all our Filipino family members as extras at union scale and drastically reduce the need for family assistance... (this may save your marriage, or at least save you from family retribution ;D).

Tom in Big D
Dallas, Tx, USA
Mactan, Cebu, PH

 


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