Saturday, November 25, 2006

The Man Who Beheaded Guillermo Sobrero

American Guillermo Sobrero's possible killer, a man who may have also been involved in the abduction of missionaries Tim and Gracia Burnham has been caught by the Philippine military. Bob in Mindanao has the scoop. The AP reports that after the the Abu Sayyaf member, Annik Abbas was presented to the press, questions were asked about the bruises on his face. "Asked if soldiers had beaten him, Abbas nodded to reporters, but Basilan army commander Col. Reynald Ronnie Javier said Abbas was injured when he fell off a motorcycle while trying to evade the roadblock."


The Abu Sayyaf released this statement after they had beheaded Sobrero:

Sobero’s execution was announced by Abu Sayyaf spokesperson Abu Sabaya two weeks after the abduction. “We have beheaded Sobero as a gift to the country on Independence Day,” Sabaya told a local radio station then. Sobero’s body was found about three weeks later, also in Basilan.

Commentary

Now I've personally been on motorcycles in those backroads in Mindanao, usually on pillon behind some farmer and I have to tell you that there are numerous ruts, wash-outs and jutting boulders that make it very dificult to ride. But strange to relate, I've never had the unfortunate experience of falling off one of them there motorcycles, even the ones that have a board slung across them with three people balanced on either side, the "Skylab" of unlamented notoriety used as transport by those with scant regard for their own safety. Abbas must have been unlucky.

11 Comments:

Blogger 3Case said...

Evidently, they got a lotta left-handed soldiers in the Philipines.

11/25/2006 04:20:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you ever want an E-ticket ride, just get on a Victory Liner bus and go for a ride through Pampanga or something. Four lanes of traffic using 2 lanes of road, jeepneys, tricycles, other buses, and the ubiquitous VW bugs, all passing each other with close shaves literally every twenty seconds, enough insanity to turn even California drivers into confirmed pedestrians for life.

11/25/2006 04:37:00 PM  
Blogger Marcus Aurelius said...

May mga bruise siya'e, perro mayroon pa ang ulo niya.

He may have bruises, but he still has his head.

WC, Hehehe

Hey, you can get up to Pampanga real quick now. Once we got out of Manila it was less than an hour to Mexico City. I did not drive at all but I was felt like I was getting a feel for the mindset. However, one night on the way back there must have been an accident the traffic on NLF (Northern Luzon Freeway) and we diverted off of the freeway and it was real slow going.

Anyway onto Annek's arrest. Yeah he has his head yet and most likely will get put into prison and at worst engineeer another breakout and best get killed trying to breakout, kinda like Global, Robot and what's his face a year or two ago.

11/25/2006 06:55:00 PM  
Blogger wretchard said...

There was an article some time back, I think it was from a British journalist, who interviewed director of the police morgue in Zamboanga City, who said there were headless bodies all over the place. Well he was exaggerating. It was only in the about a hundred plus, as I recall.

But the level of violence in the Third World even in ordinary times is somewhat shocking to visitors. But one thing that goes unnoticed is that the locals, in consequence, develop their own little "ways" of doing things. And they keep doing them until the US gets involved, with the international press hot on their trail. With the arrival of the press comes the "discovery" of formerly routine violence that had flown under the radar. And suddenly the Basilan cop discovers the existence of the Miranda Warning, of which he was formerly blissfully unaware.

I have no doubt that a visible American presence would inevitably be accompanied by many headshaking journalists waxing outraged over "heads all over the place" and brutal Filipino cops, little realizing that it is baked into the scenery. In one of Eric Ambler's novels he remarks how an evening garden is actually full of vicious insect life, each preying on each. When you look out on the idyllic island paradises full of smiling faces, remember Eric Ambler.

11/25/2006 08:08:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"But the level of violence in the Third World even in ordinary times is somewhat shocking to visitors. But one thing that goes unnoticed is that the locals, in consequence, develop their own little "ways" of doing things. And they keep doing them until the US gets involved, with the international press hot on their trail. With the arrival of the press comes the "discovery" of formerly routine violence that had flown under the radar. And suddenly the Basilan cop discovers the existence of the Miranda Warning, of which he was formerly blissfully unaware."

That Third World/Basilan "under the radar" stuff also goes on routinely here in central Florida...But I guess we qualify as 3d World, too, hehehehe...

11/25/2006 09:05:00 PM  
Blogger NahnCee said...

I'm always a little stunned at how banal these crazed maniacs end up looking. This guy and the guy who cut off Daniel Pearl's head, Mullah Omar in Afghanistan.

Zarqawi looked evil, so that was good, and so did Mohammad Atta ... but so many of them don't even look important enough to be pimples on the backside of humanity.

bin Laden doesn't look like a maniac, either. He looks more like an esthete or a philosopher - I could see him dying slowly on a crucifix like a tall thin Christ-figure.

11/25/2006 10:48:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Chalk one in the win column.

Wretchard, do they really call those cycles 'Skylabs'? I recall Skylab was one hell of a rough launch. The Saturn go it there, but Skylab suffered massive damage to solar panels and protective shielding. The mental image of bust-up rip-a-panel high-energy launch transport (motorcycle) is too funny not to comment on.

11/26/2006 02:01:00 AM  
Blogger wretchard said...

Tex,

They really were called "Skylabs" and the name came precisely from the space station because of the curious floating feeling a passenger experienced as he teetered on that board which slung across the pillon seat of the motorcycle. It was a totally absurd, lunatic and slightly suicidal way to travel. Therein lay the attraction.

The four wheel counterpart was the "top load" -- my favorite mode of travel in my youth in which you clambered upon a passenger bus and rode on the roof, gripping what you could. But it could be a logging truck or cargo van. In one case the truck carried crates of dried fish. On hairpin turns you got the same Skylab feeling. However, there were certain advantages to going "top load". This was where whatever armed men were along on the trip stayed, for better field of fire. (Remember now, these are memories from the rampage days of the Muslim rebels in Zamboanga). Also it was well known that the Muslim rebels would ambush passenger buses then finish off the survivors with machetes, and it was commonly thought that those in "top load", provided they survived the bursts of fire, might have a better chance leaping off and taking their chances in the woods. Better than lying wounded in some riddled passenger bus waiting for the ambushers to cut you up.

There was a certain amount of tension when the trucks reached ambush country. Nothing would be heard but the furious double-clutching of the driver as he flogged the engine. But when you got to safety, everyone began to relax and jabber. Strange to think that people can live like that, but I'll bet its like that in Darfur, Sri Lanka, the Congo and in any other hell-hole. When you're young it's fun. When you get older you really just how stupid it is.

11/26/2006 02:50:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for opening out the great Skylab story, wretchard.

Strange to think that people can live like that, but I'll bet its like that in Darfur, Sri Lanka, the Congo and in any other hell-hole.

It really is strange. But I wish every single westerner had at least a taste of such life. It's a most valuable education in the reality of the bigger world.

When you're young it's fun. When you get older you really just how stupid it is.

What's the saying, "War is the most thrilling experience of your life -- if you don't get your balls shot off."

11/26/2006 03:18:00 AM  
Blogger Boghie said...

Look at the chap’s shirt...

I think we’ll call him 'Lucky'?

Does someone have a blog that models all these chaps after being dragged out of their spider holes - or after falling off a motorcycles a few/three/four times?

Rebels are We…
Born to be Free…
Just Like the Fish in the Sea!!!

Woody Allen, ‘Bananas’

Oh, God, let us not forget the Miss America Contest in Woody Allen's 'Sleeper'. Who wins: Woody, Lucky, Digger, Sleepy, Splat, or one of the other lovely contestants?

Oh God, Dear God...

11/26/2006 12:17:00 PM  
Blogger Red A said...

Actually, having driven motorcycles in Indonesia, it is very easy to hit a patch of gravel or a rut and have a single vehicle accident.

Now, if I was a wanted man and had to make a very fast U-turn, I could see falling off the bike easily.

Just sayin'...


Also, anyone dig his shirt which is for an alcoholic beverage!

11/27/2006 01:36:00 AM  

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