Saturday, February 25, 2006

Discussing Terrorism in Mindanao

I missed the “political action” last Friday in Manila, because at the time the president proclaimed the state of emergency, I was in Cagayan de Oro to present a paper on “Terrorism as Political Ideology” at the first Mindanao-wide conference of the “Professional Criminologists’ Association of the Philippines” (PCAP). I enjoyed that meeting and the discussions with the criminologists. They are a highly specialized and also sophisticated professional group who I rarely have a chance to get together with.

Terrorism, as is well known, has many dimensions. To listen to criminologists from an area with a home grown terrorist problem discuss this issue, I found both intellectually stimulating and enlightening.

My own contribution, which to my delight was well received by an audience of over 300, was an overview of terrorism as an ideology including remarks on possible strategies to confront the terrorist challenge. Regular readers will not be surprised to hear that I included liberal concerns and considerations regarding this important debate. Among others, I emphasized:

“From a liberal viewpoint, we should never sacrifice or infringe on human rights, for if we do that, we would hand victory to the terrorists and the enemies of freedom.”

I have posted the full text of “Terrorism as Political Ideology” on my Foundation’s homepage.

At the conference, it was hard to oversee that a fellow liberal is the driving force of PCAP. Gerry Cano is the Executive Secretary of PCAP and also a key figure in an ongoing effort to strengthen the network of Young Liberals in Southern Philippines.


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Blogger makdom said...

You are right terrorism has many dimensions.

1:55 AM  

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