Rodrigo Duterte, the President of the Phillipines, stated on Monday that he wants all U.S Special Operations forces removed from his country due to the growing threat from Abu Sayyaf, a well known extremist group who has pledged their allegiance to ISIS. While he claimed that he did not wish for a dispute with the United States over such matters, he believed that their presence would ultimately result in the kidnapping, ransom and/or death of American soldiers, a form of violence which he did not want to occur under his reign. Apparently, Duterte is misinformed about our military operators’ capabilities to defend themselves and their unique ability to train host nation services to combat extremist groups in an oft-forgotten hotbed for terrorism, Southeast Asia. Such American units often train, advise and assist in austere areas in order to develop specialized units to combat terror. It has yet to be determined whether any official moves will be made or if the comments were purely rhetoric.
By OpsLens Staff