Sabah Under Attack >>>

Why Malaysia supported Moro Muslim rebels in 70s and 80s?

jabidah massacre merdeka

Many BN haters conveniently blamed Malaysian government for helping Moro rebels in 70s and 80s which have bitten back Malaysia.

I opined Malaysia had sponsored and supported Moro Muslim rebels in 70s and 80s as an eye to an eye to a covert war planned by Marcos besides the Muslim brotherhood link with the Suluk.

Anyway, these rebels are a new threat to Sabah security.

Project IC to wrest control the state government from PBS is the main cause for the terrorism in Sabah by the Sulu Sultan’s followers.

Jabidah: The Pinoy fighters trained in the 1960s to ‘reclaim’ Sabah

An elite group of fighters were secretly trained in different parts of the Philippines in the 1970s [should be 1960s] with only one mission in mind – to reclaim Sabah from Malaysia.

They were called the Jabidah, a contingent of Moro fighters from Sulu, Basilan, and Tawi-Tawi who were trained in Manila, Corregidor, and Fort Magsaysay in Nueva Ecija.

The mission failed, ending in the Jabidah Massacre or Corregidor Massacre on March 18, 1968, nearly 45 years ago.

According to a report of the news site Pinoy Weekly, the Jabidah Massacre “refers to the massacre of a number of young Moro recruits from Sulu and Tawi-Tawi, with estimates ranging from 28 to more than 200, by their military handlers in the island of Corregidor.”

The report said the infamous massacre “triggered the Muslim uprising in recent time and reawakened their quest for self-determination.”

Jabidah members from Tawi-Tawi

Meanwhile, on “State of the Nation,” reporter Ian Cruz said Major Eduardo Matelino led the training of roughly 200 Jabidah members in Camp Sophia, Siminul, Tawi-Tawi.

Two of the men Martelino trained were Hadji Abdul Hakim Akbar and George Usman.

They were not part of the Jabidah contingent who were massacred in Corregidor in 1968.

Returning to the Sophia camp site for the first time since their training in 1967, Hadji recalled that the two-hectare camp had a simple layout, with most of the structures being Jabidah barracks. A water well was located in the center of the camp.

Today, the camp is overgrown and the well where the fighters used to get their water from is now empty, forgotten, and covered in rubble.

Usman and Akbar said they first thought that they joined a training camp to become members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines.

However, they found out later that what they joined was actually a military operation to reclaim Sabah with the codename: Operation Merdeka.

Luckily for them, their group managed to return to Tawi-tawi without the operation commencing.

When asked what they would do if they were sent to Sabah to commence operation Merdeka, Akbar replied, “Hindi kami papayag. Bakit kami kailangan pumunta doon? Gusto namin mag army kami. Hindi namin gusto pumunta doon.”

Extensive training

Usman recounted how the former Jabidah recruits were trained extensively.

“Jogging lang every morning,” Usman recalled.

He said they were made to do rounds of laps in the area and when they returned did gun firing exercises.

Mike Maduas who was nine years old during the establishment of Camp Sophia recalled seeing the Jabidah fighters in training.

“Every morning nagjojogging sila from this camp papuntang mga barangay. Ang aga pa naririnig ninyong nagsasabi silang Jabidah – ha – ha [while jogging],” Maduas recalled.

Camp Sophia was said to be named after the girl that Col. Martelino fell in love with in Simunul – Sophia Mirkusin, who was at the time a hird year high school student.

In Muslim, Sophia means “stunningly beautiful woman.”

The two eventually got married and a few months after their marriage, Martelino left for Jabidah training in Luzon and never returned.

Shadhana Mirkusin, the daughter of Sophia with another man, said in an interview with Cruz that Martelino never got in touch with her mother again.

“Wala ng tawag, wala namang sulat,” Shadhana said.

“Hindi din siya nagkwento sa akin kung bakit umalis na si Martelino. Hindi na siya binalikan,” she continued.

Lone survivor

Meanwhile, the lone survivor of the massacre in Corregidor was Jibin Arula, who became an instant celebrity after escaping from a hail of bullets.

The MindaNews site reported that Arula “died in a vehicular accident in Trece Martires, Cavite, sometime in August or September (2010)” but his death was made known only a year later.

Pinoy Weekly cited how Arula, who was from Siasi, Sulu managed to tell about the massacre, triggering a Senate probe.

The late Senator Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino Jr., father of the incumbent President Benigno Simeon Aquino III, even delivered a privilege speech, denouncing the massacre of the Moro trainees.

Arula had claimed that the plotters led the Jabidah trainees out of their Corregidor barracks and taken to a nearby airport, where “the military mostly from the Philippine Army mowed the trainees down with gunfire, according to Arula,” the Pinoy Weekly report said.

Arula said when he saw his fellow Jabidah trainees fall, he ran toward a mountain and rolled down until he reached the sea. He clung onto a plank of wood until a fisherman rescued him the following day. – Andrei Medina, Veronica Pulumbarit, GMA News

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