“Terror Suspect Details Training, Plots,” from ABC News, with thanks to Nicolei:
MANILA, Philippines – A terror suspect on Wednesday said the southern Philippines has become a major training ground for regional terror group Jemaah Islamiyah graduating 23 bomb experts just days ago and a refuge for Indonesians involved in major attacks, including the 2002 Bali nightclub bombings.
Rohmat, arrested last week as an alleged Jemaah Islamiyah operative in the Philippines, told The Associated Press that he had trained new recruits of the al-Qaida-linked Abu Sayyaf group and said its leaders were plotting more bombings and kidnappings.
Details provided by the 26-year-old Indonesian martial arts expert showed a close but highly compartmentalized relationship between two of the most dangerous groups in Southeast Asia and partly explained why the threat of terrorism has persisted despite years of crackdown.
Rohmat, who only goes by one name, said 23 Indonesian recruits had just finished jungle training including lessons in explosives, weapons, combat and Islam when he left a Jemaah Islamiyah camp called Jabal Qubah in southern Mindanao island shortly before being arrested at a military checkpoint….
Now that’s religious training: “Explosives, weapons, combat and Islam.” Just doesn’t have the same ring as “Scripture, theology, morals”…
Rohmat said he joined Jemaah Islamiyah knowing it fostered “pure Islamic teachings” but it was too late when he learned that the group advocated a type of violence that he disagreed with because it victimized innocent people.
Yeah, yeah, Rohmat, tell it to the judge.
Rohmat said he was present in a meeting when Janjalani and Sulaiman plotted the Feb. 14 bombings that killed eight people and injured more than 100 others in Manila and two southern cities.
The two leaders also gave orders for new major bombings in Manila and one of two southern cities, probably Davao, during the Easter holiday, he said.
Hey, didn’t you fellows learn in your Islamic studies that the Qur’an has unparalleled respect for other religious traditions? Can we get Reza Aslan and Ibrahim Hooper over to Manila to teach these guys about Islam?