I remember Filipinos expressed disbelief that their former colonial master and global superpower the United States could be so vulnerable to terrorist attacks. They also became worried that another attack could seriously affect the situation of the 60,000 Filipinos residing in New York, as well as the more than three million Filipino-Americans who have their home in the US.
The panic which swept the globe after 9/11 reverberated in the Philippines through the establishing of terrorist cells in the southern part of the country, where a separatist movement has existed for several decades. Unknown to many people outside the country, the Philippines effectively became the second front in the US-led ‘war on terrorism.’
To prevent any terror attacks similar to 9/11, the Philippine government welcomed the return of US troops on Philippine soil, where they conducted regular military exercises and war games with Filipino soldiers.
It has been just one of many reminders that although the 9/11 terrorist attacks were aimed at the United States, their impact has continued to shake and shape the entire world.
Mong Palatino is a lawmaker in the Philippine parliament
Photo: Flickr / niXerKG