The worst typhoon in 40 years overwhelmed government disaster relief capabilities. The U.S. sent some of the 600 special operations troops, in the south to help with counter-terror operations, to assist with storm relief in the north. Abu Sayyaf is still active in the south, but with weaker and weaker attacks. The Islamic terrorists in the region (Philippines, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia) have been taking heavy losses in the last year, and in many areas are down to a small hard core, who have scant resources. Small, but dangerous.
October 7, 2009: On Basilan, an Abu Sayyaf bomb wounded two civilians. On nearby Jolo, Abu Sayyaf fired a mortar shell at an air field used by Filipino and American troops. There was no damage or injuries.
October 1, 2009: Two major typhoons in a week left northern Philippines a wreck, with 300 dead and over three million with flooded homes. There has been billions of dollars of damage to private and public property. Even the terrorist and rebel groups were distracted for a while.
September 30, 2009: On Jolo, a clash left three Abu Sayyaf terrorists and one soldier dead.
September 29, 2009: Two U.S. soldiers and a Filipino marine were killed when their vehicle hit an Abu Sayyaf land mine on Jolo. About 20 kilometers away, the Islamic terrorists set off a bomb near a police station, causing no casualties.