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US ARMMs in Mindanao DIE HARD III Herman Tiu Laurel 06/10/2011

Friday, June 10, 2011

US ARMMs in Mindanao

DIE HARD III
Herman Tiu Laurel
06/10/2011
Most people believe the Senate was arm-twisted by Malacañang into approving the resolution postponing the forthcoming elections in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM). Malacañang clearly sent out its gofers to crawl into the Senate to undercut the prevalent sentiment opposed to it — prevalent because of how unpopular the suspiciously arbitrary Palace action is with the people of ARMM and the entire nation.

A majority of senators are aware of how iffy the issue’s legality is if brought before the Supreme Court (SC). Yet, the alluring promises of Malacañang proved too hard to resist, especially for those up for reelection in the 2013 midterm polls. If the SC throws it out eventually, and there’s a very high chance that it will, those pro-postponement senators would have simply gotten the good will of the Palace (for whatever reason) before getting off the hook — sort of like having their cake and eating it, too.

My personal expectation of an anti-postponement Senate stand, contrary to the vote that came out, is shared by many other people. One Senate Web site, quoting a major newspaper’s report, in fact, narrated that “a local leader in Maguindanao has warned that those opposed to holding the ARMM elections on Aug. 8 might resort to ‘desperate measures,’ as he welcomed the intensified police and military efforts at keeping the peace in the region… (adding that) ‘With many senators opposing the two bills proposing the postponement of the ARMM election, there may be a sinister effort to paint a picture of lawlessness in the ARMM to force the postponement on imagined security concerns.’”

It seems that “sinister effort” wasn’t even needed as the senators already had a change of heart owing to the added promises and pressures from Malacañang.

Proponents of the ARMM polls postponement have failed miserably in making their case. Two reasons often cited are the “failure” of the ARMM experiment and the need to reform it. To wit, they cite as precedents two previous ARMM poll postponements, which former Comelec Commissioner Mehol Sadain nonetheless debunked in a position paper citing the need for the ARMM electorate to first ratify any act of deferment.

From both the practical and the socio-economic perspectives, there is absolutely no doubt that the ARMM electorate will not approve of this. One doesn’t even have to engage in a debate as elections are one of the most cherished and meaningful (read: profitable) public events for Filipinos, equal to or even more significant than local fiestas — more so in the ARMM. The insistence of Malacañang to have this very unpopular move of holding the ARMM polls in abeyance is hurting instead of endearing it to the public. So why?

Former Quezon City Mayor Jun Simon has a deeper view of this drama. Currently busy in the region’s electoral campaign, he says this is all a US operation, with BS Aquino III obliging as the point man. The US’ reason for this, Simon explains, is that elected ARMM leaders pose a problem for the approval of the Memorandum of Agreement on Ancestral Domain (MoA-AD).

It is well known that the current ARMM politicians are rivals to the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) for leadership of the Muslim communities in Mindanao. Aside from elected ARMM leaders having both the political mandate and ascendancy to assert their independence in defending their turf as participants in the sovereign Republic of the Philippines, the US knows that with appointed ARMM officials beholden to the appointing powers sitting as governors of the region, it, through the BSA III government, will wield tremendous power and leverage.

Past attempts at railroading the US-backed MoA-AD, such as the aborted 2008 signing in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, proved futile as elected officials of the ARMM as well as of other areas in Mindanao set to be covered by the US-MILF plan were instrumental in leading timely objections and exposés. When they brought it up to the high court, for instance, they were successful in having the MoA-AD declared “contrary to law and the Constitution.”

There is no doubt that in the high court magistrates’ many critical decisions, they have considered political implications aside from the strictly legal issues. But no matter how decrepit some of their past decisions were, in this particular instance, the SC took the patriotic road in upholding the nation’s territorial integrity. Let’s hope that it will keep this spirit alive if and when it has to decide on the issue at hand.

In the end, all of BSA III’s perceived “political capital” gambled into this postponement game may just be wiped out entirely.

BSA III has been doing everything according to the US Embassy and the Foreign Chambers of Commerce’s globalist and neoliberal agenda — from the PPP (public-private partnership) projects to the recent step-up of his anti-China rhetoric over the South China Sea disputes. His role in this extant charade is one that is cut out for him by US Ambassador Harry Thomas ever since the latter took the haughty undiplomatic step of congratulating him for his “victory” in 2010 way before Congress declared the official winner.

The MILF, too, pines to become the ARMM of the US, as evinced by a 2003 Hashim Salamat letter to George W. Bush. Its leaders are perhaps styling themselves to become future royal families, like those in the Emirates, to get a chunk of the vast economic riches of the country’s Southern borders — all at the expense of the vast majority of Filipinos who stand to lose much of their historically and politically-mandated prime territories and vast resources to these schemers and their imperialistic puppet masters.

(Tune in to Radyo OpinYon, Monday to Friday, 5 to 6 p.m., and Sulo ng Pilipino, Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, 6 to 7 p.m. on 1098AM; Talk News TV with HTL, Tuesday, 8 to 9 p.m., with replay at 11 p.m., on GNN, Destiny Cable Channel 8; visit http://newkatipunero.blogspot.com and http://hermantiulaurel.blogspot.com for our articles plus TV and radio archives)
(Reprinted with permission from Mr. Herman Tiu-Laurel)

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20110610com6.html

No penalties for Noy’s buddies FRONTLINE Ninez Cacho-Olivares 06/10/2011

No penalties for Noy’s buddies

FRONTLINE
Ninez Cacho-Olivares
06/10/2011
Now, it’s officially reconfirmed. Noynoy does protect his buddies from being sanctioned and held accountable and responsible for their actions — something that Noynoy keeps on denying despite the many times and instances such conduct has been proved.

The Justice secretary yesterday was quoted as having said that there is nothing more she can do in the case involving Land Transportation Office (LTO) Chief Virginia Torres, another known target range shooting buddy of Noynoy, since Torres’ fate is now all up to Noynoy.

Department of Justice (DoJ) Secretary Leila de Lima, it will be recalled, ordered a probe into the illegal raid of Stradcom offices by a faction of Stradcom, along with the LTO, led by Torres. The raid was caught on video.

There was never a release of the findings of the DoJ probe on this case, but apparently, there was such a probe conducted and its findings were submitted to Noynoy..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20110610com2.html

The crucifixion of De Jesus EDITORIAL 06/10/2011

The crucifixion of De Jesus

EDITORIAL
Click to enlarge
06/10/2011
There were a lot of unsettling issues that the recent resignation of Transportation and Communications Secretary Ping de Jesus brought to fore and the different versions being brought out on it made for understanding the reason behind De Jesus actually throwing in the towel on Noynoy more complicated.

One of these versions was from an owner of a daily newspaper who suddenly came out with a by-lined article quoting sources within Malacañang that costly projects under the Department of Transportation and Communications (DoTC) which were the Radar Control System, Mass Rail Transit (MRT) maintenance and privatization, Stradcom’s interconnectivity agreement with Land Transportation Office and its P1.2-billion claim against the government and collaterally the fate of LTO Chief Virgie Torres, were the crux behind the controversial resignation..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20110610com1.html

Last-minute doubts cloud Afghan transition focus 06/10/2011

Last-minute doubts cloud Afghan transition

focus

06/10/2011
KABUL — Worrying questions hang over a plan to start switching from Nato to local control in Afghanistan, just weeks before the process is due to start in key cities, officials and experts say.

Exact dates for when the first seven areas will transition are still unclear, a conference on the issue has been postponed twice and the United States has yet to decide how many American troops are leaving this summer.

Neither do outspoken Afghan politicians believe local security forces are sufficiently prepared for the switch amid fears that the Taliban will target the relatively peaceful areas involved.

President Hamid Karzai announced in March that the first wave of transition, in cities such as Mazar-i-Sharif, Herat and Lashkar Gah, would happen during the Afghan solar month from June 22 to July 22..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20110610com3.html

Home again NO HOLDS BARRED Armida Siguion-Reyna 06/10/2011

Home again

NO HOLDS BARRED
Armida Siguion-Reyna
06/10/2011
Aawitan Kita sa Makati goes on at 6 this evening, at the University of Makati’s 6th floor auditorium. A program sponsored by the Office of the Mayor for the city’s senior citizens, admission is free, so go and watch an operetta on various stories to do with falling in and out of love, featuring performers Bimbo Cerrudo, Cris Villonco, Bayang Barrios, Miguel Castro, Bangge Mabanta, Raul Montesa, Milay Guinid, Joel Villaflor and this writer, directed by Carlos Siguion-Reyna.

Back home and working so soon? You bet. If there’s anything that last month’s road tour of Aawitan Kita sa Amerika taught everyone in the group, this Lola included, it’s that life goes on and schedules are met, jet lag is no excuse.

It was this work ethic that threw us off-kilter when we landed at the Centennial Airport last Wednesday, via PAL PR 105, which landed at 3:45 a.m. I was on a wheelchair, so my two daughters-in-law who were with me swept past the lone immigration personnel faster than you could say bulaga. Others weren’t so lucky.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20110610com4.html

On Libingan, ARMM, atbp. C.R.O.S.S.R.O.A.D.S Jonathan De la Cruz 06/10/2011

On Libingan, ARMM, atbp.

C.R.O.S.S.R.O.A.D.S
Jonathan De la Cruz
06/10/2011
Now that Congress has passed the bill postponing the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) elections it is hoped that presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda will stop mingling that issue with the long debated burial of former President Marcos at the Libingan ng mga Bayani. There was no point interjecting that in the heat of the ARMM debates. There is no point doing so again as the battle crosses over to the Supreme Court (SC). In fact, there is no point for Malacañang bringing up the Marcos burial issue at all anytime it catches its fancy. This issue has been debated to the bone. It is time for the Palace to take a stand and bring it to a close. If the Palace boys are really so heated up about this matter they should simply advise P-Noy, if he is so minded, to just implement AFP Regulation No. 161-375 issued by then AFP Chief Fidel Ramos and approved by the late President Cory Aquino, listing down those qualified to be interred at the Libingan as well as the disqualifications. That regulation is in place up to this day and includes former presidents, DND secretaries and other military officers as well as Medal of Valor awardees, among others, as among those so qualified.
.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20110610com5.html

Noy rebuffs DoJ chief anew, won’t dismiss LTO’s Torres By Benjamin B. Pulta and Aytch S. de la Cruz 06/10/2011

PALACE, ALLIES CLOSE RANKS VS PROBE ON AQUINO’S KAIBIGAN, KAKLASE, KABARILAN

Noy rebuffs DoJ chief anew, won’t dismiss LTO’s Torres

By Benjamin B. Pulta and Aytch S. de la Cruz 06/10/2011

As long as the official belongs to President Aquino’s “KKK” which now stands for Kaibigan (crony), Kaklase (classmate) and Kabarilan (target range shooting buddy) grouping, that individual is safe from any administrative sanction and dismissal, even when recommended by a probe body, as he is publicly perceived as Aquino’s “protected specie.”

Malacañang and its allies yesterday went ballistic over the House minority bloc’s move to probe Aquino’s KKK and closed ranks against the opposition’s planned resolution calling for the investigation, calling it a “fishing expedition.”

But Aquino’s protective stance when it comes to his KKK group, was again proved yesterday..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20110610hed1.html

Jonas Burgos’ mom files raps vs generals, officers By Benjamin B. Pulta 06/10/2011

Jonas Burgos’ mom files raps vs generals, officers

By Benjamin B. Pulta 06/10/2011

Seven police and military officers, including four retired generals, have been slapped with criminal cases before the Department of Justice (DoJ) by Edita Burgos, mother of missing activist Jonas Burgos who was abducted in Quezon City four years ago.

Charges of arbitrary detention were filed by Mrs. Burgos.

In her 15-page affidavit-complaint, Mrs. Burgos accused respondents Maj. Harry Baliaga Jr., Lt. Col. Melquiades- Feliciano and Col. Eduardo Ano of arbitrary detention.

She also accused former Armed Forces Chief of Staff Hermogenes Esperon, former Army chief Gen. Romeo Tolentino, his successor, Lt. Gen. Alexander Yano and former Philippine National Police chief Gen. Avelino Razon, of lying to her and to the public by formulating a story that the New People’s Army (NPA) was behind the abduction of her son cover-up for the wrongdoings of their men..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20110610hed5.html

BI creates new unit to run after fugitives hiding in RP By Conrado Ching 06/10/2011

BI creates new unit to run after fugitives hiding in RP

By Conrado Ching 06/10/2011

In an effort to erase the image of the Philippines as “haven” for foreign fugitives, the Bureau of Immigration (BI) has created a new unit that will run after aliens hiding in the country.

Immigration Commissioner Ricardo David Jr. said he approved the establishment of a fugitive search unit (FSU) in the bureau to replace the BI Interpol Unit.

The FSU is headed by seasoned BI intelligence officer Uso Dan Salasim who previously held the positions as intelligence chief in Region IX and in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM). He will be complemented by a pool of intelligence operatives..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/metro/20110610met1.html

Dead and missing casualties of ‘Dodong’ By Mario J. Mallari 06/10/2011

Dead and missing casualties of ‘Dodong’

By Mario J. Mallari 06/10/2011

Continued rains brought about by tropical depression “Dodong” havealready resulted in the killing of a 56-year-old woman while a 10-year-old was reported missing, reports from the National Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (NDRRMC) said yesterday.

The NDRRMC identified the first fatality as Alejandra Mortel, a resident of Sitio Kabangan, Barangay Carmen in San Agustin town, Romblon, who died of drowning.

Reported missing was Mark Daniel Ken Mateo, a Grade V student in Batangas City who went missing since Wednesday..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/nation/20110610nat1.html

NPC to file charges vs governor who smashed radio man’s mouth with mike 06/10/2011

NPC to file charges vs governor who smashed radio man’s mouth with mike

06/10/2011
The conscience of the Liberty of the Press is revolting over the act of Kalinga Gov. Jocel Baac in smashing a microphone on the mouth of radio commentator Jerome Tabanganay while the latter was wrapping up his “Agenda on Tuesday” radio program inside the studio booth of dzRK.

In defense of the freedom of the press and of expression which is among the purposes of its creation, the National Press Club (NPC) will file administrative, civil and criminal cases against the governor to serve the public good that this act should not be repeated by any high official of the government.

The NPC will file a complaint for administrative violations against Baac for conduct prejudicial to the best interest of the service and for oppression, both punishable with dismissal from the service.
faction under Article 32 of the Civil Code of the Philippines that calls for free exercise of the press..... MORE
SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/metro/20110610met3.html

Makati logo for ‘G7 Smoke-Free Advocacy’ adjudged winner in contest 06/10/2011

Makati logo for ‘G7 Smoke-Free Advocacy’ adjudged winner in contest

06/10/2011
The City of Makati has copped another victory in its crusade for smoke-free air after its entry was selected as the official logo of the G7 smoke-free advocacy by the officials of the University of the Philippines College of Law Development Foundation (UPCLDF) yesterday during a meeting at the UP College of Law in Diliman, Quezon City.

Makati Mayor Jejomar Erwin Binay thanked the UPCLDF for considering the city’s entry as the best logo to represent the G7’s unified and synchronized advocacy for a “smoke-free Metro Manila” that is envisioned to ultimately promote a “smoke-free Philippines.”

“This latest recognition serves to motivate us further to intensify our efforts to help bring about a ‘smoke-free metropolis’ and eventually a ‘smoke-free nation,’” Binay said..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/metro/20110610met5.html

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