• A Mamasapano accounting is long overdue

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    THE reaction of President BS Aquino 3rd and his ruling Liberal Party to the calls for the reopening of the Senate investigation into last year’s tragic Mamasapano Massacre is reprehensible and smacks of a criminal obstruction of justice. The Administration has already succeeded in stifling a proper investigation and accounting for the tragedy once; it must not be allowed to do so again.

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    In the weeks immediately following the slaughter of 44 police Special Action Force troopers at the hands of guerrillas from the Moro Islamic Liberation Front – the government’s supposed “partners” in the peace effort in Mindanao – and its erstwhile “breakaway” group, the BIFF, investigations were launched by the Philippine National Police and both Houses of Congress.

    But when it became obvious that Aquino, and along with him, his anointed successor, then-DILG chief and now Liberal Party presidential candidate Mar Roxas, were clearly responsible for sacrificing the SAF 44 by intentionally withholding assistance for the outnumbered and outgunned troops from nearby military forces who could have reached the scene of the battle within minutes, every inquiry into the matter was stopped. The results of the PNP investigation were tersely acknowledged and then tossed aside with no further action; the inquiry by the House of Representatives simply faded and was quickly buried by Aquino’s congressional errand boys; and the Senate inquiry, which briefly showed some promise of revealing what really happened and who was to blame for it, stopped when Senator Grace Poe-Llamanzares, who at the time still harbored pretensions of being the LP’s candidate for President, refused to submit her committee’s report to the plenary as required by Senate rules and custom.

    Save for the firing of SAF commander General Getulio Napeñas, which was rather the result of the honorable general’s accepting command responsibility for the fiasco as a true officer and gentleman than it was an official finding that he was truly at fault, no one has ever been called to account.

    Not the MILF and BIFF murderers, their supporters on the government’s “peace” panel who alleged urged the president to abandon the troops so as not to trouble the spurious bargain with the MILF.

    Not the disgraced and suspended ex-chief of the PNP who was illegally put in charge of the entire operation by BS Aquino himself.

    Not the DILG chief at the time, and as such second only to the President in authority over the police forces, who did nothing to save his men.

    Not the President who bears ultimate responsibility for it all and who pushed the operation in order to claim credit for capturing or killing two notorious terrorists.

    President Aquino and his congressional henchmen have dismissed the decision to re-examine the Mamasapano tragedy as a mere move to discredit him and his favorite Mr. Roxas. If that is indeed the case, and he and Mr. Roxas are truly blameless, then neither man should have anything to fear from a continuation of the investigation, and should instead want it to go forward in order to expose their political enemies’ supposed ulterior motives.

    If that is not the case—and what is already known so far, along with the near-panicked reaction of the Liberal Party regime to an expanded investigation, strongly suggests it is not—then the only discredit Aquino, Roxas, and their cohorts will suffer is that which they have brought on themselves.

    Whichever the case may be, the subversion of justice cannot be tolerated. At least not by the PNP-SAF 44 heroes’ widows and orphans. And not by the officers and men of the PNP and the military who were willing and ready to reinforce the besieged PNP-SAF commandoes but were virtually told to stand down.

    We urge the Senate to stand firm against the dissent from Malacañang, and proceed with dispatch and thoroughness to finally bring this sad chapter in our history to a just and truthful resolution.

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    6 Comments

    1. It’s not about getting new evidence, it’s more about putting a closure to this darkest moment in our history. Parusahan ang mga guilty. Bigyan ng justice ang mga victims. Masuwerte ang government dahil walang nag coup against them. Siguro dahil ang aggrieved party rito ay police lang. Hay naku.

    2. yes, senate and congess, do it right this time for the souls he saf-44 and other victims alike had been and are still crying for justice .. their parents, children , siblings wives also grieving endlessly until justice is served

    3. The Senate Committee headed by Grace P. Llamanzares, the Senatora looked as if they were credible but in the long haul, it was a very soft landing with only poor Gen. Naspenas who was punished. Obviously, Grace was already eyeing the highest position of the land and it will be suicide for her if she will really dig deep into the reason(s) of the massacre which will surely point to the main culprit, PNoy. Grace knows how vindictive PNoy is and if she will do her job right, the man will be pinpointed and she will have no chance to fulfill her ambitions. It is good that the case will be re-investigated for and in behalf of the SAF victims of Mamasapano. However, let us all pray the Tanda Enrile will not make another about-face in the process and will even make PNoy the hero just like what he did not poor Renato Corona. For once, let us all pray that Enrile will not be tempted with millions PNoy may offer him because this old man is very gullible to bribes and kickbacks.

      • Senator Liamanzares had her chance to represent the people during the first investigation but she showed she did not have the peoples interest at heart.

        What was the reason behind Liamanzares not getting answers to all the important questions ? What is the reason to give the report to the Ombudsman (a Aquino appointee) instead of to the senate ?

        Did Pnoy prevent the reinforcements from aiding the trapped SAF ?
        If not him then who prevented the other SAF and the military from providing reinforcements and why ?

        Roxas was in charge of the Philippine National Police (PNP), responsible for the safety of his men, the policemen of the PNP and yet he did nothing while the SAF 44 were being killed.

        Secretaries Roxas, Gazmin, Soliman, and AFP Chief Catapang spent the day with Aquino and none of them lifted a finger to help the trapped and massacred SAF.

        How does Aquino explain why he lied on television ?

        In Aquino’s first public address after the Mamasapano clash on January 28, Aquino said Purisima was involved only up until the Ombudsman’s suspension order.
        Aquino said Purisima was no longer involved after his suspension, and was just there to explain details to him.

        Well we all know now that was a lie.

        Aquino and Purisima refused to turn over their cell phones, cover up after promising full cooperation and transparency.

        Senator Liamanzares allowed a whitewash and actively helped to bury the report by giving it to the Ombudsman.

        Liamanzares is not capable of chairing a investigation that involves the president and the cabinet secretaries, Liamanzares should be excluded this time around for demonstrating incompetence and subservient behavior in the first investigation.

        Fool us once shame on you, fool us twice shame on us.

    4. How convenient this president to claimed or to remind the senate about the protocols regarding the separation of power between legislative and the executive, but when it comes to the rescue of hacienda luisita is at stake no amount of rules can distract it from obtaining the desired result. He use to keep on insenuating that if there’s nothing hid, why not open up your bank accountsas to corona’s impeachment.

    5. If there’s new evidence then it’s good to reopen the probe. Nothing will change in the last report so there’s nothing to worry about. Until justice is served, it’s always good to be open to new evidence.