FVR tells Aquino: Stop blame game

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FALLEN HEROES Police commandos carry the 44 flagdraped coffins of their slain comrades from three C-130 planes at  Villamor Air Base on Thursday. PHOTO BY RENE H. DILAN

FALLEN HEROES
Police commandos carry the 44 flagdraped coffins of their slain comrades from three C-130 planes at Villamor Air Base on Thursday. PHOTO BY RENE H. DILAN

SANTA ROSA CITY, Laguna: Former President Fidel Ramos on Thursday asked President Benigno Aquino 3rd to refrain from blaming anyone in the deadly clash that led to the massacre of at least 44 elite police commandos in Mamasapano, Maguindanao, on January 25 until investigation of the incident is over.

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Ramos said“finger-pointing” is uncalled for, especially since the incident was also the result of “poor strategic direction from the Commander-in-Chief.”

The former leader served as chief of both the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP)
and the Philippine Constabulary (forerunner of the Philippine National Police).
He said Aquino should let the truth prevail and bring the culprits to jail.

Ramos made the statements after Aquino on Wednesday addressed the nation on the Mamasapano “misencounter.”

He said Aquino was washing his hands off on the carnage.

“I’m glad he made that speech even if it’s overdue. But sana naman ay walang masyadong finger-pointing kasi hindi pa natin alam kung anong tunay o kumpleto na katotohanan. Mayroon bang hindi tunay na katotohanan? Parang yun ang nakikita natin sa panahon na ito [But there should be no finger-pointing because we don’t know the whole truth. Is there a false truth? That seems to be the case at
hand],” Ramos told reporters in a chance interview.

“Ang daming salita nung mga nandito sa Manila [Those in Manila talk too much].
They have not seen the field of combat and it is unfair to the policemen,” he noted.

As one of the founding generals of the SAF, Ramos said he was concerned about the Mamasapano tragedy.

He likened the incident to the 1977 Patikul massacre that took the lives of 43 officers and men, including Army 1st Division (Tabak) Commander Brigadier-General Teodulo Bautista.

Ramos noted that “the Patikul [incident]was not even a field encounter but the premeditated murder of AFP personnel while talking peace with Moro National Liberation Front rebel commander Usman Sali.”

“These days, there appears to be too much complacency, a laid-back attitude on the part of high government officials, peace negotiators and even field commanders in regard to the ongoing peace process,” he said.

To win peace, according to Ramos, the “two leading ladies” in the government peace panel should have “availed themselves of advice” from retired AFP and PNP officers with experience and knowledge about the conflict in Mindanao.

He was referring to Prof. Miriam Coronel-Ferrer, the government peace panel head, and Secretary Teresita Deles, Aquino’s adviser on the peace process.

“Why don’t our negotiators consult these battle-hardened people?” Ramos asked.

He pointed out that “the advice of knowledgeable, experienced and battle-hardened retired AFP/PNP officers” would have helped the peace panel in its negotiations.

“Our job now is to pursue the killers [and]bring them to justice. But the peace process must not be a casualty like the 44 commandos who died in the notorious historic event,” Ramos said.

Malacañang said it welcomes the former president’s statements.

“Kabilang siya sa mga pinuno na nagpahayag ng posisyon hinggil sa kahalagahan ng pagpapatuloy ng prosesong pangkapayapaan at iginagalang namin ang pagpapahayag niya ng kanyang pananaw hinggil sa ibang usapin [He is among those who have stated their stand on the importance of continuing with the peace process and we respect him for his views on other issues],” Presidential Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. also on Thursday told a press conference.

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41 Comments

  1. Paanong misencounter? Kaya ninakawan at pinutulan ng ari at ibatibang bahagi ng katawan ang mga namatay na mga pulis ng mga kalaban nilang BIFF /MILL? PINOY call these a misencounter? …

  2. THE MAMAPASANO TRAGEDY REQUIRES THAT THIS GOVERNMENT SHOULD POSTPONE APPROVAL OF THE BANGSAMORO BASIC LAW UNTIL AFTER THE NEXT ADMINISTRATION TAKES OVER IN 2016.
    A MORE THOROUGH AND TRANSPARENT REVIEW BY THE NEXT CONGRESS IS IMPERATIVE. ITS APPROVAL OR DISAPPROVAL MUST BE BASED ON A REVIEW DISSOCIATED FROM THE EMOTIONS AND RECRIMINATIONS CAUSED BY THE TRAGEDY.
    POSTPONEMENT SHOULD ALSO SERVE AS WARNING TO THE MILF THAT TO ACHIEVE PEACE IS A TWO WAY STREET AND THAT PEACE AND JUSTICE GO HAND IN HAND.

  3. command responsibility starts with the saf director and field commanders and not the president. these commanders laid the plans and it look like it was short sighted and poorly planned. no air support, because the PNP do not have choppers for this operation, no armored cars or personnel carriers used. another blunder. this makes the moros more intelligent than us and yet they are not yet full equipped.

  4. Daniel B. Laurente on

    Wayback early 80’s a colleague in my work a Filipino Muslim show friends a video about the Patikul Massacre and i assumed he was a MNLF supporter.

  5. The President does not know how to accept responsibility. What he knows a lot is pinpointing and vengeance. He does not even know how to say ‘sorry’. Everything in him is pure rhetoric. The great generals in the AFP must dig deeper to this “massacre” of great SAF Members. One question that must be answered as to why Sec. Mar Roxas was not informed about the military action; whereas Purisima was the one doing the calls with remote control of the President? Pinoy must be accountable and take responsibility of this massacre. JUSTICE FOR THE 44 SAF HEROES!

  6. May the souls of our soldiers rest in peace knowing the Filipino people are grateful for their sacrifice.. May those who are guilty because of non support , poor planning .. Selfish motives . And now cover up burn in hell

  7. FVR a west point graduate,he would have been the right president to arm the military up to its teeth,General during the Marcos regime so he is a proffessional crook pocket the money for military.Now he is talking from his ass.

    • that’s right. FVR should shut his mouth as he did nothing and did not modernized the AFP and POLICE during his time.

    • leonora milner on

      I think guys you dont know what you are talking about. Cory Aquino put the Philippines to the ground and she did not hear anything from Ramos but Ramos turned around the Philippines to be a cub tiger of Asia. Even though the Philippines was totally bankrupt. He was a true leader who knows how to take responsibility. Pnoy Aquino is Spoiled brat who does not know how to get out from the mess he made.

  8. This is a police operation. Hindi puede involve ang military since there is a ceasefire. Sa pagka alam ko there are two groups. The main group is the one to attack marwan. The second group is the backup in case something (un)expected happen. Kasi how would you explain a covert operation involving almost 400 special forces. For sure yung core involves only a few. The question is how come the SAF. Suposedly highly trained, the best of the best numbering 400 where ovepowered by supposedly less skilled enemy. Cguro isang SAF is equivalent to 2 or 3 ordinary rebels. So bakit sila napurohan??? paano na lang kung all out war, baka thousands pa ang mamamatay…. just thinking.

    • You are definitely right. History reminded us of the more than two thousand young soldiers died when the boastful President Erap engineered the attack of MILF at Camp Abubakar. He thought fighting with the rebels who has the mastery of the fighting field is easy as when he was exchanging punches with Fernando Poe Jr. in the movie. His favorite line is “all out war with the MILF” but his success only achieved when he has taken pictures of the over run Camp Abubakar after paying so much money to the responsible Muslim Leaders assisting him just for the pictures taken.

    • in all out war, we will use the air force jets when they come from south korea, naval bombardment, artillery bombardment. encircle them then starve them to death.

    • Need we remind ourselves of what happened during the bus hostage crisis of 2010? SWAT police officers were the laughing stock of the force. Now why did we send the SAF officers to get a well known terrorist? Just goes to prove the incompetence of the Philippine police force. I can only pray no war will ever come since we are ill-equipped to handle this type of adversary.

  9. Has anyone ever figured that those men were doublecrossed? Even a kindergardener knows not to play hide and seek in an open field. Those soldiers were shot in front and back!!! Find out who in government ratted them out and hang him by the testes.

  10. FVR is very right on his observations that Pnoy (1) made a bad strategic planning as Commander-in-chief ; (2) wash his hands on the carnage; (3) blame the SAF head and resort to finger-pointing (4). MILF and BIFF involved must be pursued and bring to justice. Let me also add Pnoy is a big liar trying to wiggle out of the command responsibility when in fact he was the chief planner and idiotically relied on a suspended PznP Head, Purisima, who himself have no competence to head the operations planning. Pnoy is so personally involved in this operation that he even left Mar Roxas, as DILG Head out of the loop, to give Purisima the much needed boast to his corrupt image if the operation succeed. This boondoggles project cost the lives of the 44 young lives of the PNP forces just because of incompetence of Pnoy and Purisima! Pnoy ‘s guilt is so glaring that he appeared to the public only 2 days after the massacre occurred trying to hide or plan what to say without being blame. Even his TV speech lacked the tone of sadness, insensitive to the slain policemen’s family, and nothing said about the pursuit of the MILF and BIFF who participated in the massacre and bring them to justice. Pnoy sounds more in defense of the MILF due to the on-going peace process and pending BBL in Congress. Pnoy gave more emphasis on the urgency of passing the BBL than the previous lives lost for the country of getting rid of terrorists which the MILF coddles rather than surrender as good faith act of pursuing the peace process. As sign of Pnoy’s guilt of conscience, he intentionally avoided to attend the homecoming of the 44 dead in their caskets at Villamor Base to show the people and MILF his firm support for the heroism of the dead policemen. Instead, the so-called Commander-in-Chief, attended the car plant opening of Mitsubishi in Sta Rosa, Calamba, and praise the company for its alleged contribution to philippine, economy, meanwhile the turn-over of 44 dead policemen was…

  11. Bakit pag may napapaslang na mga rebelde ma NPA man o kasapai ng MILF o BIFF agad sumisigaw ang mga human rights advocates at leftist ng paglabag ng mga karapatan pang tao? Bakit pag ang ating hukbong sandatahan ng pilipinas at ang kapulisan pinatay ng mga NPA, MNLF at BIFF walang sumisigaw na taga human rights advocate na paglabag ng karapatan pang tao ng ating mga sundalo at kapulisan? BAKIT?Nakakalungkot

  12. Alfonso Dubouzet on

    FVR should be ashamed of himself. A West Point graduate and he armed the MNLF to make peace with the Muslims during his presidency. Is that what what he learned from the US top military school? To arm your enemies to have a lasting peace?

    • exactly…if there is somebody doing the finger-pointing here, one is this APO TABAKO FVR…and he has the nerve to say that to achieve peace, they should have consulted the retired afp/pnp, but how bout you during your term??were you able to do so? what I think best about you fvr is you’re very much after interviews and wanted to be in the limelight…mag-artista na ka na lang…

    • Please don’t looked-down FVR especially on the issue of arming MNLF. Be informed that I have been assigned at Sulu province as member of the PC-AFP for almost almost 4 years.from 1975 up to 1979 weherein, knew the history of Muslim rebels from Commander Kamlon up to Comdr. Nur Misuari of MNLF. Let me explain about Comdr. Kamlon who started his rebellion movements with a very limited armaments and outnumbered but within several years, they acquired so many firearms by launching ambuscades with a very limited resources such as old model rifles ( Kres/Barung,home-made shotgun and Carbines) to the so-called Battalion Combat Team (BCT) of the AFP. who became skeleton. On 1973, the MNLF conducted a simultaneous and a massive attacks to all military installations within the province of Sulu. Re-enforcement from friendly units could no longer in-place. As a results, there were so many lives that were offered as sacrifice for the sake of our beloved nation with several firearms taken from the government side. The treacherous deeds of MNLF which resulted to the death of General Bautista with 43 officers and men in Patikul.Sulu. Nevertheless, are you aware of these incidents wherein the enemy of our republic have gained numerous numbers of firearms during the Marcos administration? Are you aware that several MNLF Comdrs are mostly trained by foreign countries. As Soldier, I’d rather prepare to die in a battle for the sake of our nation rather than to be a politician whose motive is for the sake of his own pocket. Let’s now begin for a campaign denouncing corrupt politicians for not providing advance armaments and technology to the AFP-PNP.

    • FVR being a general of his pedigree only did what a reasonable person would do facing an insurgency. Arm the public to defend itself. This tactic is both effective and widely used even in recent urban warfare. The U.S. did the same strategy during the surge of 2007 in Iraq. Before criticizing a well respected General, you should have facts to back your claim. Also, If you consider our muslim brothers in the south enemies, then God help us all if it comes to that. No peace will ever be reached with such an ideology.

  13. commander.st.john@gmail.com on

    The current & past presidents of the Philippines and those in Congress & Senate who advocates/negotiates peace with terrorists, rebels, and enemies(MILF, Communists,BIFF, etc) of the Republic by surrendering portions of the whole Philippine Territory and its Constitutional Sovereignty are on notice they are liable/guilty of TREASON AGAINST THE PHILIPPINES.

  14. Really this Aquino mis-govt. will blame everyone, except itself, for any fiasco it got involved to. It’s really a tragedy we’re suffering for the last 5 years on this insensitive and hypocritical mis-govt., headed by “Boy- sisi”. If not for his mother, he should never been a president. It’s also a tragedy, for those who blindly voted for him, blinded by sympathy and false hopes… Wish 2016 is here, such that this bungling mis-govt. can disappear.

  15. apolonio reyes on

    Tama si Pres. Fidel Ramos na hinto na ang SISIhan at huwag sana malibing ang peace talk kasama sa paglibing ng atin 44 FALLEN HEROES.
    FVR, PNOY IS JUST ACTING TRUE TO HIS PERSONALITY AND IN HIS POSITION AS PRESIDENT & CC ( NOT COMMANDER-IN-CHIEF BUT SISI DITO, SISI DUON BUT NEVER SINISI ANG SARILE AT MEMBERS OF HIS KKK ), DI BA PNOY?
    IKAW NAMAN SIKWATARY KALUMA, HUWAG MO NANG BIGYAN NG KATWIRAN ANG HINDI TAMANG GAWAIN NI PNOY NA DAPAT SINALUBONG NYA ANG 42 FALLEN HEROES SA VILLAMOR BILANG COMMANDER-IN-CHIEF AT PWEDE NAMAN NYA PADALA SILA DOF SIKWATARIES PURISIMA O DOMINGO SA INAUGURATION NG MITSUBISHI MOTORS. MATAPOS ANG ADMINISTRATION NYO SA 2016 AY NANDITO PA DIN ANG MITSUBISHI PERO YUON 44 FALLEN HEROES AY NASA ISIP NA LANG NG BAWAT NAGMAMAHAL NA PILIPINO SA KANILA. DI BA SIKWATARY KALUMA ?

  16. The Commander-in-Chief as observed has displayed arrogance ever since. He seldom, if none at all, convened the National Security Council to seek advice from the experienced. His attitude rubbed on his ladies (Deles and Ferrer) who believe they know everything about peace negotiations. They dangerously risked the country’s sovereignty by their actions, as seen by the draft BBL articles they agreed with their MILF counterparts.

  17. This point in time we can assess the MILF’s sincerity in pursuing peace with the government by surrendering the perpetrators to the bar of justice. By doing so they can proved their organization can enforce discipline within the Rank and File of MILF. They must also return the weapons and other belongings of the fallen PNP SAF. The President must reexamine his Oath Of Office when he assumed the presidency and must act accordingly. HE MUST BE MAN ENOUGH TO ACCEPT RESPONSIBILITY IN THIS REGARD. . .

  18. But, will the incumbent president heed the “unsolicited” advice of the former president? That, I guess, is the question.

  19. The fool Herminio Coloma is at it again, by making the very negative statements of Tabako Fidel sound like positive statements. I really do not know how Coloma became a professor at the University of the Pacific or AIM when he has become one of the biggest liars and statement manipulators of this administration.

  20. The best thing to do is sweep Mindanao with full military force to get the evil doers. Forget the peace process. There has been no peace for decades, only peace talked. Justice must be swift just like what happened in Paris…..but again, this is Pinas, not Paris or a develop country, I guess investigation 1st & no action at the end.

  21. Ang mga taga Malacanang ay masyadong mgagaling.
    I mean nag-mamagaling. Mga “Yabang”!

  22. In the Philippines, there are many “pampas”; i.e., pampa-payat, pampa-puti, pampa-ganda, pampa-tubo ng buhok (Aquino needs this), etc., at “pampa-pogi”. The last one is what Pres. B.S. Aquino does when he blames ohers for his mistakes. Yet, he as the nerve to say, “the truth shall set us free”! That’s the truth, he’s the master of blame game.

  23. muriel magtanggol on

    What about putting a suspended PNP chief in charge of such a delicate job? For that alone, he should be sacked and charged. Sobra na, Abuso na, Kalabisan na, Tigil na ang pagtitiis at pananahimik!

  24. I have to agree with FVR for I was there in 1977 Patikul Massacre and Usman Sali didn’t pay for the lives of our beloved brothers forever. Here we are again – a repeat! We must end this ridiculous action and if they refuse to surrender the murderer then its time to arm your civilians and drive those demons back to hell where they belong. Mindanao has always been a lawless land run by illiterate moros using all sort of excuses just as not to share with christians. There are a few realistic moros who accepts the unification but again majority are morons. It’s never been about religion it’s 100% greed and taking what’s not yours for free including your wife and children. Those are selfish bastards and should burn in hell while they’re still alive. We are “Police – SAF” and lets bring those murderers to the gallows where they belong and meet their creator in hell.

  25. Mahina talaga ang utak ni Commander-in-Chief. Did you hear what the would be President Mar Roxas said in his press conference? He was fumbling his words. A sign of things to come if he becomes President. Countrymen watch out.

    • I agree to what former Pres. Ramos said. There must be no finger-pointing and what’s worst is that it (finger-pointing) came from the president and the commander-in-chief. I believe it was really a poor strategic direction. I think that things like this should be taken seriously and with lots of “brain” and experience. These people who lost lives are assets to our national security and this should not be taken with leniency. I really hope that Pnoy act as a thinking commander-in-chief, president, and a true Filipino.