I am disappointed that PBA chief Chito Salud should leave the PBA after leading it ably these last five years. But, maybe he agrees that knowing when to leave is as important as knowing when to arrive. Chito’s father, Commissioner Rudy, invited me to toss the ball in 1989 to open one Conference. Rudy was a fellow Bedan, in that he attended the finest law school in Mendiola for two years; honor roll. Then he moved to the best law school in Faura (now in Rockwell). Fruit does not fall far from the tree.
It is Manny Pacquiao who should leave the PBA after entering it as a rookie at 36 and did not make us forget Jimmy Alapag. Every time he opens his mouth it seems to be about Mayweather. As a true-blue Mindanaoanon, does he know or care about the Mamasapano tragedy? What are his thoughts about the seven NPAs just killed in Sitio Tugal, Barangay Anggas Alabel, Sarangani, his district?
The House had him recently but, it was that House in Washington, D.C., not the one in our Batasan where he has not been sighted for the longest time but only abroad or in Forbes. Or in the PBA where he may now push for Rookie of the Year honors, having finally scored a point the other night.
Manny has fewer than 500 days to go as congressman. He should run for Guv in 2016, and Vice Guv Jinkee can act in his absence. No such thing as Vice Cong.
PNoy’s critics should consider that he has the same period to be kicked around. No need to rush his departure, not after his success in reportedly killing Marwan, responsible for killing more than 200 in Bali, and training hundred of Pinoys (300) in bomb-making. And in reportedly wounding Usman. Both terrorists had millions on their heads.
Success Bulletin columnist Leandro Coronel saw and wrote about last Monday. A triumph, not a fiasco, he said, “albeit a costly one” (44 added to the 150,000 slain earlier). I cannot agree more. In the donut, I see the dough, not the hole, the silver lining, not the dark cloud, a glass 3/4 full, not 1/4 empty. A measure of justice for the 16 9/11 Pinoy victims.
44 SAF commandos died as heroes, entering unfriendly territory of heavily-armed extremists who shot many of them in the head, but did not behead any of them. The Moros angered Prez Erap so during his watch that he ordered all-out war, defying Clinton. Last Tuesday, the Inquirer had a prominent page one spread of captives the Muslims would behead, elsewhere. Tough, cruel, brutal killers.
The SAF commandos knew what could happen to them. Massacres Moros themselves know only too well, given Jabidah 1968; in 1971, the killers were cleared by a court martial. Then, there was the 1906 Mount Bud Dajo Massacre of 600 Muslim warriors, women and children. The Christians from the US said at the time that the only good Moro was a dead one (as they would say of American Indians).
In last Tuesday’s Inquirer, the Lupah SugBangsamoro Womens Association said 67, not only 44, people died in Mamasapano, to include 18 MILF combatants and five civilians. They asked, “Can’t we rise above our prejudices long enough to mourn them all?” Page A2, col. 4 (Mamasapano: The Real Count).
In a “Statement from Mindanao,” of many signatories led by His Eminence Orlando Cardinal Quevedo of Cotabato and Archbishop Tony Ledesma of Cagayan de Oro, we were reminded that war “brought death to more than 150,000 combatants and civilians.” Now, another 44. Or 67, including children of what Christians see as a lesser god.
I particularly mourn for Sarah, 5. Has any Christian condoled with the family (father and mother wounded)? Or only fellow Muslims?
A setback. Mamasapano. But, the Battle of the Boyne occurred in 1690 in Northern Ireland and triggered centuries of bloodshed between Protestants and Catholics. Two decades ago, the parties achieved the impossible: Settle, and the agreement seems to be holding. Too many people had died. It can happen here. The difficult we do right away, the impossible takes a little longer, say the US Seabees, following the chain of command, when applicable.
Would it be wrong for a Prez to get a Dirty Dozen of life termers in Muntinlupa and let them loose against Usman with pardon or commutation as the reward for turning in his head? We are dealing with decapitators who should not be served warrants but shot between the eyes until they are very very dead. The Kanos did not serve warrants on Osama Bin Laden. “Tao po, mawalang galang na po. Meron po kaming mandamiento de aresto para kina Marwan at Usman.”
I am glad the “families of 13 Igorot SAFs got P50,000 each from the DSWD, on top of medical, educational and livelihood support programs. (Manila Bulletin, Feb. 17, 2015, p. 16, col. 5.) Manila, Makati, Muntinlupa and others have been generous to the families of those who are gone (P100,000 each). The hardy Spartan Igorots do not have weepy kin, knowing what the stakes are. Not touchy either. Reportedly, PNoy was snubbed by some sad kin. When my wife passed away in 2007, GMA courteously asked discreetly if she could go to St. Scho to pay her last respects; of course, my grieving family said: I was then in ICU but that would have been my appreciative response. A son of ours, Rebo, is a good friend of a son of hers, Dato. I had Good Manners and Right Conduct in Makati Elementary School.
Gemma Cruz wrote last February 10 in the Bulletin about “the death of 2nd Lt. Raphael Vincent Cubillan, Class 2014, fresh graduate of the PMA” in a “recent encounter with the NPA in the dense forests of Northern Samar.” No publicity in donating to the widow and orphan. So, no funding? But we can help, unadvertised.
The Negro abolitionist Frederick Douglass said we cannot have the ocean without the awful roar of its many waters. And Robert Burns wrote that the best laid plans of mice and men often go awry. Murphy’s Law: Anything that can go wrong, will.
Misfortunes of war. FDR had his Pearl Harbor (1941); JFK, his Bay of Pigs (1961), Johnson; Tet Offensive (1973); Carter, Iranian debacle (1980); Reagan, Beirut bloodbath (1982), Clinton, Black Hawk Down (1993) and Dubya Bush, Iraq (2003). They are remembered for other things today. A Light Brigade survivor lived to be 70 when he was killed in an accident. Ninoy came home dreading being killed by a Boston taxicab.
PNoy will be vindicated not later than 500 days from today. He should not resign. That is not Cardinal Vidal’s position but the National Transmogrification Council misquotes this holy man. Openly. Not in executive session as at times the truth needs bodyguards of lies. But, here what is taken up in a confidential executive session is front-page stuff the next day. The Supreme Court, which leaks like a sieve (to our enterprising Jomar Canlas), finally decided this year to write finis to the case of Lenny Villa, killed on February 11, 1991. One victim. 25 years. Ampatuan? 200 years, per Joker Arroyo. Mamasapano? Dito ditto?
Anyone guilty will have died of old age.