Marcos loyalist



On Friday, the Marcoses buried their patriarch Ferdinand, Philippine dictator, at the cemetery for heroes.

He who plundered nation’s wealth, who put nation in debt, who established corrupt crony and patronage politics, who instituted Martial Law that tortured, killed, raped Filipinos.

The Marcos children and grandchildren will not apologize to nation. They will not admit to the faults of their grand/father. We watch them in their expensive clothes and jewels, we watch them speak of nation like they did not benefit from its plunder. We watch them dismiss the living testimonies to their father’s and mother’s conjugal dictatorship: the survivors of the violence of Martial Law, the generation that fought in various ways against the silencing, the repression, the oppression of the Marcos regime.

We watched the Marcoses wait for a President who would be a Marcos loyalist, who would think Marcos the greatest President ever, and who, without consideration for anybody else but the Marcoses, would insist that the dictator is hero.

The Marcoses waited for this president. They got President Duterte.

Nation got President Duterte. And today, on this issue, I stand against him.

Against press freedom
I stand against President Duterte, who has dismissed the fact that Marcos closed down media, jailed journalists, newsmen and women, and publishers. I stand against President Duterte, who is saying that this history is irrelevant, that the suppression of our right to free speech and press freedom has yet to be written.

It has been written President Duterte.

September 22 1972, a day after the declaration of Martial Law. Marcos ordered the closure of The Manila Times, Daily Mirror, Manila Chronicle, Manila Daily Bulletin, Philippine Daily Express, Philippines Herald, Philippine Free Press, Philippine Graphic, The Nation. He also closed down 66 community newspapers, four Chinese dailies, three Filipino dailies, weekly magazines. Seven television stations were closed down, and 292 radio stations fell silent across the country.

The first round of arrests upon Martial Law declaration included members of the media. Some of their names were part of the “National List Of Target Personalities” of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP).

This list includes, but is not limited to: Joaquin “Chino” Roces, publisher of The Manila Times, and Manila Times columnists Rosalinda Galang, Maximo Soliven.

Teodoro M. Locsin Sr., publisher of the Free Press, as well as Free Press writer Napoleon Rama. Amando Doronila, editor of Manila Chronicle, Taliba columnists Rolando Fadul and Francisco “Soc” Rodrigo. Jose Mari Velez, newscaster of Channel 5, Roger Arienda, radio commentator, Amelita Reysio-Cruz of the Manila Daily Bulletin, Go Eng Kuan of the Chinese Commercial News.

Bobby Ordoñez of Philippines Herald, Ernesto Granada of Manila Chronicle, Manuel Almario of the Philippine News Service, Luis Beltran of Evening News, Juan Mercado of the Press Foundation of Asia, Luis R. Mauricio of Graphic magazine, Ninotchka Rosca of Asia-Philippines Leader.

These media personalities were illegally arrested and detained, in the name of Marcos’ Martial Law. Contrary to what President Duterte believes, this is historical fact.

Criminalizing criticism
Marcos criminalized criticism. No one could criticize the President, his family, or government – at least not publicly. Not only would they be jailed, Marcos also removed all venues through which people might air grievances, question government, demand accountability.

Printers were prohibited from producing any form of publication for mass dissemination without permission from government. Networks were sequestered. Even rumors were penalized because these are “false news” that “undermines the stability of government.” Some gossip columnists who poked fun at the dictatorship were jailed.

It was either you praised the government, or you fell silent. And if you didn’t purposefully fall silent, you would be silenced.

Let’s be clear: censorship is a form of silencing. Two years after the declaration of Martial Law, Marcos required that all reports undergo censorship. Every day, members of the media had to go to Malacañang to have their articles approved by Marcos’ Press Secretary.

Four years into Marcos’ Martial Law, he forbade the creation of “subversive” organizations. The preparation of “documents, leaflets and any other types of publication” were declared as punishable acts.

In 1980, already eight years after declaration, Marcos was not done silencing critics. The Public Order Act gave him unilateral and absolute power to issue orders he deems necessary to “clamp down on ‘subversive publications or other media of mass communication’ and ‘ban or regulate the holding of entertainment (or exhibitions) deemed ’detrimental to the national interest.’”

Marcos also issued another order declaring as “unlawful the malicious dissemination of false information.”

President Duterte: Marcos loyalist
It is these journalists’ experience of Martial Rule, it is the histories of these publications in fighting the dictatorship, it is survivor testimonies, it is the voice of the families who continue to seek justice – these are the stories President Duterte dismissed when he declared that Marcos deserved to be buried at the heroes’ cemetery.

The President is saying that history does not matter. He is wrong.

President Duterte is the historical outcome of the Marcos regime. He is one of many Marcos loyalists so well-entrenched in government, business, and politics, that it has ensured the return of the Marcoses. President Duterte is one of many who have been molded by Marcos politics – its excesses and evils included.

President Duterte is exactly the loyalist the Marcoses have been waiting for, the loyalist who is ready to believe all the lies and falsities that the Marcoses have spread to fashion their father a hero.

President Duterte likes to say that his loyalty is to the Filipino people.

To me, after Friday’s burial, he is nothing but loyal to the Marcoses. ***

Sources: Center for Media Freedom and Responsibility (CMFR) Website. Official Gazette, Martial Law Infographic, PCDSPO. 


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  1. Albert Martines on

    For the past decades, our government are run by either graduates of Ateneo or UP (most of Cabinet Ministers and other high government positions, then and still now) – but look, where are we right now? Go blame Marcos who is already dead, but I blame you for the country’s mess all these years.

  2. Albert Martines on

    I have always believed that the Left is viciously against Marcos because he (Marcos) thwarted their rebellious plan to overthrow the government three decades ago – remember the First Quarter Storm????? Likewise, I have also believed that the Yellows and the Aquinos are also against Marcos, because the more you pull down Marcos, the higher they go (Two Aquinos became Presidents and the Yellows were all over).In the end, I think the Left and the Yellows should be happy that the Marcos issue is again alive – because then they become relevant again.

  3. Albert Martines on

    I used to wonder why Ateneo and UP graduates and students are always at the forefront of any anti-Marcos actions. Now, I realize that most of the Yellows are Ateneo graduates and most of the Left are UP graduates.
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.

  4. Roberta, huwag ka nalang magsalita kasi lumalabas lang kung gaano kahina ang utak mo at ipinangangalandakan mo pa sa lahat. No talk, no mistake! Kasi kawawa ka lang sa mga gumagamit ng utak. Asaka kung hindi ka mapigilan sa pagsasalita, tagalugin mo nalang kasi ang sakit sa ulo basahin ang sinabi mo… okay?

  5. Katrina Stuart Santiago, are you even understanding your own writing? “Four years into Marcos’ Martial Law, he forbade the creation of “subversive” organizations. The preparation of “documents, leaflets and any other types of publication” were declared as punishable acts.” But of course! Unless you are a communist? Had Marcos not forbade the creation of subversive organizations and publications, this country would have been a communist nation today. Please be objective and not be carried away by your emotion lest I think of you as communist leaning writer.

  6. Really? I can understand this hatred of marcos by victims of martial rule. But would an admission by his family erase all this? Or rather, such admission warrant an arrest, so that finally they can be jailed for the ‘sins’of the father? For god’s sake, the man has been dead for 30 years, buried six feet underground. I am not saying forget the past, rather remember it in order to build a better future. Have we? Built a better future after martial law? Where are we now after 4 presidents since marcos? Nowhere! We are still coping with the daily grind of living.
    Marcos a hero? Just because he was buried at LNMB? Really? No one said he was a hero. Only the anti marcos fanatics. Even the Supreme Court didn’t. I know of someone buried there who qualified only because he was an airforce pilot, period. So was he a hero? No!

    When will these all end? Is there really any closure? Why are we so obsessed/scared ? with the marcoses? Why not just relegate them to the dustbin? After all, laws have been crafted so that victims can bring them to court. You say ‘never again’, yes never again must we allow ANYONE to impose martial rule. Again, learn from past.

    I don’t want to be presumptious to say the i understand the victims of martial law. The pain and agony they had to endure during those times. Yes it will haunt them for the rest of their lives. But it’s been 30 or so years to exact ‘revenge’, for want of a better word. What have they really done? What have the victims-turned-legislator done?

    I think it unfair that you would describe President Duterte as such. Just because he allowed marcos to be buried at the LNMB.

    We, the ‘common tao’ are more concerned with daily living, surviving, so that our children can eat 3 times a day, go to school, don’t get sick, etc. Nakakpagod narin all these clashes among ourselves. We can never really move forward, it seems we’re stuck in a rut with this obesssion with marcoses. i just hope and pray that someday all filipinos stand as one for a better country for all.

  7. maximo p fabella on

    The Marcoses will hold the record of having stolen billions, He closest arde the African dictators.

  8. what can you say about those who continue marcos type of corruption that you abhorred on present day? is it okay? why the silence of mighty journalist like you. nobody can bring back the past. it’s a thing to learn for a better future. let me ask you? are those people we trust after marcos learned something from the past? appreciate your feedback miss stuart santiago.

  9. These people who demand for democracy (Demo-Crazy?) and rule of law and then immediately go out to the streets in protest the second that what they wanted (demanded?) is not approved or is rejected lawfully are self-righteous hypocrites (Brainwashed parrots?). “I want Democracy” as long as it obeys what I want, “I demand Rule of Law” only if it serves my purpose – Liberals in a nutshell.

  10. This goes to show that anti-Marcos back then and now are the most stone-hearted people and do not know how to forgive. Because they are communists who do not believe in the existence of God. These are the people who were victimized during martial law because they wanted to bring down the government and have the gall to complain. These are the people who held our country hostage by the most greedy and most callous elite quarter of our society. Until now they are the most stupid section of our society. Grow up!

  11. Martial Law was made necessary by the Plaza Miranda bombing, do you even remember that crime of the century? Ninoy Aquino accused Marcos of masterminding that bombing, but of course, just like practically everything that came out of Ninoy’s mouth, it was a lie. Do you know who really bombed Plaza Miranda? Thats the guy you should blame for Martial Law. Besides, Marcos is already buried at the Libingan ng mga Bayani in spite of your mightiest effort to stop it, which means you lost the argument. Can you just live with that quietly, because a lovely woman like you does not deserve to be constipated for life, you know.

  12. Yellowtards will always be negative in any form of reason, BEST president Marcos good memories will never fade away. NEVER ever dai because you are enjoying one of his good deeds which is 13th month pay, if you are not hypocrite ibigay nyo yan sa yolanda survivors at wag nyo gamitin mga project nya. Kumain nalang kayo ng ampLayaya. Bitterness to the max waaaah loooooser baga???

  13. katrina, do you have a legal basis for our the accusation you throw ast FM. do you believe in the rules of law. for all the past 30 years that the anti Marcos rule the Philippines why did they did not file a single case in the supreme court to convict Marcos of any crime. All are just allegations with out proof as accepted in court.

  14. On the other side of story, people who are submissive during Martial Law had a great time, public discipline restored. Marcos’ massive infrastructure build up on all sectors of energy, agriculture, transportation, education, health, military, food sufficiency, export and science managed to make their way fast and efficient due to the fact that the country is under Martial Law. Loyalists will always remember these more than the casualties of Martial Law. We should remember how CPP and its covert members from govt official to students, peasants and labor groups destabilized govt by bombings and killings even before September 1972. I can’t blame a President declaring a constitutionally legal law that suspends some basic human rights to root out the enemies of the state. One thing is clear, Yung mga hindi matigas ang ulo ay hindi naging biktima Our entire clan lived in peace during Martial Law with style.

    • What u said was Pure Lie. Marcos Blames the Communist-with his 2 terms as Prez-the Reds actually increased. CPP was an alibi to extend his power. And Wow-Absolutely Pwer-Really Corrupts Absolutely. Making him the Second Most Corrupt leader in the World. Forever -unfortunately for him-he died of lupuz