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Jul 20

What happens if Filipinos come home?

Here’s something very interesting: reporters both blogging about the same event and even the same interview: read what Jove Francisco and RG Cruz have to say about Michael Defensor and the self-grading by the Palace on its achievements. Both accounts, I think, underscores Newsstand’s critique of the President’s reports to the nation.

Bishop Angel Lagdameo reacts to official criticism (and possible investigations).

My Arab News column for this week is Overseas Filipinos Caught in Distant War Zones. A reader sent the following email,

I think your recent article on the plight of Pinoys in Leb. and at home was bang on. While there are some guys like you putting the sad reality forward there is some hope for the future.

Western visitors/relatives/spouses of Pinoys have known these things for years and it breaks our hearts. We can’t of course say anything. As you know criticism is not received very well at any level in the Phils culture from the “Puti”. Power to you.

Regards

Ken Booth

London,Kuwait,Quezon City and Cebu

For which I’m very thankful.

My Inquirer column for today is Blessed like Franco.

In [email protected], there’s an entry here, with a follow up entry here, on an unfolding controversy in Iloilo City concerning government purchases of cellphones.

In luvspring, a blogger recounts her feelings (very personal indeed) upon having to evacuate Lebanon. Pinay in Barnsley confesses she’s partial to the Lebanese cause.

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  1. realistic

    On bishop Lagdameo’s reaction: who cares anymore! Same old safe position. you’d think he has a form letter. just fill in the blanks with whatever names and places are in the news.

  2. taipan88

    Seems to me, ate glue doesn’t want Pinoys to come home. WHY? there’ll be lesser remittances and lesser pork for her minions in the House of RepresentaTHIEVES. She simply doesn’t care whether war is raging on elsewhere, so long as she can gallivant around the world using our money!

  3. manuelbuencamino

    Manolo,

    I’m looking forward to a future essay where you go deeper into this new Filipino evolving.

  4. Nasty Pen

    Is it any wonder why Filipinos still sneak into danger zones like Iraq? When the OFWs in Lebanon are evacuated and brought home, what jobs await them here? So, when the OFW’s return, there will be media mileage for them, the politicians with their streamers await them at the airport for photo ops and then what?

    No jobs or underemployment. It seems some of Filipinos would rather face the uncertainty of war in the Middle East than face the certainty of hunger and poverty here.

  5. trix

    as usual, i’ll be getting off at quite a tangent with an occasional comment, but this time i just would like to throw in my two cents’ worth: i believe ur show last tuesday (?) came off really good. i’m no authority on this–for the record; i’m only sharing an observation.

    it’s nice that the a growing number of people outside of the academe (with the help of ur blogs and now ur tv show) begin to acquire that rare appreciation for the scholarship that ur practice exemplifies. not very many people in the academe have actually earned their places in it (like alex magno) but a vibrant handful of really well-read and analytically innovative scholars there strive to make the necessary headway toward improving scholarship and collapsing the intellectual elitisms that drive a wedge between scholarship and the dog-eat-dog realities known to those whose lives play out beyond the comforts and the idealisms of the academe. and this handful of people make themselves more and more scarce by the minute.

    i do wonder why u don’t teach, but i do like the fact that a person of ur training is now really making strides in a field that can draw more attention to what u so ably do–and that is well-grounded research and well-annotated sociohistorical analysis (?!).

    many people swear off written studies in the human sciences (what used to be the “humanities”) and the social sciences, finding them particularly heavyhanded for their language–the jargon, the convoluted paragraphs, etc. which is why i became concerned with the classroom monotony/professorial monopoly that might drench and dilute the much-needed impact of ur show.

    as a columnist myself for a publication abroad, i am able to relearn and recast in a sturdier framework the methods in which to go about my own politico-cultural and socio-economic landscaping–with the help not only of the seething social issues that events, myths, clashing icons and various other phenomena start to bring out in stark relief through media on a day to day basis, but mainly of works of scholarship including ur own, sir.

    though i think many shows do a great deal of “explaining,” i’m pretty confident (for whatever the thought is worth) urs at least won’t veer off this unpopular perspective that has been excruciatingly anxious for even one strong voice. kudos manolo!

  6. trix

    i mean (in paragraph 2) “it’s nice that with the help of ur blogs and now ur tv show the growing number of people outside of the academe who watch the news are now beginning to acquire that rare appreciation for the scholarship that ur practice exemplifies.” heeheehee. OC matter.

  7. Phil Cruz

    It breaks one’s heart.

    In yesterday’s BBC report, shiploads and planeloads of Americans, Brits and Norwegians were already ferrying their citizens out of Lebanon.

    And how many Filipinos has our government shipped out. Nada.
    All that the DFA can say is “we are planning to do this, do that..we will do this, do that..”

    Is it lack of funds or poor crisis management? And this country’s leader seems to be more preoccupied with sending more of us out to work in distant lands rather than creating the jobs right here.

    But it’s the dollars, the dollars. She needs the oFW dollars to shore up the economy. It’s disgusting really for a leader of a country to go abroad and convince the leader of that country to take in her citizens.

    It’s heartbreaking, too. Reminds one of that old classic movie “All Mine to Give.”

  8. Phil Cruz

    Sorry, the last paragraph should have read:

    “But it’s the dollars, the dollars. She needs the OFW dollars to shore up the economy. It’s disgusting really for a leader of a country to go abroad and convince the leaders of other countries to give jobs to her citizens.”
    It’s heartbreaking, too. Reminds one of that old classic movie “All Mine to Give.”

  9. Phil Cruz

    There’s one big difference though. In that movie, Robbie the eldest child of 6 siblings had to find foster homes for his siblings because of a tragedy which struck the family and his parents. Circumstances not of his own doing.

    In the case of Gloria, she’s giving away her citizens because of circumstances of her own doing. She can actually stop multi-billion corruption, she can stop bribery, she can stop crony deals, she can stop destrying institutions, etc.. But she can’t and doesn’t want to.

  10. vic

    It is a sad reality for a while now that most OFWs have no income protection, or unemployment insurance to turn to, if for a long period of time they find themselves , without a job either in the Country or still waiting for another “contract” overseas. That’s the reason why some OFWs in Lebanon may decide to stay and slog it out, rather than going home for a certain “uncertainty”.

    We just hope that a comprehensive cease-fire and withdrawal of warring forces in the area be in the forthcoming , so NGOs and U.N. agencies can get in and take care of all misplaced people and most especially, nationals of foreign countries whose Governments are not capable of evacuating them or no desire to. We all knew that Ms Arroyo Administration, is both not capable of Evacuating all of most of the 30,000 of its citizens, and have no desire to. Bringing them home, not only will cost the government enormous sum, which it would rather spend on “something” else, but also a big headache of looking at thousands of unemployed in which the same government would rather would want them keep remitting their earnings. With these kind of people in the Government I’m not very optimistic as to the welfare of our fellow Pinoys, who happened to be in the situation not of their own making

  11. Karl Garcia

    Me nauna ng 192 kahapon,
    Off course magpapakita muna sila sa mga mahal nila sa buhay,para makita na buo silang babalik.

    pagtapos alis ulit,kung saan man. sabi nga ni GMA subukan daw ang Libya….need I say more?

  12. Carl

    It is truly a pity to see Filipinos caught in this sad situation. However, because of lack of opportunities at home, that is a risk many are prepared to take. Unfortunately, our dire situation did not occur overnight. Several years and several administrations have gone by without doing anything to improve our economy.

    With the way things are going, Israel may have to occupy Lebanon in order to create a permanent “buffer zone”. Associated Press is now reporting that resistance from Hezbollah has been much tougher than expected, and there is now talk of a full-scale invasion and probable occupation. At least until Lebanon shall have been “sanitized” against the “axis of evil”.

    Will Lebanon be the fulfillment of long-cherished expansionist ambitions by the Zionists, or will it become another “quicksand”, much like Iraq and Afghanistan are becoming to the U.S.A.?

    Lebanon is not just a breeding ground for Islamic radicals. Lebanon is a cultural, economic and political threat to Israel. Lebanon, the Paris of the Middle East, was always known for cultivating culture, science, finance and economics. The Lebanese were known for having a high degree of education and for being accomplished professionals and businessmen. Lebanon, under a stable regime, could become the cultural, financial and industrial capital of the Middle East, eclipsing Israel.

    Lebanon once had a sophisticated political structure whereby Muslims and Christians could rule peacefully by taking turns at running the government. That was upset when the Zionists drove away the Palestinians from their homeland. The great influx of Palestinian refugees into Lebanon destabilized Lebanon, created another country within a country, and ruined what once was a cultural oasis in the Middle East.

    The threat of Lebanon is the reason that Israel’s leadership has vowed to “set it back by at least 20 years”. Israel cannot allow any Arab state to eclipse it. Israel cannot allow an Arab neighbor to flourish. Like a predator, Israel will have to destroy in order to survive. The U.S. certainly messed up the world when it allowed the Zionists to hijack foreign policy.

  13. Karl Garcia

    Going into another topic.

    Franco and the civilwars.

    Many say thatall the monuments of Franco should be destroeyed and off course about the same number will say that they should be preserved.

    Civil wars,should be explained to the succeeding generations,land marks and monuments.must have a long narative in them explaining why they are there.What I hear now is epending on what side of the fensc your grandparent belongs,that is the story you will believe.

    Civil war it also happenned in Lebanon less than 20 years or just about one generation ago.,,,,,

    Sa hirap ng bansa natin siguardo pag peace time na naman,we will be there to reconstruct and rebuild,that is the story of our lives.

  14. Phil Cruz

    Sorry, a bit off topic, but may I flutter back to the Bishops and their latest predicament.

    Now the bishops are really getting it from both sides of the fence. That’s because some tried to sit on the fence. First they got it from their own flock. Now they’re getting it from Malacanang.

    It’s rather ironic that the bishops who played ball with Malacanang on the impeachment issue are now the target of much vilification from Malacanang itself. These mafiosi types can really play dirty.

    After wining and dining the CBCP and getting this body to be fuzzy about support for impeachment, Malacanang turns around and now hangs the sword of Damocles over the bishops’ heads by threatening some of them with charges of coddling coup plotters. And bringing out those two traitorous jueting whistleblowers further dragged the bishops through the mud. The better to further discredit and weaken the Church perhaps?

    One Bible lesson some bishops never learned. “Never shake hands with the Devil. You’ll get burned.”

  15. mrabello

    Malacanang is on a roll right now as it prepares for Gloria’s glorious SONA on monday–where she is expected to make a pitch once more for charter change and how it will be a boon to the nation economically and politically.

    Power really corrupts(pun intended really..) and these are heady days for the palace by the stinky pasig and everybody it deems not for it — it seeks to destroy — suspected civilian financial backers of an alleged coup attempt to prelates who are critical or unsympathetic to government.

  16. ABALOS-LUS-LOS

    A GREAT SUGGESTION WOULD BE TO SENT “GLORIA” AND HER CABINET FOR A VISIT IN LEBANON … GOD PLEASE SEND GMA TO WAR !!!
    UNTIL SHE’S ANNIHILATED … SHE DESERVE A THOUSAND DEATH BY ANY MEANS …

  17. DEFENSOR-TAPYAS-LABI

    There’s no crime in WITHDRAWING support on a FAKE COMMANDER-IN-CHEAT !!! Before you INVESTIGATE the PLOTTERS, know the REASONS .. For MOST FILIPINOS, what THEY DID IS A HEROIC ACT and a GREAT SENSE OF PATRIOTISM/NATIONALISM … LONG LIVE MAGDALO !!!

  18. ABALOS-LUS-LOS

    SEND GLORIA, MIKE DEFENSOR, RAUL GONZALES, ERMITA, BUNYETA, SENGA, ESPERON, LUMIBAO, NOGRALES, JDV, CAGAS, MAKALINTAL TO WAR !!! SEND THEM TO LEBANON !!! THE PHILIPPINES IS BETTER OFF WITHOUT THEM !!!

  19. mrabello

    Malacanang’s “envelopmental” efforts help ensure one way or another that it gets its way.

    First, Saludo implies the bishops are beyond reproach..now some lowlife jueteng operators are unleashed to destroy bishops’ credibilities..

    so… which is it, Malacanang?

    Nobody it seems… is above being bought or threatened.

  20. DiYumu Yuko

    Can’t understand this mentality of Filipinos wanting to go to hell than go back home to the Philippines! Lack of opportunities back home should not be an excuse for this government to be excused for not doing its best to repatriate those 30,000 stranded Filipinos in Lebanon. Just talked to a boy whose mother is in Lebanon working as a maid. He’s retarded as a matter of fact, but retarded or not, he wants his mother to come home. “Ayokong mamatay ang nanay ko sa Lebanon. Matagal ko na siyang gustong umuwi kahit magutom kami!” he cried. Enough of the Tiyanak’s excuses! >-

  21. Phil Cruz

    DiYumu Yuko,
    Touching. That boy is a symbol of the true State of the nation.

  22. feelingslim

    Diyumi Yuko… yuko na sa iyo, you are a ghoul!

  23. AbeM

    Carl… your vision is badly clouded? A strong, prosperous, multi-cultural, progressive Lebanon is what Israel wants and needs. Israel withdrew from Lebanese territory years ago. BUT… but Lebanon’s politics has been hijacked by Iran. Hezbollah is an illicit militia (illicit — the United Nations has a resolution asking for the Hezbollah to be nullified). Lebanon’s duly elected government has been unable to disarm the Hezbollah out of south-Lebanon, from where Hezbollah fires Katyusha rockets into Israeli civilians and from where, recently, they kidnapped two Israelis.

  24. AbeM

    Carl… your vision is badly clouded? A strong, prosperous, multi-cultural, progressive Lebanon is what Israel wants and needs. Israel withdrew from Lebanese territory years ago. BUT… but Lebanon’s politics has been hijacked by Iran. Hezbollah is an illicit militia (illicit — the United Nations has a resolution asking for the Hezbollah to be nullified). Lebanon’s duly elected government has been unable to disarm the Hezbollah out of south-Lebanon, from where Hezbollah fires Katyusha rockets into Israeli civilians and from where, recently, they kidnapped two Israelis.

  25. mrabello

    AbeM ..agreed.

    Nobody talks about UN Security Council Resolution 1559 and its full implementation..

    and Israel is always painted as the “bad guy” and the root of all evil in the middle east.

    I also believe the “zionist” label is derogatory.

    It’s like saying “all arabs are terrorists” imo.

  1. Coffee With Amee » Blog Archive » Filipinos in Lebanon

    […] MLQ3 has great links about Pinoys in Lebanon. In his Arab News Column, he writes: The Philippine government maintains that at present, only a handful of the 30,000 or so Filipinos in Lebanon are in danger. That is possibly, in the strictest sense of danger, true. […]

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