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Coward's courage?
By mlq3 Posted in Daily Dose on July 6, 2006 63 Comments 4 min read
The Long View: Complicity's price Previous Obscurantism Leaves Unrecognized Those Filipinos Who Peacefully Sought Independence Next

Everyone and his uncle has a theory on why the Lim tape was released, and who did the releasing, but what irks me are those who issue dares to supporters of Lim to come out in the open, not because they believe support for Lim was right, but because they think it was wrong.

Why should they? To be ducks fish in a barrel, and in the line of fire of a government engaged in reliving the tactics of the martial law government and the Japanese Occupation?

The last thing a person owes a regime to which he is opposed is cooperating in his own destruction. That’s the regime’s job -bluntly put, self-defense allows it to destroy its enemies, but you can’t expect anyone to do it any favors (if it respected certain limits, it might have right on its side; but this is not a government that respects any limits). And for people to cackle at a supposed lack of courage on the part of those being dared to put the noose around their necks, only shows how easy it is to demand courage from way behind the front lines. After all, the President on down has the might of the armed forces, police, the investigative and prosecutorial arms of the civilian State, to secure them; the rest have nothing but their wits and wiles. Don’t ask favors from those to whom not a single favor are being granted by you (such as even the benefit of the doubt when it comes to convictions).

The news, even if half true, points to more agonizing over the consequences of their actions than has ever, at any time, been demonstrated by those claiming to have legitimacy. You can be sure there has never been an iota of concern for avoiding bloodshed, or preserving rights and freedoms, on the part of the administration. None. And now you demand the “courage of convictions” from the opponents of the regime?

At the end of the day, the South China Morning Post’s headline sums the whole thing up: Arroyo is fake leader, says general in videotape. And the question demands an answer: agree or disagree? Regardless of whether the tape is genuine or not. Meanwhile, perhaps the Palace is happy it is making Gen. Senga sweat. Or it is confident enough to try to smoke out residual rebels. And likes the chance it has to bare its fangs.

In other things… Max Soliven says Sec. Mike Defensor’s brainchild is the Madyaas Confederation, being launched tomorrow.

I’ve never understood opposition to raising tuition fees, because as the opposition is usually phrased, it’s opposing the wrong thing: a denial that things actually cost money. A quality education is expensive. What should be made available are means to extend loans or subsidies to cover the real costs of a quality education: and that involves many other reforms, such as allowing people to have jobs that enable them to give back what was given to them.

And what’s this about a Google PC?

In the punditocracy, My column for today, Complicity’s price, points to the real confrontation going on in our society. In 2004, the President decided (at best) Philippine democracy had to be saved from the people or (at worst) that she would stay in power by hook or by crook. Probably both. And many others felt the same way, and assisted the President. To my mind, if, in opposition to the President, others then try to go where the President and some of her supporters already were in 2004, how can they complain in 2006?

Manuel Buencamino on using religion versus religion.

Adel Tamano tries to explain why the President should welcome impeachment. Brian Yap speaks of a Malaysian malaise.

In the blogosphere, Pajamas Media is abuzz with the missile tests of North Korea.

Out of my mind weighs in with a different view on bishops and impeachment. He bewails the continued erosion of civility.

Bunker Chronicles has advice for the opposition.

Belmont Club on Jose Abad Santos. Also refer to this and this in the Philippines Free Press blog.

Achieving Happiness on words as weapons.

Iloilo City Boy on sex video scandals in his city.

Another Hundred Years hence has two fascinating entries, here and here, on maps, and planning such as the puzzling lack of interconnectivity of transport systems.

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  1. A few months back, I saw on HBO that movie classic, “The Great Race”. Playing the vaillainous character, Prof. Fate, Jack Lemmon uttered what has become “The Coward’s Creed” : “He who fights and runs away, gets to fight another day”.

    Gen. Servillano Aquino, despairing of the sell-out to the Americans by his fellow Katipuneros, summed his feelings in Spanish. Gen. Aquino called his comrades “patriotas del estomago” (patriots of the stomach), his way of saying that these so-called “patriots” were only looking out for themselves by first filling their stomachs.

    Self-preservation is a very strong human instinct. It can cut both ways. But when people exhort others to commit acts of violence, even going to the extent of financing plans for a coup which would surely lead to violence, it wouldn’t be wrong to brand these people as cowards when they deny responsibility for their actions. These people placed other people in harm’s way. They do not have the courage of their convictions and they hide behind the need for self-preservation. They are provocateurs and opportunists of the worst kind. As Harry Truman once said: “If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.”

  2. Madyaas is obviouly a propaganda to muddle certain issues confronting the adminstration. To stir patriotism kuno, and just allow the current regime to go its merry ways in the guise of love of country. I just hope this Madyaas is not another form of “Sigaw”.

  3. Manolo, the tape also showed how a Lim can lie through his teeth & still be cheered by others.
    It also shows that w/ solid “legitimate” evidence of a person lieing.Certain people will look the other way.
    Insted w/o solid “legitimate” evidence of a person being accused of lieing is not important.
    So what is Lim? a hero or a heel?
    It’s Ok to lie.
    Certain people will just bring the attention of the people to other things that will help their cause.
    because certian people who talk about change are cheering for Lim & his coward companions.
    Siguro mga tigas kuwan lang sila.
    When the shit hits the fan everybody runs for cover.
    Everybody plays the denaial game.
    Like Orbos deniaing but if offered will accept.
    Strange people wanting change will show-up only when everything is sure.
    Or utter so many word that mean nothing anyway.
    Strange that certain people wanting change would look the other way from Lims lieing.
    It also speaks badly about certain peoples values.
    It’s really all about on whoes side one is on.
    It’s old hat to say that there are craks in the military.
    But some groups would rather higlight it for a purpose of personal agendas & it’s not to make the military better.Because these problems have exsisted for decades anyway & they have just been exploited for selfish reasons.
    The goverment has been looking for the tapes & it surfaceses through media.
    It’s really a good cover cause media has to protect it’s sources.
    Why did not the garci tape cowards think of that insted of using partisan sources?
    Buti pa the goverment, they said there was a tape & the tape appears.
    Unlike the noisy people who talk a lot but have nothing to show.

  4. All the elements are in place. Proclamation na lang ang hinihintay.

    First, declare an all-out war against communists;

    Second, fund it with a billion pesos;

    Third, simultaneously recall 3 battled hardened batallions from Mindanao for posting in Metro-Manila, and allow Gen. Palparan to release his anti-communist fetish on the residents of Bulacan by placing its towns under his complete control. Blocking forces are in place.

    Fourth, release the Danny Lim videotape and say it’s proof of a leftist-rightist conspiracy to topple Arroyo.

    Fifth, give Arroyo a signing pen.

  5. Could it be that Clavio’s source is another “pakawala” of the adminstration to finally “pin the tail on the donkey”? In one fell swoop, the administration could neutralize the entire opposition. As we all know, the administration’s dream-weavers and story-tellers are very good at novel-writing.

  6. Sino po ang tinutukoy na duwag? Si Amb Senerez po ba, dahil sa kanyang panawagan na lumantad ang iba pang kasapi ni Gen. Lim? Hindi po ba makapangyarihan at mayayaman ang mga taong pinananawagan ni Amb Senerez?

    Sa tingin ko po, isang matapang na tao si Amb Senerez. Lumantad siya at sinabi ang kanyang paninindigan. At kung siya nga ang tinutukoy na duwag, e di mas lalong duwag ang mga nanawagan sa mga pankaraniwang mamamayan na ilantad ang kanilang katawan sa mga rally, pinakain man o pinangakuan ng isang salop na bigas.

    Sabi po ng titser namin, ipaglaban namin ang aming paniniwala. Stand up and be counted! Tama po ba yung sumali sa labanan tapos magtago pag nagkainitan?

    Di po ba ganyan ang ginawa ng mga tagasunod ni Jesus Christ ng tanungin sila kung kilala nila si Jesus Christ pagkatapos ipagbili ni Judas ang kanyang kaluluwa?

    Mali po ba ang pagkakaintindi ko sa post at kuro kuro dito?

  7. Joselu

    I know how we can leave all this bullshit behind and get on with our lives. GMA and Noli resign and let Senate President Manny Villar take over. The Batasan said they can work with him. He has not uttered anything devisive. He can heal our divisions since no one really abhors him. He is someone who we can be sure will sit only until 2010.And we won’t even have to bother with chacha or singaw ng bayan because manny villar can call for a halt to all divisive issues until after the 2010 election.

    Let’s get on with our lives. Endorse a true compromise – Manny Villar. Gloria and Noli resign

  8. HS student, hindi si Amb Seneres ang tinutukoy ni MLQ3, kundi ibang mga tao na hindi niya pinangalanan. Ang tinutukoy niya ay yaong mga nilalang na hinihikayat lumantad ang mga kasama ni Hen. Lim hindi dahil naniniwala sila na tama si Hen. Lim, kundi hinihikayat nilang lumantad ang mga ito dahil naniniwala sila na mali si Hen. Lim. May pagkutya sa kanilang hamon, di tulad ni Amb Seneres na naniniwalang dakila ang ginawa ni Hen. Lim.

    mb, correct me if Im wrong, but if Senator Villar does take over, the law says he cant stay until 2010. He has to call for an election to take place within 6 months.

  9. Sir Jeg,

    Mabuti na lamang at nariyan po kayo. Maraming salamat po sa inyong paliwanag.

  10. Pero Sir Jeg, ano po ang kaibahan kung sino ang humahamon na lumantad ang mga taong kasama ni Gen Lim? Hindi po ba nananawagan din si Amb Seneres na lumantad sila? Iyan po ang nabasa ko sa Philippine Daily Inquirer.

    Bukod sa magkaibang panig yung iba kay Amb Seneres, ano po ang kaibahan, Sir Jeg?

    Na nangduduro lang yung iba, samantalang tunay ang panawagan ni Amb Seneres? Yun po ba ang kaibahan, Sir Jeg?

  11. Manuel,

    You’re not far off there…”Fifth, give Arroyo a signing pen.”

    Martial law can be declared only in certain areas, regions, etc for starters.

  12. student, sorry, ngayon lang ako nakabasa ng mga comment. tama ang paliwanag ni jeg sa tanong mo tunkol sa mga ibig kong sabihin.

  13. Yes Manuel is right, all the pretender needs now is a sign pen. The cast has been set. The administration has laid the predicate, but would it work? One thing is for sure, this time, the collateral damage would be greater. Could we have another Pol Pot in our midst? If Palparan plays his part as Hun Sen, then I suppose we’ll be in for a very rude awakening.

  14. Bukod sa magkaibang panig yung iba kay Amb Seneres, ano po ang kaibahan, Sir Jeg? Na nangduduro lang yung iba, samantalang tunay ang panawagan ni Amb Seneres? Yun po ba ang kaibahan, Sir Jeg?

    Pareho laman silang tunay ang panawagan, HS Student. Subalit magkaiba ang kanilang pakay. Ang sinasabi ni Amb Seneres sa kanila ay, “Lumantad kayo at ipagmalaki ang inyong ginawa pagka’t ito’y tama.” Samantalang ang sa kabilang panig naman ay, “Sige lumantad kayo at panindigan nyo ang inyong maling ginawa.” Sa biglang tingin ay halos pareho lamang, subali’t malaki ang pagkakaiba ng kanilang mga adhikain. Nais ni Amb Seneres na ipagbunyi ang mga ito. Ang kabilang panig naman ay nais lamang silang parusahan.

  15. So if Señeres thinks it was the right thing to do, it’s alright for him to be a stool pigeon. I do think, however, that Señeres was genuinely irked by the hypocrisy and cowardice of his fellow plotters. Otherwise, he would not implicate so many rich and powerful people who are now trying to look their astonished best and furiously waving their hands in denial. Consider these nuggets from Señeres:
    “Señeres said he felt bad that Lim had been left on his own. “I’m fed up, considering what he did is not illegal,” he said.”
    “Señeres ticked off the names of some of those from the private sector he claimed were involved in the Feb. 24 plot: former Executive Secretary Oscar Orbos, former Defense Secretary Renato de Villa, ABC-5 chair Antonio “Tonyboy” Cojuangco, construction mogul F.F. Cruz Jr. and old-rich scion Iñigo Zobel.”
    “My point is, all the backers of General Lim should now come out in the open,” he said, adding they should stop issuing denials. They cannot fight evil under cover of darkness,” he insisted.
    “Señeres told the Inquirer that the video was pre-taped by the ABC-5 staff with Cojuangco’s knowledge. When the plot failed, Cojuangco was literally left holding the tape, he said.
    “I know for a fact (Cojuangco) tried to suppress the tape. He thought it won’t come out anymore so we were all surprised it came out. But maybe a technician got a copy and sold it to ABS-CBN,” Señeres said.” — Here, Señeres even implicates ABS-CBN as being responsible for spilling the beans. Notice how money somehow always changes hands? Doesn’t anybody do anything out of patriotism or altruism anymore?
    “Señeres said Orbos and De Villa had been asked by disgruntled military units to be part of the transition government.”
    “I know for a fact Orbos was offered a part in the transition council. I endorsed Orbos to head the transition council. I did not endorse De Villa because of his leadership style. He is “teka-teka” [literally meaning, wait],” he said.” — So much for altruism. There was something in it for those involved, after all. Somehow, Señeres still manages to take a dig at De Villa’s incompetence and vacillation, what an unkind cut from a fellow conspirator.
    Of course, Señeres is quick to absolve himself of any ulterior motives:
    “Señeres said he was offered the foreign affairs or labor post, but he flatly rejected this, saying he was finished with government posts.”
    And Señeres continues to finger other conspirators:
    “Also F.F. Cruz Jr. and Iñigo Zobel. They’re part of the withdrawal of support (plot). I had a meeting with them in the mansion of F.F. Cruz in Forbes Park. We watched (Ms Arroyo’s) ‘I’m sorry’,” he said, referring to the President’s televised speech on June 25, 2005, on the “Hello Garci” scandal.”
    Finally, just to show people that he isn’t a stool pigeon, Señeres concludes:
    “I’m naming names now … Why won’t they come out in the open?” Señeres insisted.

    Re manuel buencamino’s proposal for Villar to take over: If it can be done, that would be Solomonic in my judgment.

  16. MLQ3, Manuel B, Carl, and everyone,

    I suspect that Gloria has been in the know about the Lim tape and was informed about it even before she left for the Vatican or sometime on the 17th of June.

    I’m pretty certain that the owner of Forbes Park home that Max Soliven spoke about in his column and of a dinner with Gloria, himself, Babe Romualdez which was hosted by the owner of that Forbes Park home is Cruz of FF Cruz Corp (who happens to be the bosom buddy of Gabby Lopez). Cruz always wears white from head to toe and you can’t miss him in Manila society.

    Cruz and Lopez are very, very close – they used to go to Cannes and parade off on Cruz’s yacht.

  17. manuel. you are just DYing for martial law to be declared aren’t you? so you can offer yourself up as a martyr. that’s pathetic really. Thank god not every Filipino is as desperate for national collapse as you are.

    Did you get that?

    Sa tagalog, ang sabi ko, salamat sa sa diyos hindi lahat ng pilipino nangangarap na malugmok ang bansa.

  18. Mbuencamino, is that how naive you are?
    Will these people who spent billions of money trying to oust Gloria every minute of the hour, every hour of the day allow him to sit as
    President. I tell you,the moment GMA is ousted, there will be scampering from all sides right, left, middle, extreme right/extreme left , pati galing sa ITAAS ( Catholic Church ) in the persons of men in cloth-Cardinal Sin wannabes to get to Malacanan. The movement to oust the President is no longer a political and economic issues, it is more of POWER STRUGGLE to get the much coveted Prime position of PRESIDENT where even a lowly actor has become filthy rich.

    And just like what I’ve been saying, no conspiracy between the rich and the famous, the elite and the tradpols will ever succeed if it features the RED FLAG and now the SICKLE (OPLAN HACKLE) short for hammer and sickle because both the military and the people would not go out to extend their support. Umiyak pa kayo ng bato.

    WHO IS USING WHO?

    That idelology has died long time ago with the death of Mao and the break up of the USSR. Kalaban nila diyan ang US and other capitalist countries. Baka pati China.

    As to Lopez, I advise people here not to be mind readers. Businessmen would always do whatever would be benificial to their business conglomerates with the disclaimer of course that corporations have their own juridical personalities. Besides they are also gamblers. They bet on both sides.

  19. About opposition to tuition fee increases: MLQ3, everything has a price, but education should never carry an exorbitant price. Personally, I support a tuition fee increase in UP but only if, ONLY IF, they would fix the STFAP system. As it is, a classmate of my brother was forced to stop schooling because he was classified as BRACKET 9 under STFAP and was instruted to pay full tuition. ngayon, nangangalkal siya ng basura. isang nangangalkal ng basura, na-classify as bracket 9.

    Also, a 200% tuition fee increase is absurd. They should do it gradually.

    As for tuition fee increases in private schools, I am really opposed to those specially in the UBelt schools. Some of these schools can give big businesses a run for their money, with Return on Investment reaching as high as 33% and averaging at around 20%. The bad thing about it is that 70% of the increase is supposed to go to the teachers, but sadly, schools go around the requirement by providing nonmonetary benefits such as “faculty development.”

    Also, a lot of private schools are abusing the system by regulating their tuition fee increases but not limiting their miscellaneous fee increases, which are not covered by any regulation. For example, there’s a university which charges P50 / hour for internet fees.

    I understand that private schools are not charities, but they should not be ran as typical private enterprises either. If they were meant to be treated like a normal business venture, they should not have been accorded a preferential tax treatment with an income tax rate of just 10%.

    Another funny thing is that the most expensive schools in the country are Catholic schools, which are not paying any taxes. I wonder how much profit they are raking in?

  20. mlq3 said: “carl, i was going over your first comment -where did lim call for blood to be shed?”

    Did I say Lim called for blood to be shed? I do not even recall any direct reference to Gen. Lim. However, his backers should have known that, by backing a coup attempt, there was always the possiblity of blood being shed. They knew that human beings and fellow Filipinos would be put in harm’s way. When these people take on that responsibility, they should be man enough to bear the consequences should things not go their way. Otherwise they are just spoiled brats playing God with ordinary mortals’ lives! A pox be on them!

  21. may coup ba?

    akala ko withdrawal of support lang? di ba magkaiba yun? kasi sina Angelo Reyes, nagwithdraw ng support dati. coup ba yun? bakit yun, ok lang?

  22. Cat,

    Re: “And just like what I’ve been saying, no conspiracy between the rich and the famous, the elite and the tradpols will ever succeed if it features the RED FLAG and now the SICKLE (OPLAN HACKLE) short for hammer and sickle because both the military and the people would not go out to extend their support.”

    That is being intellectually dishonest.

    The plot, plan, and the eventual coup d’état by Gloria and her friends among the rich and the famous along with a sprinkle of generals around and the REDS, YES, THE REDS (admittedly not quite the formally stamped OPLAN HACKLE plan you decry) SUCCEEDED. Wasn’t Gloria sworn in as ACTING PRESIDENT and she’s still around…

    So your assertion that a conspiracy between the rich and the famous does not succeed if it features the red flag isn’t quite right.

    The Red flag wasn’t acutally being waved at Edsa 2 but it was there – it was all part of the plan without which Gloria and her friends couldn’t have executed her coup d’état to perfection. You cannot deny that it happened.

    Joma Sison aka Armando Liwanag, may not be the most credible person in the Philippines but I don’t believe that he lied when he admitted that the CCP provided the warm bodies without which, the million at Edsa 2 couldn’t have become a million.

    You must remember that RED MAN Satur Ocampo is a very close friend of Gloria’s. He helped a great deal summon those RED warm bodies for Gloria and her friends among the rich and the famous to succeed.

  23. Paeng, they just called it that other name. But it really looked a duck, walked like one and now it squacking like a duck, but all the other ducklings abandoned the sacrificial duck. Now, now I hope the rest of them turn around ducks can swim far, far away before the little foxy lady with a double barrel shotgun took aim at them or “come” to my side and we’ll talk this one out.. genius ..

  24. i am suddenly reminded of three things.

    1. the katipunan plot to implicate prominent filipinos in the revolution, even if they didn’t support the revolution (there’s the account of dr. pio valenzuela in which he said he discussed this with rizal).

    2. some fairly recent scholarship on the katipunan, in which it seems, in some provinces at least, the rank and file joined because their landlords, etc. joined the revolutionary cause.

    3. the little-discussed (today, anyway) reality of the ww2 guerrilla movement, in which a lot of inter-guerrilla fighting went on, even as the guerrillas fought the japanese.

  25. manuel b.,

    the first day i read that 1B pesos for the army and the 3 battle hardened army batallions from mindanao, i thought it was really an excellent military strategy to protect the house in pasig before the final signing of the document ( everyone knows what it is!)

    pero may hinihintay pa yata para mas dramatic….’yung a la plaza miranda o ‘yung kidnap/ambush a la enrile…

    last item ‘yung SIGNING PEN!

  26. Gen. Lim and Col. Querubin cannot be faulted for doing what they had to do, that is, breaking away from a corrupted chain of command and withdrawing support from a bogus commander-in-chief. Between Lim and Querubin on one hand and Esperon and Palparan on the other, I’d choose the former without batting an eyelash.

  27. bystander, the chain of command is morally dysfunctional although still operationally functional, that’s why at some points where moral scrupples surges, the chain breaks, a widespread breakout of the chain is inevitable unless the moral bond of the chain is restored.

  28. sometimes, it isn’t moral scruples that causes the breakdown in the chain of command. sometimes, less noble reasons operate. have lim and querubin really done anything to deserve the moral high horse they are riding on, other than the fact that they have broken away from the president?

  29. mlq3, bad as they (KKK,WW2 guerreros) were on three counts, they would have, were they to rise from their graves, a better chance at fighting against the present regime than all the present ‘rebels’ put together? somethings, bad habbits got worse?

  30. antonio w., you are insinuating something without making a point. the lim and querubin cases are not isolated, not the first nor the last under this regime, until this regime is changed, to restore the institutions back to normalcy.

  31. Antonio walang…

    Why don’t you ask the question the other way around using the bogus president as subject of your interrogative form?

  32. juan, i totally agree. they will not be the last. my point is there are many reasons for breaking the chain of command. some are noble. if you want to believe that lim and querubin have noble causes, that’s your prerogative. but you have to accept that not all causes are noble. some are blatantly selfish. we should choose our champions more carefully, instead of casting our lot with every person who claims to be disgusted with the president.

    that’s the mistake many people made when they acted to toss estrada out and embraced gloria; let’s not make that mistake again.

  33. If Lim and Querubin’s reasons are suspect, then I’ll go with Gen. Miranda. To say that the buck stops with him would only show how noble his cause is. He had asked the authorities to lay off his subordinates as he is willing to accept everything. This would put the administration in a dilema however as with his credibility, nobody in the administration would dare face him. The Pandora’s Box lock has been opened, I hope to see it wide open, then let’s see who’s got the balls to face the music.

  34. I love the Pandora’s box allusion! Let’s give that tired old “can o’ worms” expression a rest!

  35. anna, re ‘pre-empted impending coup’; you are taking the rule of law side vs GMA’s rule of force under which the pre-emptive strike doctrine operates consistently applied as an officially declared policy which should have been challenge, specifically, in the CPR and PP1017 cases of which it is an essential operative element. In short, pre-emptive strike doctrine is the culprit, its validity is the real bone of contention.

  36. 1017 did not prevent the withdrawal of support. Lim etal decided not to go through with it after they spoke to Senga, not after Gloria proclaimed 1017. By the time Gloria made her proclamation, Lim etal had already decided to stay in their barracks. The only thing 1017 stopped were peaceful civilian marches.Which is why it was proclaimed in the first place.

    This Danny Lim tape was not aired in February so it was a call to nobody. No harm, no foul.

    But what if Danny Lim says – Hey I made the tape to spoof Angelo Reyes? Or yes I was dying to air it but Senga talked me out of it because I didn’t want the blood that Esperon was raring to shed. You know Esperon… the general in the Garci tapes.

    Roy Seneres and everyone could have been trying to talk Lim etal into withdrawing support but in the end Lim did not. So everything broke down even before a conspiracy could occur.

    Many people wanted the military to withdraw support but not many went all the way for the transition government idea. That’s a point where the alleged conspiracy kept breaking down.

    At the end of the day, above all the noise, we hear Esperon reminding Senga that he and not Senga is the one who has the prerogative to throw Lim in jail. And the commander in chief is quite so that is what I call a withdrawal of support by the commanderin chief for her chief of staff. That is what I call strengthening the chain of corruption.

  37. Manuel,

    You’re absolutely spot on! ”

    1017 did not prevent the withdrawal of support. Lim etal decided not to go through with it after they spoke to Senga, not after Gloria proclaimed 1017. By the time Gloria made her proclamation, Lim etal had already decided to stay in their barracks. The only thing 1017 stopped were peaceful civilian marches.Which is why it was proclaimed in the first place.”

  38. Before PP1017, Senga “pre-empted an impending coup”(Ermita, Defensor’s words), PP1017 pre-empted a wider scenario. If Senga wants to be extra secure he can pre-empt but in doing so pre-empts actual commission required to secure a case therefore also violates due process by arresting with a pressumption of irregularity, bad faith, guilt. Can ‘pre-emptive arrests’ be challenged on both counts? Arrest before/without commission of a crime? and be charged for talking about thinking about it?

  39. MLQ3, Manuel, Juan, Phil and others,

    What really shocks me is the contempt with which high ranking military officers in the AFP have been regarding military law and procedures.

    If you remember, I posted several comments saying that if the AFP finds or believes that Brig General Danilo Lim culpable, he should be charged and a court martial convened.

    We are all aware that the military does operate in a totally different setting with its own rules and regulations embodied in its own laws and traditions.

    At the moment, I see the Armed Forces breaking some of the provisions in its own Articles of War.

    There is ONE BLATANT violation being committed today on the person of Brig General Danilo Lim:

    He’s been under arrest and detention since end of February without any charges filed against him (I’ve been on and on about this in other previous posts) which breaks his military rights under the article of law as well as his basic human rights under the UN Convention of human rights.
    So, on this aspect alone, Esperon being Lim’s commanding general is already culpable in the eyes of the military law.

    In the UK or in France and even in the US, a military officer particularly of a senior or star rank, cannot be arrested or detained for FOUR MONTHS without formal charges levelled against him for the simple reason that it could have a demoralizing effect on the chain of command down the line. It just doesn’t happen that way. There are rules to follow and there are no ifs or buts about it. The laws are clear cut. There should be no deviation. We are speaking of the military here.

    It is true that in theory and in practice, as commanding general of the army, Esperon has FULL authority over Lim BUT NOT SOLE authority.

    I therefore find it puzzling that after 4 months, there are still no formal charges leveled against Lim and no court martial convened to try him.

    General Senga in his capacity as Chief Armed Forces of the Philippines has full authority to demand that Lt General Esperon, Commanding General Army OBEY MILITARY LAW & FOLLOW military procedures and to make sure that Brig General Lim’s rights are protected as a person and also as befitting his rank. His order must be explicit and must set a time frame for it to be followed.

    Unfortunately, there is NOT ONE STROKE solution to the hierarchy or authority problem but in a democratic context and where professional military men are involved, the Chief of Staff Armed Forces would have to be absolutely confident and sure of his decision to demand the CG PA to abide by military procedures because the danger of overriding a major service commander’s authority would lead to chaos and demoralization in a military entity.

    Having said that, and if for the sake of argument Lt General Esperon should still refuse to obey a higher order and by estension refuses to obey military law and follow procedures pertaining to Brig General Lim, Senga as CSAFP could either:

    1. Relieve Esperon of his authority and place Lim under CSAFP jurisdiction to enforce the rule of military law.

    2. Or call for a command conference that should include the Secretary of Defence, the NSA, NSC, the board of Generals and 2 senior members from the Legislature to call Esperon and to have him explain why Lim has not been charged formally and faced a court martial after so many months of detention; should Esperon persist that he is right, that SPECIAL BOARD may decide on the fate of Esperon, i.e., whether to relieve him or not.

    I am really surprised that Senga has not acted on the fate of Lim. I repeat, if the military believes that General Lim is culpable, he must be charged and tried in a court martial illico.

    The procedures in military law is far more expedient and simpler than in civilian law. It is therefore surprising that Lim, a star ranking general has not been formally charged and if charged, has not been scheduled for trial in a court martial.

    I do agree that in the Articles of War, the president of the republic’s consent is or may be needed to convene a formal court martial, however, Senga as CSAFP should have made the recommendation two months ago at the latest based on the Army Commanding General’s own opinion which should have been made before the time lapsed. In practice, the CSAFP and the board of Generals needen’t even have the formal consent of the commander in chief before they can convene a court martial. That it is not happening is really bad and speaks very badly of the military.

    If we look at the Philippines in a different setting as if it is in conflict or at war (either within or outside), the CSAFP could override, overule the Commanding General of the Army and take it upon himself to issue the orders to prosecute Lim. Obviously, we have to determine in what state the Philippines is actually before such scenario could be envisioned.

    This happened during the Falklands war when the Chief of Defence Forces UK (that’s how the Chief of Staff Armed Forces is called in the UK) had full authority and could overide and overrule the Royal Navy Chief in decisions pertaining to the conduct of operations. Same with prosecution of erring officers during the war – Chief of Defence Forces could, if he wanted to override the authority and decision by the Naval chief (but obviously did not need to happen in terms of prosecuting erring officers and the convening of court martials).

  40. correction: “Esperon has FULL authority over Lim BUT NOT SOLE authority.” So, in essence, Esperon is stretching, testing the limits and perhaps, I don’t know playing up to Gloria and in so doing, is challenging or fixing the limits of the authority of his own commander, General Senga…

  41. The administration surely knew earlier that Lim had been dissuaded by Senga. There clearly is no need for PP1017 unless the administration wanted to test how far they can play the spin and how effective it is in silencing its critics.

  42. “The movement to oust the President is no longer a [sic] political and economic issues, it is more of POWER STRUGGLE to get the much coveted Prime position of PRESIDENT where even a lowly actor has become filthy rich.”

    Ano raw? Why seek power if there is no political or economic imperative–and you are talking of elite’s motives. Hello? Arf,arf.

    And why single out the lowly actor when you have your sitting fake president, wifey of Mr. Pidal, whose wealth has scaffold n-fold. Lowly, ouch. Para ka namang reyna kung magsalita.

  43. anna, of import: your points are valid, there is a strong case against Esperon upwards on Lim’s illegal ‘arrest’ and continued ‘detention’. Rep Golez, Def Committee, filed HouseResolution inviting Gen Lim. Suggest you email above post to him at [email protected], fax 931-6624 tel trunk 931-5001

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