Greater Malaysia

On The Explainer last Tuesday (which you can watch online on YouTube) I presented a series of maps based, in turn, on maps you’ve already seen on previous entries, to argue along the lines of there being a basis for the territorial claims of the Moros. At the same time, looking at the past basis for today’s territorial claims also runs smack into the reality on the ground.

Starting with the present ARMM:

Then showing the areas proposed for inclusion by plebiscite next year:

And including areas proposed for inclusion by plebiscite in 25 years:

You get an idea of the (officially stated, and demarcated, anyway) claims of the MILF on behalf of all Moros.

And then comparing the total area with the historical extent of the Sultanate of Sulu, and the Blumentritt map, etc.:

The area seems to match almost exactly.

But the problem lies in that area overlapping territory that is now dominated by non-Moro ethnic groups:

Add to this, the following map (the B’Laans are not Muslim) which includes areas proposed for inclusion in the BJE after 25 years:

Now if this wasn’t a stark enough representation of the situation, one of the Young Moro League members in my show pointed out that their professors made reference to another map, which did not restrict Moro territory to the areas in the Blumentritt map, but pretty much covered most if not all of Mindanao; and furthermore, that the Blumentritt map overstated the territory of the Lumads. All I could answer was that I have yet to see the map they saw, but what I’d presented was information pretty much agreed upon by various contemporary maps.

But a recent entry in Bangsamoro Blog delves into the issue and essentially details the position raised by the Young Moro League member on my show:

The Bangsa Moro Homeland or territory must be composed of, at the MINIMUM, the areas specified in the Tripoli Agreement of 1976. Nothing less.

At most, it should be the land territory of the Sultanate of Maguindanao, Sultanate of Sulu, Rajaship of Buayan, the Maranao Confederacy and other Moro datuships as of 1898, the signing of the Treaty of Paris between America and Spain. This is because Spain had absolutely no right to cede what was not theirs. The Americans realized this and so they signed a separate treaty (the Bates Treaty) with the Sultan of Sulu.

Or, let the territory be according to the Moro Province created by the Americans which comprised all territory lying south of the 8th parallel latitude except Palawan and the eastern portion of the northwest peninsula of Mindanao. This includes the whole of Lanao, Davao, Cotabato, Zamboanga and Sulu before these provinces were dismembered later.

But Palawan was given to the Sultan of Sulu by the Sultan of Brunei at the same time as Sabah. If Palawan could not be part of the Bangsa Moro homeland, it should be given back to its first owners — Brunei — or be part of the Malaysian Federation like Sabah.

There was neither rhyme nor reason for the Americans to give the Moro province to the Philippines to form a Philippine Republic in 1946.

The Moro Province was NEVER a part of the Philippine Revolution of 1896 or 1898 or the Philippine Republic of Aguinaldo.

A cursory glance at history — real history not the fiction of Most Filipino historians — show that the Moros and Indios were never one people. Never until 1946. But the various Moro rebellions and the MNLF and MILF wars show that the Moros are not satisfied with being a second-class citizen in the Philippine Republic.

The ARMM territory is not recognized by most Moros as the totality of their Homeland.

Again, as I mentioned in my previous entry, what matters less is that there is a history that could contest the history that informs the argument above (the participation of Moro leaders in the drafting of the 1935 Constitution; in the 1st and 2nd National Assemblies, and election in the first nationally-elected Senate in 1941 and thereafter), and more that the history has been accepted as The Truth by those who espouse it (one member of my audience afterwards pointed me to the book, Nation Under Endless Tyranny, as the most widely-read and thus, influential, book they and other Moros read; it was written under a psuedonym by Mohagher Iqbal, the MILF peace panel chair); in which case, there is no room for debate. Stripped of its offensive rhetoric, and of its defensive enumerations respectively, what Rep. Teodoro Locsin Jr’s speech advocates is the supremacy of secular law, while Rep. Mujiv S. Hataman argues from the perspective of Muslim religious law; the basic incompatibility of the two views was demonstrated on my show, too, where one member of the Moro League simply stated that if Sharia Law were made supreme in Moro areas, things would go a long way to calming down.

That being the case, let’s focus on the argument above making the case for the Moro homeland being defined either by the Tripoli Agreement of 1976 or by the old Moro Province established by the Americans.

The Moro Province is portrayed in a Wikipedia Map and here’s a detail for easy reference to the ethnic map above:

Now what has further complicated the situation is suspicion over the intentions of Malaysia and now, of other countries usually considered allies of the Philippine government. On my show, Dean Jorge Bocobo brought up an interesting point concerning the Russian invasion of Georgia, which has been producing some interesting news articles and analysis indeed. See Before the Gunfire, Cyberattacks (a topic I’ve been interested in since I read a policy paper on the People Liberation Army’s cyberwar strategy in the late 1990s) and Georgia President Mikheil Saakashvili’s ‘calculated gamble’: When he moved troops into disputed South Ossetia, the young leader adored by Washington put his nation in a precarious position. For a domestic reaction, see The Pelican Spectator. And this video:

Let’s start with Uncle Sam. The other night, the story went, Sen Arroyo: “Why was US at aborted MOA-AD signing?” which makes me want to ask, with all due apologies to the other (fictional) Joker:

(image is the masterpiece of Billy Añonuevo, many thanks for permission to use it!)

But seriously, folks. Here is a very interesting map (from Strange Maps) showing how the Americans thought the world ought to be divided, in terms of spheres of influence, after World War II. The “New World Order” map, it’s called.

The American sphere of influence is in blue. The British, in orange. The Russian, in pink. Europe is a federation in purple, Scandinavia a federation in green. As it turns out the Russian portion pretty much conforms to the way things turned out. American ambitions and their reckoning of their interests are spelled out clearly (South America is a Federal Republic). What’s interesting is that the British Empire is reduced to a shadow of its former self, its Caribbean possessions transfered to American influence or control, India independent, scattered trading posts left in an Africa basically otherwise a Federated Republic, Southeast Asia seems to be a gift to Britain, with the former Dutch East Indies firmly placed under British control but Burma, Thailand, and Indochina given over to Chinese control and influence.

Notice, however, the Philippines. Let’s zoom in on our part of the world:

The Philippines, a protectorate under this American postwar vision includes extensive portions of present-day Indonesia (the Commonwealth government-in-exile had seriously proposed the union of the Philippines and Indonesia in 1943 and this caused great consternation with the Dutch, until the idea was quietly dropped; but it would resurrect two decades later with proposals for Maphilindo) while all of Borneo is apportioned to the British. Additional American protectorates are Taiwan (Formosa) and Hainan off the coast of China. The various islands comprising Guam, Nauru, etc. seem to be a gigantic federation that marks the American security perimeter in the Pacific.

this is all to point out the Americans like to think in terms of spheres of influence, and we like to think we sit comfortably -and importantly- in the American sphere. Thing is, from the time America decided on a Europe First policy in terms of prosecuting World War II, Asia has been the secondary front and Europe, the primary one. And whatever importance we had in American strategic thinking diminished to the point of barely existing, after the closing of the US Bases. I’ve mentioned in the past that even with the War on Terror, the United States has pretty much been content to leave Southeast Asia to its own devices, with Australia taking up the slack (strikingly reminiscent to the 1942 map assigning most of our part of the world to the British Commonwealth). A couple of years back, in a think tank conference on the region in Washington, the darling of American policymakers was the President of Indonesia and the Philippines mattered mainly in terms of the threat to regional security posed by the JI.

If you look at a map of the Pentagon’s strategy for the War on Terror:

You will see that the Philippines does fall within the sort of global picket fence American strategists have erected to contain threats to their security. You will see, however, that what they foresee as a future hot spot lies within the territory of Indonesia and does not include the Philippines -we enter the picture only in so far as we contribute to managing that potential flashpoint, or hastening its eruption.

If you measure the significance of a country in terms of aid and where that aid’s concentrated, then American aid is significant by Philippine standards but modest and even negligible by American standards; if you peg it, as most figures suggest, at about $60.5 million, it’s peanuts; even if you factor in that the amount (the overwhelming majority of which is targeted at Mindanao) is worth double or even treble that, in terms of benefits to the local economy and savings to the Philippine government and military (there are other costs and funding devoted, for example, to military operations and exercises), they are still far from sizeable in comparison to neighboring countries or elsewhere America’s invested in the world.

If there’s a concern in our part of the world, it’s less JI and more the People’s Republic of China. I wrote about this in my June 2007 entry, New Asian Alliance and there’s additional stuff in my Inquirer Current entry, The China Card.

While the Quadrilateral Initiative, which I’ve written about, focuses on China, it has also laid down the basis for a latter-day SEATO in our region, composed of the USA, Australia, Japan and India. Except for India, it’s the three (US, Japan, Australia) who were most noticeable in the aborted signing ceremony in Malaysia. They have all established ties with the MILF in particular and Muslim Mindanao in general. They have, to put it simply, gotten their foot in the door, and this means whatever happens, they have established a basis for having a say in the eventual outcome of the RP-MILF negotiations. This cannot please Malaysia.

For more on this, including its pressing strategic concerns, see Eagle Speak and this map, which shows naval flash points the alliance has been wargaming (note the flow of oil past Palawan and Mindanao):

But blogger the nutbox, in an extremely interesting entry, puts forward some intriguing information and ties in what I’ve put foward, above, with what’s going on in Mindanao:

What many don’t know is that no less than US Deputy Secretary of State John D. Negroponte discreetly came to Manila right after the Supreme Court temporarily halted the signing of the controversial GRP-MILF agreement last week. Prior to that, rumor has it (I can’t really confirm this) that US Ambassador to the Philippines Kristie Kenney went to Bangkok to meet with President George W. Bush, who was then en route to China for the opening of the Olympics, to brief him on the Bangsamoro issue. Ambassador Kenney, by the way, had been meeting with MILF leaders before this whole imbroglio broke out.

These only prove the fact that the United States’s involement and stake on the Bangsamoro issue is deper than we all thought. And as always, the Americans would do all it takes- even thread dangerous waters if need be- just to pursue their national interest.

I believe the United States is coddling- if not outright aiding- the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) in exchange for major pro-US concessions.

As early as 2003, the United States Institute of Peace, which is funded by the US Congress, has been involved in the “peace process” in Mindanao. Among their activities is the creation of a so-called “peace constituency,” which entails disseminating “information” about “ancestral domain” and the history and culture of the so-called “Moro” people to government leaders, policy makers, university students and even soldiers.

This campaign, as far as I’m concerned, only aims to aid the idea that the “Moros” constitute a people distinct from the Filipinos. Not only is this idea faulty, it is also very dangerous because it gives the MILF the moral ascendancy to take up arms and it further sows division between Christian and Muslim Filipinos (I’ll talk about these in another post).

Also, despite the clear existence of a discreet alliance between the MILF and the extremist terrorist groups in Mindanao, Washington has consistently moved against designating the MILF as a terrorist organization.

More importantly, the US has been very supportive of the creation of the BJE. In fact, Ambassador Kenney even witheld her announcement of an aid package for Mindanao worth 25 million dollars when the Supreme Court TRO stopped the signing of the GRP-MILF agreement, as if the signing was a pre-condition for the package.

Now, in geopolitics, everything is quid pro quo. The quid from the US to the MILF is this apparent support of the creation of the BJE. What, then, is the quo from the MILF?

Under the GRP-MILF agreement, the BJE is to have complete control over the natural resources of the region, along with the authority to enter into any form of economic cooperation ventures with foreign countries, as long as they don’t not constitute direct agression against the Republic of the Philippines.

In other words, the BJE can let the United States explore the energy reserves in the Sulu Sea and the Liguasan Marsh. And exploration, in turn, could give the US the opening to maneuver for exploitation of those resources. We all know that in this era of economic competition among global powers, energy- whether fossil-based or from alternative sources- is very vital. Not to mention the fact that Minsupala is actually a key route for oil exports from the Middle East to Northeast Asia and the United States.

Secondly, MILF spokesman Eid Kabalu has stated that the seperatist group is open to the possibiity of the United States establishing a military base within the territory of this proposed BJE. Now this is a price the US would move mountains to get.

First of all, the United States has troop concentrations in South Korea and Japan, but not in the ASEAN region. A military base in the proposed BJE, therefore, would complete Washington’s efforts to encircle and contain the Chinese, who have been actively doing alarming maneuvers in the South China Sea lately.

Secondly, such a military base would give the Americans the springboard they need to intensify their campaign against the Jemaah Islamiyah (JI), which is believed to be based in Indonesia. You see, the Americans need such a springboard badly, and they can never expect to get one in the teritorries of Malaysia and Indonesia. In the status quo, the Manila politicians, the mainstream media and the Constitution make it hard for the Americans to establish such a springboard in Mindanao. This is why the best way for the US to get this springboard is through this BJE.

The benefits the United States will get from supporting the creation of a BJE, therefore, are economic and geopolitical in nature.

Note, however, that as of this writing, none of my colleagues in the media have been able to confirm if, indeed, Negroponte’s been here lately or if the US Ambassador did give a briefing to Bush in Bangkok. I am also skeptical about the United States going all-out to support the creation of a Bangsamoro State, because doing so complicates matters in a part of the world the US would prefer to keep quiet as it has major things to attend to in Afghanistan and Iraq. but what it cannot afford to do, is to appear inconsequential in anything that happens; and if the Philippine government concludes a deal with the MILF, then for reasons of prestige and more pragmatic considerations, the US has to seem to matter -to all sides. See New Philippine Revolution:

This is the reason why US Ambassador Kristie Kenney was there all throughout the peace talks, to make doubly sure that the GRP and the MILF really come to terms with each other. Defense secretary Gilbert Teodoro in his interview over at Private Conversations on ANC says that the real interest of the US in those talks is to ensure regional security. Why?

If the Mindanao conflict spills over the rest of the region, it threatens the US mainland. A radicalization of young Moro fighters in Mindanao poses a very serious risk in the security of America. Remember that past World Trade bombers trained and even used the Mindanao corridor as a springboard towards the US. The possibility of Mindanao becoming a regional hub of terrorism is very high if these peace initiatives fail.

But I do think that American energies aren’t just aimed at keeping a lid on things in Mindanao; I believe their priorities includes containing another Muslim nation in our part of the world.

I’ve been thinking about the question of who will gain the most from the creation of the BJE and I think there’s only one answer: Malaysia. (My own views on Malaysia as far as Mindanao’s concerned can be found in Search for an Honest Broker in Mindanao). therefore even if the United States has larger incentives for supporting Federalism in the Philippines, its playing footsie with the MILF also gives it leverage when it comes to the country that used to be the sole patron of the MILF: and that’s Malaysia.

If you look at this map:

The Muslim World is in green. If you look at our part of the world, the two contenders for dominance of the Muslims are Indonesia and Malaysia. The Philippines has traditionally allied itself with Indonesia versus Malaysia, but in recent years the Philippine government has fallen under the influence of Malaysia.

Malaysia itself considers Sabah it’s Achilles heel, and since the 1960s has supported secessionist groups among the Moros to keep the Philippine government busy while it embarks on the late 20th and early 21st century version of the Philippines’ own colonization of Mindanao. Except this time, its the Malaysian government pursuing its own version in Sabah. After its influence waned with the MNLF, which gravited to Indonesia and which concluded a peace deal with Marcos and his successors, the Malaysians have taken to funding and giving political support to the MILF. At the very least, this keeps Manila perpetually off kilter; it might actually pay off in terms of a nominally Philippine-affiliated but in reality, pliably pro-Malaysian client state in a future Bangsamoro; it could, at best, result in outright annexation as part of a Greater Malaysian Federation stretching from the border of Thailand, to the borders with Singapore and Indonesia, to the vicinity of Davao -or beyond. This would make for a large, extremely wealthy, country that would keep that other perennial Malaysian rival, Indonesia, off kilter, too.

You can trace these things on a regional map:

A Malaysian-friendly Bangsamoro client state (which even now, its future leaders politely point out will decline to bring up any embarrassing questions concerning Sabah, regardless of how the old sultanate’s borders and territories are used to justify expanding the ARMM in Mindanao itself; and which one Moro blogger, as quoted above, could very well be allowed to incorporate Palawan into it) would also be well-poised to project its claims into the Spratleys area:

You can easily imagine the Philippine flags being replaced with Malaysian flags, expanding the scope of the Malaysian claim, based on its expansion of its sphere of influence to the Bangsamoro portion of Palawan, for example.

Consider, finally, from a global perspective, blurry brain‘s views in the draft of an article he posted in his blog:

Another thing that must be emphasized, particularly when read in the context of news that flags of independence have been waived by the MILF, is that there IS NO JUSTIFICATION UNDER INTERNATIONAL LAW FOR THE CREATION OF A SEPARATE LEGAL ENTITY. What is really disturbing here is the impression circulated by some parties that the right to “self-determination” could serve as the basis for creating (or eventually creating) such a separate entity and that by doing so we are being a “good international citizen” complying with “modern interpretations” of international law. This is complete crap. If a separate Moro republic is created, it is simply because we allowed it and recognized it for some inexplicable reason. There is simply no international law that requires or compels the Philippines to agree to a separate entity carved from its national territory…

In any event, as I wrote previously, the right to self-determination applies only with regard to colonial peoples. It is essentially a right against colonialism and foreign military occupation. IT DOES NOT GIVE LICENSE TO SECESSSION. It is well worth reiterating, again and again if need be, that the right to self-determination does not allow a minority group to secede and become an independent State.

This right to self-determination could be found in the United Nations Charter, the two 1966 Covenants of Human Rights, several General Assembly Resolutions, such as GAR 2625, as well as GAR 1514 of 1960 (or The Declaration on the Granting of Independence to Colonial Territories and Peoples). It must be emphasized that the latter Resolution pointedly states: “Any attempt aimed at the partial or total disruption of the national unity and the territorial integrity of a country is incompatible with the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations.” Indeed, insofar as cultural, religious or ethnic minorities are concerned, no general rights under the ambit of self-determination are actually applicable to them. International law justly recognizes (even if our government doesn’t) that the demands of political stability and territorial integrity of States are simply too important.

The maintenance, therefore, of the Philippine’s territorial integrity takes priority over any right, whether it be collective or individual, including those claimed under self-determination. As succinctly put by former UN Secretary General U Thant: “The United Nations has never accepted and does not accept and I do not believe it will ever accept the principle of secession of a part of a Member State.”

Which brings us back to the MILF. From the very start, I pointed out that the signing of the agreement with the government was the real and ultimate prize for that group. To a certain extent, the intervention of the Supreme Court thwarted that objective. The question is what the MILF will do next.

Bong Montesa (incidentally, an interesting look at him as a political partisan is in Phoenix Eyrie, Reloaded) presents this flowchart:

Has he selectively gamed the possibilities? On the surface, no. After all, the outcomes depend on what both the government and the MILF do, in response to certain developments.

Manuel Buencamino, in his column the other day, Just a piece of paper?, looks at what the MILF itself has said, and he says there is no ambiguity in what the MILF intends to do:

It’s obvious that the MOA is more than just a piece of paper that provides a “psychological boost” for the secessionist group. There is no turning back once the Arroyo administration signs the pact.

If the current government or any of its successors do not implement the accord “in the guise of following the Constitution,” the MILF will raise hell.

Ameen told Luwaran, “This is plain lokohan [foolishness] and the MILF cannot allow this to happen.”

The MILF will make war if it does not get the MOA it wants. This is obvious from the veiled threat published August 6, 2008, in the MILF’s Luwaran:

“The MILF has told the government of the Republic of the Philippines that its options to solve the Moro problem are reduced to only two: choose Vice Governor Emmanuel Piñol and his company, who are pushing for war, or to continue the path of peace with the MILF.”

The MILF can count on the support of Malaysia in case hostilities break out over the MOA. Malaysian mediator Othman Andul Razak, talking to the Associated Press on May 2, 2008, said, “If the government wants the talks to progress, it can do it. It can think creatively. But if it wants to stick to the constitution, things will not move.”

Othman characterized the Philippine position on Constitution processes as “harping on technical points.”

Malaysia cannot be blamed for acting in its national interest. The Bangsamoro Juridical Entity (BJE) controlled by the MILF will serve as a buffer state between the rest of the Philippines and Sabah.

The MILF has denied it promised Sabah to the Malaysians in exchange for support, but the May 7, 2008, statement of Mohagher Iqbal, MILF chief negotiator, sounds equivocal.

“Never for a single moment did we talk about [the Sabah claim]. With Malaysia as facilitator, it is only practical for us not to bring that up or include Sabah in our proposed homeland. We are silent on the issue. We never said it belongs to the Bangsamoro people, just as we never said it does not belong to us. It is a nonissue for us at this point,” he said.

The MILF and the Malaysians are acting in their best interests; is the Arroyo administration acting in the best interest of the nation?

The growing consensus, much to the fury and alarm of people emotionally invested in the RP-MILF agreement like Montesa (or Rudy Rodil: both surely sincere people but one wonders if they aren’t so close to the problem that they have lost all sense of perspective on the loyalty the rest of the country expects them to demonstrate to the Republic), is that the administration was neither negotiating in good faith, or with a clear comprehension of the implications of the deal, domestically and internationally. Read Yen Makabenta’s A peace that could lead to war. See, also, Miko Samson’s rebuttal of the view proposed by the government negotiators, that the Constitution is a trifling detail that shouldn’t get in the way of the historic agreement they (the negotiators) achieved. See also Moroland’s Weblog for recriminations within the Moro community.

As I told the young Moros on my show last Tuesday, my fear is we will be much further away from peace, because of an agreement that its negotiators claim brings us so close to achieving that peace. Mon Casiple in his blog, shows why the proponents of the agreement (whether foreign supporters like Mennonite peace builders) may be alienating a larger peace constituency:

In the present situation of a lameduck presidency with huge popularity deficit, any campaign for the public approval of the MOA-AD will meet stiff resistance.

What I am saying is this: Federalism may need to be revisited if it is touted as the framework solution to the Bangsamoro demand for their right to self-determination and to the question of just and lasting peace in Mindanao. It may bring more problems than it solves.

The only political path the peace process can take under the present situation is for government to undertake widespread and intensive national discussions, not to sell the MOA-AD but to discern the national consensus (particularly the limits of national concessions), go back to the negotiating table, and redraft a document based on this consensus. For the MILF, the same process should likewise be done among the Bangsamoro people, including the MNLF and other political groups within the community and bring their own consensus to the negotiating table. For the peace advocates, the main thing is for them to take a step back, to undertake the same national discussion with all stakeholders, and to disclaim their own biases in order to achieve a just and lasting peace based on a national consensus of all major stakeholders.

An entirely different topic -in that the proposals deserve serious consideration and debate- is the switch to Federalism. Ging Gagelonia, blogging At Midfield tackles one reason why the debate’s become poisoned by suspicions concerning the President’s motives. She took advantage of a resolution engineered in the Senate by Aquilino Pimentel, Jr.:

Pimentel says he has specified in the very title of the Senate resolution the limited scope of the Cha-cha train itinerary so that it will not have “side trips” that will tinker with other contentious changes in the 1987 fundamental law.

Pimentel also bellows that the Senate and House of Representatives will vote separate and not as a single chamber when they convenes as a constituent assemly.

But those are parameters as far as Pimentel is concerned. He himself is the first to admit that in this early stage of GMA’s Cha-cha push, the administration-controlled House could still throw in various alternate resolutions to complicate the debates before the two houses of Congress are able to pass an acceptable constituent assembly measure before the Cha-cha train leaves the station.

As for the proposals put forward by Pimentel, blogger Snow World (hat tip to Jester for pointing it out) zeroes in on the proposals and The Jester in Exile makes short shrift of them in two entries: Lazy Legislature and Ivory Towers of Power. I have my own reasons for agreeing with The Warrior Lawyer calling the President’s move “the Federalism of Convenience.” It isn’t something that has excited her except when politically expedient.

When I proposed to the President that she hold her 2004 inauguration in Cebu, it was on the basis of her making a symbolic, but meaningful, commitment to Federalism by doing so. It was endorsed by administration officials on that basis. But as it emerged, the President decided to be sworn into office in Cebu, not because of Federalism, but as a “thank you” for the province and city delivering their votes to her. You can see one reason I believe she suffers from a failure of imagination and the kind of approach she has to politics. you could see it again in 2006, when genuine and committed exponents of Federalism like Jose Abueva found themselves used -and abused- by an administration that found them a useful smokescreen for what it really wanted: lifting term limits and shifting to the parliamentary system.

And there you have it: she has a region rattled, governments scrambling to keep up, a situation unraveling, and for what? An expanded menu of political options under the smokescreen of a concept she neither fully comprehends or has ever genuinely subscribed to.

Manuel L. Quezon III.

68 thoughts on “Greater Malaysia

  1. These “heirs” of the sulu “sultanate” are a bunch of lazy extortionists. It’s 2008, hello, monarchy is dead.

    Sultanate of Sulu my pwet.

    They should get real jobs instead of pushing for this imaginary kingdom. What makes them think they are entitled to ‘inherit’ the land?

  2. PS. I’m not talking about the Moros who have struggled long enough..

    I mean the “Royal Families” of Mindanao who muddle the peace issue because they want to be enthroned.

  3. I really appreciate all the scholarly effort that was put into this very comprehensive post. (I’ll have to re-read and digest this again later!) But what was going through my mind was what was stated at the conclusion of this post: that all of these heated and comprehensive discussions on the BJE may end up as a smokescreen and very compelling distraction to what the president wants: to keep herself in power and prevent herself from being prosecuted.

  4. If they separate I don’t see how the way of life of Luzonians (and Kapampangans as a subset) will be affected negatively. We’ll lose territory, and subsequently government revenues from the taxation of the peoples, natural resourcesm, and the few multinationals that hold swathes of land in Mindanao.

    But then again, we’ll bleed too much money if we’re going to build that island’s infrastructure and invest in the education of it’s impoverished population. As it is, we’re already losing too much money with military spending in the war against the Muslim rebels.

    So I guess, a separate republic ala David Martinez (Republics of Luzon, Cordillera, Visayas, Mindanao, Bangsamoro), will put Luzon at the most advantageous position, with Visayas the second. This is so because Luzon already has a better infrastructure in place and the population resource are a bit more educated, and have higher incomes.

    Agree Luzonians?

  5. As well, if in a separate Bangsamoro republic, the Muslim leaders decide to create a “middle east” style governance of violent political power grab and civil war ensues, displacing the Christian population, most of the refugees would be of Cebuano extraction, hence, it will be the Republic of Visayas’ problem wouldn’t it? So we can just close our ports and guard our borders against this potential refugee problem and let Visayas and Malaysia deal with the problem.

    I don’t see Visayans descending into civil war though, so it is another plus if we ever become a separate Luzon republic.

  6. In a five republic scenario, Visayas would become Luzon’s “buffer” against the Muslims in the south (Bangsamoro, Indonesia, Malaysia).

  7. Luzon must also encourage the Chinese Pinoys in Visayas and Mindanao to migrate to Luzon and uplift the economy with their entrepreneurial spirit.

    That would be the dream for me – a nation comprised for the most part by Ilocanos, Pangalatoks, Kapampangans, Tagalogs, and Chinoys, with a few smattering of other ethic groups such as Aetas, Ibanags, Bicolanos etc. I can see more political and social cohesion

    You can keep the other ethnic groups.

  8. Thanks for the mention sir ^_^ and to Jester as well 😀

    I can say, this is the only post and longest, that I’ve read from beginning to end, and via Google Reader. It is very informative, objective, and considers many factors (how long did it take you to research and write this :p ) like Historical claims, Historical-Political situations (like how the Philippines allied itself with Indonesia versus Malaysia [which few people know or should I say fail to see, and simply dismiss as mere ‘conspiracy theories’]).

    Good read, great article!

    God Bless.

  9. The US supported the secessionists in Colombia that carved out a piece of real estate that is now Panama. The kitty was the Panama Canal. Before the Americans would turnover the Canal to the locals, they prepared for another canal of their own at the transit point used by the ’49ers. They supported the Contras but the Sandinistas were no match. Must they fail to get a foothold once more in the Phlippines for their base(s) now in Mindanao, that could be a thorn at the belly of the Muslim coddlers of terrorism and the windfall of natural wealth just for the taking.

  10. Does this mean that there is a race — Luzon vs Visayas vs Mindanao — on which will be the first to host the 21st century Clark-AirBase?

    At 75/25, that is a lot of revenue-stream to the host!!!

  11. pampaguenco: the 21st-century ClarkAirBase either protects the sea lanes (oil for Japan) or threatens the sea lanes (oil for China).

  12. Indeed, the Malaysians stands to gain from a Philippine client state that would be the BJE. the only angle I thought of was the Sabah angle. But now, the Spratly angle and the prospect of Malaysia dominating the region vis a vis Indonesia is really something worth pondering.

    I still think the US’ involvement here is deep, though. And the Malaysians probably know this, which is why KL has been opposing the US being involved in the talks.

    Although I still don’t get why the US would trust that the MILF, should it get BJE, will continue to serve Washington’s purpose. I’m sure the MILF would choose to be cater to the Malaysians instead. Or maybe the US, learning from its past experience, has plans on how to control the MILF and its BJE in the future? I’m beginning to think that we are seeing maneuverings of Malaysia and the US at the expense of the Philippines. Which is sad. Both countries are cunningly plotting for their national interests, and here’s the Philippines selling out.

    By the way, I though the Quadruple alliance is dead? Fukuda and Rudd killed it didnt they?

  13. pampagueno: Why host a base?

    Many Okinawans say “yes” (though of course, many Okinawans say “no”) to Kadena. Many South Koreans say “yes” (though of course, many South Koreans say “no”). Many Brits, many Germans say yes/say no. Spaniards, too.

    And I am glad you are saying it — little brown Filipinos. In particular, that Filipinos of year-2000 do not think think, behave, or deal with foreigners like the Filipinos of 1970’s or 1980’s or of 1950’s.

  14. Excellent comprehensive post, unfortunately the chosen time line will of course determine the outcome of the long dissertation. If we go a little further back then there is no basis for ancestral domain claim of MILF……… fer cryin’ out loud their ancestors were seafaring traders, fishermen, and occasional pillagers, hunting not wildlife but fellow non-Muslim Malays or other ethnic people for slavery. They don’t exactly lived off the land so what’s with the ancestral domain thingy……. Seriously, how do you resolve the issue of marginalization of the Moros if the ones representing them whether the trapos, warring clan leaders, armed MILF-MNLF have different perspective and religious interpretations?

  15. Now the scenario I mentioned long time ago is getting clearer….

    ” Kaibigang Razak, may Sabah ka rito. Balato na rin ang Spratly pagkatapos ma-approved ang MOA!”

  16. Empires are sustained by endless wars. Endless wars are only possible if you find a novel way of funding it. The dollar hegemony has given empire its own gold mine. Imposition of the dollar standard and the continous expansion of the industrial military complex into high tech to maintain military superiority.

    There are new players in the economic game who struck out on their own to industrialize. The fraud of the Washington Consensus has been exposed.

    “What has been called the Long War is likely to be many years of persistent, engaged combat all around the world in differing degrees of size and intensity. This generational campaign cannot be wished away or put on a timetable. There are no exit strategies. To paraphrase the Bolshevik Leon Trotsky, we may not be interested in the Long War, but the Long War is interested in us.” Robert Gates

    “The principal challenge, therefore, is how to ensure that the capabilities gained and counterinsurgency lessons learned from Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as the lessons re-learned from other places where we have engaged in irregular warfare over the last two decades, are institutionalized within the defense establishment. “

    “ To date, virtually all the costs associated with such capabilities have been covered by supplemental appropriations. Looking to the future, we need to find a long-term place in the base budget for them. “

    “If I’ve made it a point to emphasize the importance of this over the last year or so, it is because unlike the big conventional modernization programs, there has been no strong constituency inside or, for that matter, outside the Pentagon for a long-term resourcing of capabilities for irregular conflict. The danger is not that modernization will be sacrificed to fund asymmetric capabilities, but rather that in the future we will again neglect the latter. “

    “ I firmly believe that in the years ahead, our military is much more likely to engage in asymmetric conflict than conventional conflict against a rising state power. We must be ready for both kinds of conflict and fund the capabilities to do both. There is no doubt in my mind that the modernization programs will continue to have strong institutional and congressional support. I just want to make sure that the capabilities we need for the conflicts we’re in and most likely to face in the foreseeable future also are sustained long term. And that is the essence of the new National Defense Strategy. “ Robert Gates

    The view from the progressive side.
    “None of these problems will be cured so long as war remains our dominant political theme. But serious though they are, they pale in comparison with the larger problem of the international trade-and-financial order under conditions of permanent war. It is a straightforward fact that if global oil production starts to decline but U.S. consumption does not, everyone else will be required to cut purchases and uses of oil. But how can oil prices be held stable for Americans yet be made to rise for everyone else? Only by a policy of continuing depreciation in everyone else’s currency. Such a policy of dollar hegemony amid worldwide financial instability, of crushing debt burdens and deflation throughout the developing world, is perverse. It will make our trading partners’ exports cheap, render their imports dear and keep their real wages low. It will price American goods out of world markets and lead to unsustainable dependence on foreign capital. It will be a policy, in short, of beggar-all-of-our-neighbors while we live alone, in increasing idleness and inside the dollar bubble.”
    “This is the policy that Bush and Cheney are actually imposing on the rest of the world. But they cannot make it last. It will make lives miserable elsewhere, generating ever more resistance, terrorism and military engagement.” James K. Galbraith
    Unbearable Cost: Bush, Greenspan and the Economics of Empire by James K. Galbraith (good read)

  17. great blog manolo….

    On recent entry on bangsamaro land stating:

    “At most, it should be the land territory of the Sultanate of Maguindanao, Sultanate of Sulu, Rajaship of Buayan, the Maranao Confederacy and other Moro datuships as of 1898, the signing of the Treaty of Paris between America and Spain. This is because Spain had absolutely no right to cede what was not theirs. The Americans realized this and so they signed a separate treaty (the Bates Treaty) with the Sultan of Sulu.”

    that’s their claim but has NO LEGAL effect… the moros have been pawned by their own leaders…

    “A year prior, in December 1898, and with the Tausug (people of Jolo and neighboring islands) UNAWARE that they were among the pawn peoples whose fates were being decided at a table thousands of miles away, the Treaty of Paris was signed, which included their beloved string of islands. In the Treaty of Paris, Spain ceded Cuba, Puerto Rico and Guam to the U.S.; and for $20 million the entire Philippines. Included in this cession were the territories of Mindanao and Sulu, which actually had not been in full Spanish control.
    About two years later, on November 7, 1900, the U.S. paid an additional $100,000 to Spain to include in the 1898 cession the Sulu islands stretching as far west as Sibutu and Cagayan de Sulu.

    Here’s the Pawnshop: Article XV of the Bates Treaty Agreement

    The United States government will pay the following monthly salaries:

    To the Sultan $250.00
    (Mexican dollars)
    To Dato Rajah Muda $ 75.00
    To Dato Attik $ 60.00
    To Dato Calbi $ 75.00
    To Dato Joakanain $ 75.00
    To Dato Amin Hussin $ 60.00
    To Dato Puyo $ 60.00
    To Hadji Butu $ 50.00
    To Hadji Mura $ 10.00
    To Serif Saguin $ 15.00

    Signed in triplicate, in English and Sulu, at Jolo, this 20th day of August, A.D. 1899 (13 Arabmil Ahil 1317).


    More on Sharia law … not good for modern Muslims… itutuloy…

    sorry if posted twice

  18. if the moros want their land back, they have to pay back the Philippine government who gained independence from the United States..
    add inflation and interest plus penalty on crimes committed…

    SHARIA : Muslims against Sharia: Sharia Law must be abolished, because it is incompatible with norms of modern society. Islam, in its present form, is not compatible with principles of freedom and democracy .

  19. Why the U.S. speaks with a forked tongue. In occupied Iraq, the de-facto Kurdish state has already signed oil contracts with American and Canadian oil companies outside the frame of the “Iraqi National government”

    While the say that dismemberment of states is not their role they already have dismembered Iraq.

    It is unfortunate that most Georgians do not know why they have to die for British Petroleum and Chevron.

    Spheres of influence refers to access to markets and resources.

    As of the end of the year 2006 U.S. financial and commercial interests outside the U.S. amounted to $13 trillion. That hoard together with the dollarization of the global economy makes the U.S. the de-facto world economy, the de-facto world government.

    The Empire will strike down any challenges to its dominance.

    Please note that this was published in 2005

    Reversing the Polarity – Bretton Woods revisited?
    by Chris Cook

    “A very strong case has been made by William Engdahl (“A Century of War – Anglo-American Politics and the New World Order”: Pluto Press) that the three principal goals of US foreign policy in the last 100 years have been Energy Security; Energy Security and Energy Security.”

    “But it is becoming clear that the Iraq war – while aimed at reducing US reliance upon Saudi oil – may have unintended consequences in terms of changing the dynamics of the oil market generally and OPEC in particular.”

    “When it is considered that the US, with 5% of the global population, consumes 25% of global energy supplies, then we see the sheer impossibility for China or India to begin to approach US levels of consumption within the existing global political and financial market settlement which has maintained since Bretton Woods in 1944.”

    “But what is the alternative?”

    “Is oil priced in dollars or are dollars priced in oil?”

    “There has been a growing realisation on the part of major oil producers such as Iran and Saudi Arabia that oil is not priced in dollars but rather that dollars are priced in oil. The reality underpinning this epiphany is the fact that oil has “Value” ie “money’s worth” – in exchange for commodities, goods and services – whereas the financial object we are accustomed to think of as the “dollar” is merely a “claim over value” or IOU issued by the US Federal Reserve Bank.”

    “If we look at the current structure of the global energy market, we are accustomed to think that the “big bad wolf” is a “cartel” of OPEC members. However, the fact of the matter is that while there has been a cartel extracting extraordinary profits from energy markets in recent years this has consisted of intermediary investment banks and energy traders who control the global market platform on which oil is traded and benchmark prices set. In other words, the derivative tail has been wagging the oil market dog.”

    “This is set to get worse, to the extent that a major trading disaster is only a matter of time – possibly as soon as this winter if the prognosis of Goldman Sachs of “super-spikes” to $100/ barrel oil is realised. The reason for this is the fact that the investment banks and oil companies have themselves now lost control of the price-setting process to a wall of hedge fund money under the control of star traders attracted by rewards beyond the dreams of avarice – as opposed to the pittance they were receiving with their former employers.”

    “Hedge funds – as the Long Term Capital Management meltdown showed us in 1998 – are almost entirely unregulated since there is no regulatory body either with access to data in relation to their transactions (particularly “off-exchange”) or with the capability to take enforcement action over off-shore entities typically used by hedge funds.”

    “Due to the lack of transparency in “off-exchange” trading, oil producers and consumers do not even know that they are losing – a phenomenon which J K Galbraith memorably described as the “bezzle”. However, while oil producers and consumers have now woken up to the bezzle, the problem they have is what they can do about it.”
    Chris Cook

  20. Hi manolo,

    I watched the explainer from 1 to 5. It was interesting to know that a university professor was encouraging Sharia Law for BJE. It was shared by one of your female muslim audience.

    In my opinion, the BJE must ask itself if it wants to return to the isolation , or continue forward with Muslims and Christians nationwide who have learned to live side by side in a common culture of life.

    It bothers me to see such a great and noble religion dragged through the mud by its own. It is notable how differently Sharia law is implemented throughout the Muslim world. It seems women are more often punished than men. Also, corruption and cheating are seemingly not punished at all. I cannot believe the professor.( explainer part 4).

    Religious freedom is not negotiable. What’s negotiable is their freedom to govern their own affairs according to our Law..the constitution. To fully implement the process, the constitution maybe amended- ChaCha.

  21. The natives of Mindanao who follow the Muslim faith would be wise to study the history of Condi Rice, Zalmay Khalilzad and Hamid Karzai and their ties to the U.S. oil and gas (Chevron & Unocal) interests of the U.S. and the continuing problems in Afghanistan relative to the Taliban and the oil and gas reserves of Central Asia.

    Mining and oil exploration rights within Philippine territories and the eventual extraction is a billion dollar enterprise.

    That is the prize for whoever can resolve the lawlessness in the South.

    Indonesia, Malaysia, Vietnam and China have their own state owned energy companies.

    The weakest state in the area is the Philippines. Brunei is run by Shell Oil.

    The opening for the transnational integrated oil companies is guess which country???????


  22. This simply brings back the whole issue of our society’s collective ability to hold our leaders to account and evaluate INTELLIGENTLY what is going on and what they are up to.

    Check out our latest video on the Presidential Elections looming in the horizon:

    Just like mass marketing, propaganda, and the ramblings of evangelists, campaigns are nothing more than quaint mind tricks. However, even Obi Wan Kenobi and Darth Vader themselves admit grudgingly that their Jedi mind tricks work only on weak-minded fools. Let us not be quick to delegate our thinking to the most popular belief systems and their slogans. Let us evaluate our candidates with a critical mind this coming elections.

  23. “Do not trust the horse, Trojans! Whatever it is, I fear the Greeks, even bringing gifts”.

    We were already cheated in 2004.

    Are we going to allow Gloria to get away with Cha Cha and extend her reign indefinitely?

    Always Remember the Palace Spin Doctors’ Motto: FOOL YOU ONCE SHAME ON ME, FOOL YOU TWICE SHAME ON YOU!

    Gloria has mastered the politics of deception.

    Small lies.Big lies!!!

    Directly and By Omission!

    The Gloria Arroyo’s advocacy of charter change (cha-cha) is clearly a subterfuge for the extension of her term!

  24. Many observers are saying that local politicians do not really want their individual bailiwicks to progress and prosper. This is to maintain the trapos’ hold on their power. i.e. patronage politics. These patrons want to perpetuate the culture of utmost dependency of their constituents. Their clients to be reliant from birth to death.

    The analysts cite the situation not only the provinces in the ARMM but also some in Luzon and Visayas that, despite substantial resources poured in by the government, the areas remain underdeveloped. The pork barrel funds are used not for long-term development projects but for one-off projects which marginally benefit the area.

    This early, analysts are saying that local politcians are looking at ways to beat the computerized voting. Election automation could be designed to fail in some provinces in order to accomplish their selfish ends, with the connivance of the national aspirants.

    Delikado ito.

  25. to PSI: Many people have told me the same thing. Malacanang is doing its job — sending substantial resources. It is the local politicians that are responsible for the poor performance of the country with their misguided use of pork barrel.

  26. “The Cat is Out Of The Bag”

    Gloria meets local officials in Pampanga (August 16)

    The President did not speak to the media after the meeting but Pampanga officials present said they were happy to announce the president’s plan to start more projects in the province and the benefits they would be getting should the Constitution be amended.

    “Marami nang dapat palitan sa Konstitusyon natin at mas maganda na hahaba pa ang termino niya tayo din naman ang makikinabang,” (“There are many required changes in the constitution and it would be beneficial to extend her term”)Masantol mayor Peter Flores, speaking in Kapampangan, told media.

  27. to Equalizer: You seem to be surprised that some politicians from Pampanga want an extension to GMA’s term of office. That is no different from people of America who would be happy if Bill Clinton were to become president again (while others would be happy if the elder Bush were to become president again). Para lang iyan na may mga Moscow-citizens who want Putin to be president-for-life.

    Kaya nga may eleksiyon, eh. At panahon pa ni Ramos, usap-usapan na, marami na ngang dapat palitan sa Konstitusyon.

  28. Its high time that we seriously consider Federalization to jumpstart the country’s moribund development and flat-lining progress.

    Even with great strides in communication (broadband, wireless, etc.) and upgrade in transportation (more flights to the other islands, RORO, etc.), the culture, attitude, and psyche of Filipinos still require a person-to-person engagement.

    Not everything could be attended to by imperial Manila, even if you have the most serious, industrious, multi-tasking President and most efficient bureaucarcy .

    Let’s have ten or eleven less-tasking but more focused Federal State Premiers or Presidents.
    Let’s evaluate Senator Pimentel’s proposal or a variation of it.

    Sans the term extention for PGMA, the country should benefit from more power distribution, decentralization, and decontrol.

    Caveat emptor: I live

  29. malinaw na nakasulat sa kasaysayan na hindi nagpasakop sa mga Kastila ang mga kapatid natin sa Mindanao.
    sinubukan ng mga Amerikano subalit hindi sila nagtagumpay.
    lalo na siguro sa mga taga Luzon.

    mayroon silang gobyerno noon, mayroon silang mga pinuno, nakikipagugnayan na sila sa mga karatig bansa, mayabong ang kanilang kultura, mayroon silang magandang kasaysayan na maipagmamalaki sa mga darating na henerasyon…

    marapat lamang na ipagkaloob sa kanila ang tinubuong lupa na kanilang ipinaglaban noon at ipinaglalaban magpasahanggang ngayon..

    napapanahon narin para ituwid ang baluktot na paniniwala na nakasaad sa mga aklat ng kasaysayan ng Luzon ……

  30. @leytenian

    The United States government will pay the following monthly salaries:

    To the Sultan $250.00;To Dato Rajah Muda $ 75.00
    …To Hadji Mura $ 10.00…To Serif Saguin $ 15.00

    The US is still doing this if you look at who benefits most from US Scholarships and other aid…

    I know one mindanao ‘royal’ who has two masters and is thinking of getting another one…(courtesy of the US taxpayer of course)….the rest of the population have no chance at all to benefit from the social mobility (and the knock-on effects) afforded by a decent education because the heirs of the royal houses of mindanao ang nagpapasa-pasahan ng mga aid na iyan…

    ang ulterior motive naman ng us ay to make sure the ‘potential’ leaders are on their side kaya hala sige welcome to the kennedy school of government…

  31. Nagkakamali ka Mandaragat. And mga Mohammedan Filipinos ay nasakop ng mga Amerikano matapos ang mahabang at madugong digmaan.

    Matapos ang digmaan, and Senado ng Estados Unidos ay kinilala ang Mindanao bilang isang seperadong Nasyon, at ang Pilipinas binubuo ng Luzon at Visayas.

    Ito ay alam ni Emilio Aguinaldo, at nilinaw niya ito paulit-ulit na ang kangyang pag-deklara ng Kalayaan ng Pilipinas noong Hunyo 12, 1898 ay patungkol lamang sa Luzon at Visayas – Ang Pilipinas.

    Subalit, nang nakaupo na si Diosdado Macapagal, and ama nang kasalukuyang Presidente ng Pilipinas, iniutos niya na tumira sa Mindanao ang mga ibang lahi upang ma-kontra ng gobyerno ni Diosdado sa harapan ng Estados Unidos ang pagbibigay ng Kalayaan sa Nasyon ng Mindanao.

    Dahil dito, hindi ibinigay ng Estados Unidos ang Kalayaan ng Mindanao, at tuluyan na ngang napasailalim ng Pilipinas ang naturang lugar.

    Ito ay tinanggap nila ng maluwag at kinilala nila ang kanilang mga sarili bilang Filipino-Muslims o Mohammedan Filipinos. Hanggang sa inilipat ni Diosdado Macapagal ang Kalayaan ng Pilipinas na dating Hulyo 4.

    Ito ay ikinagalit ng mga Mohammedan Filipinos dahil ang Hunyo 12 ay Kalayaan ni Emilio Aguinaldo para sa Luzon at Visayas laban sa mga Espanol. Alam natin lahat ng hindi nasakop ng mga Espanol ang Mindanao kaya tinawag nilang mga “Moro” ang nakatira doon, kung papaano nila tinatawag ang mga taga Luzon at Visayas na “Indio”.

    Kinikilala ng mga Mohammedan Filipinos ang Hulyo 4 na Kalayaan, dahil ito ang tunay na nangyari sa kasaysayan. At pangalawa, sa paglipat ni Diosdado Macapagal ng Kalayaan ng Pilipinas sa Hunyo 12, pinalalabas ng Gobyerno ng Pilipinas na hindi nito kinikilala ang Mindanao at ang mga Mohammedan Filipinos bilang kapantay at kapwa Filipino.

    Ito ay isang napaka-laking pagkakamali at dumagdag lamang sa mga apoy na sumisigaw ng Seperasyon. Ngayon, ang kanyang anak na si Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo ay ginagawa ang lahat para ITUWID ang malaking (katangahan at) pagkakamali ng kanyang ama.

    Subalit, ito ay isa nanamang kahangalan. Hindi pagtutuwid ang pag rereberso o pag ne-“negate” ng isang tapos na. Ang tamang pagtutuwid ay ang pagtulong lumago sa mga kapatid nating Mohammedan Filipinos.

    Maraming dekada na ang lumipas. Nagbago na rin ang kanilang buhay, pananaw, paniniwala, at pagkakakilanlan. Sila ay mga Filipino at kinikilala nila ang kanilang sarili bilang isang Filipino.

    Uulitin nanaman ba ng mga Macapagal ang pagtapon sa kanila?

    Si Diosdado Macapagal ay ipinahiwatig niya na hindi niya kinikilala ang mga Mohammedan Filipinos sa paglipat niya ng Kalayaan sa Hunyo 12 ni Emilio Aguinaldo.

    Si Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo ay gustong ibigay ang Seperasyo ng mga Mohammedan Filipinos.

    Ito ay parehong pagtatakwil at pagtatapon sa isang Nasyon na ating pinigilan na magkaroon ng Kalayaan noon. Ngayong hindi na nila kailangan at huli na ang lahat, at kinikilala na nila ang sarili nila bilang Filipino, itatapon naman sila ulit ng isang Macapagal.

    Ang lahat ng gulong ito ay nagmula sa mga Macapagal, at inuulit lang ng kasalukuyang Presidente ang kahangalan ng kanyang yumaong Amang si Diosdado Macapagal.

    At siyempre, ang ugat din ng kaguluhang ito ay nanggaling din sa Estados Unidos. Katulad na lamang ng gulo sa pagitan ng Pilipinas-Sultan of Sulu at Sabah at Malaysia patungkol sa Sabah, na ang ugat ay ang Britanya.

    Pinag-lalaruan lang tayo ng mga kapangyarihan sa Kanluran, sana magising na tayong lahat.

  32. Hi Nash,

    “The US is still doing this if you look at who benefits most from US Scholarships and other aid…”

    Let’s review US POLICY on war against terrorism:

    In 2001 after sept 11, Mindanao became one of the fronts
    in the U.S. war on terror. Indeed, since 9/11, U.S. foreign policy has given considerable military and diplomatic support to the Philippine government in its counter-insurgency war against two local Islamist groups–the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, or MILF, and Abu Sayyaf, one one of al Qaeda’s most aggressive affiliates in Southeast Asia.

    Funds are chanelled thru USAIDS. The Program is GEM 3

  33. in the context of a “moro homeland” claimed by the “young moro league” based on historical claims, there is well-settled legal doctrine, accepted by both local and international laws, called acquisition by prescription in civil law or adverse possession that ripens into ownership at common law. internationally, it recognizes transfer of sovereignty after a long, continuous and adverse possession (under a color of title) by the transferree.

    the acquisitive prescription or adverse possession by the philippines with respect to the claimed moro homeland appears to have started with the treaty of paris of 1896 and continued uninterruptedly through the present. more than a century of adverse possession leaves no room for doubt as to philippine ownership and sovereignty over the so-called moro homeland.

    a claim based upon history is, i believe, not viable at best and frivolous at worst. otherwise, sovereignties of countries like u.s., australia, south africa, canada, to name just a few, could be open to question.

  34. mlq3, here you go again with conjuring up ghosts to haunt you. why can’t the president take a position about anything without being “suspected” of sinister motives.

    pgma happens to be a politician. any politician worth his/her salt adopts a course of action that, according to her vision, could benefit the country. the fact that the position she takes could, or could not, benefit her politically in a personal way, does not justify a conclusion, or even suspicion, of bad faith.

    no less that the current leading proponent of federalism, sen. pimentel who is one of the severest critic of the president, practically gives assurance that gma would not, could not, or would be prevented from, using the cha-cha as a means to extend her term as president.

    btw, speculating about what was in the president’s mind in deciding to take the oath of office in cebu in 2004 borders on walang katuturang tsismis.

  35. @leytenian

    the US also supports whichever warlord will toe the line. so if it means sending sultan sira-ulo’s children to the ateneo, they will do it.

    of course, if i were gma, it makes sense to blame everything on al qeda as this is a guaranteed source of aid…

    (but like georgia, we should never delude ourself that the usa will come to help defend las islas catolicas filipinas when the mighty chinese army runs out of space making knock-off guccis and annexes the spratlys permanently…)

  36. Tama si far below. Sa hinaba-haba man daw ng prucision sa CHA-CHA rin ang tuloy. Wala namang sinabi ang MOA na iyan, o’ ang usapan sa BJE o’ ano mang may kinalaman sa gulo sa Mindanao.

    Naghahanap lang si GMA ng bangka, maski nga bangkang papel pwedeng gamitin para masakyan lang ng CHA-CHA. Sino nga naman ang Pilipinong kusang bibitiw sa kapangyarihan gayong ang sarap magpasasa doon. Lalo na kung ikaw ay ipinaglihi sa duron…kain-popoh/kain-popoh/kain-popoh/kain-popoh, ’till death do us part.

    Pero ako kampante lang, lalo na ngayong alam ko na kung ano ang mangyayari kapag pinilipit ang leeg ng taong-bayan para lang ipilit ang CHA-CHANG ito.

    Ipupusta ko ang sampo ko manalo ng piso ang CHA-CHA na isasakay sa bangkang papel ay malulunod lang sa Pasig River.

    Pinasasarap lang ang mga alipores at iba pa riyan na uma-asa, hehehehe.

  37. Our generation is already having difficulty solving the many problems. The Executive department of Education has failed to supplement or implement the proper learning tools and education to the youth. Lack of budget is not an excuse but what’s weak is the lack of managerial skills. The media must also focus on reporting issues from the bottom not just from the TOP. Identifying problems directly from the bottom or local government units by engaging the younger students and parents to voice out their opinion will guide their political leaders to come up with a better solution.

    “Lower levels of elective office can constitute an arena for training and recruiting new political leaders, including women and young people who have not previously had a role in political life. And these lower levels of democracy provide a more accessible means for citizens to become active in public affairs, such as to question their local officials, monitor what they do, present their interests and concerns, and learn the skills and values of democratic citizenship”

    This is one reason why I also like to Chacha and I will support Gloria to continue what Ramos and Estrada’s failure to implement. Decentralization of power will prevent further abuse of our already corrupt system.

  38. All the discourses and reactions i have read fail to address the basic issues raised by Bong Monteza. Stripping all the political colors on the issue i will rather wait for the decision of the Supreme Court

  39. To All
    Iam really bothered by the premise of the MOA concerning the First Nation concept. This concept is applicable to the Native Americans because they preceded the Europeans.
    Will anybody expand on this matter

  40. To Vic:
    Since The term “First nations” wascoined for the indigenous peoples of Canada (Inuit and Metis) you might want to expound.
    After that please relate it to the Philippine setup.

    Now on Mindanao not occupied by US????
    rememeber Gen. John J. Pershing?

    on 1900 he was Adjutant General, Department of Mindanao and Jolo, Philippines

    back to that First Nation:
    I read an article by retired Justice isagani Cruz.
    Cruz tried in vain to resolve the issues on IPRA at the supreme court.

    As far as the senate hearing concerning the indigenous peoples are concerned:the resorce speaker I listened to; is that he submitted position papers both to grp and the milf.

  41. KG, just if my memory serves me right, the “first nations” term was coined by the Chief of the one of the Indian Band in the 80’s and you will be surprised it does not include the other indigenous People like the Inuits and metis (of mixed parentage, Indian and French) but was in reality for the purpose of ‘changing the Term’ Status Indian’ for the ascertaining of Federal Benefits to the more than 600 different bands which all separate or collective Treaties with the Federal Government.

    Unlike, in the U.S where the ‘Natives’ are called Native Indians, I never heard that Term used, as far as I remember there were only the Status and non-status before the First Nations. I don’t have a very in-depth knowledge about the Rights and Privileges of our First Nations, but there are Provisions in the Charter that specifically noted that the Rights and Freedoms stated in the Charter would not in anyway affect the Rights and Privileges and Freedoms granted in the Past Treaties and Agreement entered between the Governments and the First Nations and would not impede the Future Agreements and Treaties. All is safeguarded so as not to again go Back and do the Cha-Cha…that would be too tiring..don’t you think soo?

  42. As to the Indigenous people of the Philippines, I would say the are the forgotten ones..there are the Negritoes or the Aetas, what deal did they get? the Ifugaos and those should include, if Pilipinos know their Origin right, all that were originally inhabitants of the Islands , as to their Tribes, before the Malay Race had landed and some of them vanished without most of us knowing..As far as I am concern the MILF just happened to be strong Political Movement, capable of demanding their own Autonomy and they can not be classified as First Nation. And that is why to accommodate this Particular Group, the Government of GMA (and maybe for some other reasons) will go to the extent of Cha-Cha, she can call Her Own, perhaps the only Legacy she can leave behind if it turns out to be what it purports to be…and all we can do for now is post our 2 cents worth…

  43. A pattern comes out of the woodwork every once in a while, subtle, but visible still to the discerning eye. We seem to have multiple targets nowadays, the MILF, the US, China, and even each other…
    Personally, if the US, China, or even Malaysia takes a very serious interest in occupying the country we won’t be able to do anything about it…but would they? If we look like we’re making a mess of things here, giving an impression of ineptitude, thats a clear invitation for others to meddle in our affairs, especially if their interests may be jeopardized by our inadequacy. Who in his right mind would interfere if we are determined, superbly managed, united, happy, robust, and proud of ourselves?
    What we can do really is to take care of business “our business” like getting rid of Gloria, cleaning up congress, senate, the local government, and the whole national political conscience, and stop tinkering with the constitution for goodness sake…

  44. One question someone asked before ” Who the hell gave the MILF the right to speak for the moslems?” and “Why are we negotiating with them, aren’t they rebels?”

  45. …or kick their butts out to Sabah, or maybe Boston, where they can make old man Bencard their Imam!

  46. claymore, thanks for the left-handed compliment but i’m not even a muslim and have no intention of becoming one. you may be surprised, i bet, i look younger that you, old boy.

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