Monday, January 21, 2008

Bernas Would Create Afghanistan in Mindanao Using Chacha

Founding Father Joaquin Bernas, SJ, writes in PDI today about how simple it would be for the Congress to enact Surgical Constitutional Change as a means of achieving peace and solving the Mindanao problem. (Yeah, right!) Never mind that it involves surgically creating a Frankenstein Unitary Federal Republic...
From what I have seen of the conflict in Mindanao and of the efforts to achieve permanent peace in the region, I have become convinced that lasting peace cannot be achieved without some significant changes in the structure of government in Mindanao... In my view, the search for a solution to the Mindanao problem can be approached through this “surgical” method. More specifically the goal can be either a reformulation of the powers that can be given to the Autonomous Region or the formation of a federated state for Mindanao. I believe that a limited constitutional change can be achieved by Congress under the present constitutional provision without disturbing the rest.
If carried out, the Congress could end up establishing a kind of Afghanistan in Mindanao. Call it the Federated State of Bangsamorostan, a kind of State-within-a-State, a single "federated" Islamic theocracy surgically carved out of the unitary Philippine Repubic. But we are assured by the good Father Bernas that such an entity can be achieved "without disturbing the rest."

Hashim Salamat, Eid Kabbalu, Nur Misuari, and the rest of the Dr. Jekylls and Mr. Hydes in Mindanao's liberation front industry must be sharpening up their surgical axes already, while the folks that did Bali are eagerly looking forward to their new Base and Homeland in Mindanao, courtesy of the Philippine Congress and Father Bernas.

See you at Plebiscite time, Father!


manuelbuencamino said...


On this issue I agree with you.

I my column last week I wrote that this federal state or whatever they call it is appeasement not peace. It is self mutilation, cutting away bits and pieces of the country to appease armed rebels.

The won't stop until they get their independence. Here's what Muhammad Ameen has to say:
“[T]he days of integration and ‘autonomy’ as in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao [ARMM] are over, and it [MILF] will only sign an agreement with the government if it establishes genuine governance for them either in the form of ‘state’ or ‘substate’.”

The government has to defeat the MILF and any other secessionist group Either through force of arms or preferrably by destroying their political support by adroit use of propaganda and all that.

Either this bullshit has to stop, They are part of the Philippines. Period. Live with it or move to Sabah. Oops that's Philippine territory too.

Meanwhile Malaaysia is threatening to pull out its monitoring force if no peace ageement is reached by July. Good riddance! We all know that there mediation is aimed at creating a buffer state between Mindanao, Sulu, Tawi-Tawi, Palawan and their stolen territory, Sabah.

Lester Cavestany said...

I personally agree with your views. Perhaps now is not the time to give autonomy to that region in Mindanao. Pres Ramos signed a peace treaty with them in 1996 and everything seemed alright. But when there was a change in leadership, the fighting started again and apparently, the government troops faced stronger forces because some leaders of the Autonomous regions have provided more military training for their troops, with the help of international funding of course.

Maybe autonomy can be discussed in the future when our country is more stable.

AdB said...

Agree with you Dean.

AdB said...

I've been vehemently opposed to Malaysia's incursion right on Philippine territory from the outset; that this government is kowtowing to Malaysia's desiderata is completely idiotic.

Out with Malaysia's "peacekeeping" shit!

Agree with Manuel -- we gotta eliminate these parallel armies but how do you do that when you have an official army that cannot move because its commanders are busy politicking in the halls of malacanang?

AdB said...


Don't want them in Sabah -- What I suggest is for these parallel armies to be expelled to the Spratlys (Ayungin island!)

AdB said...

In the mid-90s, the Malaysians started building a sophisticated naval base at the doorstep of the island of Sulu and used it to train their special naval operation forces (equivalent to the Paras of the British Army). The Malaysians have now upgraded it into a moern submarine base.

There is no doubt to my mind that the establishment of an attack submarine base in the area is to ward off any potential trouble with the Philippines that may emanate over Sabah in the future. To my mind, they have not ruled out the possibility of a war at all with the Philippines and are thus are getting more than prepared for any eventuality.

Given that, it is very easy to imagine that the turmoil in Mindanao has served as a welcome respite for Malaysia while they continue to reinforce their military presence in Sabah

(I'm inclined to think that Malaysia is encouraging the insurgency problem in Mindanao!!!.)

It also isn't difficult to presume that in spite of the so-called depressed economy hitting the Muslim population in the Southern region of the Philippines, the MILF and their brothers in arms, the Abu Sayyaffs are equipped with the most modern firepower on offer today thanks to the unflailing logistical support from our next door "friendly and brotherly" neighbours, the Malaysians.

It isn't at all farfetched either to imagine that these Malaysians who are disguising their presence in Mindanao as ceasefire monitors could be part and parcel of Malaysia's overall plan to distract the Filipinos from laying eyes on and claiming Sabah back.

Amadeo said...

O Mindanao, My Mindanao!

So many want to participate in its harvest, so few to till the soil, sow and water its seed!

DJB Rizalist said...

It's the Garden of Eden, where all our original sins lie.

RR said...

What are the chances of this federated state from becoming reality?

Is this inevitable or just more noise?