Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Give her enough rope

“Aaminin kong may pagkukulang kami sa intelligence community, pero lahat na intelligence community sa buong mundo ay nasisingitan din ng mga masasamang loob. E, mas malaki ang budget nila nasisingitan pa rin, at mas malaki ang mga bombang sumasabog sa kanila. [I will admit we are inept but so are other intelligence agencies in the world.] ” —National Security Adviser Norberto Gonzales on why he won’t resign despite being caught off-guard by the recent spate of bombings in ARMM

The Palace said the Sunday morning bomb that killed five and wounded dozens in Cotabato City bore “the signature of the special operations group of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front [MILF].”

In the same breath, the Palace pointed out that the matter is still under investigation. So maybe it’s the MILF. Or maybe it’s not.

Meanwhile, the opposition is not doing anybody any good raising alarms that the bombings are part of a Palace plot to declare martial law. They have no proof.

Without evidence, warnings about an elaborate Palace shadow play involving terror bombings are nothing more than shouts of “Theater!” in a crowded fire.

Here’s what I mean:

“We’re only two weeks away from Mrs. Arroyo’s last Sona [State of the Nation Address] and we’re seeing a spate of despicable bombings in Mindanao. It doesn’t take a genius to piece the two together to surmise that something bizarre is going on,” said a leader of the opposition.

In the same breath, he said he was not discounting the MILF’s role in the bombings. So maybe it’s the Palace or maybe it’s not.

The public will just have to be patient. It may take a while before it becomes clear whom the Palace boob was alluding to when he urged everyone “not to yield the day to political harlots who wish to profit from the unsettled situation.”

Seriously, there is too much lawless violence in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM). There have been 38 terror bombings since January. The governors of North and South Cotabato said people in their area have started to arm themselves.

Gloria Arroyo must prevent the “unsettled situation” from deteriorating into anarchy. She must put a stop to the bombings and bring the perpetrators to justice. And she has the means to do it.

The Constitution says, “The President shall be the Commander-in-Chief of all armed forces of the Philippines and whenever it becomes necessary, he may call out such armed forces to prevent or suppress lawless violence, invasion or rebellion.”

What is Gloria waiting for, more bombings and more mangled bodies?

The opposition, for its part, must change tack. They must urge Gloria to declare martial law in ARMM and give her all the tools she needs to deal with the terror bombings. “Give her enough rope…” as the old saying goes.

How much time does she need, three months? Fine. Does she want to eavesdrop on all communications within ARMM? Fine. Does she want to monitor the movement of funds in that area? Fine. Does she want warrantless searches? Fine, but no suspension of free speech, no torture and no salvagings.

Give her everything she says she needs so that if she fails to stop the bombings and to apprehend perpetrators, she will have no excuse.

Box her in. If she can’t make martial law work in ARMM, she can’t claim she can make it work anywhere else.

On the other hand, if she stops the bombings and apprehends the bombers, then she has no more reason for martial law, in ARMM or anywhere else.

Either way, whether she succeeds or fails, her option of placing the entire country under martial law because of bombings is off the table.

Hopefully that will put a stop to all the blather about shadow plays. And we can now focus on real issues like where to jail Bonnie and Clyde when the time comes.

SOURCE: Life in Gloria's Enchanted Kingdom


Jun Bautista said...


If I follow you correctly you are for GMA having martial law or emergency rule in the ARMM area so that it will serve the dual purpose of stabilizing the situation there and preventing GMA from having a basis for martial law elsewhere, to stymie the opposition apprehensions of shadowy Malacañang manuevers. But will this not all the more make the opposition apprehensive? In fact you have observed in your "Mestizo Martial Law" article that this would guarantee victory for the administration in the 2010 elections, hinting at the possibility of vote-rigging in a military-run locality.

By the way, a martial law is not a license to suspend individual liberties . . . at least as far as the Philippine Constitution is concerned.

manuelbuencamino said...

Yes Jun. Mestizo martial law would help insure admin victory in ARMM.

That;s why the purpose of urging her to declare martial law in ARMM now is so that by the time the campaign period starts the bombers should have been apprehended. Thus there's no more reason for it.

And if she can't catch those people by December despite martial law... well that says a lot about her ineptness.

I'm not bothered by the apprehensions of the opposition because those fears will never go away. It's the blather of people like Eddie Villanueva et al that irritates me.

On a selfish note, better she declares martial in ARMM, where there is really a breakdown in law and order, than over the entire country. Why should there be martial law in Boracay?

Anonymous said...


Bakit ka naman nagpro-propose ng martial law samantalang alam mo naman na walang hanggan ang kasuwapangan ni Gloria M. Arroyo. Sabi nga bigyan mo ng 1" yan isang milya ang hahagurin.

Ano ang pipigil kay Glue na sa ARMM lang pananatiliin ang martial law? Ano ang pipigil sa kanya na sabihing lumalaganap ang terorismo at kailangan na buong Pinas ang ilagay sa Martial law?

Palagay ko medyo dalos-dalos ang mga rekomendasyopn mo.

Isang tagahanga mo.

manuelbuencamino said...


Sana sa sagot kong ito ay mapaliwanag ko kung bakit nasabi ko na "give her enough rope..." (to hang herself.)

Walang makakapigil na gawin niya ang martial law sa buong bayan kung gusto niyang gawin yan. Nasa sa kanya ang poder.

Ang aking pakay na give her enough rope ay para makita ng sambayanan at lalo na ng mga sundalo na ang martial law ay isang pekeng solusyon. Yan ay mapapakita lang natin kung gagawin ang martial law sa isang lugar na nagkakawindang-windang na tulad na ARMM.

Sa ngayon ang tingin ko ang political dialogue ay ganito:
GMA - may hawak akong baril at ipuputok ko ito kung magloko kayo

Opposition - may hawak na baril si GMA at may plano siyang iputok sa atin.

Sumali ako sa usapan at ito ang sinabi ko - iputok mo na. pero siguraduhin mo na mapapatay mo kami

Anonymous said...


Tiyak na patay tayo kung sakali na iputok ni GMA ang hawak niyang baril. Maari na may matira sa atin, ngunit handa ka bang pahawakin ng baril ang isang baliw o mas pa diyan ang isang ganid sa kapangyarihan o isang kriminal na handang humawak sa patalim upang iligtas ang kanyang buhay?

Bakit kailangan pang maraming magdusa, kung ang sanhi ng ating paghihirap ay iisang tao na pandak sa pangangatawan at kaluluwa at peke pati na ang soso?

Cut the head and the body dies with it. Diba yan ang kasabihan?


manuelbuencamino said...


Ang akin lang naman ay hamon sa baliw: "Ang tagal mo ng tinututok yan baril na yan so iputok mo na kung ipuputok mo. Sawa na ako sa duruan ng duruan,"

Jm Benavidez Estoque said...

martial law? hmm...

malay natin...
Ang naging imahen ng martial ng panahon ni Marcos ay iba sa magigiging imahen ng sa ngayon kung ito man ay matupad...