Wednesday, November 23, 2016

The Marcoses and the Heroes’ Cemetery

The Marcos family has made headlines again after having the former president Ferdinand Marcos Sr. in the cemetery where soldiers, presidents and others with bestowed honors are buried. These caused the happiness among loyalists and dismay among those who are against the burial.

(The Pitzviews Note: This article is in its neutralist form of presenting viewpoints which is the main aim of this blog site. False Dichotomy is highly discouraged in the blog site’s viewpoints since it defeats the course of discussion. Ad Hominems and Ad Ignorantiam arguments are also discouraged. It is here to balance, and analyze the given situation based on what is out in the open. Spread love, not hate.)

The Burial. Via
The story is all about a leader who declared Martial Law in order to preserve the country at that time from the insurgents such as the newly-formed New People’s Army (NPA) which is an armed branch of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP). The period is considered by several people as the darkest periods the Philippines have ever seen where stringent military rules are applied. That means, it suppress the so-called freedom of expression, movement, and several others. The good side of that instills discipline on the people that it is part of the better plans of the so-called new society. However, there are reports of killings and missing persons which are by nature, unexplainable since there are no specifics so as for that.

Now at present day situations which the main issue is given. On a Friday noon of November 18, 2016, the Marcos family surprisingly announced that the burial of the former President to be done on that day in the Libingan ng Mga Bayani, or Heroes’ Cemetery. This is after the decision made by the Supreme Court that the said burial is legal under the duress of the law. Such kind of surprises gives a mix of reactions among the people. There are some who are crying with happiness and joy so as the issue about the atrocities of the past will be gone buried along with his corpse with the hopes of moving on to the things that are done during the Martial Law and instead looking forward to a brighter future being a Pro Philippines (ProPH). The others meanwhile are angry where these people protested with their own various means. Unprepared activists gone to the cemetery to show their dismay where there is no clear organization given the quick time of the announcement. Various schools, prominently Christian, also participated in the protests that makes them the targets of flak from the people in the social media given the gravity of the events and the nature of the arguments given by both side, especially on the alleged faults of the Martial Law years that may seen as obscured considering that several cases have dismissed both in local and international courts.

Given the highlighted situation that this issue faces today in the extent of the nation’s face as well as the citizen’s collective thoughts about the issue itself based on various preferences, let us unravel and analyze the decision, the event and the dilemma with regards to the burial of the ex-president whom the against called “the dictator.”

The former President. Photo from GetReal Philippines.
It all started from the declaration of Martial Law in September of 1972. The country at that time is plagued with violent protests and numerous bombings which included the Plaza Miranda bombing which caused several casualties among those who participated in a Liberal Party campaign there at that time. Accordingly to several historical accounts, which are allegedly fabricated by the succeeding administration as per the loyalists, the regime is renowned to have numerous human rights violations which are ranging from tortures of various types to number of disappearances of several people as well as the number of unknown killings in that period.

Accordingly, the decision was moved and declared for preservation of democracy in the light of communist movements in the region at that time. It was known that Vietnam War is on its climax at that time, communist insurgents in the country are on the rise as well as the Moro secessionist movements in the south. Citing the law for insurrection, rebellion and other notable causes that are grounded for such decision, it was no doubt that the declaration has made in the sense that violence shall be oppressed by all means, by both the military and its constabulary branch (police).

Legally speaking, the martial law is indeed justified due to given provisions by law in order to preserve law and order in the whole nation. This is for suppressing violators as well as communists where allegedly in the process have the plans to create a communist state emulating the likes of China at that time citing Maoism ideology. However, these may come at the down side. Many oppressed per se considered this as “morally unjust” that there are accordingly several innocent people fell victim to the regime’s prowess of power. Those accounts pertaining to such atrocities can be found across the internet through a search engine or probably, on several reputable media outlets where several people branded them as “unreliable.”

Going to the present situations today, the burial simply had taken place. It is then noted that the former president is not allowed to go home back to the Philippines under the administration of ex-Pres. Cory Aquino. Thereafter that, ex-Pres Marcos died in Hawaii at that time on Sept. 28, 1989. The body was allowed to send home as per permission from then-president Fidel Ramos. Somewhere under the administration of Estrada, there comes the idea of having the so-called dictator to be buried in the Heroes’ Cemetery. Such idea was scrapped due to intense opposition at that time. It was then ignored by the President Noynoy Aquino under his tenure where the plea is ignored. But everything changed upon the administration of President Duterte where he promised that the burial will be made soon. These agreements made several people who are against the burial appeal to the Supreme Court which at first implemented an Ante-order to delay it. Then, the same justices voted in favor to the allowing the former president Marcos to bury in the cemetery in the decision of 9 favoring versus 5 who disapproved. These are under the provisions that the prerequisite on having such burial is to be a soldier or a distinguished public official with the exception of anything morally concern thereof. From there then, the rest is history.

From these first four paragraphs, we are will now weighing the sides of the argument plus several other things that are not included in those points given. The decision was made in accordance to its legality where the Supreme Court decided that it is the Marcos family can bury the former president in the Heroes’ Cemetery intended for the soldiers of the armed forces. It is not dismissible to the fact that he himself was a soldier at that time fighting against the Japanese Occupation during the Second World War as a guerilla fighter. He being the president under his tenure is also another requisite for him to get buried in the said cemetery in which under his term there are many infrastructure projects have made. Some of those projects implemented are the North Luzon Expressway, the South Luzon Expressway, San Juanico Bridge, Lung Center of the Philippines, Kidney Center, Basilan State College, Western Mindanao State University, among others. The main issue about him are two, primary things: first, the abuses of martial law and second, the ill-gotten wealth incurred by them.

In the first one, it is well-known that martial law was implemented with the explanations given on the third paragraph in this analytical subtopic. The main point for implementation is to oppress violence that harms the nation in general so as also to enhance order in the society which is badly needed to implement in. Hence, the point of those so-called victims of the regime having their rights abused can be seen as defying or being a staunch critic of the government at that time where it is indistinguishable with the communists where it can be justified, not to mention that several violators undertake some harsh punishments in the process where one can say that they play victim, citing human rights albeit the wrong doings. In the second one meanwhile, the so-called ill-gotten wealth are gone blurry due to the thing that the ex-president was already rich before rising into power. Thos are, according to numerous conspiracy theories ranging from Yamashita gold to the Tallano version of it saying that they gathered portions of gold bullion deposited on numerous accounts in several banks across the world. Speaking of these, the Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG) are filing cases under Pres. Cory Aquino’s tenure where these numerous cases are dismissed which all are favorable to the Marcoses, signifying that allegations of plunder of government wealth are deemed false. Speaking with these, there are supporting documents in such a matter about the bill of lading and other necessary documents to support their claim. Despite all those, several amounts of that wealth are returned to the National Treasury in several given amounts coming from the Swiss banks (amounts given are varied according to several sources, and such allegations therein are also dismissible as some sort of “hoax” given the reports.)

Putting all of these things in summary, the issue in itself hangs in the balance between its morality and legal matters considering that such kind of decisions really give mixed reactions among the people. Moreover, there is one big thing that is ascertain about this issue, which is it creates more division among the people than uniting altogether. The consideration in this matter is that albeit the messages that people concerned must be move on or simply just stay silent because they didn’t experience martial law at that time, the messages of the other side about crying foul can be considered in this country which promotes freedom of expression. Moreover to that, the idea of national healing is indeed an ideal thing where people can forgive and look forward to the progress of the nation. That is somewhat the victims cannot simply accept on. There is somehow some sort of justice where such atrocities may bear true. Albeit the responsibilities of the Constabulary and the Military about the kinds of inhumane acts given, one can say that one can blame it all on the President since he was the commander-in-chief of the whole armed forces. But then again, take note that there are just several people within the group who did all of those nasty things which in the end the president can bear although he is not the one who implement it. Such things shall be clarified and given attention, and on the events like the burial, there are matters that need to be settled on so that the issue about it will definitely end once and for all.

A protester from the event.
It is ascertained that the issue is indeed too sensitive as well as overwhelming that it involves a piece of history where several Filipinos experienced at that time. Not to mention that it includes numerous advantages and disadvantages given from the different images of the argument. Moreover, it gives the idea about the good side and the bad side of a person like the former President Marcos. Albeit the harshest things in the past, let us be objective in things upon seeing this person with regards to his achievements and failures back then as the president as well as having a logical ideology prevail in the sense of moral essence. In this case though, it can be seen that the action is based on its legality in which it can be justified. However, people have cried loud for the moral issues which involve atrocities in that period. These in which needs to be settled where both sides are being measured and in this case, it can be seem that Marcos did it right all along. This be settled once and for all.


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