3 reasons to blame President Noynoy Aquino for the savage massacre of 44 PNP-SAF troops

Make no mistake. Philippine President Benigno Simeon ‘BS’ Aquino III is to blame for the appalling massacre of 44 Philippine National Police (PNP) elite Special Action Force (SAF) troops by the terrorist Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF). The reasons are quite straightforward.

* * *

1. President BS Aquino negotiated with terrorists.

President BS Aquino joins in condoling with the families of the 44 fallen SAF troopers.
President BS Aquino joins in condoling with the families of the 44 fallen SAF troopers.
The MILF, a terrorist organisation long known to cause horrrific grief to huge swaths of Mindanao, was given legitimacy by the Second Aquino Administration as a result of the president’s pet project, the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) now being deliberated in Congress.

The origins of the MILF as a militant breakaway group from what was once considered a more “moderate” Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) was over disagreements with the direction being taken by the MNLF leadership back in 1977 towards renouncing its own separatist agenda in favour of a more “conciliatory” deal with Manila then, a direction which bore fruit ten years later for the MNLF…

In January 1987, the MNLF signed an agreement relinquishing its goal of independence for Muslim regions and accepting the government’s offer of autonomy. The Moro Islamic Liberation Front, the next largest faction, refused to accept the accord and initiated a brief offensive that ended in a truce later that month. By one estimate the Mindanao-based Moro Islamic Liberation Front fielded around 3,000 troops.

Consider, then, the families of tens of thousands of soldiers and police officers who died gallantly fighting the MNLF, the MILF, and the New People’s Army (NPA) over much of the country’s recent history. What would they be thinking of successive governments who rewarded violence with sovereign-sanctioned legitimacy? The MNLF was given their Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao (ARMM), the MILF is on the verge of being rewared with a Bangsamoro “nation”, and the NPA’s bosses have all but infested Philippine Congress.

2. President BS Aquino is the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP)

President BS Aquino had compromised overall national security in the course of negotiating with the MILF by seemingly giving standing instructions to the military to stand down from armed confrontation with the armed forces of any entity that is party to the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) draft being reviewed in Congress.

While this “ceasefire” supposedly covers the MILF, such terrorist groups tend to have a less reliable chain of command and are inherently infested by rogue units. In comparison, the AFP are subject to a clear and mature chain of command and is composed of professional soldiers who are far more inclined to observe it. As such, whilst the AFP can guarantee observance of such agreements, a bandit group like the MILF cannot be expected to act as gentlemanly. As a result, the entire nation was put into peril by naively expecting a terrorist group to honour an agreement that effectively left their enemy hand-tied.

So to be fair, though the AFP have been criticised for failing to assist the 44 SAF police officers despite possessing the readiness in terms of equipment and personnel within striking distance of the massacre site, they were acting under orders. And these orders can ultimately be traced to the standing ceasefire that was an outcome of the president’s pet project, the BBL.

3. President BS Aquino is at the top of the chain of command of the Philippine National Police (PNP).

The PNP is subject to the authority of the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) under Secretary Mar Roxas who answers only to the president. Yet, according to Roxas, he and PNP officer-in-charge Deputy Director General Leonardo Espina had been left outside of the loop during the planning and actual deployment of the PNP force to Mamasapano. Roxas also admitted that he could have contributed to effecting better coordination with the AFP had he been included in the initial stages of the operation and kept informed as it transpired.

In a statement to the media, Anakpawis Rep. Fernando Hicap pointed out that President BS Aquino had “deliberately held back details about the operation in a televised address last week, including the role of suspended Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Alan Purisima and United States military forces,” and continues to do so.

* * *

No matter how much media face time President BS Aquino clocks to condole with the families of the 44 SAF troopers who were brutally killed by the MILF, it does not exonerate him from sole accountability for laying the groundwork for this horrible tragedy. You can’t neglect your kid for 20 years and expect to make up for that by buying him an XBox for Christmas.

Being Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, the leader of the country’s civilian law enforcement agencies, and the self-described “god” of the Filipino people comes at a steep cost. It’s time President BS Aquino pays up by accepting that the buck stops at the Office of the President when it comes to most state affairs, in this case, to military and police affairs where he is clearly the final commander.

[Photo courtesy Showbiz Government.]

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62 Comments on “3 reasons to blame President Noynoy Aquino for the savage massacre of 44 PNP-SAF troops”

  1. Indeed, he is in deep deep deep deep yellow crap.
    His propaganda masters are having a hard time thinking up of excuses for their bald boss.

    Incoming yellow troll butthurt in 3..2..1

  2. The guy is good at one thing. He is a great representative for a nation of bandwagon jumpers. Something goes right despite how neglible his contribution is , he will chest thump. If something goes wrong it’s always significant residual from his predecessors. You think he’d own up to what the pope said? He has gone 54 years without coming out of the closet so that should tell you right there.

    1. Expression na ng kara niya yon .Galet man o banas..iisa ang tsura ng mukha,parang may almirol pa para matigas..Nag search ako ng the worst president of the philippines ,nadoon lahat hanggang ke Arroyo pero walang binangit sa mag inang Aquino. Pati nga si Binay isinama na nila sa listahan..Bilib talaga ako sa Crystal Ball nila,kitang kita doon kung paano magnanakaw si Binay pag nakaupo niya. may suspetsa ako na baka sila mag apply na cabinete dahil alan nila ang outcome at baka barkada ng mga AKBAYAN na nagpapatakbo ng gobyerno natin ngayon ang mga ito. Napuna co na walang comment para kumontra sa site

  3. Benign0

    — “3 … The PNP is subject to the authority of the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) under Secretary Mar Roxas who answers only to the president.”

    Not anymore.

    The DILG was granted this authority under Sec. 12, R.A. 6795 (1990). But owing to an amendment under Sec.3, R.A. 8551 — the “Philippine National Police Reform and Reorganization Act of 1998” — the DILG was “relieved of the primary responsibility,” and to quote:

    “Section 3. Section 12 of Republic Act No. 6975 is hereby amended to read as follows:

    “SEC. 12. Relationship of the Department with the Department of National Defense. – The Department of the Interior and Local Government shall be relieved of the primary responsibility on matters involving the suppression of insurgency and other serious threats to national security. The Philippine National Police shall, through information gathering and performance of its ordinary police functions, support the Armed Forces of the Philippines on matters involving suppression of insurgency, except in cases where the President shall call on the PNP to support the AFP in combat operations.”

    As the incumbent “President,” this is now PNoy’s “primary responsibility.”

    1. How can it be “now the primary responsibility of the president” when all those departments (DILG, PNP, AFP) fall under the executive authority of the president in the first place?

      Through those departments the president exercises primary responsibility even before.

      1. Jameboy

        Why ask me? Ask Congress instead — the branch that enacted the laws I cited and merely quoted the words used, “primary responsibility” — in spite of Sec. 17, Art. VII

        “Section 17. The President shall have control of all the executive departments, bureaus, and offices. He shall ensure that the laws be faithfully executed.”

        And add Sec. 18:

        “Section 18. The President shall be the Commander-in-Chief of all armed forces of the Philippines …”

    2. I did not merely ask you I also made some inputs showing the inconsistency of what you declared in your post.

      Yes, you “merely cited and quoted” a provision without connecting it to the idea of your post which is why I inquired as to the how of it.

      Apparently, we need Congress here to expound what you wrote in your post. Anyway, let me see if I can find Congress’ address here……….

      1. jameboy

        I certainly was not inconsistent, since I was citing provisions of law that virtually absolved Roxas of “primary responsibility” which is in line with the title, “3 reasons to blame President Noynoy Aquino …”

        If you get to find Congress’ address, please convey this question too:

        The arresting PNP-SAF team is reported to have consisted of 392 troopers. Now, since 44 were slain, 15 were wounded and none missing in action, or a total of 59 casualties, what of the remaining 85% of the original team, consisting of 333 potential witnesses?

      2. Yes, Domingo, apparently only Congress can explain what you wrote here. That being the case, I cannot engage you for you don’t have the capability to elaborate on what you just cited and quoted.

        Let’s just say you are right and let’s move on.

      3. Excuse me for butting in. Being a contrarian as always Jamegirl. I don’t see any inconsistency at all.

        Domingo said “As the incumbent ‘President’, this is now PNoy’s ‘primary responsibility’.” with supporting law provisions.

        Then you Jamegirl said, “through those departments the president exercises primary responsibility even before.”

        So what’s your point Jamegirl? You’re disagreeing with Domingo by agreeing?

        1. Oh, good that you help Domingo by speaking and asking question for him. Domingo said, “As the incumbent “President,” this is NOW PNoy’s “primary responsibility.”

          And I said, “How can it be “NOW the primary responsibility of the president” when all those departments (DILG, PNP, AFP) fall under the executive authority of the president in the first place?”

          Meaning, there is actually NOTHING NEW or NOW in what he said because all those department are under the executive authority or primary responsibility of the president even before or since their creation.

          It is not about agreeing or disagreeing but clarifying something.

          I hope that helps. 😉

        2. “Meaning, there is actually NOTHING NEW or NOW in what he said because all those department are under the executive authority or primary responsibility of the president even before or since their creation.”

          See Jamegirl. You’re a typical contrarian and troll. Making a fuss out of something when there’s clearly nothing to have a fuss about. You admit there really is nothing to argue about. You’re arguing with someone just for the sake of arguing.

        3. See Jamegirl. You’re a typical contrarian and troll. Making a fuss out of something when there’s clearly nothing to have a fuss about. You admit there really is nothing to argue about. You’re arguing with someone just for the sake of arguing.
          ========
          Err, sir, there is a provision cited and quoted. That’s the point of inquiry not me. You asked and I formally answered and then, as expected, you trolled again. 🙂

          Clearly, there is no real intent to engage on your part but just to harass and bully. Oh, well. What’s new? 🙁

          Domingo, you just have been used. 🙂

        4. Ah who is the bully now Jamegirl? You inciting a needless argument with Domingo by quibbling over pointless details when there really is nothing to argue about. Domingo actually was quite illuminating in that the provision he cited may serve as a scapegoat for Mar Roxas to avoid culpability.

          You on other hand are a typical troll as usual. You like to do that don’t you? You already had a lot of pointless arguments with a lot of people here. You seem to have a lot of free time on your hands. You’re probably bored. Nothing better to do?

        5. Look, you butted in by writing this:

          Excuse me for butting in.
          So what’s your point Jamegirl? – Jmac
          ========
          And I responded to you about the issue explaining and addressing your question objectively but you wrote this back with name-calling and all:

          See Jamegirl. You’re a typical contrarian and troll. Making a fuss out of something when there’s clearly nothing to have a fuss about. You admit there really is nothing to argue about. You’re arguing with someone just for the sake of arguing. – Jmac
          ========
          Now, I’m a bully? Please. 🙁

          Let me just give others their deserve time, okay? 🙂

  4. Since the justice system in our country is getting bullshit that panot will once again get away with that latest allegation, I wish the ICC will do the job this time.

  5. Cue Pnoy apologists:

    “Yeah those points may sound true and all but you still can’t blame the president because because…!”

  6. Is there any truth in a rumor, that the 44 PNP SAF Troops, were sent in on such ‘Black Ops’ mission to rescue 2 x hostages (for whom a PHP5M Reward was being offered).
    In other words they were sent in, for monetary reward?

    1. It’s not clear what motivations lie behind the operation. Could be for the bounties, but it could also be political. No one is sure but those who gave the orders.

      What’s clear is that those who gave the orders and ran the poorly conceived operation from behind the scenes are the ones responsible. The MILF-BIFF are also responsible, but remember, they fit more the role of executioners. Those who got into bed with them in the first place are equally, if not MORE RESPONSIBLE.

      1. It’s not clear what motivations lie behind the operation. Could be for the bounties, but it could also be political. No one is sure but those who gave the orders.

        What’s clear is that those who gave the orders and ran the poorly conceived operation from behind the scenes are the ones responsible.
        ========
        The motivation is not clear but it is clear that those who gave the order are responsible. So, there is a conviction already even if we don’t know what the motive/mistake is of those who gave the order? There is a conviction already even though we have yet to establish clearly who officially gave the order?

        Aren’t we going to conduct an investigation first, which is the ordinary course, before we go on that direction? Why be so sure of conviction if you cannot even name the guilty party/parties? 🙁

        1. “So, there is a conviction already even if we don’t know what the motive/mistake is of those who gave the order? There is a conviction already even though we have yet to establish clearly who officially gave the order?

          Aren’t we going to conduct an investigation first, which is the ordinary course, before we go on that direction? Why be so sure of conviction if you cannot even name the guilty party/parties?”

          What conviction? I didn’t hand out any conviction. I didn’t even mention it. I only pointed out those responsible.

          Stop putting words into my mouth.

        2. What conviction? I didn’t hand out any conviction. I didn’t even mention it. I only pointed out those responsible.

          Stop putting words into my mouth.
          ========
          Classic talking on both sides of the mouth! 🙂 Nandito na naman po tayo 🙂

          Why will you hand out a conviction? Are you a court to do that? Conviction means a fix or firm belief. Ayayyay!

          No need to put words in your mouth. You clearly said it here:

          “What’s clear is that those who gave the orders and ran the poorly conceived operation from behind the scenes are the ones responsible.” – Jmac

          See? According to you, it is ‘clear’ those who gave the order ‘are the ones responsible’.

          Those are your words not mine.

          Question: who in particular are ‘those’ people? 😉

        3. “Classic talking on both sides of the mouth! 🙂 Nandito na naman po tayo 🙂

          Why will you hand out a conviction? Are you a court to do that?”

          Ewan ko sayo, ikaw nagsabi ng conviction eh. That’s why I was surprised you even said it. Labo mo talaga kausap no?

          “Conviction means a fix or firm belief. Ayayyay!”

          So you switched from one definition of conviction to another to avoid embarrassment. How lame.

          “See? According to you, it is ‘clear’ those who gave the order ‘are the ones responsible’.

          Those are your words not mine.”

          Oo nga. Sinabi ko iyon. Ano point mo?

          “Question: who in particular are ‘those’ people?”

          The Commander-in-Chief Aquino and suspended PNP chief Purisima. There could be others in the loop, but so far no other names were mentioned that I’m aware of that are clearly responsible.

          Any more lame and pointless retorts?

        4. “Question: who in particular are ‘those’ people?”

          The Commander-in-Chief Aquino and suspended PNP chief Purisima. There could be others in the loop, but so far no other names were mentioned that I’m aware of that are clearly responsible.
          ========
          On Aquino and Purisima, in the absence of any official findings, what’s the basis of that conclusion or is that just a guess based on malice and bias?

          Ah, there could be others in the loop whose names you don’t know but you are aware they’re responsible. Again, what exactly is the ‘clear responsibility’ of these unnamed people you are saying?

          That’s the problem in a catch-all statement based on nothing.

        5. “On Aquino and Purisima, in the absence of any official findings, what’s the basis of that conclusion or is that just a guess based on malice and bias?”

          Guess based on malice and bias? Many already pointed out Pnoy is responsible, including no less that former general and president Fidel V. Ramos himself said he ought to take responsibility. Oh but to you, he is still blameless.

          “Ah, there could be others in the loop whose names you don’t know but you are aware they’re responsible. Again, what exactly is the ‘clear responsibility’ of these unnamed people you are saying?”

          *facepalm* what a numbskull. You can’t understand simple English. I’m expressing my openness to the possibility of involvement by others. Did I say I’m sure there are others? No. Understand the difference?

          “That’s the problem in a catch-all statement based on nothing.”

          Such as your arguments?

        6. Many already pointed out Pnoy is responsible, including no less that former general and president Fidel V. Ramos himself said he ought to take responsibility. Oh but to you, he is still blameless. – Jmac
          ========
          Are you telling me the “many pointed” is now the rule in laying accountabiilty against gov’t. officials? Wow!

          Where in my post did I say someone is blameless? Again, that is not critical thinking; that is pure and simple guessing.

          I’m expressing my openness to the possibility of involvement by others. Did I say I’m sure there are others? No. Understand the difference? – Jmac
          ========
          Why be mad at me when it is YOUR statement and not mine. Did you say you are sure there are others? OF COURSE, YOU……..! 🙂

          Here, read again what you wrote:

          “There could be others in the loop, but so far no other names were mentioned that I’m aware of THAT ARE CLEARLY RESPONSIBLE.” – Jmac
          ========
          You are not aware of the names yet, but you’re sure they are responsible. And now you’re denying it?

          Ay-yay-yay! 🙂

        7. “Are you telling me the “many pointed” is now the rule in laying accountabiilty against gov’t. officials? Wow!”

          Did I say that? No I didn’t. Again, stop putting words into my mouth. You’re the one who said mine is just a guess based on malice and bias, which isn’t the case.

          “Where in my post did I say someone is blameless? Again, that is not critical thinking; that is pure and simple guessing.”

          Nonsense yet again. Diba you mentioned chain-of-command? Who are the people at the top of this chain who executed and ran the operation? It’s common sense that they’re the ones responsible. That is simple logic that for some inane reason escapes you. Where is the guessing in that?

          “Why be mad at me when it is YOUR statement and not mine. Did you say you are sure there are others? OF COURSE, YOU……..! :)”

          Mad? Who is mad? I’m not mad. I don’t know where you got that impression. Who is the one with the caps and exclamation point? There is a psychological term for that: projection. Look it up. Accusing me of being mad when it is actually you who is mad and you seem to be getting really frustrated with me handing your own butt to you.

          “You are not aware of the names yet, but you’re sure they are responsible. And now you’re denying it?”

          Hindi mo pa din maintindinhan? Hopeless. I’m not going to explain it again to you. I suggest you read and reread what I wrote again until you can understand what I meant.

          “Ay-yay-yay! :)”

          Hm ok whatever. With smiley pa, as defense mechanism. Apparently, ikaw ang nagagalit hindi ako. Calm down and take a deep breath Jamegirl.

  7. A person may cause evil to others not only by his actions but by his inaction, and in either case he is justly accountable to them for the injury.

    1. They are trying to cover up so not to involve Mar Roxas that I believe is part of this operation.
      What’s the use anyway, he is already doomed to be president during day one with Yolanda.. The only Mar Roxas regain his reputation is to attack his mentor and tell the truth what really happened. But that is impossible, try to double cross Pnoy then you will feel the vengeance from malakanyang to entire MEDIA on crony newspaper. Binay will shake his hand and say “welcome to the club”

    1. OnesimusUnbound:

      Whgy would we allow all of these to happen to our country?

      “There are tyrants, where there ar no slaves”, form Jose Riza;…

  8. Aquino-Roxas-Purisima are the Three Stooges, who are to be blamed for the massacre.

    There was no recoinnaissance…the planning was idiotic; the performance was catastrophic.

    Sending your soldiers to an Open Field…with no artillery support, in case things get wrong is stupid. The soldiers/police were clueless of what they find there…

    Even in the case the soldiers/police are surrounded…if there is a great infantry and Armored Force available. The MILF would had been defeated…it is not only planned by amateur officers…it is planned by dumb people.

  9. Actually, if we’ll go by the knee-jerk reaction on the killings of the policemen in Mindanao, Pres. Aquino can be blame not only for 3 reasons but for almost everything that contributed to what happened there. And rightly so being him at the top of the chain of command.

    But we have to admit that that is the easiest thing to do especially if you have personal agenda to do so. Anybody can formulate that kind of thinking and one would be hard-pressed to dispute that given the command responsibility theory and the emotional outpouring the killings brought to us. I, for one, would pose no opposition to that kind of thinking if the case will find closure and justice handed down against the guilty parties. We can just all sweep everything under the rug and be done with the case and we move on.

    But I don’t think we’ll benefit from that kind of approach. Let me explain.

    For one, we’ll never learn if we’ll just go by bandwagon effect and be content with it. Secondly, we’re doing injustice not only to the memory of those who died but also to their grieving relatives for just dragging the case for political expediency and resolve it in that fashion. Lastly, what will that make of us? Every time bad people do something wrong against us, instead of strictly pursuing them for their crimes, we’ll immediately blame our government officials and run after those who we disagree with in the heat of the moment and engage in exchanging expletives and obscenities that has nothing to do with the case?

    Based on what I’m reading here, my impression is that people don’t make an effort to look at the event and focus on certain details that will give new facets on the case and support whatever conclusion they have. Majority of what I read has the ‘Aquino is to blame’ theory which is expected considering the focus of this blog. But to repeat such theory to the point that there’s no more diversity in the discussion makes it a boring exercise.

    So, let me raise the ante of emotion by sharing some ideas for a change.

    We have a saying that goes like this: “Pagkahaba-haba man ng prusisyon, sa simbahan din ang dating.”

    Relate that saying to the issue, in this blog, we can go by the process and still end up with Pres. Aquino as the guilty party. So, let me focus on the process since we already have the guilty party.

    What I notice that was not being talk about in the case is the intelligence side of it. Was intelligence utilized in the operation or not? If so, what kind of intelligence did the PNP did for them to end up in that situation? Who are responsible in staking out the area and planning the operation to be conducted. What was the plan B of the operation if there is one? Where is the major base of operation while the operatives was in action? Who should contact who in case of surprises occuring during the operation?

    Of course, certain details must not be overlook like, who is the highest ranking officer/s that participated in the operation. Who is the civilian officer/s that is directly responsible in the way the operation was conducted and planned? While we all now know that DILG Roxas was an outsider in the event, the details of why was it so still has to be cleared. With Pres. Aquino, he has to come clean on the whole make-up of the team. Who did the formulation and trategic planning and execution of the operation?

    Of course, the possibility leans towards him distancing himself from the case and prosecute it with only those under him being made to answer for any wrongdoings or misfeasance that can be found. But the president can never escape the bar of public opinion that will negatively impact his leadership to which some people, and mostly from this blog, sees as fastly eroding if not already gone. 🙂

    1. @jameboy: I agree with what you are saying. President BS Aquino is not really in control of much in his government to begin with.

      Having said that, the fact remains that he is in a position to find the truth and tell the people about it. The key condition of that ever happening is something you yourself cited; “he has to come clean on the whole make-up of the team.”

      For now, that’s not a very promising prospect when you consider the sort of speech he gave the first time he faced to public after news of the massacre broke.

      So it is really up to him. Until he grows a big enough pair to do just that, all the roads public thinking follow will simply lead back to “articles such as these.”

      1. @Jamegirl:

        Command Responsibility is NOT a Theory…it is ingrained in any military command. The Commander leads his Troops, not PUSH his troops to Battle.

        U.S. Gen. George Patton, the greatest World War II field commander stated:
        “You Pull your Troops, Not Push Them…”
        He was the only U.S. General that the NAZIs respected and feared…

        1. Command Responsibility is NOT a Theory…it is ingrained in any military command.
          ========
          Theory – concept; doctrine; idea; ideology; philosophy.

          Command responsibility is none of the above? Okay.

      2. No question as to the idea you advanced on top but there is one glitch that I think is very tricky and slippery. And this is the line I’m referring to:

        “President BS Aquino is not really in control of much in his government to begin with.”

        That statement if invoke will only embolden the pro-Aquino crownd of the president’s guiltlessness about the killings. Let me explain.

        For the pro-PNoy, since the president really has no control – either his men did all the planning behind his back or he knew the operation with limited knowledge because he designated the rest of the details to his underlings – he is not the most guilty one or he has clean hands if ever incriminated in the killings. Losing control of something could actually be the saving grace of the president because he will be shown in the light where there is really no clear malice, intent nor machinations in his part. You know how politics is in the PHL. If you are not caught red handed, you walk. And even if you are caught red handed but you can cast doubt on it by simple strategy or diskarte, you could still walk. In short, giving even a small allowance will enable PNoy, if really involved, to get by and come out unscathed.

        I know that to picture the president as ‘not really in control’ is to show how inept or incompetent he is. That’s a good negative impression.

        However, there is risk that it can also be played out and twisted to his advantage because his ‘ineptness or incompetence’ can be use as proof to exclude him as the principal actor in the bungled operation for the simple reason that he is not capable or competent to formulate and plan such complicated operation. His incompetence will render him just an usisero in the whole event. What does that mean? That means only those under him will get the full weight of the law in terms of liability. PNoy? Maybe a slap on the hand. You know the usual adage in criminal cases, those in ‘control’ gets the worst punishment.

        But having said that, guilty or not, the president will surely carry a big black eye on the incident. I don’t know the exact repercussion of it on his administration but it will surely haunt him for the rest of his term or even his life.

      3. @jameboy: Indeed, this “I have no idea what happened because I just woke up from my nap” argument might work for him in this instance. But step back up to the bigger picture and we see THAT excuse for what it is — the underlying fundamental issue behind the wholesale failure of his administration.

        His promise to eradicate corruption — and consequently, as his logic goes, the poverty that it causes — is premised on the notion that he will be in control; squarely on the driver’s seat. Because, if you think about it, the only way to stamp out crime in the Philippine government, is with an iron fist, focus on results, and a keen eye for legal strategy.

        So far BS Aquino and his henchmen have displayed none of the above.

        1. I don’t take Pres. Aquino will take the “I have no idea what happened because I just woke up from my nap” argument as a defense to shield himself from the fallout of the killings. It will surely not work for its not a defense but a capitulation.

          What I’m implying in my post was the ‘Yes, I have knowledge of the operation which I delegated to my men” argument that Aquino will most likely take. It’s a kind of defense that even the anti-Aquino will agree for the fact that it’s a concrete sign of his ineptness and incompetence.

          It maybe be a hard pill to swallow, giving the anti-PNoy ammunition, but PNoy will take it so long as he walk out from the issue unscathed.

          (benign0, I can’t post as ‘jameboy’ so I had to use ‘jamebo’. I wonder what happened?)

    2. “Actually, if we’ll go by the knee-jerk reaction on the killings of the policemen in Mindanao, Pres. Aquino can be blame not only for 3 reasons but for almost everything that contributed to what happened there. And rightly so being him at the top of the chain of command.

      But we have to admit that that is the easiest thing to do especially if you have personal agenda to do so. Anybody can formulate that kind of thinking and one would be hard-pressed to dispute that given the command responsibility theory and the emotional outpouring the killings brought to us. I, for one, would pose no opposition to that kind of thinking if the case will find closure and justice handed down against the guilty parties. We can just all sweep everything under the rug and be done with the case and we move on.

      But I don’t think we’ll benefit from that kind of approach. Let me explain.

      For one, we’ll never learn if we’ll just go by bandwagon effect and be content with it. Secondly, we’re doing injustice not only to the memory of those who died but also to their grieving relatives for just dragging the case for political expediency and resolve it in that fashion. Lastly, what will that make of us? Every time bad people do something wrong against us, instead of strictly pursuing them for their crimes, we’ll immediately blame our government officials and run after those who we disagree with in the heat of the moment and engage in exchanging expletives and obscenities that has nothing to do with the case?

      Based on what I’m reading here, my impression is that people don’t make an effort to look at the event and focus on certain details that will give new facets on the case and support whatever conclusion they have. Majority of what I read has the ‘Aquino is to blame’ theory which is expected considering the focus of this blog. But to repeat such theory to the point that there’s no more diversity in the discussion makes it a boring exercise.

      So, let me raise the ante of emotion by sharing some ideas for a change.

      We have a saying that goes like this: “Pagkahaba-haba man ng prusisyon, sa simbahan din ang dating.”

      Relate that saying to the issue, in this blog, we can go by the process and still end up with Pres. Aquino as the guilty party. So, let me focus on the process since we already have the guilty party.

      What I notice that was not being talk about in the case is the intelligence side of it. Was intelligence utilized in the operation or not? If so, what kind of intelligence did the PNP did for them to end up in that situation? Who are responsible in staking out the area and planning the operation to be conducted. What was the plan B of the operation if there is one? Where is the major base of operation while the operatives was in action? Who should contact who in case of surprises occuring during the operation?

      Of course, certain details must not be overlook like, who is the highest ranking officer/s that participated in the operation. Who is the civilian officer/s that is directly responsible in the way the operation was conducted and planned? While we all now know that DILG Roxas was an outsider in the event, the details of why was it so still has to be cleared. With Pres. Aquino, he has to come clean on the whole make-up of the team. Who did the formulation and trategic planning and execution of the operation?

      Of course, the possibility leans towards him distancing himself from the case and prosecute it with only those under him being made to answer for any wrongdoings or misfeasance that can be found. But the president can never escape the bar of public opinion that will negatively impact his leadership to which some people, and mostly from this blog, sees as fastly eroding if not already gone. :)”

      You said one thing right Jamegirl, and that is you mentioned the saying: “Pagkahaba-haba man ng prusisyon, sa simbahan din ang dating.”

      Which of course also applies to your whole line of thinking and your whole comment. Verbal diarrhea ika nga.

      I’m not advocating bypassing the legal process or taking a shortcut in the pursuit of justice, but it is thought processes like yours that bog down the path to progress even further. I’m likening it to one of the problems that hamper development in this country, a cultural problem that has lead to too much red tape and bureaucracy that next to nothing it seems ever gets accomplished.

      As for the details, yes in any proper investigation, every detail, no matter how minor, has to be considered. But that ought to come naturally in any investigative undertaking.

      It’s apparent you yourself are already admitting the President is responsible for the botched-up operation. It’s as clear as day to anyone he is responsible. Why dismiss those who acknowledge that?

      So let’s suppose we refrain from pointing fingers and opt to wait for the official investigation to come to light. Then we wait and wait and wait and wait until it gets bogged down so much to the point that people get tired of it, move on, and focus on other things. Then we’ll never see the end of it, we’ll never see justice delivered and delivered properly, and the whole process of pursuing justice gets bogged down in a sea of questions and legal processes that we might as well not pursue it at all. It happens all the time in this country, from Marcos to the 2009 Maguindanao massacre.

      So what then? If the President is unwilling to come clean on this whole thing, what’s the point of democracy, popular sovereignty and accountability if the people choose not to call him out on it and just let him be? Just let him be and keep quiet every time an issue arises?

      Of course not. It’s not right to call a witch hunt, but it’s not right to keep silent and not demand accountability from the government either.

      1. The on-going cry for justice in the Mindanao killings and the simmering political reaction, particularly the critical observation pointed on the Aquino administration, ugly as they may be, is part of the whole process in order to reach and arrive at the truth and dispense justice against the guilty party. By saying that (guilty party), I’m referring on the side of the gov’t. for we already know who actually pulled the trigger.

        I said right because it is right. I’m always, as most posters here, aspire to be right every time I post because (I’m not saying it’s critical thinking) I want the other side to also show what, for him/her is the right angle or other version of the issue.

        Verbal diarrhea or not, at least I’m making an effort to be understood as to what my message is. I only resort to one-liners when I’m in a jocular mood. You can accuse and call me names but you can never call me a one-issue poster.

        So, in expressing you abhorrence to official investigation, what do you propose instead? People marching in the streets calling for PNoy resignation or filing petition for him to resign? That’s okay. Impeachment? If there’s evidence to support it why not? If you really don’t want to wait there are options for people like you to exercise and at the same time express your feelings how antagonistic they may be against our gov’t. No one is prevented to do what is right and legal.

        Now, wasting time is another matter.

        Me, I’m for legal process. Fact-finding investigation and leaving no stone unturned is my cup of tea at the moment. If we are really dead serious in getting to the bottom of things we have to submit to the procedure our system provides. I see nothing wrong there. :l

  10. IDK who led these cops into where they got killed but it sure is not the President of the countries fault.WTF? The President is not in command of every soldier, he commands the top officers and shit rolls downhill from there.

    I do think that the guy is an incompetent asswipe, but that does not mean he is to blame for these dead guys. No, whoever was the commanding officers are to blame.

  11. The haste with which this article proclaims Noynoy ultimately responsible for the deaths of 44 policemen (and 18 MILF personnel as well as a few civilians) on a certain cornfield at Mamasapano, well before the various investigative commissions tasked to ferret out the facts out of the bloodbath there can even begin to form themselves, is frankly disconcerting. It’s not as disconcerting as the insistent use of the word “massacre” to describe what happened that bloody Sunday (when the SAF could hardly have expected lenient treatment from the base commands of the BIFF and MILF controlling the area if they were discovered hunting Marwan and Usman, as to all appearances in the eyes of the rebels the policemen were invading their territory in violation of the ceasefire), but still not a sight for eyes made sore by the lack of consideration for the other side and the near-violent backlash at the Aquino administration for an event that would’ve been justly feted had all went as planned against the odds.

    With all those in mind, I’ll content myself with the following critiques on benign0’s main points, to be dealt with on separate posts made in reply to this post for what I hope are obvious reasons.

    1. “1. President BS Aquino negotiated with terrorists.”

      The snappy retort is that the Aquino administration (and the Arroyo administration before it) negotiated with the “terrorists” because the “terrorists” (or, to be more precise, the MILF leadership) were willing to negotiate.

      The slightly longer and even more pointed retort to #1 is that of course the “terrorists” (the national government, unless it is to be alleged that affairs regarding Mindanao from 1946 onwards were handled by stainless saints committed to democracy, pluralism, conflict-avoidance, and the redress of grievances wherever they occurred) would be willing to negotiate with fellow “terrorists” (again, the MILF leadership), because of course like should recognize like. (And isn’t it nice, isn’t it important, that one be seen as one sees others?)

      The still longer rebuttal to benign0’s first point, placing the MILF in their proper historical context (though admittedly highly condensed and by no means comprehensive), giving the lie to the convenient branding of the MILF as a terrorist organization, as well as to the notion that Noynoy was wrong or was taking an unprecedented stance in pushing a peace deal with the MILF, is presented through the following link: Link

      1. I was going to post my critiques on points 2 and 3, but first my life and then word of press conferences by Napenas and Espina, as well as an interview of Catapang, intervened. With their conflicting if not contradictory accounts of the events leading to 44 very dead SAF men on a worsted cornfield, I have decided to do the prudent thing and let the various investigative commissions and boards of inquiry do their things and let the evidence they collect and the conclusions they reach speak for me (whether or not those conclusions would reflect disapprovingly on Noynoy and the positions he’s taken regarding Mindanao and the BBL).

        As it is, I’ll let the critique to #1 stand, if for no other reason than to let myself be amused at benign0’s pseudo-impartial (“fairly or unfairly” followed by decidedly unequivocal anti-Noynoy invective) bow to populist sentiment that happen to coincide with his, and this site’s, anti-Noynoy stance — a bit jarring but a lot more amusing given GRP’s ruthless assault on Pinoy culture, mores, and public tastes elsewhere.

    2. Nah. No amount of history lessons can change the fact that the MILF are terrorists. Lawyers may plead insanity or bad upbringing even as a defense for the behaviour of homicidal maniacs. But that does not change the homicidal nature of said maniac and what needs to be done to prevent him from doing any further damage to society. Society still needs to be protected from them.

      Indeed, I do note that nowhere in your comment above nor the article you cited argues against the fact that the MILF are terrorists. In fact, I’ve been using “terrorist” as a qualifier for my references to the MILF for years now and NOBODY has called me out on it.

      It is, of course, nice that these terrorists were “willing to negotiate”. I’ve never disputed that this is a good first step. But hard terms are important when undertaking negotiations with criminals. The problem with BS Aquino is he negotiated with them as equals. So perhaps there is some credence to your point that BS Aquino was not wrong about “taking an unprecedented stance in pushing a peace deal with the MILF”. But the approach he took to go about it was classic PNoy incompetence — flawed at the most fundamental levels of its design.

      History cannot protect the MILF from fact of their savagery, much the same way that history was of no use to the Sultan of Sulu’s claim to the island of Borneo.

      As BS Aquino’s henchmen argued during the Corona impeachment, this is now a political exercise. Fair or uinfair, public opinion today rather than history is what will judge the Aquino administration in this instance. We can quote history all we like just as we like quoting history to highlight all the rest of the “unfairness” of a lot of the issues that routinely crush the Philippines’ hopes of becoming a better country. But ultimately, what the future holds is what matters. And that future will not be determined by the past.

  12. That’s a very dangerous mindset, benign0.

    The MILF became terrorists because we LET them be. Our past failures in addressing the “Mindanao Question” led to this current quagmire.

    I believe you view the SAF massacre as terrorism, right? But what about those killings the Ilagas did in 1970s? Or Bud Dajo? Or the burning of Jolo?

    You know the reason why China’s current attitude towards Japan? It’s because of the terrorist acts the Japanese did to them in WWII still lingers on without closure. They still yet to see justice for it.

    Equating it to the Mindanao situation, for the Moros they still yet to see Manila hand down justice to their plight. Why would they, if Malacañang has been involved for most of the injustices? As the years go by, it remained the same. It won’t be a surprise if the Moro insurgents consider using terrorism against gov’t forces as a normal.

    When our soldiers die gruesomely at their hands, we cry foul. But how about when a hundreds of those Moro insurgents die in combat? We cry “they’re terrorists, that’s what they deserve”. Double standard much?

    Going back again, the reason why MILF, BIFF, etc. became the savages we see them today, is because in the past, we showed them that savagery is normal. Adding to that the rise of Islamic fundamentalism, it became a clusterfuck.

    What the gov’t need to do is to show the Moros that they’re one of us. That they’re also Filipinos. That if they commit a crime, they’ll be punished. But if they’re victimised, they’ll get the same justice as with their Christian brothers in the north.

    And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

    1. Following your logic, we can also say that the US has no right to label people as terrorists then launch military campaigns against them because they too brutally slaughtered Filipino insurgents back in the 19th Century.

      For that matter, it is easy to demonise Germany and Japan for the barbarity of their armies in World War II. For that matter stepping back even further, just about every world order we enjoy — or suffer — today was built upon rivers of blood shed at war.

      So, frankly, that argument is getting a bit boring.

      When your parents tell you not to smoke marijuana, you can point out that they also did so when they were teenagers. But that does not change the wisdom of what they presently tell you, does it?

      Fact is, imperfect as it may be, the order of things we uphold today are enshrined in the Philippines Constitution — which guarantees the Army and the Police monopoly over state-sanctioned violence. Fair or unfair, that’s what we, the citizens of this state, signed up to. The MILF and other terrorist and criminal thugs roaming the country side happen to be on the wrong side of this equation.

      1. Well, sadly, you have a point there.

        This is what we get for electing the wrong kinds of people in congress. They make the wrong kinds of laws.

  13. Hi guys, I’m wondering if the President can be put into trial for the SAF44-MILF Mamasapano tragedy? If yes, under what grounds? If no, why? – is it because he’s still a President? Is that the reason why the NTC wants him to resign? Thanks for your answers. I’m a sophomore in HS and we still don’t talk much about these things though I am quite curious about these matters. Thank you for your articles. I am fond of reading them.

  14. Since I’m no constitutional expert I can only suggest to you to read an article on our Constitution that I think covers the matter you raised in your post. So, here it is.

    THE 1987 CONSTITUTION OF THE REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES – ARTICLE XI

    ACCOUNTABILITY OF PUBLIC OFFICERS

    Section 1. Public office is a public trust. Public officers and employees must, at all times, be accountable to the people, serve them with utmost responsibility, integrity, loyalty, and efficiency; act with patriotism and justice, and lead modest lives.

    Section 2. The President, the Vice-President, the Members of the Supreme Court, the Members of the Constitutional Commissions, and the Ombudsman may be removed from office on impeachment for, and conviction of, culpable violation of the Constitution, treason, bribery, graft and corruption, other high crimes, or betrayal of public trust. All other public officers and employees may be removed from office as provided by law, but not by impeachment.

  15. Mar Roxas forgot to tell the President that the BOI wanted to interview him.

    He was fully informed of the operation of the Special Action Forces(SAF) on Jan. 25 as early as 7:43 a.m. Yet, he didn’t lift a finger in the crucial hours of that morning and early afternoon to ensure the safety of the commandos. (Article in the Manila times)

    He even claimed in one hearing in order to concoct his basic defense posture of not knowing anything about the event: “Masasabi lang namin kung anong alam namin. We were cut out. Ano ma-re-report namin?” (We could only tell the President what we knew. But we were cut out of the loop. What could we report then?”) (manila times)

    The first time he was asked what time he knew about the operation he said around 11am.
    In the next hearing he said early in the morning.

    “Roxas’ text messages submitted to the Philippine National Police’ s Board of Inquiry show that he was lying, and he was fully informed of what was happening that morning by Acting PNP Chief Leonardo Espina.” (Manila times)

    He was aware of the seriousness of the incident by mid-morning, that there were as many as 20 casualties, as Espina reported. He was lying that he didn’t inform the president because there was “no sense of urgency” in the reports. (Manila times)

    He is in charge of the Philippine National Police (PNP), and next to the President is the most responsible for the safety of his men, the policemen of the PNP. Yet, he did nothing during those crucial hours when his intervention was crucial — for instance, he could have told Armed Forces Chief of Staff Gregorio Catapang, who was beside him in Zamboanga City that day, to make sure that the army help the SAF. (Manila times)

    Roxas didn’t even try to call SAF head Getulio Napeñas during those crucial hours to ask him personally about the SAF troops’ situation. It was Napeñas who communicated with him in a text message. And his reply to Napeñas (translated from Pilipino): “Keep calm and keep your head. We will not abandon the troops.”

    But that exchange of messages was at 7:12 p.m., hours after the 44 commandos were massacred.

    Nice work Roxas they are already dead so no rush.

  16. Let us not forget the civilian casualties. Now he is scared that he’ll end up in prison where he should be because of negligence.

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