BBL: An agreement with just one Muslim rebel group will not bring peace to Mindanao

Philippine President Benigno Simeon (BS) Aquino would like us all to believe that the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law will bring peace to Mindanao. This is probably what some people around him like Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Secretary Teresita Deles and Miriam Coronel-Ferrer head of Government Peace Panel (for peace talks with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, or MILF) have advised him.

President BS Aquino: Neither an academic nor a rational individual who could comprehend the situation
President BS Aquino: Neither an academic nor a rational individual who could comprehend the situation
One problem with BS Aquino is, he is neither an academic nor a rational individual who could comprehend complicated issues like the conflict in Mindanao. His obsession with taking credit for the success of a project works against him too. It seems like when an idea is pitched to him as something that could earn him brownie points or, more so, the possibility of getting nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize, he is quick to jump on board the idea without bothering to think about the consequences. Negotiating with a terrorist group is one of them.

It is easy enough for any rational individual to understand that since the MILF is not the only rebel group that is demanding a piece of Mindanao and seeking independence from the Philippines, the passing of the Bangsamoro Basic Law will not put an end to the conflicts in Mindanao. Other rebel groups like the newly-formed group Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF), Abu Sayyaf and the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) – the original Muslim rebel group who managed to win autonomy from the Philippine government in 1996 – all want their own version of the Bangsamoro Basic Law.

One doesn’t have to be a genius to realize that spending time crafting and deliberating the proposed law that caters only to one rebel group is a waste of time and resources. The MILF will even get billions of pesos from the government to assist them in creating their sub state. Aside from that, all their previous atrocities will be “pardoned” after the bill is passed. This could include the massacre of the 44 Special Action Force (SAF) troops in Mamasapono. No wonder the number of rebel groups seems to be growing. They not only enjoy killing our troops, they also get rewarded for it.

It’s a real mystery why academic experts like Deles and Ferrer can’t even see this. They are both so determined to convince the rest of the Filipino people that it is crucial to pass the law despite the deaths of 44 SAF troopers in the hands of MILF rebel soldiers during a supposedly legitimate police operation to capture international terrorists hiding in Mamasapono. Some people can be forgiven for accusing them of being traitors and working for the MILF.

Deles and Coronel-Ferrer ignoring the fact of the existence of other Muslim rebel groups.(Source: GMA News)
Deles and Coronel-Ferrer ignoring the fact of the existence of other Muslim rebel groups.
(Source: GMA News)
How can the MILF speak on behalf of all Muslims in Mindanao when they can’t even convince the other rebel groups to join their cause? Is the MILF chief negotiator Mohagher Iqbal even talking to any of his counterparts in the BIFF, MNLF and Abu Sayyaf? It doesn’t look like it. How will they iron out their differences if the BBL is passed? It seems whatever Iqbal said in front of the recent Senate hearing and to the media — that the MILF is for peace — is totally different from what the MILF foot soldiers do in reality. Iqbal saying that MILF didn’t want what happened is not going to convince most Filipinos that the shooting of the wounded 29 SAF troopers, execution-style was an act of self-defence especially when the act was caught on video.

In a news report, the rebel group BIFF even gave a chilling warning through the media that they are prepared for war and challenged politicians like BS Aquino and Senator Allan Cayetano to bring their guns and go to Maguidanao to fight them:

If they really want war, (President) Aquino and these politicians should bring guns and march to Maguindanao,” BIFF spokesperson Abu Misri Mama said in a phone interview.

Mr. Aquino in his second public statement after the Mamasapano clash warned threat groups like the BIFF he would run them over and he would make them face the full force of the law.

“If they will come here, we will give them what they want. We will show them a real war that is far different from what they see in the movies,” Mama said.

The reference on the difference between an actual combat and a war movie is a shot at Senator Alan Peter Cayetano who claimed during the hearing that he knew things about war from movies that he watched.

BIFF likewise refused to hand over weapons they stole from the fallen SAF troopers, saying that they are enemy weapons and will even use them on government forces. Their statements certainly don’t help the MILF cause.

MILF must prove that they can convince other rebel groups to lay down arms. If they can’t do that, then there is no point in insisting that the Bangsamoro Basic Law will put an end to the conflict in Mindanao.

Iqbal cannot cry foul and act as if the MILF rebel group is a victim of bullying and “gutter politics” just because they are receiving backlash after the tragic event. The outrage from the Filipino public against the atrocities is justified and it is not even close to how other societies react to cruelties committed by terrorists. The MILF need to hand over the individuals who murdered the SAF troopers to Philippine authorities if they want to appease the public.

Iqbal and the supporters of the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law should also stop misinterpreting the calls for its scrapping as a call for an “all out war against MILF”. Not everyone who is against it wants war. The MILF doesn’t represent the entire population of Mindanao. They cannot speak for everyone. In fact, the MILF is just one among the many groups in the entire country who has a grievance with the Philippine government. Others complain but don’t use violence. The MILF should take a number and fall in line like the rest.

Various Moro rebels competing for dominance in Mindanao
Various Moro rebels competing for dominance in Mindanao
It was wrong for Iqbal to say that the Philippines is treating Mindanao as a colony. Mindanao has been part of the Philippines for hundreds of years. The MILF cannot claim ownership of any parts of Mindanao. They are merely another group of people who want to secede from the Philippines.

Frankly, BS Aquino should be using this opportunity to tell the MILF that the deal is off if they do not surrender the perpetrators. Apparently, he is more concerned about pleasing the MILF than the Filipino people. This was quite evident on his first address to the nation three days after the Mamasapano clash. He looks like a desperate salesman who could not wait to sell a product even when at a funeral.

In his speeches, BS Aquino comes across as someone who already promised the MILF that the bill will be passed. If so, he made a terrible mistake since it cannot be passed without amending the Philippine Constitution. The Philippine Supreme Court would eventually junk the bill anyway even if it passes Congress because some provisions like the creation of the Bangsamoro Police are against the Constitution.

Unfortunately, BS Aquino’s arrogance got in the way of his common sense once again. He certainly has a penchant for doing things his way even when it is against the law. His Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP) is proof of this. The list of his violations is getting longer, indeed.

This time, BS Aquino’s actions have resulted in the deaths of 44 SAF troopers. Even when he was informed about the clash at 5 a.m. when a lot of the wounded men were still alive, he still didn’t want the Armed Forces of the Philippines to be involved in the operation. Since he was more concerned about appeasing the MILF, he was said to have told the military to “stand down” instead of giving them the go signal to help the SAF troopers who were at that time surrounded by rebel forces.

One problem with BS Aquino is, he is neither an academic expert nor a rational individual who could comprehend the situation he has himself and the country in. His obsession with taking credit for the success of a project works against him too. It seems he will do anything to maintain an image of a man who can do no wrong including lie and deceive the Filipino people. His actions have caused too much division and hate in the Philippine society. If he knew what is good for him and the country, he would tell the whole truth about his involvement in the Mamasapano clash, admit his mistake and resign from his post. This is the only way the country can start moving forward.

print

Post Author: Ilda

In life, things are not always what they seem.

Leave a Reply

109 Comments on "BBL: An agreement with just one Muslim rebel group will not bring peace to Mindanao"

Notify of
avatar
Sort by:   newest | oldest | most voted
Jaime G. Arejola
Guest

Agree. Mindanao is not even totally “generic” to the Muslims.

And nice new picture, too!

karl.henson
Guest

barbaric warriors and they are so back in the days no UN no nothing just bare killings, they should be stateless and move out of mindanao. Mindanao is part of The Philippines. Move yourselves MILFies and BIFF. mom i love …..,,,ggg

karl.henson
Guest

MILF exists in porno you know lol…

Bienb
Guest
the very name, “Bangsamoro Basic Law”, which they would to apply to that whole region, is not only unconstitutional, it is outright racist. they claim to want to build schools and infrastructures for all, but isn’t that what the government wants to do anyway? it’s the rebels like the MILF who sabotages the development in Mindanao by their bombings, kidnappings, and killings. I have no idea why the government is even negotiating with them, when they are obviously terrorists. Anyone who takes up arms against the constitution, and the government and people bound by it, are terrorists. Look up the… Read more »
phantommagnum
Guest

The whole point of the BBL isn’t peace for the Philippines, it’s more of peace and profit for other countries and the people involved with it. It’s really quite baffling why Malaysia is the mediator when they have of conflict of interest towards with Sabah with the Philippines.

It can be analyzed the whole farce is to ensure chaos stays within the Philippines. A Mindanao completely united with the Philippine government will give time for the country to refocus its effort in strengthening itself which foreign powers wouldn’t like.

Jetlag807
Guest

Great article! It would be like Israel signing a peace agreement with Lebanon back in the ’80s but neglecting to account for the insurgent and terrorist groups (PLO, ALF, PLA, Hezbollah, Abu Nidal,etc) operating inside the country. Even if this peace agreement is signed, the celebrations will be short-lived since every other group there, now feeling “marginalized”, will state their objections violently.

Raul Laman
Guest

For the negotiators, please consider the system of their governance in the form of Barangay independent from each other. To attain peace, you must gather all barangay leaders and meet them offering evenly spread economic progress to all the area they occupy, and the needs they want. They should choose among themselves their leader who has the skills to consolidate all the groups.. The first agenda is the intensive education & health program to all their constituents, support in agricultural infrastructure including productions & irrigation, and communication facilities in the form of roads,bridges, jnternrt, piers, etc.

d_forsaken
Guest

In times like the present, men should utter nothing for which they would not willingly be responsible through time and eternity.

The people — the people — are the rightful masters of both congresses, and courts — not to overthrow the constitution, but to overthrow the men who pervert it.

Add
Guest
..Thanks, Ilda. You have a fantastic article right there above. Indeed, the Mamasapano incident is way over the head of Mama’s Panot. His obsession at credit grabbing now exposed has exposed that that is all what he knows. But that is not only the irony of this incident if you consider the fwg: 1. It now appears that MILF have already found out the identities of the two MILF guys who tipped the US Embassy on the whereabouts of Marwan. Guys in Los Angeles. who are following this story, now tell me that it is just a matter of finishing… Read more »
Chris
Guest
BS PNoy signed the BBL to appease these rebels by giving them what they want and it only took them including BS PNoy less than a decade just to get the big slice of a pie, even though, we already knows what will happen in end once this issue raise in the Supreme Court. On the other hand, poor farmers of Hacienda Luisita which is the Conjuanco-Aquino’s crown jewel still under their control. In spite of Supreme Court’s ruling to give it to the poor farmers of HC and this issue is more older than MILF issue. So, if Deles… Read more »
Rene
Guest
I doubt Noynoy wants to appease the MILF. Noynoy is in my opinion a mere figurehead, a convenient fool to further the interests of the Aquino-Cojuangco clan. And they may be interested in this: http://www.rappler.com/nation/15114-milf-put-off-oil-exploration-bids-in-liguasan or this http://www.philstar.com/nation/2013/01/28/901862/groups-oppose-palm-oil-estates-mindanao . Hacienda Luisita will not earn that much anymore, since the beginning of 2015 the Asean free trade area has been established, cheaper Thai sugar which is produced in a more efficient way is making life hard for the old school sugar plantations – as always it makes sense to follow the money, it could be that the Aquino-Cojuangco clan need a… Read more »
Rodolfo A. Tabotabo
Guest
If I were the Government Negotiator with the MILF I would scrap/garbage the Peace Process Negotiations because it is an evidence that the MILF cannot control his owned group. Besides, there are a lot of Moro faction/group. Since they are protecting the terrorists and other lawless group activities there will be no peace at all in Mindanao after the peace processed has been approved. In my owned opinion the billion amount of money intended to set up the Bangsamoro State will be used by the MILF to strengthen their revolutionary activities against the Government of the Philippines and then little… Read more »
Hyden007Toro
Guest

@Rodolfo A. Tabotabo:

Under the Islamic SHARIA LAW. You are an Infidel. A subhuman non-believer of their God: Allah. You become their slave. if you commit a small crime. You can be :crucified,hanged, whipped a hundred times, tortured, your head cut off and displayed on stake in Public Square.

Your wife, daughter and any female in your family will be sold in Auction as Sex Slaves…

This is already happening in ISIS controlled territories in Iraq and Syria…in Taliban controlled Provinces in Pakistan…

Add
Guest
..Below is a comment of mine that I tried to post in JoeAmerica’s site as a reaction to his latest article MAMASAPANO: WHO WAS AT FAULT, AND WHY. I don’t see it in the combox so I guess he deems it unacceptable. Well, it’s his site, so i have no right to complain. Now, i will try to post it here if you don’t mind. But, if that creates some complication I know not about, then it is also okay if you delete it out as well. Either way, thanks GRP in advance. ***** Hahaha. A retired banker trying to… Read more »
JAMES GANG
Guest
The question must be asked: Does the Republic of the Philippines want to have a part of the country given away to another governing body?If so, get it over with already, just tell the people “Look you run this country and don’t ask us for anything,any longer.Your on your own.”, and then,step back and watch them kill each other. BUT IF NOT and The Republic of the Philippines doesn’t want see any part of the coutry seceede away from its control, go in there and wipe out the enemy of the state…straight away, no screwin around.To put up with this… Read more »
JAMES GANG
Guest

How idiotic is all of this, and the entire country in general? W/ Catholic Caridals named ‘SIN’ and rebel leaders named ‘MAMA’, who could ever make this shit up?

“BUT ‘MAMA’ ITS A ‘SIN’….”,?

Tony
Guest
I hope truth will emerge in a peaceful way… And Justice be served whatever it takes for it is from GOOD. All against the truth and justice are for EVIL… The clashes of these sides has a determining effect.. I would hope and assume that we concern Christians and Muslims ride on the side of GOOD against EVIL driven by some Christians and muslims as well… Question for all… Where do you think you belong? Reflection tip: God provides a wide-range of road for the GOOD and a narrow road on EVIL that at the very moment you stepped on… Read more »
Hyden007Toro
Guest
Aquino has a Large Ego, and is suffering from Paranoia and “Delusion of Grandeur. He cannot understand the consequences of Appeasing the Islamic Radicals. The MILF is just one of those terrorist groups operating in Mindanao. Aquino should look in the conflict in Lebanon, many years ago. Muslims fought against Muslims; Muslims fought against Christian; other groups fighting another group. The U.S. went to act as a Referee. It got its 300 U.S. Marines blown by a Suicide Bomber. Or look at Iraq. The Iraqui Shiites, fights against the Iraqui Sunnis. But these groups are all Muslims. It is called… Read more »
wickedfrog
Guest

To make the story short the President can not even differentiate the numbers 123 and abc. Philippine government are wasting time in arguing. NO TO BBL this land doesn’t belong to anyone but to the Republic of the phlippines…..

Fulgencio Salvado
Guest

Thanks, Ilda, and all concerned humans for justice and peace in Mindanao as well as LuzVis! This is history in the making and things may not last our own lifetimes. But all must co-operate to find solutions when all have definite knowledge of the problem.

Hyden009Toro
Guest

ISIS just BEHEADED 21 Egyptian Christians in Lybia…the Christians Crime were just being Christians…

So, you can see the Evilness of these Islamic Radicals and fundamentalists…

This is what we Filipinos are fighting for: for true Victory and Peace in Mindanao…

LA702
Guest
Here was a statement from the Bangsa Moro prior to the BBL’s approval by the Philippine congress: Bangsa Moro (Moro Nation) is the collective name of the people of the sultanate of Sulu. In solving the communication gap between Muslims and christian Filipinos you must understand the “hermeneutic philosophy” why the Bangsa Moro asserts its historic rights as a national ethnic community, it is not being a separatist or secessionist but rather asserting a historical truth that must be acknowledged otherwise there will be no solution to the conflict in Mindanao. The Bangsa Moro and their culture, religion, history and… Read more »