the 6 unfinished businesses on the slaughtered 44 PNP SAF commandos that will make you scratch your head
this is truly a shocking time for the Philippines – just a few days after the visit of Pope Francis to the country where 7 million went to Luneta to hear Pope Francis say mass and all 100 million of us were transformed and united by the words of the pope and of God, we were shocked out of our wits by 44 faces of these young men of the PNP’s SAF unit who were all slaughtered in Maguindanao.
there should be some kind of irony that they died in the hands of the MILF and BIFF soldiers who we assume are Muslim and belong to the faith of Islam just a few days after the head of the Catholic faith was in the country but we will not discuss that now. maybe for another day,
we sat in shock after more information were given on the incident that involved the 44 SAF personnel and how they died. we were brought into deeper shock when we heard the speeches delivered by government officials that listed what they will do and not do. from that shock, we are listing here things that we find and we put this mildly as unfinished businesses. and not putting it mildly, things that made us scratch our head.
in no particular order:
1. president aquino in his speeches defined ‘justice fpr the SAF 44″ as ‘the government will ctach Usman”, not as “catch the murderers of the 44 SAF men“. Usman is the other terrorist that the SAF was supposed to serve a warrant of arrest to. the other one is international terrorist Marwan who according to the PNP was killed in the encounter. Usman and Marwan were together, in separate huts but very near each other during the encounter.
we fail to see how catching Usman gives justice to the slaughtered 44 SAF men. the 44 SAF were slaughtered, they were murdered while doing their duties, the rule of law says murder is a crime in the Philippines and it is punishable. the president of the country not saying anything even remotely near that is at minimum disturbing and very disappointing.
we know that often times Noynoy Aquino has logic that only he understands but this one is one of the extremes. defining “justice” in that way seem to show he jumped several, actually many logic gaps that he did not bother to explain to us.
we are not even mentioning the fact that it took Aquino 3 days before he spoke about the massacre. he delivered 2 speeches on the matter and we listened intently to those two speeches. we listened as we wanted to hear from him that the government will pursue the killers. it was not mentioned in his first speech. it was also not mentioned in the second speech but it was there where he gave that strange definition of justice.
i scratched my head for the longest time on this one.
unlike president aquino, DOJ sec De Lima had made a statement that gives the proper definition of “justice for SAF 44”. De Lima shoulod be elected president!
Justice Secretary Leila de Lima issued a statement assuring the families of the justice department’s commitment to pursue justice for the fallen Special Action Force men.
“But we need to first ascertain the full facts surrounding the whole incident, including the identification of perpetrators,” De Lima said.
She added: “We’re looking at criminal liabilities for various offenses, such as multiple murder, homicide, serious physical injuries, direct assault, illegal possession of firearms … obstruction of justice and others.”
2. aquino seem to be giving the criminals among the MILF and BIFF a free pass on the crime they committed. it is ironic that the 44 SAF men died to uphold and execute the law and yet aquino seem to have given a free pass to those who broke the law and killed the 44 SAF men. justice, rule of law and even common sense were mangled to unrecognizable bits and pieces here.
3. according to news reports, 392 SAF men, a whole battalion was mobilized for the operation – how was it that the officers in the PNP chain of command didn’t know that a whole battalion of men were being mobilized? DILG chief Mar Roxas and the PNP OIC both claim they did not know about the operation and these two gentlemen are part of the chain of command. the chain of command must have a long list of officers down the line but none of them noticed the mobilization or if they did, none of them reported the matter to higher ups?
the SAF men are stationed in many different parts of the country. to assemble 392 men in one place will mean small and big groups of men will be travelling from different places to go to one central location. aside from men preparing and leaving, equipment, arms and transport of all sorts would have been mobilized. surely, officers in the chain of command would have noticed the large amount of people and logistics are getting moved.
if the PNP chain of command did not notice the mobilization of 392 men, one battalion, it can mean the national government is susceptible to a coup detat and they will not even know a battalion sized army with arms are already assembled and have commenced the attack on the government.
really, they did not know?
4. president Noynoy Aquino knew about the operation. aquino said he was told of the operation. it is not clear who was telling hin of the operation. the question here is this – why is a captain or even a major or colonel talking directly to the president? are we supposed to believe that? aquino as president knows by practice and i suppose in some handbook somewhere that men with the rank of general are the ones who have access to him. and these are not ordinary generals, they are usually 4-star or 5-star generals, the chiefs of the forces, not some middle level military or police officer. the military and the police are totally anal about procedure and the chain of command. protecting and upholding the chain of command is very critical in any military and police organization.
aquino says he knew about the operation, so what is this a captain or a major in the SAF who led the operation is a textmate of aquino? unlitext? or unlicall?
5. general Alan Purisima, the former PNP chief who has been suspended from office by the ombudsman was apparently in control of the operation and presdient Aquino knew it. we’re not questioning the skills and knowledge of Purisima but why was he actively involved and in fact the lead in this operation when getting suspended means he is not supposed to perform the function that he was supposed to be performing? in simple terms, a suspension means “you do not perform your function” but that was violated here. since he performed his function contrary to the order of the ombudsman, is Purisima now liable to be jailed?
the other head scratching moment here is that president aquino was a party here. Aquino admitted he was talking to Purisima about the SAF operation. in other words, the president was a party in violating the suspension order of the ombudsman.
6. terrorists Usman and Marwan have been in the MILF territory apparently for years – the MILF has been coddling international terrorists? it is not like these two just dropped by at the MILF territory. they had houses in the area. their wives and family were there too. the MILF know who they were and they allowed them to stay in their territory without reporting it to the police or the army. the MILF coddled and harbored the international terrorists. they are bomb makers and they have killed a lot of people in Mindanao and in the case of Marwan also in Bali, Indonesia.
we are not a lawyer. we do not claim any knowledge of the law. and we are not looking at these items from the point of view of the law but just from the eyes of a citizen using common sense. none of these things can be explained by anything close to common sense.