PRESIDENT Duterte thinks he never had it so good – a Supreme Court always ready to bow to his whims, a fattened military behind his back and popularity ratings still as high as ever. He could only see what he believes he can do – never mind the repercussions affecting his own people especially with the VFA abrogation.
But God help the aging and sickly President who has turned grumpier each passing day. He has directly challenged the CIA, cussing the world’s most powerful intelligence agency twice in his speech before local officials last Monday. The cost of any renewed US destabilization here, which is certainly possible more than anyone would think, will hopefully not drag innocent lives.
People have forgotten the more than 100 civilians who were killed in the crossfire in the series of military coup attempts spearheaded by the RAM and the Young Officers Union (YOU) during President Cory’s tenure. The coup plotters’ brazenness had fed on their close Washington or CIA ties, especially in the face of leftists in the Cabinet suspected of taking over the government. A number of books on CIA’s covert operations, notably in Central and South America, convey, without any shadow of doubt, Washington’s fierce and wicked determination to neutralize and shatter any defiant government brandishing a contrary security or ideological agenda.
It is stupid to think that Solicitor-General Jose Calida represents the national interest, as he makes himself out to be. Nothing is clearer to him than to step up as an attack dog of Malacanang and its tenant. As a presidential appointee to an office that should otherwise stand as the nation’s constitutional refuge, he, of course, has no choice but to give in to the President at almost every turn of any improbable legal impasse.
It seems Mr. Duterte wants to assert his power that he means business to a reluctant Congress which refuses to put its foot down on not renewing the franchise of ABS-CBN.
Broadcast executives and industry personnel are anticipating the stand of the Kapisanan ng mga Brodkaster ng Pilipinas (KBP) and join the rising clamor against the possible closure of the huge network. Made up of the owners and presidents or board chairmen of the numerous radio and TV networks nationwide it is can always wield its immense self-regulatory powers for which it was founded principally against any government intervention in the operations and businesses of its member-stations
People in Asia should always remember Dr. Li Wen Liang, the doctor who discovered the now dreaded nCoV and was arrested for “spreading rumors” about what many thought was a mysterious pneumonia. Despite the continued threats to his health and reputation he persisted in caring for patients until he himself was infected. He died on Feb. 7 and left behind a pregnant wife who also got infected.
Christian believers in China say Dr. Li Wen chose to be an example of Immanuel; “God be with us” to the people of Wuhan province. He penned a moving Chinese poem that has been translated into English. A part of it goes, “I don’t want to be a hero. I still have my parents, And my children, And my pregnant wife who’s about to give birth, And many of my patients in the ward. Though my integrity cannot be exchanged for the goodness of others. Despite my loss and confusion, I should proceed, anyway. Who let me choose this country and this family? How many grievances do I have? When this battle is over, I will look up the sky, With tears in the rain… Goodbye, my dear ones. Farewell, Wuhan, my hometown. Hopefully, after the disaster, You’ll remember someone once Tried to let you know the truth as soon as possible. Hopefully, after the disaster, You’ll learn what it means to be righteous. No more good people should suffer from endless fear, And endless sadness”.
He ended the poem with the Biblical verse from 2 Timothy 4:7, “I have fought the good fight. I have finished the race. I have kept the faith. Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness”. Dr Li Wen’s career as a medical doctor suddenly became a calling. But what a price to pay for that calling to really matter. It’s good there is eternity!