Shove it!

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    THE US Senate Appropriations Committee adopted the amendment proposed by Senators Patrick Leahy and Dick Durbin to ban entry into the US of “Philippine government officials involved in the alleged politically-motivated imprisonment of Filipina Senator Leila De Lima.”

    I take it that the proposed ban would apply to President Duterte down to his Justice secretary, to National Bureau of Investigation agents, to the state prosecutor, to the judge of the court who ordered her arrest and confinement and finally, to the police officials who arrested her.

    In retaliation, Digong should immediately order his Justice secretary to ban the entry into our country of Durbin and Leahy, both Democrats.

    Senators Edward Markey (D), Marco Rubio (R) Marsha Blackburn (R) and Chris Coons (D) who with Durbin introduced a bipartisan resolution last April condemning the continued detention of De Lima and calling for her immediate release, should also be banned from entering the Philippines.

    (NOTE: I wrote this part before Duterte’s “alalay” and sometimes spokesman Sen. Bong Go announced that he would make the same suggestion to the former.)

    Mga bastos at walang galang sa atin! Wala silang pakialam! That’s blatant interference in a purely domestic affair of a sovereign country! WTF!!!

    Reacting to the same sentiment expressed by Spokesman Salvador Panelo, Leahy said:
    “Every year, the United States provides large amounts of aid to the Philippines, and I have supported that aid. I assume President Duterte’s spokesman who defended the wrongful imprisonment of Senator De Lima does not consider our aid to be ‘interfering’ in their sovereignty… Our aid is not a blank check, and when Philippine officials abuse the justice system for the purpose of political retribution, we have a responsibility to respond.”

    Again, WTF!

    To begin with, what “political retribution” is the bloody fool talking about? De Lima is under detention for alleged involvement in the proliferation of illegal drugs in the national penitentiary!

    Incidentally, there has been no reaction from our Amboy of a foreign secretary, Teodoro “Tweeterboy” Locsin, Jr., to the US senators’ moves, although I must say I am not at all surprised.

    If the US considers her aid to us entitles her to merrily interfere in our domestic affairs which she has been doing all along, I believe it is time our government told her to shove it!

    I have always contended that we have enough money to fund our programs and projects if, and it is a biiiggg IF, our politicians and government officials, not all of course, were to stop plundering government resources, including grants and donations from foreign sources.

    Besides, other countries would only be too happy to fill the gap to be left by the withdrawal of US aid. There’s China and Russia, for instance, which have declared their readiness to assist us.

    US DECEIT

    In this regard, is it any wonder then that Duterte has been critical of the US in the way she has been treating us?

    Only recently, he revealed how the Americans deceived Filipinos, including his parents, to migrate to Mindanao and exploit its resources.

    “Alam mo pagdating namin doon we found out na ‘yung sloganeering ng mga Amerikano ay hindi pala totoo. They were the imperialists who came after the Spaniards and took over the country by subjugation. They wanted to exploit the riches of Mindanao but they could not find Moro working for them,” he said.

    “They offered homesteads, ‘yung mga cadastral lands noon. Sabi nila ‘go to Mindanao because it is the land of promise.’ But actually kakaunti lang ‘yung naitabi nila para sa mga tao. At nagkaroon ng problema kagaya sa ibang lugar ng Davao. But it was not because of any — walang piyudalismo. They were just scrambling for the lands,” he added.

    AMBOY LOCSIN ON CHINA AND US

    Meanwhile, Amboy Locsin was busy in New York casting aspersions on China, while heaping praises and hosannas to the US.

    “We signed up this and that agreement (with China), but they hardly materialized… and if you were to compare it with Japanese investments and official assistance, nothing,” he told former Australian prime minister and Asia Society Policy Institute president Kevin Rudd.

    Did he consult beforehand with the relevant authorities, our economic managers, if what he said is accurate?

    Asked about PH-US relations, Tweeterboy, like a true-blue Amboy, said:

    “Rock solid. We hope not just in words, but in material commitments and American presence. We cannot see any way forward in Asia, with any promise of freedom, without the American military presence.”

    By that statement, I take it he also wants US troops and military bases to remain in the Philippines?

    But that is against Duterte’s oft-stated policy!

    Pray tell, who dictates foreign policy, Mr. President?

    ***
    After meeting with US Department of State Assistant Secretary David Stilwell to discuss areas of current and future PH-US cooperation, Tweeterboy reportedly gushed:

    “Half a billion dollars of military assistance. That’s a good corrective to the widespread and deliberately ignorant view that America is not carrying its share of the burden of Philippine national defense.”

    And he was talking to a mere assistant secretary?! How gullible!

    Too, is he not aware of the present mood in the US Congress with respect to the sale of arms to the Philippines? How the US reneged on her commitment, for instance, to deliver some 26,000 rifles for use by our military during the Marawi siege because some bloody US senators objected to it?

    And how China and Russia came to our rescue by supplying us with the urgently needed arms for free?!

    Tweeterboy should have asked first the leadership of our government and the military establishment, past and present, about the veracity of his statement before opening his filthy mouth.

    By the way, in his speech before the UN General Assembly, Tweeterboy referred to the Filipino people as “MY people.”

    Feeling president or leader of the Filipinos na yata!

    FRANK SINATRA

    During a chance meeting on the sidelines of the ongoing UN General Assembly session, US President Donald Trump asked Tweeterboy to say hello to Duterte.

    “Say hi to Frank Sinatra… You know who I mean?… I love that guy,” said Trump which Tweeterboy dutifully tweeted.

    Bolero! Duterte loves to sing, but Frank Sinatra he definitely is not.

    Duterte shouldn’t trust Trump. They may like each other personally, but at the end of the day, Trump will, as will Duterte, simply follow what is good for their respective countries.

    REMINDERS

    This segment is intended to remind the Duterte administration of some of its yet unfulfilled promises and matters that need attention and/or follow-up action. More importantly, the people are entitled to know what’s being done about them.

    1. Digong’s promise to rid the country of foreign troops. This, of course,
    necessitates abrogating the MDT and the lopsided and constitutionally infirm VFA and the EDCA.

    2. Reciprocal visa arrangements with the US and other countries. What is Amboy Locsin doing about this? Our embassy in Washington? No less than President Digong has said he wanted this done about three years ago. Has he changed his mind? If not, Locsin should be directed to start things moving, or else…???

    Needless to say, such reciprocal arrangements should also be pursued with all other countries.

    Oh, I know that certain offices in the government, the Department of Tourism for one, and some members of the private sector resist such a move for the cockeyed reason that it will lessen the number of tourists coming here.

    That’s pure hogwash! As long as we get our acts together and make the country attractive to foreigners, they, including Americans, will come with or without visa fees.

    Incidentally, now that a modified Visa Upon Arrival (VUA) will continue to be given to Chinese nationals, we should ask China to extend the same privilege to our travelers, that is, if no such arrangement yet exists.

    ***
    Today is the 148th day of the 13th year of the enforced disappearance of Jonas Burgos, son of the late press icon and founder of this newspaper, Joe Burgos.

    After the acquittal of Major Harry Baliaga, Jr., the only person formally charged with Jonas’ kidnapping, I guess what happens next is now up to Divine Providence.

    ***
    From an internet friend:

    In a land far, far away, there was a Christian parish that had many attendees.

    There was a priest who was part of it that used to give out miniature palm crosses that he made by hand.

    One Sunday, he announced that he would be giving them out.

    The congregation in the church that day reacted with glee.

    “Put this cross in the room where your family argues most,” he advised.

    “When you look at it, the cross will remind you that God is watching.”

    When the parishioners were leaving the church, a woman walked up to the priest, shook his hand and said, “I’ll take five.”

    ***
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