Monday, March 05, 2007

On The Road To Martial Law?

The presence of the military in the metropolis is a clear sign that something is afoot. The timing is suspect, being so close to the elections. It seems that the MOA signed by the COMELEC and DND Sec. Avelino Cruz has been dumped. With the approval of the Human Security Act of 2007 and the deployment of the military in Metro Manila, one would wonder if the administration is gearing up for martial law.

The last time military presence was felt was during the coups of the late '80s. What makes it different now is the constant propaganda against the left-wing party-lists. Norbie Gonzales had been harping on the communist threat for several weeks now. While Gabby Claudio wants us to give the AFP the benefit of the doubt, the military has time and again shown that they cannot be trusted. With the extra-judicial killings, the military has lost its credibility. CoS Hermogenes Esperon is a known GMA attack dog and any statement or justification from him is highly questionable.

With the power and arrogance he wields, he can do pretty much anything with impunity. The signs are all there for people to see. Marcos laid down the predicate to the declaration of martial law with the Red Scare. It is happening now with Gonzales's pronouncements. The attacks on the party-lists integrity coupled with the Terrorist Scare, shows where the administration is heading to. With the surveys going against its bets, they are on the verge of political meltdown.

See how the administration tries to divert the people's attention on the political issues hounding Gloria? She is now trying hard to do an Erap to win over the masses who definitely see her true color than the fence-sitting middle class. She thinks she can bribe the poor with her promises of growth and wealth. Marcos too did this to kill the people's skepticism while the military subdued the critics.

Is this a prelude to something bigger? This obvious electioneering by the military at this time is something we should not be taking lightly. These deployments are serious enough and threatens the outcome of the elections. We should not take Esperon's denials at face value and should be more vigilant. Its an obvious attempt to cloak the true nature of their deployment.

This latest deployment of the military is a slap on the face of the PNP. It clearly demonstrates the ineptness of the police at cracking down on criminality. Is the military now assuming the role of the police? The MOA clearly stated the military's role during this elections. Ebdane and Esperon clearly overstepped the boundaries of the MOA. Unless the COMELEC is in cahoots with the administration, Abalos should quickly charge Esperon with violations of the Election Code. Abalos should sue him in court. But alas, Abalos had given in to Esperon and now the road is clear for the AFP to do as it pleases.

Clearly the deployment of the military has intimidated the people. As if under constant watch, people have no other option but to give statements supporting the military presence. Armed with long firearms, who wouldn't be intimidated. With their presence, any form of partisanship is quickly crushed. With 26 communities now under its control in the metropolis, how many more will follow? There is no clear and present danger to the people that warrants such an operation. Clearly, the military and GMA are taking no chances. They need to rein in the masses to avoid a victory of the legitimate party-lists and the growing opposition.

Its a way of telling the electorate that the AFP will not allow any form of dissent. As the signing of the Human Security Act of 2007 dawns on us, what assurance do we have that this will not be used by the current dispensation to perpetuate itself to power? With the current mindset of the military and GMA's track record, the law can easily be abused by the administration. The Anti-terror Commission is composed of Malacañang lackeys who will need no coercion from Gloria and would gladly put her critics behind bars.

Its no wonder that Gloria is reinforcing her forces, its a last ditch effort for her to save her skin. They have resorted to the infamous "HAMLET SYSTEM", widely used to quell dissent. They are attacking the mass base of their critics. Striking terror and fear is the best deterrent to an expanding opposition. This is a stab to the very essence of civil liberties. The blatant display of force and the impunity by which this administration is harassing the people, where else would it lead? Are we on the road to Martial Law?