During the regular press conference with law enforcement groups at the Royal Mandaya Hotel last Wednesday, November 29, 2023 the Police Regional Office (PRO) XI spokesperson Maj. Catherine dela Rey announced to the media that the PRO is deploying around 3,000 policemen all over the region to ensure security of the season’s revelers and of the residents of Southern Mindanao.
Initially we thought why that big number of policemen. We were thinking that the police could have deployed that much number possibly to thwart any move by anti-government forces to disrupt the celebration of the Christmas season. That is why we were about to ask ourselves what happened to the much talked about claim of the police and the military that the entire Davao Region is almost 100 percent insurgency-free?
It was a good thing that in the later part of the statement of the PRO spokesperson she put heavy emphasis on the security of the people of this southern Mindanao region against common criminals.
Yes, the Police Regional Office Director P/Brig. General Alden Delvo could not have been more correct in his decision to put more policemen and perhaps some force multipliers on the road. It has been the experience of the public that more crimes, especially those depriving of others of their properties, are committed during the holiday season.
People walking on the streets, strolling on plazas or inside business establishments, and even those who are in the sanctuary of their homes are oftentimes victimized by burglars preying on their vulnerability at this time of the year.
We are just hoping that those who are assigned to do the job of securing the region’s population will live up to the expectation of their regional director and those of the people whose vulnerability to the season’s crimes they are tasked to guard against criminals.
Honestly we are hard up in understanding the character of some people who we suspect are belonging to the strongly anti-Duterte groups masquerading as pseudo human rights advocates and nationalists.
On the issue of our country’s territorial dispute with China over the West Philippine Sea (South China Sea as far as the latter country is concerned), these same people and the organizations they belong are even advocating for more drastic action to protect our sovereignty over the area. They are even short of suggesting to the government to initiate collective moves to invoke the ruling of the International Court of Arbitration favoring the Philippines. They want government to insist that China surrenders its claim against the area. By collective they mean that we have to call on our allies to somewhat “intimidate” China into submission to the arbitration court ruling.
On the whole these groups of people appear willing to fight to the death just to ensure that the Philippines will not “give up even a square inch of our territory” to China.
Unfortunately, in the case of their desire to get back at the former President who they claim to have committed a crime against humanity in his aggressive anti-illegal drugs war, they are more than willing to give up our sovereignty by allowing outsiders to investigate and prosecute – even sentence – the former President for his alleged crime.
These people who are known well-schooled and learned to the maximum are actually exposing their naivety. They are banking on the number of those killed during the anti-illegal drug war and appear to be counting every alleged slain victim of police operations as innocent “collateral damage.”
Seemingly, they pretend to ignore their knowledge that when a war is waged either against and enemy country or enemies within the state there will always be collateral damage no matter how careful the conduct of any of the protagonists.
Yes, it is highly possible that some of those slain in the Duterte war against illegal drugs may be innocent. But to charge it all against the one waging the war is too much of a generalization. The illegal drug merchants, in all possibilities, could have done the killings themselves because they know the deaths will be charged against the one declaring the “war.”
Moreover the advocates for the conduct of an International Criminal Court (ICC) probe on Duterte’s alleged crime against humanity know very well that the drug war was a fight against criminals destroying the fibers of Philippine society.
Yet, they are willing to ignore this fact in the guise of being guardians of the human rights of Filipinos. So literally surrendering our functional justice system to outsiders is not a significant matter to these so-called protectors of Philippine sovereignty.
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