This is the time

IT is wrong for President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III to continue the peace talks with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front when the latter is either massacring or beheading our soldiers.

To end the peace talks following last Tuesday’s massacre in Al-Barka, Basilan of 19 government soldiers by the MILF is nothing but the right thing to do. The massacred soldiers were pursuing members of the notorious Abu Sayyaf, a criminal group enjoying MILF protection, when waylaid.

There can never be any permanent peace settlement with a group like MILF which is hell bent in establishing an independent country. Clearly, it is only using the peace talks to consolidate its ranks and gain support from Muslim countries in Southeast Asia and the Middle East.

An expert on Mindanao history said the only language the Moro rebels knew is force. They only act honorably when confronted with a determined force otherwise all talks about peace, which they generally consider contemptuous, will fall on deaf ears.

Former President Joseph “Erap” Estrada was right to recover Camp Abubakar from the MILF early in his term because the Moro rebels realized they are facing a determined and hard man, and were forced to back down until a new but “soft on the MILF” Malacanang occupant, ex-Pres. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, came along.

The unprovoked ambush-massacre in Al-Barka is just one from the long list of contemptuous act the MILF committed against the “peace-loving” republic and the Filipino soldier whom they consider to be a foreign invader. Just ask these MILF people if they consider themselves Filipinos and you will know what I mean.

Before the Al-Barka incident, the Muslim rebels last July beheaded several members of the Philippine Marines. The MILF can deny its involvement all it want but it can never hide the fact that the people involved in the atrocities against the Filipino people are linked, one way or another, with them.

To continue dealing with the rebels at a time when our soldiers are being massacred will lead to demoralization of the soldiers on the front and probably total victory for the rebels, and consequently the dismemberment of the Philippines.

This is the most opportune time to galvanize the people and the armed forces to really put an end in the violence in MILF infested areas. I am just wondering how many soldiers need to die before Aquino and his peace advisers like Ging Deles and Marvic Leonen face the fact that the MILF does not really want to be part of the Philippine republic.

There is a time for peace (and I think that time is almost over) and a time for a just war.


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