Category: At Ground Level

Life and survival under martial law

At this time of the year since 2011, I have written in this space a piece about martial law and the Marcos dictatorship. Mostly I have ruminated on the wrong decisions by the Cory Aquino government that have, since then, allowed the pernicious imprint of martial law – military and police abuses, extrajudicial killings, enforced…

Impunity on extrajudicial killings is a Marcos legacy

Last Tuesday presidential spokesperson Ernesto Abella was quoted as telling reporters how President Duterte felt about the drug-related killings, both by the police and vigilantes, under his watch: “I think he’s very concerned and, in fact, bothered and troubled. He is deeply and profoundly concerned.” Did Abella accurately fathom the President’s innermost feelings on the…

More informal meetings vital to peace negotiations

It was relieving for those keenly concerned with peace to be reassured early this week that the Duterte government and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines remain committed to resume, in the last week of August, the long-suspended GPH-NDFP formal peace negotiations. The misunderstandings and exchanges of mutually hurting words between the two sides…

Unilateral ceasefire mode and details need clarifying

This week the Philippine STAR is celebrating its 30th founding anniversary. I join its loyal readers in commending the editorial staff, the management, and the employees for the paper’s sustained growth and dedicated pursuance of its declared goal: that, through responsible reporting and opinion writing, truth shall prevail. Also I thank the Philippine STAR for…

Direction of Duterte gov’t: ‘Compassion, real change’

Formally speaking as President of the Philippines soon after making his oath of office last Thursday, Rodrigo R. Duterte made it abundantly clear that “Malasakit, Tunay na Pagbabago” (Compassion, Real Change) define the character and direction of his administration. He emphasized that he had articulated these battlecries during the presidential campaign “in behalf of the…