“(ARE you) ‘nuts?”
This was purportedly the retort issued by the commanding general of the embattled US Army in the city of Bastogne, Belgium, during the Nazi’s “winter offensive” (Operation Northwind) in 1944, now famously known as the ‘Battle of the Bulge,’ when asked by the German armed forces to surrender.
The offer of surrender by the Germans under a “flag of truce,” was for them to avoid further “slaughter” of the US Army, with Bastogne surrounded and the prospect of “rescue” nearly impossible due to bad weather (Gen. George Patton would eventually rescue them a day after Christmas).
And this may well be the same retort that we would be hearing from our own Armed Forces, nay, even from PDU30—and the rest of the public— over the “peace terms” being proffered by the National Democratic Front (NDFP) if a peace agreement is to be finally signed, and that elusive, “just and lasting peace” for our country, is to be achieved, finally.
And why would most Filipinos “go bananas” over them, you may want to ask dear readers?
Well, it’s because the “draft” of the NDFP peace terms, now circulating, disclose that among the “details” that the GRP should accept would be the “confiscation” and “nationalization” of all foreign-owned (read: all MNCs/TNCs) business enterprises in the Philippines and “confiscation” of private and public lands so these could be used to implement a “genuine” land reform.
Now, if that would not immediately draw up the “vision” of the US Navy and other naval powers (China included) suddenly appearing in Manila Bay to “protect their interests,” the collapse of the stock market and every available financial institution suddenly closing its doors to us, or the US Marines wading into our shores preceded by “precision bombings” of “vital infrastructures,” I don’t know what other “doomsday scenario” one could imagine should PDU30 be convinced by our chief “negotiator,” DoLE Secretary Silvestre Bello, to agree to these terms.
If these terms are not yet enough to make you run to the nearest toilet bowl to vomit, then you should brace for more terms that even a harebrained would describe us “lunacy” and coming from the minds of people wholly removed from reality.
For among the most unacceptable “terms for peace” that the NDFP wanted is the “demobilization” (translation: “dismantling”) of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), with the clear intent that as soon as the peace agreement is signed, it would be the New People’s Army (NPA) who would be the new core group of possibly, the “re-established” AFP—now under direct the political and military command of the NPA’s “Military Commission.”
For yours truly, this is clearly laying the groundwork for civil war and an incitement for the AFP to overthrow the government, with or without the backing of the United States and other “imperialist” countries, China included.
Why the NDFP is emboldened to proffer such terms should also tell us a lot about the caliber of the GRP negotiating panel as headed by Bello and former student activist, Nani Braganza.
For clearly, had these two, entrusted by PDU30 and the Filipinos to negotiate the peace agreement with the NDFP, not given the latter “encouragement”— thru their stupidity, incompetence or both— the NDFP would not have been bold enough to draft these terms to begin with.
Indeed, in some quarters of government, in case Sec. Bello does not know it yet, his being the head of the government panel is being a considered an absurdity. “It’s actually two NDFP panels talking to each other,” one source told me.
Translation? Should it now be the time for PDU30 to kick-out Bello as head of the GRP peace panel and better yet, remove him from any post in the government—then ordering his arrest and incarceration for high treason?
For how can he even touch the paper over which these proposals are written without realizing that these are the terms that only a “victor” can dictate?
Eh, “nanalo” na ba ang mga komunista? Saan? Kelan?
Of course, all of us—more so, Pres. Duterte—want peace. Real, genuine peace.
But it must be peace intended to promote exactly that, peace. Thus, the terms behind it should not result to further division, chaos and worse, possible foreign intervention amidst a raging civil war.
But then, this may be what the NDFP precisely wanted all along. The country’s descent into further chaos which it can use, once in power, to create a “new race” of Filipinos (after the elimination of the “old”) and who are totally obedient to the “will of the party.”
And then, “genuine social progress” can now begin. I mean, that’s how the USSR did it and Chairman Mao’s China too. Or may be, the country, under NDFP rule, can also go the way Cambodia went during the Khmer Rouge years— mass murder and a return to “communal” living.
I admit to “admiring” the ‘12-Point Program’ of the NDFP that it has laid down to turn the country into a truly progressive and sovereign nation. But if the above terms are the ones that we would all follow to realize them, then I have one retort too:
“Are you nuts?”