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PIA Press Release
2006/10/14

Commentary: Terror as a desperate tool?

By Bong Pedalino

Tacloban City (14 October) -- About a couple of years ago, top leaders of rebel forces backed out from a peace talk supposedly brokered by Norway in an effort to end the 37-year-old insurgency of the country. Their main reason for withdrawing then was that the present administration did not make moves to remove their name from the list of terrorist organizations as labeled by the US and other European countries.

In the light of the recent attack on a soon-to-become a world-class airport in Silay City, Negros Occidental, you my dear readers, be the judge, on whether or not theirs was, and is, indeed, a terrorist organization.

A group that promotes destructive acts to sow fear and, in the process, extract compliance, mostly of the monetary kind, can be branded just as it is: a terror group.

***

Offhand, it is much harder to make sense, to find meaning, on why an armed band that spouses a “class-less society”, or claims as the refuge of the helpless, relishes in destroying private equipment, properties, and public infrastructure that uplift the plight of the poor.

It’s impossible to believe that a group advocating equality and justice use damaging ways to attain their objective, or use terror as a tool to slow down much-needed development.

If they do not consider government projects as necessary for social progress, helping the poor through jobs and other services, then the underground has lost its right to say they are pro-poor.

***

Sadly, though, in the global war on terrorism, some terrorist groups do not hide the fact that their business is, well, spreading terror. As I write this piece, at least three explosions rocked Central Mindanao , and the culprits have not yet been identified.

But don’t be surprised if sooner, a certain group would take full responsibility publicly through the tri-media on the blasts, including the polluted alibi on why it was done.

Which brings us to this question: Do we need some more bombings with much higher intensity and extent in damage to lives and properties before the anti-terror bill finally becomes a law?

And by the way, that question is addressed to our Honorable Senators.

***

LOCAL FRONT: Southern Leyte DPWH District Engineer Carlos Veloso disclosed that repair and rehabilitation of Liloan Bridge has been included in the super-region program for the province. For commuters passing through the bridge, this is good news, inasmuch as nature, by way of corrosion and the passage of time for more than 25 years, has taken its toll on the steel and concrete bridge. Veloso said bidding for the project, which cost P 40 Million, may be undertaken this month at the DPWH Regional Office, and work may start next month or a little later. In the meantime, truckers and cargo handlers were forewarned to reduce their load, from twenty tons maximum to only ten tons, in crossing the bridge as a precaution.

ODDLY YOURS: That a Friday falls on a 13th is no big deal, really, no thanks to those spine-raising, freaky Friday the 13th movies, which probably caused all these fuss. Calendar experts have calculated that the 13th of the month is more likely to fall on a Friday than on any other day of the week. It was found out, using a 400-year cycle as basis, that Fridays appeared 688 times to fall on the 13th, compared with Sundays and Wednesdays which had it 687 times each; Mondays and Tuesdays had it 685 times each, while Thursdays and Saturdays 684 times each. Of course, a 400-year segment should be used, for if it is less than 400 years the distribution is more or less even. (PIA) [top]

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