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Opinion

The rest is history 

SENTINEL - Ramon T. Tulfo - The Philippine Star

Detractors of former vice president and defeated presidential candidate Leni Robredo have been vicious with her.

Robredo’s bashers have been very unfair. They constantly feed the public lies about her. They portray her as a witch that would use her spells to bring down the government.

Isn’t it enough that she lost in the last presidential election?

Why do they continue to bear down hard on a loser who is conciliatory, even offering help to the Marcos government through her Angat Buhay charitable foundation?

From where I sit, the bashing Robredo continues to get is making a martyr out of her.

*      *      *

What happened to President Bongbong Marcos then is now happening to Robredo.

Marcos, whom Robredo defeated in a controversial vice-presidential election, was the object of virulent criticisms from Liberal Party attack dogs.

Bongbong Marcos, who never fought back against his detractors, won the sympathy of the public. As always, people root for the underdog.

The rest is history.

*      *      *

The euphoric mob who supported president Cory Aquino crossed the line when they continued to clobber her ousted predecessor Ferdinand Edralin Marcos and his family long after they were gone.

Cory’s yellow mob even disrespected the deceased president – OK, former dictator as the Old Marcos was reviled at the time – by not allowing his remains to be buried at the Libingan ng mga Bayani.

Little by little, the Marcos family inched their way back into the country’s political scene: first as local politicians in Ilocos Norte and then into the national scene as members of Congress.

The public’s hatred for the Marcoses, exacerbated by Cory’s vindictive nature, had turned into sympathy.

At the height of the Cory presidency, it was unthinkable for any of the Marcoses to return to the country to regain their place in history.

The rest is history.

*      *      *

Haven’t Bongbong’s supporters heard of magnanimity in victory?

I’m sure the President is not behind the attacks on Robredo, his former enemy, as I know him to be fair and levelheaded.

But somebody should tell the Marcos supporters to stop beating a dead horse.

Believe you me, it’s not helping Bongbong’s image any.

*      *      *

I covered the so-called EDSA People Power revolution – if you ask me, it was just a big picnic – from start to finish as a police reporter and columnist for the Manila Bulletin.

I remember the chanting and singing of the EDSA crowd as the announcement came that Ferdinand Marcos and his family left the country.

I still recall Times Journal reporter Teddy Africa’s prophetic words as if they were said only yesterday: “Mon, the oppressed will soon become the oppressors.”

*      *      *

I remember what my father said about why the Japanese never succeeded in supplanting White Supremacy after they won over the Americans, British, French and the Dutch in Asia during the Second World War.

“The (Japanese victors) became abusive. They oppressed the very people who they were supposed to sympathize with after they defeated their former colonial masters,” said my father, who fought in Bataan and survived the Death March.

At the time, Asians were tired of being ruled over by western countries. They were ready to embrace the concept of “Asia for the Asians” through the Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere.

The concept was to liberate Asia from colonial powers. Japan, already an advanced country, would lead their fellow Asians toward economic prosperity.

Had the victorious Japanese been solicitous of, instead of oppressive towards, their fellow Asians, all the countries that they wrested from western powers would have embraced their new saviors.

The peoples in Asia would have repulsed their white colonials who, a few years later, liberated them from Japanese rule.

Governments and politicians should learn a lesson from the Japanese experience. They should be magnanimous in victory.

*      *      *

Former cop Jeffrey S. Perez has become the poster boy for the excesses of the police when it comes to the war on drugs emphasized by the previous administration.

Perez was found guilty by a Caloocan City regional trial court of torturing and “planting” evidence that led to the killing of two teenagers: 19-year-old Carl Arnaiz and 14-year-old Reynaldo de Guzman. This happened in 2017.

Arnaiz allegedly died in a shootout with the police, while De Guzman’s mutilated body was found in a creek in Nueva Ecija.

Ex-cop Perez has been sentenced to serve life in prison for the brutality of his actions.

But why only Perez?

Perez couldn’t have done it alone, without help from his fellow cops.

*      *      *

The Caloocan City cops seem to epitomize the abusive behavior toward citizens who they are mandated “to serve and protect.”

In another incident, Kian delos Santos, a 17-year-old student, was shot in the head when he supposedly drew a gun from his waistband during a police operation and tried to shoot it out with the cops.

However, it was found that the boy was wearing boxer shorts. He couldn’t have hung a .45 caliber pistol from his waist because the gun is too heavy to be supported by gartered shorts.

Three policemen were found guilty of murdering Kian and are now serving life terms.

In still another incident, six Caloocan cops robbed a vendor, Eddie Yuson, of P14,000 in cash aid which he just received from the government.

The six cops beat Yuson up when he pleaded with them not to take his money.

All six have been dismissed from the service, but it is not known what happened to the robbery complaint filed against them.

LENI ROBREDO

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