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The Bangsamoro MoA: Will A Piece of Paper Make Peace Or War?

August 19, 2008

The Supreme Court is at a defining moment for the institution, and the nation.

This Friday is expected by many as D-Day for the widely disputed Memorandum of Agreement on Ancestral Domain, the pact that is billed as the way to lasting peace in Mindanao by both the Arroyo administration and the rebel Moro Islamic Liberation Front.

A trail of 31 dead bodies and sccores of  burned out homes and businessnes left by marauding Moros in four Lanao towns earlier this week gave the high tribunal a stark, chilling preview  of the mayhem that may lie ahead if peace is not attained, or in this case, if the MILF does not have its way.

To be fair, the Philippine State, with Gloria Macapagal Arroyo asserting her Commander-in-Chief status, says its Armed Forces “will defend every inch of Philippine territory.”

But the MILF is bellowing in return that it “will not agree to any renegotiation of the MoA-AD because it has already been initialled and is binding.”

The Supreme Court is itself puzzled by the use of the word “initialed”, with several Justices of the belief  that the petitions questioning the constitutionality of the agreement are premature and that the MoA-AD is a mere “piece of paper.”

But is it?

What “breakthrough and meeting of the minds” then had been announced by presidential ‘peace secretary’ Hermogenes Esperon?

What indeed is the legal character of an ‘initialed’ MoA-AD that its non-implementation has made the MILF feel that it has been betrayed, and forced it to “make a virtual declaration of war”?

Were the Moro rebels assured by Esperon and company that the MoA-AD is in fact “a done deal” with the a ‘sovereign Bangsamoro Juridical Entity’ already a fait accompli (an accomplished fact)?

Now it is not only justice, but peace which hangs in the balance.

The decision of the highest court of the land, and the executive department’s handling of the peace negotiations outside the very framework of the Constitution, as it appears, will determine whether the tenuous peace in the southern Philippines will hold, or if full scale war will erupt.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. Aldwin permalink
    August 19, 2008 9:31 pm

    NO.
    It will not create peace on that land. if you give them food, then they will ask for more – it is a law of nature. MILF should have learned to respect the law first before they can say they’ll abide to MOA.
    If they are really fighting for their fellowmen as a Bangsamoro why then did they inflict fear that caused their people to flee for a refuge in the Philippine government? It is a good indication that they are just fighting for their own good and not the good of the people of that locality.
    This is a same scenario with the NPA with some locality. Some feared them and only a few sympatized them, while others just don’t want to get involve (because of fear? or they just want to live their life? who knows) but the bottom line isPhilippines would be better and be growing economically without a leftist that causes fear and hindrance to growth – economically speaking. On the good side – they are the one who protects our forest and natural resources by imposing fears for those oppotunists who want to exploit our beautiful country.

  2. August 23, 2008 1:02 pm

    all this, to me, spells G-R-E-E-D.

    it is the cancer, the autoimmune disease, that has been eating away at our foundations. we are attacking our own people, whom we are supposed to protect, maniacally driven by that blinding lust and desire for power, and excesses of it. greed is insatiable, self-absorbed. it can only hear the ceaseless roaring of its hungry, empty soul. it is deaf to the pains and needs of others.

    a piece of paper can never achieve peace. but an individual at peace with himself, can.

  3. heart permalink
    September 2, 2008 11:43 am

    for cherr and aldwin:

    you do not understand the thing because you are not muslims. so please don’t speak like that. it’s a fact that mindanao is not part of philippines. (remember in your history subjects? rizal was exiled in dapitan. exile means to throw to other country). why would you exile a filipino in philippines. tell me. or was it just that the historians do not know the meaning of exile. well, maybe there are not responsible enough about their hearsays of their HISTORY.

    btw, the media is bias. the kept on praising the army, destroying the public image of milf. well, they do not air in the tv or radio the massacres by the army right? im sori i forgot the website where i found out that 9 peasants who were peacefully harvesting coconuts were massacred like how your national hero died.

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