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Feb 04th
Home Columns Reinventing the Philippines An Old Story: New Coup Planned to Oust President Arroyo
An Old Story: New Coup Planned to Oust President Arroyo PDF Print E-mail
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Columns - Reinventing the Philippines
Sunday, 30 November 2008 09:14

(Part 6 of “Reinventing the Philippine Military” Series)


L ike a soap opera that has no ending, coup rumors are again spreading in the Philippines. As stated in Part 5 of this series, “According to sources in the Philippine military, it is only a question of ‘when’ (not ‘what’ or ‘why’ or ‘how’) a coup would finally succeed.”

According to our impeccable sources in the Philippines, the Young Turks, the rank-and-file and non-commissioned officers (NCOs) – of both the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) – are all unhappy with the leadership and track record of President Gloria M. Arroyo and her equally-corrupt generals. Philippine Marines are killed in Mindanao by Islamic militants and some of them were even beheaded. There communist rebels inflict also numerous casualties on Filipino soldiers and police in the Visayan islands and in Luzon. But reports say that the soldiers’ and policemen’s widows and/or surviving kin are not given much death benefits or even a pension. Their military-issued boots wear out in less-than a month, as the bulk of their acquisition cost is actually pocketed by officers.

Many of the generals are beholden to the President, who regularly gives them at least a million pesos ($25,000) per quarter, without the benefit of a government-issued voucher and without requiring review by the Commission on Audit. And worse, politicians pay "tribute" to communist and/or Islamic rebels on regular monthly basis, so as not to be ambushed by them. The pay-off moneys in turn allow the rebels to purchase more ammunition and even high-powered rifles from corrupt sources in the Philippine military – to inflict more casualties on the front-line soldiers and/or police.


The Arroyo Administration has billions of pesos for congressional pork barrel and more billions for local-government officials every fiscal year but it does not have money for veterans’ pension and disability payments.


Even fuel for the antiquated vessels and patrol boats of the Philippine Navy is reportedly diverted to non-military use or even outright stolen by some government officials.


The Philippine military and police are like a once-dormant volcano that is slowly coming to life, as it prepares to explode violently.


If the predicted military coup does happen, it may be bloody because President Arroyo is not expected to flee to a foreign country on an exile – if faced with a massive rebellion. As Washington, DC-based Filipino writer Ado Paglinawan said, "President Arroyo would leave the presidential palace in a horizontal position."


Here are the links to the previous five articles of this series:


Reinventing the Philippine Military to Prevent the Coming of a Junta


Reinventing the Philippine Military (Part Two)


The Military Background of Philippine Presidents (Part 3)


A Call to Arms? (Part4 of Reinventing the RP Military)


Anatomy of a Filipino Coup (Part 5 of "Reinventing the Military" Series)



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Last Updated on Sunday, 30 November 2008 09:27

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Quote of the Day

If a man will begin with certainties,he shall end with doubts;but if he will be content to begin with doubts,he shall end in certainties.-- Sir Francis Bacon, 1561-1626