Musharraf is Marcos reborn


When late Ferdinand Marcos placed the entire Philippines under Martial Law, he justified his acts of saving the country from communist insurgency.

His declaration came after the deadly Plaza Miranda bombing in 1971, which wounded members of the political opposition and killed a journalist and a child. The reign of Martial rule were proved murderous and brutal; extrajudicial killings, enforced disappearance, systematic attack against members of the opposition, was a way of life then.

While military president Pervez Musharraf of Pakistan defended his actions of saving the country from terrorists, Marcos then defended his actions of saving the country from communist insurgency. Communism was at its peak in the Philippines at the time, in addition to Polpot’s Khmer Rouge in Cambodia, the Russian federation, among other things.

Musharraf too declared state of emergency following the deadly bomb blast of a political caravan in Karachi. Their manner of saving their own country anyhow were nevertheless at the expense of civilians and its established institutions.

Unlike Musharraf though who took power in a military coup in 1999, Marcos was an elected president who abuse and accumulate power which centers to himself, his cronies, police and military loyalists. They are the one who kept him in power for years, and his regime fell apart when they defected.

Like Marcos, Musharraf sacked the chief justice of the Supreme Court, arrests lawyers, judges, members of the opposition, imposed restrictions and seized the media organisation. Once a person is arrested by Marcos notorious police, PC (Philippine constabulary) , the victim’s relatives would also not be properly informed of his condition or his whereabouts, or allowed access to visit.

Marcos’ time was in 70s while Musharaff is today, 2007.

What is unthinkable is that Musharraf, who took power over a military coup and declared himself as president, had been able to do this in our modern times. His notion of democracy likewise is bleak. To believed his rhetoric is a complete stupidity, if not lunacy about declaring emergency rule on the pretext of saving his country, and to step aside democracy in this case was justifiable.

It was apparent though that terrorists were never the target of this emergency rule as Musharaff claims to be, but the basic institutions of the country–particularly the Supreme Court.

Like Marcos, President Musharaff may have felt that the laws doesn’t serve his choice and the court had prevented him from doing his thing, then why not suspend the Constitution and sacked justices–like Marcos did.


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Filed under Human Rights, Military, Public opinion

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