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Sunday, November 21, 2010

Maguindanao: Remembering the Massacre

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The greatest punishment we can inflict upon ourselves sometimes is shame and regret.

Tomorrow, the 23rd of November, exactly a year ago during the morning hours in a town tucked-away in a province of Southern Philippines, a convoy of vehicles making their way along the rural highway was ambushed by a group of heavily-armed men. The convoy party was supposed to be heading for the the local election office to file for their man's candidacy as part of the local election mandate.

On that day fateful day, 57 innocent men and women were killed in blatant disregard for the rule of law. This came to be known as one of the most brutal political killings in our nation's recent history. All fingers point to the most obvious villians here; the ruling, rival clan of the province. They even attempted to cover-up and dispose of the bodies and vehicles by burying them.

What empowers such blatant disrespect for law and life? Where do they get their evil sense of supremacy and control? How did such fiends become part of the institution? Because they were simply allowed to. Even Adolf Hitler and his Nazi party were allowed to flourish and even acknowledged by other world leaders at the height of their power. What they did afterwards made the whole world only hang their heads in shame and regret for allowing such men to prosper. Shame and regret can surpass physical pain, and sometimes such an introspective ordeal is necessary.

Until now, the wheels of justice turn ever so slowly for the victims as well as the guilty.

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