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Graft, highest priority

12:07 AM March 30, 2015

Many of us will agree that the biggest problem the Philippines faces is graft and corruption. But now that we have a graft-buster in President Aquino, who has set the trend toward ridding government of crooks—be they past presidents, senators, congressmen, governors, mayors or any person of influence and power—we seem to be losing our focus.

We seem to be putting the Mamasapano massacre and related issues on top of everything. And the crooks and their cohorts keep hammering these issues into our heads to make us forget their thieving ways.

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Yes, we do understand the sacrifices the 44 Special Action Force commandos made, and we sympathize with their grieving families and loved ones. But they didn’t die in vain. Remember, like in any war a country has to wage for the good of the many, heroes fall and these fallen troopers died for their country. So why are we demeaning their sacrifices by playing the “blame game”? In any war, small or big, someone has to give the orders for others to execute. No different from Harry Truman’s order to drop the atomic bomb on Japan or a decision to commit soldiers to a war.

The Mamasapano incident is over; let’s deal with the more important issue of graft and corruption. The crooks, using Mamasapano, are in a mad rush to divert our attention and make us lose sight of our country’s biggest problem. And it is disappointing to see that even part of the media and so-called religious leaders seems to go along with their “folly,” demanding “perfect performance” from the graft-buster President.

Well, if you want to get rid of corruption in government, let’s not be fooled by the “smart” crooks.

We voters must wake up and learn to distinguish the capable candidates from the crooks who intend to rule with their dynasty and to continue robbing the country blind.

—IGNACIO ALAVA,

Filipino-American retiree

from California, USA,

former faculty member,

Department of Mathematics,

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University of the Philippines, [email protected]

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