Well know writer supports PRRD "militarization" of Bureau of Customs

Well know writer supports PRRD "militarization" of Bureau of Customs




The political opposition will not this issue pass without making some noise.
They have called it a “militarization” of a government agency that should be left alone to an equally qualified civilian personnel.

Last weekend, President Rodrigo Roa Duterte made it public that he will ask the help of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, for them to temporary take over the functions of the Bureau of Customs due to the “dirty games” being done under his nose.

Veteran journalist Ermin Garcia has come out with his full support for the President’s move. In his Facebook page he gave justification as to why are the military/police generals are qualified to occupy political civilian position in the government.

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte (photo credit to owner)

Duterte understands the retired military personnel’s capability, among them are :

“the retired generals really are is a wasted a pool of well-schooled individuals, funded by government over the decades, now steeped in management, administration, planning and tactical implementation.”

“I believe it was his experience as mayor for 23 years that taught him that military and police officers can be relied upon to execute legal orders quickly with no hesitancy to obey since they have no political baggage to be concerned about- just the chain of command.”

“As the President and head of the chain of command in civilian government, the retired military appointees understand what their discipline and appointments require of them.”

We are quoting in full the Facebook post of Mr. Ermin Garcia Jr., for the public’s consumption:


IS THERE A “MILIITARIZATION “ OF GOVERNMENT? Not a chance. People in the opposition make it sound as if appointing retired generals is akin to declaring a martial law. That’s a lot of hogwash, just another ploy to help destabilize the government.

First of all, the retired generals are precisely that - retired, no longer in the chain of command. They no longer have any authority whatsoever to order a battalion, a company or a platoon or a squad to organize an attack or retreat.

What the retired generals really are is a wasted a pool of well-schooled individuals, funded by government over the decades, now steeped in management, administration, planning and tactical implementation, they who were forced to retire by law at 56, at the peak of their careers!

All things considered equal, they are even more qualified than most political civilian appointees who’ve had no extensive exposure to management and yet are asked to run a department. Check out past governments that appointed mostly unqualified political allies to key posts. Most could not see beyond their newfound power and left it to their career subordinates to run the show until it was photo-op time or when a crisis sneaked in.

So let’s not be dismissive of appointing retired generals the President trusts.
Perhaps, the influence of retired generals can still stop coups…but it is not a guarantee. Know that generals in active service still have their own careers to protect and would not easily follow an illegal order, especially not from a retired officer or general.

But is Mr. Duterte even afraid of a coup? I doubt that very much. He has a fatalistic streak in his veins. Besides he knows too well that any coup today or tomorrow will be not be successful because he enjoys wide pubic support and any coup attempt will be rejected and will be countered with violence. Note incessant calls of ex-military officers Trillanes and Alejano to oust him since day 1 are being ignored to the chagrin of their supporters and financiers. Why? They know why.

So why is Mr. Duterte getting into the habit of appointing retired, qualified and honest professional military officers? I believe it was his experience as mayor for 23 years that taught him that military and police officers can be relied upon to execute legal orders quickly with no hesitancy to obey since they have no political baggage to be concerned about- just the chain of command. And again, he is right. As the President and head of the chain of command in civilian government, the retired military appointees understand what their discipline and appointments require of them.

To invoke, therefore, the dark days of Marcos martial law as a reason to be concerned, is stretched. Martial law was a wholesale turnover of power to the military - from private to sergeant to captain to colonel to general. It’s not the case today. Mr. Duterte.is reactivating to public service only the few whom he trusts and knows can accomplish a difficult assignment. Note that he is not calling upon a mere retired corporal or sergeant called to direct government operations.

And as of last night, October 28, 2019, he said martial law is not the answer to right the wrong in our country. He maintains there are political tools available to do the job. Spot on!


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