Refusing to go with the current
"What has Ressa done, indeed?"
It is truly appalling to witness how our so-called intelligentsia class vigorously came to the defense of an alien claiming to be Filipino against one who denounced the award intended to slander the government and its people. They never bothered to see that the award was meant to denigrate their own kind by one who has his own literary genre.
F. Sionil Jose has his accolades, not from foreign literary guilds, but in recognition of his own talent and made a niche in the field of literature. The local media, instead of analyzing how society works and how people interact, chose to remain aloof and treated themselves as apart from the common sentiment of our people. They remain arrogant, howling in concert, why Jose came out with such outrageous commentaries against a foreign stooge.
He was branded as one fighting a lost cause. The hypocritical mainstream media were almost unanimous in their condemnation of Jose and equating his denunciation of the Nobel Peace Prize as in defiance to the norm of civil society. Worse, he was denounced for it seems his statement appears in conformity with the Duterte administration.
Objectively, Jose was simply true to his word, which is to speak of the truth in opposing those who blindly tow to falsities. For this, the media committed a blunder because that pushed them into the precipice of being on the defensive to tell the truth. The hypocrites started mudslinging Jose --that betrays all their pretension of decency. They accused him of being an old man who allegedly had lost his cause.
They cannot disparage him the way they do the politicians. He is a literary giant ajudged by his class that made him a Sionil. Maybe next to Jose Rizal’s Noli Me Tangere and El Filibusterismo, no Filipino writer has achieved that feat of having written 14 novels translated into 28 languages.
Those who could not hold their tongue took the occasion to praise the award without directly attacking Jose. It was their way of atoning for all these years they are collaborating with the US to meddle in our internal affairs.
But if one may ask, what accomplishment has Ressa done to be accorded an award? Maybe the literary accomplishments of Jose were personal to him, but that is something nobody can deny unless he earned it through malfeasance and other forms of shenanigans.
In the award given to Ressa, the fundamental question is: What has she accomplished? If the committee cannot point to any accomplishment she achieved, it can also be called a kind of flattery. Nonetheless, the Nobel Peace Prize is now used as an instrument to malign the government. It is on this score why Jose is unforgiving in hitting hard on Ressa.
Ressa, as a foreign correspondent, went beyond the limits of news reporting. Her site wrote narratives that Duterte is crook, a mad killer and a foul-mouthed bully. But that manifests how these hypocrites carry on with their faith.
Moreover, the condemnation by Jose is his blunt disapproval of the mainstream media’s role of their being an apologist of US imperialism. Jose knows that the awardee is an operator of US propaganda in this country. His criticism was to debunk the falsities peddled by Rappler. The award is funded by the US and from the National Endowment for Democracy, a new outfit for the dreaded CIA.
Those who came to defend Ressa did not mind that they are in fact in alliance with the communists, unmindful that the local CPP, NPA and NDF have been branded by the US authorities as terrorist organizations. Their synchronized political line goes all the way to the US State Department, the Nobel Peace committee and to the EU and NATO.
It was the tabloid of Ressa that showed pictures of CPP/NPA atrocities but shifted instead to show drug dealers killed in encounter by our law enforcement authorities. Often the tabloid’s caption states that the dead person was extrajudicially executed but no evidence is shown that he was indeed extrajudicially executed. In fact, one picture showed an alleged widow embracing the body of her dead husband for a reenactment of “Mother Dolorosa.”
What is strange is that there were other persons who put their lives on line to campaign for freedom and democracy. Yet, not a word was mentioned about them. The Western concept of freedom and democracy is a weaponized propaganda adjusted to suit the broker’s interest. It can be interpreted as an act to topple the government that refuses to tow their line. This explains why the local media has been reduced to that of bullhorn for US propaganda. They have no choice, for often, the local media like Rappler is funded by American media oligarchs like Pierre Omidyar. This explains why Jose is furious at Ressa because she is the personification of a capitalist slave.
The contempt of Sionil for Ressa is not borne out of jealousy but of innate patriotism reacting to how she treats our President and still considers our government a colony of the US. People could not even recall what sort of peace she brokered. This is asked because the Nobel Peace award is given to one that helped to bring about peace to our land.
Those involved are engaged in historical distortion to mislead our people yet they accuse their enemies of what they call “historical revisionism”. Most importantly, the award is intended to create a hero to one who refuses to identify as belonging to us. In the first place, people are asking why she was given an award when the tabloid she is operating is wholly dedicated to disparaging the Duterte administration. Others believe the scheme was meant to pressure the court to make legal the operations of Rappler. Maybe Omidyar is banking that giving her that stature, it could recalibrate the public opinion in their favor.
There are people from different countries fighting for freedom. Each has his own motivation and objective. Take the case of Julian Assange. He is accused by the US government of publishing secret communications of US officials involving the commission of war crimes. He counters that exposing a crime cannot be considered a crime. In the case of Ressa, she is committing almost daily the crime of sedition for slandering and maligning the government.
Another is the case of Edward Snowden. It involved his bringing with him secret and coded files from the US the National Security Agency. He exposed the web eavesdropping activities of the US, revealing that practically nobody is immune from the NSA’s spying activities, and violation the privacy of communications and correspondence from the President down to the ordinary citizens who might be the target of the government harassment.
Another is Chelsea Manning. He leaked to the media how a US helicopter gunship mercilessly gunned down several young and unarmed Iraqi civilians. More than 10 civilians were killed in a hail of machine gun fire. No investigation was ever conducted nor an acknowledgement was made on that multiple murder. It was later learned that the incident was carried by civilian employees contracted by the defense department known as Black Water which has become notorious for committing indiscriminate atrocities to civilians in US- occupied territories like Iraq and Somali.
All of them are called whistleblowers. In the case of Ressa, she cannot be considered a whistleblower but more appropriately an agitator who can be charged of sedition, espionage or operating a mass media outfit without permit from the SEC.