EDITORIAL| When guns are silent

THIS time last year, when peace negotiators from the government and the National Democratic Front were at the peak of laying out the finer points in the substantive agreements of the peacetalks, clashes in areas where the presence of rebels were reported, were few and far between. Perhaps both sides to the conflict were also anticipating the silencing of the guns that have, for a long while, made widows and orphans across the country.

Now, with the suspension of the peace talks and the announcement of Pres. Rodrigo Duterte that the New People’s Army and the Communist Party of the Philippines are terrorists, we expect the heightening of military offensives in areas identified to be influenced by the rebel groups.

In yesterday’s edition of the AFP-PNP press conference held at Royal Mandaya hotel, 10th ID spokesperson Capt. Jerry Lamosao said there might be no order of a unilateral ceasefire coming from the military headquarters.

This means there will be no respite from the military operations even with the celebration of the yuletide season. It will be a sad Christmas for all, if this scenario is laid.

However, a ray of hope shines through for the soldiers who long to be with their family during Christmas time as AFP Chief of Staff Gen. Rey Leonardo Guerrero told reporters they will still assess the situation though they will continue monitoring NPA activities in the communities.

Even Defense Secretary Lorenzana who was earlier quoted as saying “we can always break tradition” referring to the suspension of military offensives during Christmas, said his mind may still change if there is reason to justify otherwise.

Each day brings new beginnings, so they say. We remain positive that the situation will be reversed and that everyone from all sides of the conflict will have it in their hearts to silence the guns of war in the yuletide season.


Posted in Opinion