The Hound of the Wolf

For the strength of Pack is in the Wolf, and the strength of Wolf is in the Pack -Rudyard Kipling

Monday, August 23, 2010

A sad day for the Philippines

On a bright Monday morning, a group of tourist from Hongkong was hostaged by former Sr. Inspector Rolando Mendoza. The former policeman was sacked from duty and was demanding for his reinstatement of his position and benefits. One by one, hostages are being freed as demands from the hostage taker are being posted over the bus windows. An ultimatum of 3PM was given by Mendoza to start the "big deal". Negotiations turned sour slowly.

Manila SWAT teams barged into the bus from all fronts. On the front, a police is hammering the front mirror (and eventually, the sledge hammer falling inside the bus). On the right glass door, the policemen attempted to pull the metal door using an abaca rope attached to a police mobile and the result: abaca rope was ripped apart. Lastly as policemen attempted to break in to the rear part, the four man SWAT team managed to get into the window glass but immediately retreated when Mendoza fired his rifle.

What followed next are series of events starting with a letter from Ombudsman denying the reinstatement proceeded by the forceful arrest of the hostage-taker's brother (great, the hostage taker is seeing it from bus TV) and lastly, the sudden escape of the bus driver while at the same yelling that hostages are already dead, made Mendoza totally snapped and fired his M-16 to the hostages. Snipers fired back hitting Mendoza in the process. In the end, 8 Chinese hostages plus the hostage-taker are declared.

POST Hostage Events: HK citizens showing public outrage over ending of the hostage incident. Travel ban to the Philippines for HK. Suspension of several police officers. Autopsy of bodies of the victims. Autopsy of the hostaged bus. Agony of the Capt. Mendoza's family. Battery of investigations by different bodies.Finger pointing. A dent to the Philippine tourism industry. The future is still uncertain.

Philippines is a nation that weathered by disasters and tragedies and strengthened by time. History has it that Pinoys are capable are fighting back and be resilient after a major downfall. The situation is different for things could have been prevented and resolved in a peaceful ending. The nation cannot be dragged by an action of a single man.

There will be brighter days ahead ...