Hello world!

papa2I shall be writing topics as it comes to mind. It could be topics, past or present, but relative to the times. I shall also be reacting to articles published, whether domestic or foreign, and voicing my opinion. My views shall always be objective.

Every now and then I shall also be sharing with you videos, photos, sayings and graphics of people, animals, places, etc., that I find interesting, which I hope you will appreciate.

Also, there are times when I will be posting articles about facts – why it happened that way or what could have been if something else happened.

I welcome you to my blog site and I look forward to inter-acting with you.

Your participation, your thoughts and commentaries, either for or against, will be very much appreciated.

We may have differences in opinion but that is the essence of being rational, to be able to agree to disagree. It is my aim that as we go along we enlighten not only ourselves but also those that finds the opportunity/chance to visit this site.

Let us enrich each other in knowledge and build each other up in friendship.

Thank you.

Jesus Sievert a.k.a  Quierosaber

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¡Hola mundo!

Escribiré temas como estos vienen a la mente. Esto podría ser temas, pasadas o presentes, pero con relación a los tiempos. También reaccionaré a artículos publicados, doméstico o extranjero, y expresaré mi opinión. Mis vistas siempre serán objetivo.

De vez en cuando también compartiré con ustedes vídeos, fotos, refranes y gráficos de la gente, animales, lugares, etc., que encuentro interesante y espero que lo aprecian.

También, hay tiempos cuando fijaré artículos sobre hechos – por qué pasó así o lo que podría haber sido si algo más pasara.

Bienvenidos a mi sitio de blog y espero colaborar con Vd. en el futuro.

Su participación, sus pensamientos y comentarios, para o contra, serán muy apreciados.

Podemos tener diferencias en la opinión pero eso es la esencia de ser racional, ser capaz de consentir en discrepar. Esto es mi objetivo que como continuamos, aclaramos no sólo nosotros mismos sino también aquellos  que encuentran  la oportunidad/posibilidad de visitar este sitio.

Déjenos enriquecer el uno al otro en el conocimiento y en la amistad.

Gracias.

Jesus Sievert alias Quierosaber

Sen. Cayetano uncovers Iqbal’s real identity

 

MILF chief peace negotiator Mohagher Iqbal and Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano

MILF chief peace negotiator Mohagher Iqbal and Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano

I don’t know why but Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano seems to be making a big deal out of Mohagher Iqbal’s real identity.

After being critical of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) chief negotiator for using an alias in talking peace with the government and working for the passage of the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL), Cayetano finally uncovered Iqbal’s real name to be Datucan Abas, based on school and criminal records that he presented.

To me it was not really much of a revelation as a police record showing a warrant of arrest for the bombing of the Davao’s Sasa wharf and airport was issued to one bearing the name of Datucan Abas Mohagher Iqbal.

Cayetano said Datucan Abas Mohagher Iqbal was among respondents in a case in the 11th Judicial Region Branch 12, Regional Trial Court in Davao City.

Needless to say that Iqbal has behind him a criminal record when scores of people died during the Davao bombings in April 2003.

He may have been comfortable and safe using the pseudo name Mohagher Iqbal thereafter, which many people believed was his true name, but would using the name Datucan Abas had made a lot more of difference in who he really as the MILF chief peace negotiator?

We are all for peace in Mindanao by creating a Bangsamoro political entity in the region that will help its people attain an improved quality of life and see the place progress, and certainly the government panel is not negotiating with the MILF because it wants to change Iqbal’s personality.

More than a person’s character or identity, what should be of greater consideration and interest when a former rebel person takes on the noble job of negotiating with the government in establishing peace and stability in his fellow Muslim’s war-torn region, is his intention and motivation, not to mention his sincerity.

The BBL is not about Iqbal or Abas or any other negotiator’s name. It is about the result of the negotiation by government and a group of former rebels of the MILF who have chosen to have peace in Mindanao.

Surely, the MILF is not a bogus organization.

Binay’s discordant approach to South China Sea issue

 

Vice President Jejomar Binay

Vice President Jejomar Binay

Vice President Jejomar Binay is really living up to his name and reputation.

As if the charges of corrupt practices are not enough, now and then, Binay is once again giving the Filipino people a negative impression on who he really is as a person and as a politician, and what would become of this country if gets elected president in 2016.

While the leaders of this country and most Filipinos are upset with the way China has been bullying its way and claiming the entirety of the South China Sea with no possibility of compromise since its stance has always been all or nothing, now comes Binay making a discordant and a divergent approach, saying, “May pera po ang China, kailangan po natin ng kapital (China has money, we need capital).”

According to reports Binay said the foregoing in an interview on Saturday, April 12, over the radio station DZYM in Catarman, Northern Samar.

Clearly what this means is that if and when he gets elected president of this country, Binay will agree to have bilateral talks with Beijing conforming to the idea of going for a joint venture with China in developing the natural resources even as the nation’s territorial claim in the disputed sea/area is being infringed, especially with China’s rapid expansion/reclamation and fortification of the area being undertaken today.

Under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) coastal states have the right to establish sovereignty over adjacent waters out to a maximum of 12 nautical miles from the nation’s coastline, including the coastline of offshore islands. These enclosed waters are known as the coastal state’s territorial sea.

nineUnfortunately, China does not respect the UNCLOS as it continues to barrel on, claiming to up to about 90 percent of the South China Sea with their nine-dash line forming a U-shape down the east coast of Vietnam to just north of Indonesia and then continuing northwards up the west coast of the Philippines.

The nine-dash line has been considered by many experts as incompatible with UNCLOS, which rejects historically based claims.

Binay should understand that all is not about money. Rather it is about respect, dignity and sovereignty of a nation governed by laws.

Alas, these are strange words for Binay.

Because China is “creating a great wall of sand” through land reclamation in the South China Sea, and even in parts we consider belonging to the West Philippine Sea, which could be used for military and other facilities to bolster China’s territorial claims, the country is seeking additional support from the United States in terms of being able to take a stronger position in defending our position, which is to uphold the rule of law.

President Benigno Aquino may have his faults, but he is right in saying that what China is brazenly doing in the South China Sea should bring about fear to people and nations around the world of the real intentions of China.

Binay should be ashamed for taking not only an unpopular stand in the South China Sea issue, but one that is also discordant and emblematic of his embarrassing leadership.

Trillanes tars CA justices

 

Sen. Antonio Trillanes

Sen. Antonio Trillanes

There is no doubt that Sen. Antonio Trillanes has always showed his “cojones’ (balls) – either as a rebellious soldier or as a senator of the realm.

In all his words and actions, he always sounds incorruptible and appears to be the nemesis of the corrupt.

Trillanes’ demeanor has never been more evident than his dogged determination in going after the corrupt practices of Vice President Jejomar Binay and preventing the latter from winning the presidency in the 2016 election.

Being vocal myself against Binay’s political ethos that includes the creation of a Binay political dynasty, I had been supportive of Trillanes’ continued denunciation, nay accusation, of Binay’s corrupt practices.

This does not mean to say, however, that I am a political supporter of Trillanes. It is far from it, but if Trillanes can be an effective vehicle in convincing people to shun Binay in his presidential ambition because of his corrupt practices, then I stand with Trillanes and hope that Filipinos who care much for this country will do the same.

Whether Trillanes is doing this quixotic act for the country or for his own political agenda does not really matter for as long as he has the certainty, validity and the truth behind all his accusations.

We can only be grateful for his idealism.

I hope the same courageous and honorable move is behind Trillanes’ motivation in accusing Court of Appeals (CA) Justices Jose Reyes Jr. and Francisco Acosta of receiving P25 million each in exchange for the issuance of a temporary restraining order (TRO) and a writ of preliminary injunction that stopped the Office of the Ombudsman and the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) from implementing the preventive suspension order against Makati City Mayor Jejomar Erwin “Jun Jun” Binay.

Trillanes alleged that the two justices received P20 million each for the TRO issued on March 16, 2015 from one, Pancho Villaraza, a lawyer, but because the Ombudsman and the DILG refused to recognize the TRO, another transaction was made and the two justices each received an additional P5 million upon the issuance of the preliminary injunction.

According to Trillanes, Villaraza is a known political operator with deep links to politicians and members of the judiciary and the prosecution service and is currently supporting the presidential campaign of Vice President Jejomar Binay.

Definitely the CA justices have been tarred by this damnable accusation of Trillanes.

Now, if these justices feel that they have been unjustly tarred, then they should come out defending their honor and vituperating at Trillanes, too.

Otherwise, people will judge them as belonging to Binay’s corrupt ilk and praises to Trillanes who has shown once more his “cojones”.

Much ado about Iqbal alias on the peace agreement

 

MILF chief peace negotiator Mohagher Iqbal

MILF chief peace negotiator Mohagher Iqbal

Iqbal is of course Mohagher Iqbal, the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) peace panel chair that has been negotiating with the government panel in coming up with a draft Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) that is now being deliberated in Congress for its eventual passage abolishing the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM).

The BBL is based on the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro (CAB) signed by the Philippine Government and the MILF in March this year.

In effect, the purpose of the BBL is to establish the new Bangsamoro political entity and provide for its basic structure of government, in recognition of the aspirations of the Bangsamoro people.

There is no doubt in the minds of many that, although long in coming, this is the way to go in Mindanao, if peace and stability has to prevail and progress has to ensue.

The BBL deliberation in Congress has been going on smoothly, but, alas, the Mamasapano massacre happened and somehow with the involvement of MILF rebels in the skirmishes the discussion/consultation took a back seat, at best, and at worst, even Iqbals’s representation is seriously questioned because of his admittance during the investigation at the Lower House that the name Mohagher Iqbal is only one of the many aliases he uses.

Well, there is actually nothing unusual in using aliases or in Iqbal’s case, a nom de guerre, for he still considers himself under a revolutionary organization.

Sen. Ferdinand Marcos Jr.

Sen. Ferdinand Marcos Jr.

Notably, the one person that is making a big fuss about Iqbal’s identity is Sen. Ferdinand Marcos Jr, chairman the Senate Committee on Local Government, who warned that the peace agreement could be in jeopardy because the government could be negotiating with a “ghost”!

What an idiotic remark!

“The MILF leadership claims to be led by Filipino citizens. Even this person who is known as Iqbal claims to be Filipino and Bangsamoro by identity. As Filipino citizens, they are therefore bound by the laws of the Senate, and therefore, places themselves under the jurisdiction of this august chamber,” said Marcos.

“As such, this Senate has the power to ask, nay require, in aid of legislation, those who appear before us to reveal their true identities. The Senate wants to know if we are negotiating with a ghost or a true person,” he said.

It looks like Marcos is putting the cart before the horse.

Marcos should know that unless and until the BBL is ratified, Iqbal continues to be a rebel following his own ideology. It will be a different matter only when the BBL becomes a truly accepted and established Bangsamoro autonomous political entity.

Then, there is no more reason for Iqbal to hide his true identity, especially if he opts to hold a position in the Bangsamoro government.

For now, Iqbal’s face will suffice. It is how we know him and it is how the Malaysian government and the rest of the world community monitoring the progress of this peace agreement recognize Iqbal.

More than the significance of a person’s name what is important is the sustainability of the peace agreement.

No wonder political analyst Randy David has this to say about the legislators who questioned the validity of documents signed by the MILF chief negotiator with an alias: “It is the way of small minds.”

Yes, small minds for understanding, but big minds for grandstanding.

Head transplant becoming a reality

 

Valery Spiridonov

Valery Spiridonov

With a mixed feeling of angst and anticipation, Russia’s Valery Spiridonov has been reported to have volunteered to become the first person ever to undergo a head transplant operation.

Spiridonov, a computer scientist with an extremely rare spinal disease resulting from a genetic disorder called Werdnig-Hoffman disease and does not really have that much time to live. He is confined on a wheel chair and feels the affliction is worsening.

What motivated the Russian to become the world’s first head transplant is after hearing the controversial surgeon Dr. Sergio Canavero of Italy say earlier this year that a human head can be removed and attached to physically healthy body.

Dr. Sergio Canavero and model.

Dr. Sergio Canavero and model.

Canavero calls his transplant procedure HEAVEN, an acronym for head anastomosis venture.

He says it is possible to severe the heads of a living patient and a brain dead patient, with an otherwise healthy body, and re-attach the spinal chords, adding that he has a “magic” way of sealing the spinal cords so that they will fuse.

“Am I afraid? Yes, of course, I am,” said Spiridonov.

“But it is not just very scary but also very interesting … you have to understand that I don’t really have many choices.

“I am now 30 years old, although people rarely live to more than 20 with this disease.”

Canavero’s claim that it can be done has been met with a range of reaction, ranging from skepticism to outright horror among members of the medical community.

However, Dr Canavero has said in the past that medicine is now technically ready for such an operation to be successful – the only hurdles remain in the ethics of the operation.

Canavero confirmed he will perform the surgery on Spiridonov, saying, it would take place in 2017.

Sandiganbayan decides for Revilla to stay detained

 

Detained Sen. Ramon "Bong" Revilla and wife, Bacoor City Rep. Lani Mercado

Detained Sen. Ramon “Bong” Revilla and wife, Bacoor City Rep. Lani Mercado

There is nothing more pleasing to the ears of those who had been following the scandalous PDAF or pork barrel scam than to hear that one of the senators involved, Ramon “Bong” Revilla, has been denied bail for the plunder and graft charges against him.

What is even more gratifying is that the Sandiganbayan First Division has decided on it with finality, which means that Revilla would have to remain in detention until the trial of his plunder and graft cases is concluded. He is currently detained at the Philippine National Police Custodial Center in Camp Crame, Quezon City.

Note that Revilla is facing one count of plunder and 16 counts of graft for allegedly allocating portions of his PDAF to fake foundations from 2006 to 2010 created by the alleged mastermind of the P10-billion pork barrel scam businesswoman Janet Lim-Napoles, in exchange for kickbacks amounting to P224.5 million.

The evidences against Revilla must be strong that not only his plea for freedom has been definitely denied, but the prosecutors have also asked the Sandiganbayan to have his assets frozen.

For somebody like Revilla and his wife, Bacoor City Rep. Lani Mercado, who are said to have the propensity of using aliases, the prosecutors’ request are valid so it can’t be moved or transferred while the plunder case against Revilla is on-going.

That said, I am sure Revilla will now make this issue his leverage in making people believe that he is suffering from political persecution, thus, making him more determined to run for the presidency in 2016 election.

Revilla thinks that with his popularity and his thespian advantage of literally crying for sympathy votes, that it will get him propelled to Malacañang Palace.

But all is wishful thinking and he could never be more wrong in his presumption.

The people know better who Revilla is now.

A lot may have been fooled by Revilla’s acting prowess, but the majority of Filipinos, whose trust in him had been betrayed when he sold his soul to the devil forsaking the needs of the poor in favor of helping a scammer in exchange for a kickback, understand now how to get even, and that is by frustrating him during election time.

Besides, Revilla and his ilk that includes Sen. Jinggoy Estrada are burden to the people and is scourge to the nation’s progress.

Moving on after Mamasapano

 

Interior and Local Government Secretary Mar Roxas

Interior and Local Government Secretary Mar Roxas

I could not agree more with Interior and Local Government Secretary Mar Roxas when he says that the nation should move forward after the upsetting and embarrassing Mamasapano massacre.

I am with him, too, when he says that reforms and measures are being instituted now to prevent the same disastrous incident from ever happening again in the future, even as the lower house of Congress is presently conducting its on investigation on the success and failure of Oplan Exodus.

But what gets my goat is when he says that he is one with the legislators and the families of the 44 slain PNP SAF troopers in seeking justice, while at the same time suppressing the truth about the botched operation.

The more Roxas talks about justice for the Fallen 44 and puts the blame solely on the sacked SAF chief Director Getulio Napeñas, the more he finds himself in a dilemma where his judgment, competency and leadership is critically questioned.

I do not know if he is trying to impress President Benigno Aquino (PNoy) that the latter is innocent and therefore inculpable in what happened, but the public, from viewing the Senate hearings and reading both the PNP Board of Inquiry (BOI) and Senate Investigation Reports, know otherwise.

Suffice to say that Roxas is fooling nobody but himself.

Roxas seems to have a different demeanor and singing a different tune at the lower House than when he was invited as a resource person at the Senate hearing.

I wish he would look back and see images of himself looking stunned in the aftermath of the Mamasapano massacre. He appeared confused, shocked and dismayed that he, together with PNP OIC deputy Director Leonardo Espina, was kept in the dark about Oplan Exodus.

I am sure he was puzzled and aghast that he was even bamboozled by no less than PNoy, himself, who agreed with detained former PNP chief Alan Purisima, that Roxas and Espina should not know about Oplan Exodus until the covert mission shall have been at the target area already.

Now, even if Roxas knew that there existed a tacit disregard for and disrespect of his authority as titular head of the PNP by both Purisima and PNoy, still he thinks and wants to influence the congressmen investigating the Mamasapano massacre that PNoy is innocent.

Since Roxas has already identified Napeñas as the main culprit, I wouldn’t be surprised if he will say next that PNoy did right in by-passing him and that it was perfectly alright for Purisima to have part in the disastrous operation.

Yes, it is time to move on, but let’s move on uncovering the truth even if the finger is pointing at PNoy. After all, the buck stops with the president.

For one who can’t defend his honor and dignity after being blatantly trampled upon, this latest Roxas caper only shows his inadequacy and lack of ability in leading this nation.