February 22, 2011
A militant group of young workers, professionals, and students urged their counterparts in the military to ‘rethink’ their values following a series of exposês regarding corruption in the Armed Forces of the Philippines.
“While ordinary soldiers, many of them youths like us, are dying in the field of battle, their commanding officers are growing fat with funds that should have been spent on their equipment, medicine, and other supplies” said Anakbayan chairperson Vencer Crisostomo.
“If you wish to put back some truth into your claim of being ‘defenders’ of the Filipino people, you can start by rejecting the practice of blind obedience to your so-called superiors. This has only emboldened corrupt officials both in the AFP and the government” he said.
The youth leader meanwhile called on young soldiers to ‘reflect’ on the anniversary of the first People Power uprising, saying “Young soldiers should reflect on what could have happened in Edsa 1 had their predecessors obeyed Marcos and opened fire on the people massed up in Edsa”.
The militant group meanwhile reiterated its stance on corruption, saying systemic social change was needed.
“Corruption will always prosper side-by-side with bureaucrat-capitalism, or the treatment of government positions as merely a way of enriching oneself. Like the cabezas and gobernadorcillos of the Spanish era, they are allowed to plunder public coffers in exchange for upholding foreign and elite interests” said Crisostomo.
“Young soldiers and other youths who claim to abhor corruption should be prepared to involve themselves in the long-term struggle for genuine social change” said the youth leader.