Marcos: Only military has not let Pinoys down

Photo courtesy of Armed Forces of the Philippines

As he lauded soldiers of the Army’s 9th Infantry Division, President Ferdinand R. Marcos on Thursday said the Armed Forces of the Philippines has always been a dependable organization.

“All I can say is that once again, I have always said that of all the sectors of society, it is only the military that has never let the Filipino down,” Marcos told Army troops in Camp Elias Angeles, San Jose, Pili town, Camarines Sur.

Expressing his interest in the 9th Infantry Division and how far it has gone in stabilizing the peace and order in the Bicol Region, he said the duty of soldiers has evolved.

“And that evolution means that not only are you meant… they still train to be warfighters and in some occasions, you have to go and fulfill your primary mission of defending the people or the communities here in Bicol,” he added.

He urged the troops to continue their service with the same commitment to fulfilling the AFP mission.

“No we are asking you to be peacemakers because we have changed our approach to the communist, terrorist groups that we have been encountering,” he said.

He said the government is offering communist rebels for a better life.

“That I think has become the reason why we have slowly succeeded in the so-called whole-of-society, whole-of-nation approach in terms of our dealings with these groups that originally would like to bring down the government by armed struggle,” he said.

Although rebels have technically not abandoned the concept of armed struggle, Marcos believes their efforts have been redirected in another way.

“That’s why your role as the Philippine military continues to be as warfighters, but now there is the additional mission that we are asking of you to be peacemakers,” he added.

Moving forward, Marcos said beyond the internal threats, the country is faced with external threats that have become more complicated.

He added that with the geographical location of the 9th ID, it is close to the disputed waters where several ships were reported to be loitering.

“We also need to keep watch. So this is another new mission of yours,” Marcos said, adding that the government is working hard to provide sophisticated equipment and proficient training to the military.

He added: “We in the civilian government are determined to make sure that when we ask you to do your duty, that then you are fully prepared, you are fully trained and you are complete in the equipment that you need to fulfill that mission.”

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