After Taylor Swift, now comes Greta Thunberg, who gained fame for the query “How dare you?” to heads of state for reneging on environment commitments, among the disparate personalities criticizing the Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA) that, of course, ultimately targets President Rodrigo Duterte.
While it would take a creative imagination to connect climate change with the ATA, it doesn’t matter to the yellow detractors, since what is essential to them is how high up the endorsers are in the star meter.
The group that Thunberg founded, Fridays for Future, indeed used a quantum flight of fancy to justify the wunderkind in using the hashtag #JunkTerrorLaw in her tweet.
“We stand in solidarity with climate activists in the Philippines. The Anti-Terror law puts climate activists and environmental defenders at the risk of being tagged as terrorists,” Fridays for Future wrote.
Much earlier on Instagram, pop star Taylor Swift posted a link to an online petition that called for the junking of the then anti-terrorism bill.
Filipino-Canadian drag queen Kyne was also right there on the list of supporters that the yellow mob enlisted against ATA, which is a law no different or even weaker than the edicts against terror-linked crimes of other countries.
The opponents of the President are desperate since the law is also expected to put the final nail on the coffin against drug syndicates, which have been pouring money to oust Duterte efforts for obvious reasons.
Senator Ronald de la Rosa detailed a symbiotic relationship among terror groups and drug syndicates.
The former chief of the Philippine National Police, who led the administration’s war on drugs, cited findings during his term that drug lords and terror groups are in league.
“The drug lords feed the terror groups with drug money, while the terror groups provide protection, shelter and safe haven to these drug lords, especially when they are in trouble,” Dela Rosa said.
Drug traffickers that the police were tracking down in Metro Manila eventually were found in Mindanao and cared for by the Maute group and the Islamic State, De la Rosa noted.
National Security Adviser Hermogenes Esperon Jr. gave the simplest reason for the rather ignorant attacks from celebrities, since they obviously merely swallowed what was fed to them and that they have not even bothered to read the measure.
Safeguards are installed in the law before an arrest can be made. The implementing body called the Anti-Terrorism Council (ATC) cannot order the arbitrary arrest of persons suspected of terrorism. since proscriptions and designations are needed.
Despite the declaration of President Rodrigo Duterte that members of the Communist Party of the Philippines and the New People’s Army, its armed wing, are terrorists, their actual arrest will come only after the Department of Justice obtains a proscription from a court, which the agency is now working on.
“Proscription is taking to the court, to the Court of Appeals, and filing petitions against organizations and personalities so that they will be listed as terrorists. The designation, on the other hand, is what would come from the Anti-Money Laundering Council, and these are organizations that could be supporting terrorist acts. The designation also refers to the organizations that are already proscribed or listed in the United Nations Office of Counter-Terrorism,” Esperon explained.
“Even the matter of surveillance of organizations and personalities has to be by order of the court, and we apply for it,” he added.
The law can’t even be labeled autocratic since a joint oversight committee by Congress is provided by it.
Also in the law is the need to report arrests to the Commission on Human Rights, as well as to the courts.
Still, the goal, of course, is the free propaganda that the foes of Rody expect to generate, that in turn the self-righteous of the world are all too willing to suck up to.