A Los Angeles-based organization of Filipino WW II veterans added its voice opposing to the burial of Philippine President Marcos in the country’s national heroes cemetery.
In a press release, the group Justice for Filipino American Veterans (JFAV) said that Marcos was a fake hero. “He does not deserve to be honored as a hero and buried in the heroes’ cemetery.” JFAV has at least 30 allied organizations in the US.
The US Veterans Administration recently released its findings that Marcos had manufactured his own military medals.
The JFAV, headed by Arturo Garcia, issued the statement as various social groups in the Philippines have created a Citizen’s Assembly on Sunday August 14, to protest the burial of Marcos at the Libingan ng mga Bayani on September 18, 2016.
Garcia criticized newly elected Pres. Rodrigo Duterte for having allowed his burial at the heroes’ cemetery. “Duterte insults the 250,000 Filipino American veterans who fought for democracy during World War II and the 73,000 victims of human rights violations during martial law, which includes his own mother,” he said.
Duterte, a close friend of the Marcoses, is bent on making true his promises to the late president’s family as a way for the country to heal. He called those who opposed his plan as “yellow oppositionists” who are identified with his predecessor, Pres. Benigno Aquino Jr.
“Duterte is a Marcos loyalist. He is not healing the nation, he is dividing the nation by siding with the dictator. We will never accept that Marcos was a hero,” Garcia said.
Those who concur with Pres. Duterte said that it was no big deal for Pres. Marcos to be buried in the heroes’ cemetery because there had been Filipino leaders who were guilty of treason and betrayal and were buried in the said cemetery. Others said it was better for Marcos to be buried in his home province in Ilocos Norte.
“Let him be buried in his birthplace, where he wished to be buried. The Marcoses are such power players and ego-trippers,” said a teacher in a rally at the Citizen’s Assembly in Manila.
The remains of the late Pres. Marcos is currently preserved in a refrigerated glass crypt inside his family mausoleum in Batac. (Press release and photo from JFAV)