Saturday, August 21, 2010

Who Killed Benigno Aquino?

More than a quarter of a century has passed since Benigno Aquino Jr. (known as Ninoy) was assassinated, on this day in 1983... In the years since then his widow, Corazon Aquino, has come and gone from the MalacaƱang Palace*, plagued while in office not only by the usual politics but also by natural disasters, such as the 1991 eruption of Mount Pinatubo, which devastated the Luzon region.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at PhotobucketFourteen soldiers have been detained since 1983 for their role in the assassination; while Mrs. Aquino had said that she forgave them she also made it clear that she would never appeal for either clemency or their release.

It is suspected that the trigger was pulled by Rolando Galman, who was himself fatally shot by airport security, but to this day there is no concrete evidence who killed Aquino; even less is known about who ordered it, although naturally people have their theories.

As to the mastermind of the operation, the chief suspect, Ferdinand Marcos, was recovering from a kidney transplant that day, although he certainly could have given the order, even from a hospital bed. The other main suspect is Fabian Ver, Marcos' first cousin, who at the time was head of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, or AFP. Marcos himself blamed Rodolfo Salas, head of the Philippine Communist Party, who was his favourite scapegoat following the various atrocities he ordered committed (such as the Plaza Miranda bombing, twelve years to the day earlier, which dealt a major blow to Aquino's Liberal Party.

The Agrava Commission, which Marcos promptly struck in the days following the crime to investigate them, was controversial from the start; for one thing, it cleared Rolando Galman of the crime, as it did for Marcos, Ver, and Salas. After a year of meetings and investigation, it issued a report claiming a military conspiracy but refused to point fingers or assign blame.

Ten days after his murder as many as 2 million people attended the funeral of Ninoy Aquino, which lasted from 9am to 9pm; his death polarized opposition to the Marcos regime, in a way that mere speeches and political campaigning could not have done. Today the Monday nearest August 21st is a public holiday in his homeland, his face appears on the 500-peso note, and there are statues and memorials to him around the country.

'...the Filipino is worth dying for...' he said, in an interview just prior to his fateful return. Presumably he meant it, but until his killers are identified, justice cannot be served.

*Indeed, she's come and gone from this life as well...
*
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8 comments:

curbside_puppet said...

i will be writing a similar post regarding ninoy. thanks for your post. everybody knows who the real culprits are.

PhilippinesNewsVote.com said...

Your article covers a very important question. Kind of like the Filipino version of "who killed JFK?". Hopefully one day we will find out who killed one of our history's most important people.

michael sean morris said...

This is my favourite kind of story to write; I'm glad to see it finally getting readers. I'd very much like someone to tell this story properly.

Anonymous said...

After reading all theories and analogy about the Aquino Assassination, the people or military personnel linked to the crime are close to Danding Cojuangco(Cory Aquino's cousin and known Marcos Loyalist- who accompanied Marcos on his flight to Hawaii during People Power 1)He had the power and money to get away with it....

Anonymous said...

when my daughter so this video .she know that one of the military shot ninoy. that is her conclusion kahit bata di malilinlang sa naganap na crimen . but god knows everthing. walang secret na di naibubunyag.ialabas sana nila ang katotohanan huwag matakot.in god we trust

Anonymous said...

militaring traidor at sadista. sana makunsensya ka sa ginawa mo kay ninoy

michael sean morris said...

Well, I must say... I first posted this on this day in 2007, but for some reason it's really touched a nerve in people this year.

Keep those comments coming and I'll keep writing about it!

Anonymous said...

I don't know why no one ever thought of this but me. Ok,
Ok, first of all, I do not believe Marcos ordered the hit on Aquino. There was really no reason to. Marcos was in total control at the time. Marcos showed leniency by allowing Aquino to leave the prison and go into exile. He didn't have to do this.
The time in exile gave Aquino plenty of time to plot his return. Aquino was terminally ill and knew he would die away from his country. With the bullet proof vest he was wearing, it gave the shooter his head as the only target. The shot that killed him came from behind him and entered his head downward.
More proof is his last words. "The Filipino is worth dieing for". This made him appear to be a martyr when in fact he was terminally ill already and only limited time to live.
This is all the people needed, ignorant as they were, of the real truth. Now, they really believed Marcos had set him up. It all worked out so well, even to this day. Think about it.