Altering History, Through Movies

Movies for sure are made to entertain and at the same time educate people, most specially, if the film has a significant historical value to a certain person or events. But, most inaccuracies in a film, are sometimes, unfortunately, were done intentionally altered for dramatic and commercial purposes, which is a sad case, if the movie has some historical background.

Take for example the hit movie, 300, which depicts the battle of Thermopylae lead by the great Leonidas, which was played by actor Gerard Butler. Yes, the battle itself happened, and Leonidas only used 300 (thus the title) to battle an entire Persian army, but in reality, he had more than 300, since other warriors of Sparta have joined him against the Persian ruler.

Also, Xerxes was depicted in the movie as a giant bisexual (seemed like it), but in reality he is a great warrior and leader but nowhere nearer the movie version of himself, and Leonidas as a six packed mid aged warrior, but in fact according to records, at that time, he was already in his 60s, but still kicked tons of Persian butts, not bad after-all for a 60 year old guy.

We also had that in our movies, take into consideration the film El Presidente, a bio epic film based on the life of our first president Emilio Aguinaldo. The film was great, do not get me wrong, scoring, the quality of the film, the actors, and so on and so forth, but what’s disturbing was the Bonifacio part (played by another great actor Cesar Montano).

Based on the film, the Bonifacio brothers, were brought to Mt. Tala in Maragundon Cavite by an execution party headed by Lazaro Makapagal (sometimes Macapagal), played by Hero Bautista. In he film, upon arriving on the scene, or seems like it, Andres Bonifacio who had his arm in sling because of a bullet wound, asked Makapagal to read the letter, and upon hearing the judgement, Procopio (played by Joko Diaz) tried to escape but was gunned down by the party.

Andres on his part ran to his dying brother and cradled him on his arms while Makapagal asked Bonifacio to ran away and escape, but Bonifacio refused and instead “unslinged” his injured arm, took Makapagal’s saber and tried to kill the execution party, but was immediately under heavy fire that caused him his life.

It was a very sad and moving scene, but unfortunately, that never happened.

In reality, Bonifacio’s death was bounded by controversy, there were not just one account of his death, but 4. And the saddest part of them all, no one can verify what really happened.

One version was of the leader of the execution party Gen. Lazaro Makapagal, of which he had two versions. His first version was three decades after the execution of Supremo and his brother, through an interview. Makapagal said that, after reading the execution orders, Procopio hugged his brother and said “Kuya, Paano na tayo?”. Andres Bonifacio, according to Makapagal, did not replied and just cried, while he turned his back as they shot the Supremo and his brother.

But, after a while, through a letter to a historian, Makapagal took back some of his accounts and said that after reading the sentence, Procopio jumped and said “Naku Kuyang!” while Andres went to his knees and acted to embrace him (Makapagal) and said “Kapatid, patawarin mo ako”, crying. They first shot Procopio, and after the younger Bonifacio slumped lifeless on the dirt, again, the Supremo begged for his life, on his knees and repeated what he said awhile ago, at this point, Makapagal replied “Wala akong magagawa” after which Bonifacio bolted up and tried to ran for his life, only to be caught up in a stream where he met his creator.

If were to take Makapagal’s account, it seemed that Andres Bonifacio had minor injuries contradictory to what was noted after his arrest in Limbon, Cavite because he had only not made Andres Bonifacio knelt but ran as well, despite a gunshot wound in his shoulder, and a stab wound in his neck, which were left untreated for days.

There were two other accounts, that although it came from separate and unrelated eyewitnesses, they seemed to sing the same tune.

The first eyewitness was a farmer which happened to pass by, and saw 5 men hacking a defenseless man lying in a hammock.  Artemio Ricarte was the second person to have claimed that Andres Bonifacio was hacked to death in a hammock, and not through a bullet. Although Ricarte was not in the scene, during Bonifacio’s execution, he said that his information was valid and true, as it came from a member of the execution party, headed by Makapagal.

With these two accounts it did not only made Makapagal a lier, but fortified the claim that Andres Bonifacio was near death and in no way can kneel and beg for his life, and most likely to run and try to escape. That being said, you would come to the question, what drove Makapagal to “lie” about Bonifacio’s bravery, is it his true action, or where instructed by the then aspiring to be president again, Don Emilio Aguinaldo?

Look at it this way, how come a revolutionary leader who knew that half of his life is in the grave when he established The Katipunan, but did it anyway, begged for his life crying and making matters worst, ran for it, when he learned of his execution. Looks like a black propaganda to me, for a Supreme Leader, who claimed the highest seat in the Katipunan, Openly, in Aguinaldo’s turf, when he learned that Miong and his cohorts were actually planning something against him.

The scene was perfect and how the actors played their part will really take you back and feel how brave Bonifacio was, that is if you didn’t know what really happened. Sadly, I knew, and I was taken aback by it, no matter how brilliant Cesar Montano was in that scene.

The Philippine Senate, Then and Now.

Roughly 100 years ago, we had our first Senatorial election in which our forefathers decided to seat 24 gentlemen from all around our nation to help our then President Emilio Aguinaldo run the government, and not so distant from now (less than a month) we will again, decide to elect 12 of our senators, with the same purpose, hundred years back.

But, what was the difference back then, when seating a senator compared to now, is there a big difference or everything remained the same?

Let us see.

The first senatorial election was held on October 3, 1916 after the passage of the Jones Law, an act that created the Philippine Senate. Before the act was passed, it was the sole discretion of the President to seat whom he, or his faction, feels is capable in helping him in running the government. But with the law enacted, it was the first time in our history to give the power to the people to choose their own senators.

Also, our first senators are representatives of our 12 regions, like a congressman today, since the lower house was not yet commissioned before, making the balance of power in every provinces and regions. Included in that batch was our eventually 2nd president Manuel Quezon, who was also the first Senate President of our Country.

Quezon was the most popular senators before, not only because he garnered the most votes in his hometown, but he was also one of Don Emilio Aguinaldo’s closest ally and friend, before they have fallen apart due to Aguinaldo’s decision to heavily side with the Americans when the 2nd Presidential Election was coming.

Aside from him, majority of our first senators were also War veterans like Pedro Maria Sison who had represented La Union, Pangasinan, and Zambales, Isauro Gabaldon from Nueva Ecija who had represented Region 3, and Francisco Villanueva from Ilo-Ilo city who had pushed the envelop in order to include the Visayas region in the first Malolos Congress.

These gentlemen are not only war veterans, who had put their lives in line for the love of our country, but also lawyers and statesman by profession. Don Pedro Maria Sison had a province under his belt (Sison, Pangasinan more popularly known as the last stop and first bus stop of buses, mostly Victory Liners, to and from Baguio City) and Gabaldon Nueva Ecija after the late Statesman Isauro Gabaldon.

To add, during the first senatorial election, we only had 2 political parties which was Nacionalista and Progresista unlike today we had tons of them, which only makes the choosing very difficult but also gives avenue to undeserving candidates to run for the seat like most of our senators and politicians today (local and national).

That being said, let us look now into our current Senate as well as have a glimpse on the latest survey of the front runners for senators.

Now, out of the 24 seats, we only have 7 lawyers and two of the most brilliant minds to ever graced the Philippine Politics were on their twilight years, Juan Ponce Enrile is at 92 years old and Miriam Defensor-Santiago is at 70, who is also running for the presidency but is the last, according to the latest survey. The current Senate President Franklin Drilon, the Cayetano Siblings, Chiz Escudero and the BAR top notcher Koko Pimentel completes the list of the Senator Lawyers.

If you may ask, am I being biased to lawyers, yes, not that I am one, but as a Senator, I think, he who understands the law can and will make better laws for the land, the learning curve will be shorter compared to those who have difficulty in understanding it, this is not an absolute truth but a mere observation of the author, and probably majority of the thinking voters of the land.

Aside from the 7 Lawyers, to somehow complete the list of our senators, we 3 have former movie action stars (Lapid, Revilla, Estrada), a business mogul (Villar), a daughter of a longtime politician (Binay), 2 former rebel leader (Trillanes, Honasan), an anchor woman (Legarda), 2 sons of former Philippine president (Ejercito, Marcos), 3 sons of former senator (Guingona, Angara, Osmena), Cousin of the current PNoy (Aquino), a former senator and host of Eat Bulaga (Sotto), daughter of the Philippine Action Movie King (Poe), and husband of the Philippine’s Star for all Season (Recto).

It was arguably, if not the, one of the most diverse pool of senators we had since its conception 100 years ago, but the sad thing was, they only lived half (or even less) to the expectation of bringing different hats and tricks on the table, but was blemished by the very different propagandas, scandals, and personal issues.

Nonetheless, we will cut half of them, in the coming days, and try to replace them with a better version, hopefully, but judging from the latest survey, we might be having another zoo for senators, hopefully not.

First on the survey was Tito Sotto (God bless Aldub), then by re-electionist Franklin Drilon, and familiar faces up until the fourth. Coming in five is (Lord have Mercy on us) Filipino Sensation and boxing superstar Manny Pacquiao, who was not only known for his speed and left hook, but also for his absences as a congressman. As per the record, he only went inside the Batasang Pambansa, this year alone, 4 times, but unfortunately he is ahead, in fact way ahead of senatoriables who are far more capable than him like Isko Moreno, Toots Ople, and Jerico Petilla, to name a few.

Going back to the list, second timer (hopeful) Risa Hontiveros, who is known to be  an ally of the progressive group Akbayan, who are known to purposely disrupt presidential speaking engagements, form unorganized movements against all the presidents, vandalize government properties, etc. etc. is seventh from the list. If my calculations are correct, she will be the first person from the activist group to have a seat in the senate, and the saddest part is that we might be funding their rallies and whatnot along the way, so God Help Us.

On the brink of the list was former DOJ Secretary Leila De Lima, who was not only a Lawyer but a worker as well. Giving her the credit, she had worked her ass of as the Justice Secretary, and I think, she can hold herself as a senator. Unfortunately, like 9th front runner, Joel Villanueva, they have been tarnished with their political ads, who might have been our money, but who gives a rat’s A anyways. No One but a few of us.

I might be on the edge of judging their capabilities and characters but you can’t blame me, I guess, because of the past. We had better senators then who had the chance to shape our nation into greatness but opted not to, and with these list, I can’t argue anymore. I hope I am wrong.

Let us all vote wisely, let us pick the most competent of the candidates and not the most popular, because at the end of the day, competent beats the popular, all day.

Political Mudslinging, A Very Old But Effective Tactic?

Three weeks from now, we will once again try our luck to sit a President, and leaders, we think we deserve, since the 1986 EDSA revolution. I think everyone will agree that we have been in pursuit of the “messiah”who will save us from the mess that we are into, with just a flick of a finger (which will not, and will never, happen).

When Gloria Macapal-Arroyo ended her 9 year reign, we thought it was Aquino, but sad to say the only plan he had in mind is to run after GMA, who had not been his enemy when he was a senator. Well, except for the trimmed down (but not eradicated)  corruption, he had no other accomplishments, like his…. never mind.

Anyway, not to dwell on that sad situation, with the candidates we had for now, it seems that we have a candidate whom we had been looking for. A strong, Steel willed, and charismatic leader, the Iron hands of Davao City, Mayor Rodrigo Duterte.

With the election time looming, the momentum shifted to his side, overtaking the long time leader, Senator Grace Poe, who is mind you, denounce his Filipino Citizenship a years back for a green card. However, the momentum had taken a pit stop these past few days because of his remarks on a crisis in his city in 1989, which includes a raped and murdered Australian missionary.

And like what the dirty tactic suggests, all of his opponents saw this as an opening and has been throwing truck loads of mud at him, for the obvious reasons of course, of which is expected of them, since the Mayor is way ahead of the race, but will they succeed? they might, who knows?

Off note, aside from the foul mouthed gentlemen from Davao and the Senator Traitor, we also have the very honest and anti corruption VP Jojo Binay, Former Many Sec. and very desperate Mar Roxas, and Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago (I will not say anything against her with the fear of the obvious reasons and the fact that as a person and a writer the author is but a dust to her, delikadesa).

Going back, mudslinging is not new in the arena and in fact, Former President Manuel Quezon used the tactic to outrun the then overly popular Gen Emilio Aguinaldo, during the Commonwealth era.

Manual Quezon threw the “Bonifacio Bones” to the former General and President of the First Republic, which eventually led to his downfall. Aguinaldo had no other bullet in his arsenal against the Bones of the Supremo, which has made the voting public shift sides heavily, that led into Quezon’s landslide victory over Don Emilio.

Will it work this time against the Fearsome leader of the Davaoenos or will it just add fuel to the growing fire on public interest in him?

Well, we would not know until May 9th, and at this point, the best thing to do is just sit back and enjoy the scene. who in this world is not entertained after all?

Commission on Appointment, Irrelevant Then and Now?

Did you ever wondered why the late Jessie Robredo has been functioning as President Aquino’s DILG secretary but was never confirmed by the Commission on Appointment until his demise a couple of years back? Well, sad as it may be, the late Secretary is only one of the thousand government officials who are functioning as one but on papers are not, and the saddest part of it was it has been happening since the time of Emilio Aguinaldo.

For the benefit of the few, the Commission on Appointment is composed of Senators and Representatives, well not all of them but some of them. The commission is being headed by a Senator (more frequently by the Senate President) which is most likely an ally of the President. Officials go goes through the process are Cabinet Secretaries, Heads of other Government branches, AFP and PNP officials, etc. etc.

Can you just imaging, AFP and PNP officials being appointed by a Commission oblivious of their capabilities and not by merits, this alone gives you a glimpse of how ineffective and irrelevant the Commission is, but like what has been said before, this has been happening since our forefathers and like now, it has the same effect, Irrelevant and biased.

When this concept was penned, during President Aguinaldo’s reign, most members of the his government were his allies and most of them are illustrados and persons from the higher echelons of the society both in names and riches. These people are responsible for Apolinario Mabini’s axing in Aguinaldo’s cabinet, and to make it worst, they did it by tainting his image as a paralytic (and to even make it worst (yes its just a tip of the iceberg) they started a rumor saying that he got paralyzed because of Syphilis, a sexually transmitted disease).

A couple of hundred years after, nothing has changed, everything remained the same, why?

Why? You’re guess is as good as mine.

Are We Discrediting EDSA? (Looks Like It)

Aree we forgetting what happened during the Martial Law to think that it’ just been roughly 40 years since it happened, to make matters worst, we had EDSA. EDSA should have or is helping us to remind what really happened during that era and the action we took to overcome that. But how in the world we are forgetting what our parents, titos and titas, ate and kuyas done in the most famous avenue in the country?

It is out in the open what transpired at that time, the corruption, the cruelty, the killings, the missing persons, name it, but how come the younger generations (including my era) are easily forgetting these unfortunate events?

I am not sure if destiny is making fun of us but take a look at this irony, during the Martial Law, we have a Marcos as a President and an Aquino as a Senator and viola, as of press time, we have an Aquino President and a Marcos Senator, which is most likely to be a Vice President (which will eventually, if he wins the seat, eye for the highest position in 2022).

Are the Marcoses returning to power after all the things they have done in our country? Are we going to just throw those things away and let bygones be bygones? How about the families who had lost their lolos, lolas, fathers, mothers, sons, daughters, uncles, aunties, nieces, nephews, cousins, etc. etc. etc. etc.? In vernacular, “ganun na lang ba yun?“.

Since we are a nation that is fond of pointing fingers, when something went amiss, let us do it with this discussion, for argument sake, or to make this entry longer, which ever is more appropriate.

The Past Presidents. The former dictator was exiled (with his immediate family) in 1986 and died shortly afterwards due to lupus, a kidney disorder. The remains of Marcos was first interred in Hawaii but was given clearance to be brought home just 7 years after the People Power Revolution (where every Filipino wanted him dead), by the then President Fidel Ramos (who had been a high ranking military official during his regime and was one of the first Marcos loyalist to turn the table against his boss). There were also talks for the former Ilocano President to be buried in the Libingan ng mga Bayani, during the Estrada and Arroyo administrations. Although when President Aquino won the 2010 election, the talk died, but the front runner of the presidential race is openly talking, if and when he will win the presidency, he will have the remains of Marcos laid in the famous resting place.

Technology. Before, we only had the TV, Radio, and Prints as a source of information (if you count your neighborhood “chismosa” as a source of valid information then so be it), those mediums can (and were) easily controlled at that time, reason why the nation had a limited information to sensitive facts such as classified data and insights from political experts. Fast forward, thanks to social media, everyone is now a historian, an expert, a guru, and so on and so forth. To make matters worst, a Marcos Loyalist, who had no voice or medium back then, can now easily create a fan page in various platforms to project the Marcoses as heroes of the past and the Aquinos as the real traitors and enemies.

The Aquinos. The Cory administration went after their ill gotten wealth, and in fact, commissioned two agencies the PCGG and CHR with the purpose of running after the Marcoses (which has been, and still are, the most ineffective and inefficient government agency since its conception). Unfortunately, after 2 Aquino Presidents, majority of the alleged ill gotten wealth still sits with them (Marcoses), and the true killer and mastermind of their patriarch’s (Ninoy Aquino) assassination is still at large (or probably dead but was never tried in any court), not to mention that they are returning to power.

Education. During my student days, I had never read a book (history) where it says that the reason why we had EDSA is because of Marcos’ cruelty, it focuses on the Peaceful Revolution and not on the Martial Law, it was targeted on the outcome rather than the problem and the solution itself. The Marcos Regime (on my own opinion) can be classified as one of our darkest eras, similar to the Spanish and Japanese regime where cruelty and ruthless killings were stated in our history book, which made us aware of how horrifying those days are, but it was different during Marcos’ time. To make matters worst, a Grade Five History Book in our schools says that the reason why Marcos declared Martial Law in 1972 was because of frequent flooding and typhoons, very sad, they have killed history, and an Aquino (PNoy) let it happen, what a shame.

Now, where am I getting at? I don’t know and I have no clue, or maybe there is actually no argument with this piece but just a simple essay on my feelings about the impact of the EDSA revolution in our current and upcoming generation (if the essence of it is still alive).

One more thing, aside from maybe letting the true value and soul of EDSA live a very short life, is that we had done it again a couple of years back hoping that better things will come the morning after, and yet knowing that it will never come/happen.

Not The Andres Bonifacio You Knew

From the time Philippine history was introduced as a subject, Katipunan’s Andres Bonifacio was portrayed as an uneducated, hot headed, and poor commoner who had enough of the Spanish abuse, reason why he went at arms with them (prematurely) in 1896. However, according to accounts of the Supremo’s closest relatives, friends, and former wife, he is not the person that our textbooks have been projecting the moment it was taught inside the classroom.

According to his closest friends, the Supremo had jobs as a sales man, a storekeeper, an agent (just to name a few) for foreign companies in Manila before the war broke in the late 1800s. With this information at hand, it only not meant that he had a very good means to provide for himself and his family but he is also good in Spanish, which is at that time, the international language in the Philippines.

It was also portrayed that Bonifacio was a no-read-no-write lad, but based on his wife’s account, Ka Oryang’s parents (most especially his father), is not in favor with his then “nobio/nobyo” because he was a Freemason, which was then had a very bad image, thanks to the religion that we had at that time. If you were to analyze the situation, back then (up until now), Freemasons was a secured organization that only accepts educated and middle to upper class members of the society (Rizal and Mabini was one of them). That being said, Bonifacio is far from the illiterate poor “bodegero” that our past historians have projected.

In addition, aside from being a Freemason, he was also a La Liga Filipina member, which means that he had access to the doors of the “illustrados” and had known popular persons in the society such as Jose Rizal and the Luna brothers.

Bonifacio, like Rizal, was a wide read person and in fact, some of the books that Rizal had or read was the same books that the Supremo had and unlike Aguinaldo, who had admitted publicly in an interview that he never read any of Rizal’s book (Noli and El Fili) because he had a small (if not none) command of the Spanish language, Bonifacio read and was inspired by El Fili who at that time was in full Spanish transcript.

Based on his relatives’ account, Bonifacio was not only fluent in Spanish but other language as well such as French in which he had read Victo Hugo’s Les Miserables and the French Revolution books, that ignited the fire in him to finally take up arms against oppression.

Clearly this accounts and close to facts evidences only showed that the Andres Bonifacio hero we knew from Delos Santos, Zaide, Agoncillo is a total 360 degree person from the real one. Based from the jobs he had as a salesman, a clerk, a messenger, a storekeeper for a foreign company showed that he was not a commoner but in fact a well bred gentlemen.

Another interesting fact by Supremo’s younger sister, Espiridonia Bonifacio, is that the account of their business (selling fans and canes) was thriving, because she remembered that the price of their canes at that time were bought at around 50 to 100 pesos (it wasn’t clear if by bulk of individual, nonetheless, it was a serious amount of money back then)

However, do not be confused of Bonifacio as a haciendero or an elite, Big NO! he belonged to a middle classed family who can eat at least  3 meals a day and sometimes can buy things they need or want. One fact that can and will attest that Bonifacio belonged to the B class of the society is that he nor his family had no hacienda or mansion unlike the Rizal estate in Calamba and the Aguinaldo shrine in Cavit, or the Luna Mansion in Ilocos.

In all fairness to the Philippine Government, there were efforts to locate for his house or ancestral home, but most of them burned down or ruined during the American-Spanish War. The surviving houses, where the Bonifacio’s (Andres and Ka Oryang), lived were marked by the Government’s historical commission to commemorate the Supremo.

In hindsight, since winners writes history and clearly Aguinaldo won his battle against Bonifacio, did he intentionally portrayed the Supremo as his own image that was tweaked a little bit as poor commoner to capture the hearts of the common masses?

The Betrayals of Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo

Clearly, as what this blog site implies, the author is not (and will never be) an Aguinaldo fan. It is also clear, unlike to what is being (and have been) taught in school, that Aguinaldo is after all for personal favor and not what was written in our history books. Despite his glorified image, it is undeniable that he was the person behind the deaths of the most important(if not “The”) persons in the Philippine History, as well as betrayals and the sale of our country.

That being said let us count the ways, how many times, Don Emilio Aguinaldo favored himself over our beloved country.

Philippine’s For Sale (Pact of Biak na Bato)

With the death of Katipunan’s Supreme Leader, Andres Bonifacio, the Philippine revolutionary stronghold started to lose grip, prompting Aguinaldo (and his cohorts and cabinet) to take refuge in a remote cave in the province of Bulacan, called Biak na Bato. Together with his cabinets and loyalist, they have agreed on and signed a pact selling the Philippine Revolution to the Spanish empire for 800,000 Mexican Peso, half of which will be Aguinaldo’s and the other half will be distributed to the entire party.

At that point in time, the move made some Filipinos, most specially those who are still fighting and not present in the Pact of Biak na Bato, angry and felt betrayed more overly those who are relatives of the one’s who were killed in action (I can’t fathom the way Donya Oryang (widow of Andres Bonifacio) felt during that time).

However, later on, it was refuted (by the Aguinaldo loyalist and relatives) that the move is some sort of a tactic to gather funds and ground in order to purchase firearms and recruit more revolutionaries, in relation to the second salvo of the revolution. Also, they claimed that without the Pact of Biak na Bato, the Spanish could have still went after the revolutionaries but all of it died down with the sale.

True enough, the Spanish purchased the revolution but agreed to only pay Aguinaldo in half (400,000 Mexican Pesos), and promise to pay the other half after his exile in Hong Kong. The other 400,000 Mexican Pesos was never fulfilled and Aguinaldo never had purchased additional firearms (and revolutionaries) with his money.

Balimbing Republic

In 1941, during the Japanese Regime, Aguinaldo went to the radio and appealed to the country not to take up arms against the Japanese Forces, but join them in arms instead.

Other, most specially the Anti Aguinaldo forces, saw this gesture not only as betrayal but a mere revenge after he lost the seat to the then Speaker of the House, Manuel Quezon, with the hopes of getting the presidency or at least the highest Philippine representative during the occupation. Unfortunately, after all his efforts to take the seat, it was given to Jose P. Laurel.

Supremo’s Murder (Andres Bonifacio)

He first ordered the exile of Katipunan’s founding father Andres Bonifacio and his brother Procopio because of treason and conspiracy to kill Emilio Aguinaldo. On his credit, Aguinlado, tried the Bonifacio brothers, with Jury and a defense lawyer.Be as it may, the Jury and the Bonifacio defense lawyer were all Aguinaldo loyalist and fellow Cavitenos (during that time regional differences were at it’s highest peak).

After the trial, he ordered for the brothers to be exiled, but later on recalled his orders and gave in to his general’s advice (pressure) to kill the Bonifacio brothers, instead, for the sake of their cause. On the wake of an offensive by the Spanish forces in Maragondon Cavite, he ordered the execution of the Andres and Procopio Bonifacio in the Maragondon mountain ranges, some called named it Mount Buntis, some Nagpatong, some Tala, but unfortunately, until now, no one is definite the exact place of execution.

With the death of Bonifacio, he made himself the Supreme Leader of Katipunan that eventually led to the first Republic of the Philippines, but the manner of how he took the seat only showed that he is more into the personal rather than the patriotic edge of the blade. To make matters worst, he treated Andres Bonifacio like a common criminal, by ordering to shoot Andres Bonifcaio at the back (which is only given to traitors, like what the Spanish government did to Jose Rizal) and by not giving him a proper burial.

The Assassination of Gen. Antonio Luna

Gen. Antonio Luna gained notoriety during the Filipino-American War right after the Filipino-Spanish war. He is known to be a hot headed and ill tempered but very disciplined and dedicated general, of whom, many are happy and sad/bitter at the same time.

Luna was Aguinaldo’s highest commanding general but had gained many foes along the line, including some other generals and advisers of Aguinaldo.

Like Andres Bonifacio, Luna was killed by Aguinaldo’s men, but unlike Bonifacio’s, Aguinaldo denied the allegation until his death. Nonetheless, even though the evidences are pointing towards the men of Aguinaldo (and himself), no single person was tried nor convicted of Luna’s death on June 1899 in Cabanatuan City.

Aguinaldo’s name came into picture when he allegedly summoned Luna to Cabanatuan City, as he will be named secretary of war only to find out his arch nemesis (and a known Aguinaldo ally) Felipe Buencamino, behind Aguinaldo’s seat.

After a verbal altercation with Buencamino, Luna angrily came down the City’s capitol building and out of the square to his two trusted aides Col. Francisco “Paco” Roman and Capt. Eduardo Rusca, when he heard a gunshot inside the compound which prompted him to go back to confront the person who fired the gun. While looking for the culprit, he was upfronted by Capt. Jalonillo (another Aguinaldo ally and fellow Caviteno and was victim of the General’s wrath when he failed on a mission ), with a bolo to the head.

After Gen. Luna (and Paco Roman) was killed, Dona Trinidad Famy Aguinaldo (Aguinaldo’s Mother), peered out of the window and uttered or asked the question “Yari na ba yan?” which was/is a two standard phrase that can be interpreted as “is it done?” or “is he dead?” adding fuel to the controversy.

Don Emilio Aguinaldo went to live and witness the emancipation of our country until his death in 1964 at the age of 94 outliving his fellow Spanish “Hero” by a margin of 60+ years (Luna died at 32, Bonifacio died at 33, Jose Rizal died at 35, Del Pilar died at 24, and so on). In addition, Gen. Aguinaldo was not shy to show the entire country of his personal ambition like what he did during the Pact of Biak na Bato and the Japanese Occupation.

Nonetheless, like the old saying goes, winners write history, reason why he was (and still is) treated as a national hero well in fact he can be tagged as a traitor and betrayer.