Office of the President
of the Philippines
February 12, 1970
Against predictions of violence, the Plaza Miranda rally turned out to be peaceful. Some of the leaders shouted for the crowd to go to Malacañang but the crowd would not follow.
But the KM and SDK violated their word and went through with the rally in Plaza Miranda when they had said that they would not leave the campuses. Some 40 trucks came from Angeles City. The men in them did not look like students and they were the ones crying out for blood.
The northern congressmen, senators and governors came to the palace with completely armed men. I dissuaded them from infiltrating the demonstration and inflicting harm on them.
For a time I secretly hoped that the demonstrators would attack the palace so that we could employ the total solution. But it would be bloody and messy.
Anyway I told the northern political leaders that the situation may develop into a revolutionary situation during my administration and that we should prepare for a military confrontation with the communists. The North should be developed as a last bastion, just in case. We must now cache arms and ammo there, prepare Laoag for jet landings, Lingayen Gulf for our navy and organize provincial strike forces, at the rate first of at least 100 men each province.
But we must win the hearts and minds of our people. So, I argued, we must all be ready to sacrifice our personal interests for the common good. They agreed to this but begged that the men who had sacrificed in the political battles be not forgotten.
We had dinner and a movie. Blas Ople was there for dinner. And so was Emong Salvador, my old Maharlika comrade. Blas is an enigma. Many of the leaders distrust him. Even Col. Ver feels that he is actually one of the communist leaders and that all the attacks in the media against me and the administration may have been his brainchild. But it is best he is in the palace when there is a crisis. Then we can neutralize him or use him.
As of now I am convinced we have to wage a tedious legal, propaganda and economic battle against the communists. So this afternoon I asked the military leaders, Ponce Enrile, Yan, Garcia, and Ramos to prepare for this. There must be an assessment of the voluminous documents captured from the Ma-Maos – for legal action. The intelligence agencies must be sharpened to the sophisticated finesse of the intellectuals and urban communists. For this the NICA and NBI must be reorganized. And we must fund the various anti-subversion and anti-insurgency teams.
If they want a revolution, I will give them one in the economic field. Drastic, dramatic and effective like the rechanneling of the excess money into agro-industrial projects in the farms and resettlement centers.
I met with Vicente Araneta to listen to his priming plan. Assigned Usec. Roman Ong Jr. to study it.