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March 25, 1970 Wednesday


12:20 AM

March 25, 1970

[Marginal notation: There was a fourth retreat master and she was not a priest. She was Imelda who was so enthused about the retreat, she talked intermittently about the subject of the meditations in the retreat.]

Last night we had a second joint retreat with our retreat masters talking to us in succession. We had invited them to dinner at the Mansion then to another session. Father Cruz talked on filters and the Christian’s commitment in Philippine society. Father Tanseco followed on counsel for the married – the differences of outlook between the man and woman. The woman seeks to build a home so she is obsessed with a home life. But the man also wants a work life. The man is passionate and his love is in spurts but the woman is romantic, needs the refinements of preparation for the sexual act and has a love that is more consistent and prolonged and may be too possessive. Father Nebrida who is a Basque, a friend and colleague of the Black Pope and may become the next Black Pope spoke of the need to consider each human being as the nearest approach to God and therefore must be treated as such,

The common note was hope and not despair, life and not death and the triumph of goodness in man over evil – this struggle being the most agonizing of conflicts.

Blas Ople warns of a plot to take over the government by some retirees being openly spoken of in media circles. He says that Thursday or Friday students armed by the Huks or the CIA will attack the police and Metrocom, place me under House arrest in Baguio, the first division to neutralize any loyal troops of the AFP. So I sent Gen. Zagala to take over command of the 1st Infantry Division, grounded Col. Carreon, deputy commander and an S. Osmena man, as well as Commodore Cabal and Col. Irlanda, Commander and Deputy of the SOWESCOM as well as Col. Dizon, CO of the 20th BCT, and Capt. Nangkil, the S-2 of the 10th BCT stationed in Central Luzon.

Gen. Zagala has taken back command of the Tabak Division, transferred command of the Pasig Task Force to Col. Jose, Deputy Commander of PHILCAG. The Deputy Commander of Gen. Rancudo, CG of the 5th Fighter Wing (jet fighters), Col. Bauzon was replaced by Col Bueno.

Class ’44 of PMA will be retired except for some who are vouched for by the loyal commanders.

So everything is under control. But I guess that this is a false alarm. However as Gen. Espino, Vice Chief of Staff who was here on the way to inspect Batanes, says, there is nothing lost in precaution. He commands the reserves of nine batallions in the contingency plan.

Chino Roces saw Sec. Alex Melchor last night and says he is willing to sell the Manila Times. He is probably feeling the pressure and may think that he is going to be arrested next. I do not believe him but we will play along. I am sending Ronnie Velasco, who has suggested to Bebeng Roces to put up an anti-communist newspaper with the Manila Times outlets, to see Don Ramon Roces if the stockholders (Ramon Roces actually organized the Manila Times after the war and gave shares free to the Roces family) will sell out. Then I meet Chino Saturday here in Baguio.

I go to Ilocos Norte, lunch at Poro Point and return to Baguio tomorrow if I do not go to Manila for lunch.