I write this as I await some
callers across the river
February 1, 1971
“There is bound to be an inevitable confrontation between the communists and our democracy in the military front,” I have always said. And some intellectuals who were with Imelda and whom she brought in to see me confirm this analysis of mine (Father Horacio de la Costa, Abe Cruz and Chitang Guerrero Nakpil).
The communists gamble that the Republic will be too weak by then as they will have sapped its vitality. Or that they will have become so strong that they can match their military against ours. Or they may be hoping that the China experience will be repeated where the economy became so debilitated, the inflation beyond control after Chiang Kai Shek failed to follow through his initial successes against Mao Tse Tung and allowed him to regroup his men in the north, fell to the trap of losing time by negotiations (at the insistence of the U.S, so he now claims) for unity, that Chiang’s government fell by its own dead weight.
I have also said that if we do not now take measures of self-preservation, this will come about.
My democratic revolution will rally the great majority of our people around our republic. But it will not stop the communists from continuing their unrelenting fight. They will not be content with anything less than the overthrow of the republic, no matter how long it takes and at whatever cost.
So if there is going to be an inevitable collision, then perhaps we should induce it now while the communists are weak and unorganized.
The most touching letter I have received so far is one from Father Jose A. Cruz, a Jesuit and my retreat master several times. The letter was sent today through the daughter of Ex-Speaker Cornelio Villareal, who is now a nun.
It came when I was thinking the thoughts embodied in it – that contemporary writers will not appreciate what I am doing; that I face the sad prospect of present condemnation and future vindication; that I may lose all my friends and present admirers before my crusade is over; that even my family may not understand what I hope to achieve; and that my whole life is bound to be a life of controversy and tension and I shall know no peace.
So I was on the verge of tears when I read it.
I attach the letter.
Ambassador Byroade came to see me about his trip to Washington. He says one half of his time was spent on the question I posed him in a most informal manner what the reaction would be to our decision which I told him was already made to establish trade relations with the USSR and other European socialist countries (and later on diplomatic relations).
I made him understand that after the Foreign Policy Council meets, trade relations and/or diplomatic relations would be a matter of time.
He had taken the proper attitude that this was an act of sovereignty that the U.S. could not intervene in.
But I insisted that what I wanted to know was the true attitude of the U.S. president, Congress, businessmen and public in general, not diplomatic niceties.
I had before this asked him to tell me frankly if the American government would support me if there was need to declare martial law to save the country from the communists. Nixon’s answer was “Absolutely!”
I attach the two typewritten memos on the USSR.
Amb. Byroade also informed me of the U.S. government decision to transfer the Caribbean typhoon moderation complex from there to the Pacific possibly in Guam. They cannot possibly do so this year as they lack equipment (only four laboratory planes when they need 14) and personnel. The principle that is being developed is rain-making by cloud seeding to lower the strength of the winds to 60 miles which is moderate compared to the 200 mile ones we have been getting in some of the 20 typhoons last year.
Then we get the $20 million aid from PL 480, $15 million loan to our electrification program (jointly with Japan and as a part of the package of the Consultative group which meets in Paris, if the Japanese agree to this venue, on April 26th, this year).
There are other forms of aid – close to a million for the work on typhoon damage prevention – actually concrete roofing. And some other projects.
I have ordered all the conflicts on the oil concessions to be settled so that we can get the oil exploration moving. Twelve applications were sent back to the Bureau of Mines for their study and recommendation.
Alex Melchor and Maj. Almonte are showing an undue interest in the release of Macahiya and the dropping of the charges against him and the men caught with him who were armed. I have asked Sec. Ponce Enrile and Gen. Yan to review the case but to decide it on the basis of the evidence.
I feel that Alex is unduly influenced by the UP intellectuals for whom we all have sympathy.
The strike has failed to stop traffic but there are several incidents like the shooting of a student in the head by Prof. Innocentes Campos when a human blockade stopped his car and a pillbox was thrown at it burning it. He pursued his assailants and shot at the crowd hitting a student in the head. The professor is a mathematics wizard and branded a Marcos sympathizer in the U.P.