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October 31, 1972

11:50 PM

Oct. 31, 1972


Malacañan Palace


Our people will never know the gamble that I have taken when I proclaimed martial law.

For I deliberately diverted the possible enemy fire to myself so as to save our people.

Martial law is a limitation of freedom and, therefore, generally objectionable. There were too many factors that were imponderable. How would the people react? Would they take up arms against us? The number of firearms surrendered (Now about 280,000) indicate that if they did take up arms they would have overwhelmed us including the Armed Forces of the Philippines.

The international press and world public opinion would be against us. And I would be the principal target.

And the American government was probably going to be against it.

Even the military had not all committed themselves to the program.

The American attitude of sacrificing everybody else for their national interest as they did with Taiwan and now South Vietnam shows that if we had made just one mis-step, they would have turned against us.

But it seems to me that we have overcome all these difficulties –after one month and eleven days.

In view of the probability that the Constitution will be finished by the Concon by the end of November and submitted to a plebiscite by January 15, 1973 I have decided to call the congressional leaders to a luncheon conference on Thursday.

Received Speaker Villareal, Doroy Valencia, Cong. Danding Cojuangco, Mike Stilianopoulos, Tony Madrigal (the last two for appointment to ambassador to the Quirinal and the Vatican

And was interviewed by German correspondent Harry Hamm.

Imelda has not been feeling pain for the last three hours.