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Saturday, February 22, 1986

It started snowing Sat. afternoon & by Sunday morning we had several inches of new snow. I got some homework done but also had conf. calls re the Philippine situation. On Sun. morning I approved a letter from me to Marcos begging him not to resort to force. His Defense minister & acting chief of the Army have resigned and taken some troops with them. At one point Marcos ordered troops & tanks to go to where the rebels were based but 100’s of 1000’s of civilians blocked them & the tanks turned back.

Back in Wash. I met with Cap, John, George & Don in the situation room—well the room was full with reps. from St. Defense—Sec. Treasury, V.P. etc. and of course Phil Habib—just back. It was a long meeting with no disagreement but lots of frustration. Pres. Marcos is stubborn & refuses to admit he can no longer govern. I made the point that a message from me must appeal to him on the grounds that if there is violence I’ll be helpless to continue support for the Philippines. We must not try to lay down the law. All we can do now is send the message by way of N.S.C. staffer Sigure who is in Japan & pray.

Tonite the annual dinner for the Governors Conference. Rich Little entertaining. It was a pleasant affair & Rich L. was very funny.