Letters to the Editor. Marcos and General Ver
Neither the United States Congress nor the President can be as firm on the Philippine future as your well-intentioned explanation suggests [``Firm on Philippine future,'' Oct. 29]. If the US moves directly and presently toward engaging the Marcos opposition, it will be undermining a government. The consequences are unpredictable. Commitment to nonviolent change remains an admirable US political postulate. But unseating governments is the task, if need be, of domestic constituencies and not one for an external democratic superpower committed to the rule of international law.
President Marcos must be steadily urged, albeit always privately, to allow for legitimate succession, bona fide elections, an end to military harshness and corruption, and economic cronyism. But public denunciation or intimidation by the US will be counterproductive.
Sacrificing our military bases will be financially costly and strategically perilous to US national interests. In any event, a successful insurgency would be a political disaster for both the US and Philippine nation. Elliott A. Cohen Pomona, N.Y.
Your editorial Dec. 3 entitled ``A Marcos snub at the US'' referred to the decision acquitting Gen. Fabian Ver et al. and the ``jeers and protests'' that followed it.
As expected, the verdict was not popular, since the victim, the late Sen. Benigno Aquino, was a public figure. However, judicial decisions are based on the facts of the case as presented during the trial, not on public sentiment.
As in the United States, the Philippine Constitution presumes the innocence of an accused unless proven otherwise beyond reasonable doubt, something the prosecution evidently failed to establish during the trial.
The ``reinstatement'' of General Ver is actually a mere reassumption of his former duties. It is an established practice in the Philippines for government personnel to return to their former positions upon acquittal.
The trial, acquittal, and return of General Ver followed established administrative procedures. It is difficult to go along with your conclusion that his acquittal is a snub at the US. It would be inconsistent with the status of the Philippines as a sovereign country to waive or set aside administrative procedures just to please US policymakers. Hermenegildo Cruz Permanent Mission of the Ambassador, Philippines to the UN Deputy Representative New York
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