The Inquirer today reported that the Philippine government is open to sending another batch of “humanitarian mission” to Iraq. Such a new batch of Filipino troops would be under the United Nations framework, foreign secretary Delia Albert reportedly said.
Before the US-led invasion of Iraq, President Arroyo kept on paying lip service to the UN. In the end however, she joined the so-called “coalition of the willing,” which went to war in Iraq without UN sanction.
The abduction and threatened beheading of Angelo de la Cruz gave the President a way to get out of Iraq by citing national interest amid heckling from its so-called allies, especially by the US. It was a chance to make up for a wrong decision of dragging the Philippines into a war that was later proven to be unjustified as it based on lies about Iraq’s non-existent WMDs and supposed links to Al-Qaeda.
Pulling out of Iraq could have also given Arroyo a chance to shed her image as Bush’s little drummer girl in Asia, and instead repackage herself a true leader of a sovereign nation.
So what if the US kicked us out of the coalition? Who wants to remain in a group of warfreaks that has lost its credibility? It wouldn’t matter much even if they are now using the legitimacy of the very institution that they ignored when they attacked Iraq.
Should the government push though with this plan, it would further expose the president’s character as a shrewd politician who would do anything that serves her own political interest. When she decided to pull out our troups to save de la Cruz, the people seemed to have deliberately ignored the fact that she did that to save her political career.
Should the government push though with this plan, it would prove that “national interest” and “sovereignty” were the farthest from her mind when she made the controversial decision.
A return to Iraq would just agains show the world Arroyo’s subservience to Bush, her hegemonist master.