Friday, August 5, 2016

Duterte's reason why he wants the ROTC back

If my dearest friend, Welson Chua is still alive, he would surely oppose this proposal to revive the mothballed government program ROTC. His son died after exposing the nefarious activities of ROTC officials at the University of Santo Tomas. Yes, there were a few ROTC officials who were charged with numerous crimes, but the highest ROTC official involved in the killing of his beloved son, was spared.

President Duterte wants to revive the ROTC to "instill discipline and patriotism" among the present generation. Well, is there a study, a basis for Duterte's belief? Will patriotism be instilled in the hearts and minds of the youth if government teaches them how to march properly or how to obey without asking?

Israelis are trained militarily because their country is under a constant threat against Palestinians. Being a small state, the Israelis need a mobile and every ready citizenry to fight their enemies, and there are many. Is their situation the same as ours?

The Koreans also take ROTC courses because South Korea is still technically at war with the North. The North is still showing aggression and the South needs its citizenry to be fully prepared if war breaks out once more.

The Korean case is dissimilar with ours because we don't have an existing border war with another country. Besides, even if war breaks out with China, it will not be a war where we see hand to hand combat with a PLA soldier. It will probably be a naval war. I don't believe China will invade us. They don't need that kind of aggravation. Besides, China is not exhibiting imperialist tendencies. Regarding the Spratlys issue, China is just trying to fortify its defenses against possible aggression of its international enemies, including the United States.

Therefore, even if we train our youth to defend the country thru the force of arms, such training would be useless because in the event of a war where we are engaged, it would not be a conventional type of warfare where soldiers would engage in close contact, it would surely be a modern type of war, involving modern arsenals or implements of war.

So, if it's not at all connected with external defense, then, why is Duterte asking Congress to enact a law that would revive the ROTC?

I think the President wants to instill discipline among the youth. There is a rising perception that these millenials are reckless, undisciplined and are disrespectful of their elders and parents.

Military trainings are designed for individuals to recognize authority or authority figures. Now, is there a study which shows that those who undertook ROTC trainings are more cognizant of authority rather than those who did not?

The more substantive question is---why do we need to teach the youth of today to recognize authority when effective discipline actually starts at home? Is it really Duterte's desire to remake the Youth along the lines of traditional molds or there is a sinister reason why Duterte wants the youth to be like Hitler's youth?

Is this part of a plan to further militarize this country and make it a garrison state?