Sixty seven years ago, Manila, once the toast of European architecture in Asia, lay in rubbles. The second most destroyed city during World War two, Manila was a scene of carnage. Huge buildings were levelled to the ground, lifeless bodies, some rotting, lie along sidestreets. These scenes of horrific inhumanity were evidence of how fiercely both the Americans and the Japanese troops fought against each other.
Smoke bellows in all parts of the city. Moans, cries and shrills of horror waifed in the air. Those who survived the carnage lived yet told no one of how outrageous life became because of war. Thousands of souls walk along Taft avenue and saw a desert full of adobe and cement, and sand.
Manila never really recovered from the war. We never did.
Manila remained a patchwork. The wounds of war struck deep into our psyche that it shows during tragedies and calamities. As they say, Filipinos sometimes or most of the times, think only of himself to survive. We also see it every single day of our lives.
Now, what we experience is an economic crisis. Instead of us, uniting and urging others to sit and think of how to mitigate the effects of this crisis in each of our lives, and of how to strategically solve these problems, we decide to do it individually.
That post World War two reconstruction should have been the saving grace of this country. It should have resulted into a better Philippines. What we never did, harmed us and our successor generations.
The elites of this country are to blame for this. Instead of them sitting together and planning to build something out of the rubble, they decided to do things alone. These elites scampered to get and partake of the spoils of war. Some got rich. Others, wealthier than before.
Fact is, we are still under a period of reconstruction. What we did as a nation during these past sixty seven years were all patchwork. The lack of strategic thinking harms this country even now.