In the chaos of today’s war situation between Ukraine and Russia, I am terrified to pose a question which will probably define how we see ourselves, not only as a country, but its people.
My question is, if we were in the shoes of Ukraine (knock on wood!), what should we do? Let’s just suppose that China (or Russia) decides to cede us as part of their territory, would we surrender peaceably and allow unquestionable possession of our country or, do we take up arms to defend the sovereignty of our country?
Somewhere along the way, the higher authorities have somehow signified what our stance is going to be – arguing that a small country such as ours cannot possibly fight aggression from more superior and massively armed giants, like China and Russia.
I have read so many comments from fellow Filipinos encouraging Ukraine to stop their fight. Okay, I’m all for the futility of someone like David fighting against Goliath but, you see, aggression does not stop right there.
If we become merely a territorial property, that means governance of our country will be dictated by a foreign power. I wonder if we can still maintain our way of living as we do now. Would we have the same freedom that we are enjoying? Will we be economically and financially secure under these powers?
Remember that we have been occupied before by Spain, Japan, and the United States.
In each occupation, we were subjected to follow their ideology and conviction. Each time, we had to give up our national and cultural identities. Do we really know what life is in a communist society? Why, for instance in Hong Kong, there was, and still is, ferocious resistance against restoring their jurisdiction to China after years of being under British rule? Why did South Korea break away from North Korea? And, for that matter, Taiwan from China?
If someone can just reassure me that things will remain as they currently are, then I’m all for it. However, I have to ask these questions because I am not at all sure if I am ready to surrender the freedom and free will that I have now. How about you?
Would you, like citizens of Ukraine – ordinary people like shopkeepers, retirees, garbage collectors, even women, and the like, take up arms in order to defend your lives, family, properties, and country from subjugation of a military force?
Would I, as a Filipino, under attack by a foreign super power, remain steadfast and fight for my country’s right to be free? Or should I just hold up my hands in complete surrender because there is nothing I can do?
Or maybe, I could pack up my family and vital belongings and flee the country? If I cannot afford to do that, then what will I do? The line between fear and survival has never been confusing and unsure up to this moment.
I don’t know if what Ukraine is doing is morally right. What I can understand is its people are so passionate about their country that they are willing to defend it at all costs. I wonder if Filipinos feel that deep love about the Philippines, too. Or is it “bahala ka na sa buhay mo” and not “ang mamatay ng dahil sa yo”?
I am a peace-loving individual. I am for peace, not war. I want life and things to remain as they are right now. Can countries let others be, mutually respecting and acknowledging each one’s right to live exactly as they want? Why is there a need to fight each other? Dominance, greed, and power are words that should be abolished in all the world’s dictionaries.
Alas, war is never ending. As in the words of Plato, “Only the dead have seen the end of war”. – NWI