April 18, 2012
Women religious support the People’s Lakbayan against US Militarism and Plunder
Heed the cry of the people and of Creation: Stop plunder and militarism of the Empire!
“Because you have plundered many nations, the peoples who are left will plunder you. For you have shed man’s blood; you have destroyed lands and cities and everyone in them.” Habakkuk 2:8
The Sisters’ Association in Mindanao (Samin) supports Patriotiko Mindanao’s Lakbayan and Caravan against US militarism and plunder against the Balikatan Joint US-Philippine Military Exercises.
We, women religious in Mindanao, join the people in defending our sovereignty and resources from the plunder and presence of US military troops.
Samin has long been part of the people’s opposition to US troops, from the historic rejection of the US military bases in Clark and Angeles, and now with our call for the junking of the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) and Balikatan Exercises.
We heed the cry of women and children who are most vulnerable to US militarism. In the past joint military exercises, the abuse of women, injuries and killing of families in the aftermath, and the rape of Zamboanga citizen Nicole were characteristic of the post-US bases regime under the VFA. It is disturbing that the American military are not held accountable for such atrocities because the VFA, along with the unabashed subservience of President Benigno Aquino III to US dictates, has become a blanket of protection for the troops.
We heed the bleeding Creation that continues to be raped by the machines and equipment of US military, mining corporations and plantations. When shall the bleeding end?
Samin has raised concern that the Aquino government has surrendered the nation to the US Empire and sacrificed our resources, dignity and patrimony at their table.
But we do not shudder with this situation, as we have shown by our coming together that we are a people moved by the Spirit to defend our people, our resources, our community and our patrimony.
Samin calls on our fellow sisters and all Christians, in solidarity with other faiths and movements, to defend our people and our patrimony from continuing plunder. Let us support the call to junk the Visiting Forces Agreement and oust US military troops from our country.