Heroes and villains


To celebrate the death anniversary of Katipunan supremo Andres Bonifacio, the Bantayog ng mga Bayani (Monument of Heroes) honored 14 persons who died during the dark days of the Marcos martial law regime.

Except for two, I have no quarrel with the organizers of “Bantayog” on the rest of the honorees.

The deaths of the two supposed honorees, Norberto Acebedo Jr. (1958-1985) and Amada Alvarez (1950-1989), cannot be considered martyrdom.

Acebedo was a student activist who died in a military encounter in Compostela Valley, according to Bantayog.

Alvarez, who graduated cum laude in Philosophy at the University of Santo Tomas, died in a firefight with the military, also according to Bantayog.

From the looks of it, Acebedo and Alvarez joined the New People’s Army (NPA), whose aim is to topple the government.

To make Acebedo and Alvarez heroes or martyrs would be to make villains of the military troops who killed them in the legitimate encounters.

That would be very unfair to the soldiers who were defending the government they thought stood for freedom and democracy.

Why would Bantayog honor persons who were members of the NPA, an outlaw group in the eyes of the government?

It’s just like making a martyr of Abu Sabaya, one of the flamboyant leaders of the Abu Sayyaf who was killed by government troops.

* * *

I do not mean to desecrate the memory of Alvarez and Acebedo, who were apparently idealistic young people.

They were swayed by the NPA’s offer of a utopian society.

I understand them because, to tell the truth, I also wanted to join the NPA in the early 1970s  as a young man.

Only my being the son of my father, a retired colonel of the defunct Philippine Constabulary (PC), whom I admired and adored so much, prevented me from doing so.

I would not be here today writing this column had I joined the NPA.

* * *

In the late 1970s and early 1980s, Metro Manila was wracked by bombings perpetrated by US-based Filipinos who wanted to topple the Marcos regime.

Would the Bantayog ng mga Bayani also honor those Filipinos who placed bombs in public places to scare the wits out of the dictator Marcos?

Those bombs killed at least one foreigner (from my recollection as a police reporter at that time) and injured many others, including singer Nonoy Zuñiga.

* * *

I was at Philippine Plaza Hotel (now Hotel Sofitel) minutes after a bomb exploded inside the restroom at the hotel’s ground floor.

I was a police reporter for the then Bulletin Today (now the Manila Daily Bulletin).

I saw how the bomb wrought mayhem on innocent people.

I was able to get inside the bombed restroom and found a wallet that belonged to Zuñiga which I returned to him at his hospital bed. But that’s another story.

Although I hated Marcos like other journalists for taking away our freedom of expression, I could not understand why his enemies would harm innocent people in order to send him a message.

Most of Marcos’ enemies who took part in the plot to sow terror in Metro Manila at the time became prominent during the administration of President Cory.

If you ask me, I would not consider them heroes even if their intention was to topple a dictatorship.

A terrorist by any other name—such as freedom fighter—is still a terrorist if they harm innocent people.

The means certainly does not justify the end.

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  • Anonymous

    Uh, isn’t it “the end certainly does not justify the means?”

    • Anonymous

      Hahaha … even if Tulfo’s quote was right, his grammar was still wrong.

  • JV Velarde

    natatae na naman si tatang tulfo sa salawal kaya baligtad na naman ang pag-iisip sa mga nangyari noon panahon ng mga marcos!

  • Anonymous

    Nice try Tulfo, but no one is buying…..

    Inquirer should fire your pathetic person and just stick to full time blackmailing….

  • Saloi-CDR

    …and Mon Tulfo you are the worst, mukhang atik, ACDC, bading villain of them all.

  • Anonymous

    Himala wala ang pangalan ni P-Noy ngayon!!!! Kung ganito lang sana parati ang column mo, eh di sana hindi mabubwisit ang mga readers mo.

  • Anonymous

    Hmmm…if you had join the NPA movement then…you would have been called…KATULFO….ask any kampampangan what it means….:)

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_EYYDTMYSK2VUPDWIMUDPPSVVU4 romulo

    “From the looks of it, Acebedo and Alvarez joined the New People’s Army (NPA), whose aim is to topple the government”  Oh Tulfo..oh Tulfo.. nag assume ka na naman.  Sinabi ba ng NPA na NPA din sila..may ebidensya ka ba?  And how courageous of you to say that you once thought of joining the group when it is obvious that your family belonged to the burgis class then, your father being in the elite military group.  SINUNGALING NA COMEDIAN!!!!

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_KK3VYEGXHLKAGX5LS36MQMSLPE Lava

      Lagyan lang ng militar ng baril sa kamy yung mga yun, sabihin encounter. Puedeng assasination din naman. Basta may baril at nagbarilan mahirap paniwalaan ang mga salaysay ng mga testigong may baril, unless nakunan ng video. Minsan nga nakunan na ng video or voice recording, naiitanggi pa or hindi inaamin. Hello Garci! Sorry Pilipinas… ganun lang po yun.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_RQPBKLCOXZ2JTBNIE3SGLONJEY Shopaholik!

    Because Ninoy Aquino is a coimmunist lover and a certified communist- right Mr. Tulfo?

    • Anonymous

      Ang layo naman ng comment mo, shopaholic. We might as well call you alcoholic and so drunk to understand what you are reading.

  • arnold mercado


  • Anonymous

    sana nag join ka na nga sa NPA para ikaw ang una nilang sinample for cowardice and stupidity.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_KK3VYEGXHLKAGX5LS36MQMSLPE Lava

    The why honor any military at all. Wala bang abusadong military nung 1970’s, then how did Marcos control the Philippines then, di ba through the abuse of the military.
    Palagay ko naman medyo nasa tama sila noon, let them honor them.
    Karapatan nila yun, si Marcos maraming ipanapatay tapos ipaglalaban na ilagay sa Libingan ng mga Bayani. Galing naman ng logic nyo.
    The first casualty of any war is the TRUTH….

  • Anonymous

    A writer writes not because it’s his job, but because he is driven by the need to communicate. Behind the need to communicate is the need to share. Behind the need to share is the need to be understood. As a reader, we should also try to read between the lines… just my humble opinion.

  • patriotic_act

    I am very much entertained by reading the comments alone in Mr Tulfo’s column more than the column itself.. so many haters the man has but still they read his column anyways..

    why is so? just for the sake of saying/posting something? or just to appear or show they are “more intelligent than him”? (thus making one as same as he who is merely here to criticize) im just really amused because I myself in practice that if I dont like the writer I wont effort myself to read his/her crap opinions at all..

    but honestly I neither like nor hate the man.. but everytime I click his column I always scroll down first to read the entertaining comments of those supposed to hate him but advertise him anyway..

    just my 2 cents..

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_KK3VYEGXHLKAGX5LS36MQMSLPE Lava

      Who said he’s hated? We like seeing/reading funny stuff, are you kidding me? It’s like watching an Evangelical show on tv, hilarious but many people are duped, nuff said.

      • patriotic_act

        im sorry but im not kidding.. but if that’s your definition of fun then delivering criticisms after reading what you say was “funny stuff” then I rest my case.. as reading yours would be fun aswell (in your analogy) but I wont ridicule myself by doing so as I will only look absolutely pathetic..

        my 2 cents..

  • Anonymous

    isinoli daw nya yung wallet ni nonoy zuniga kc walang lamang pera. hehehe.

  • Anonymous

    ang mga politicians nun n laban kay marcos ay sila p rin yung ayaw bitawan ang pwesto ngayon..bukod s abuso ng mga tauhan ni marcos at imelda, parang mas marami pang nagawa si Marcos nung 20 yrs syang nakaupo kesa sa lahat ng projects mula kay cory hangang sa anak..wag nman sanang hanggang sa apo

    • Anonymous

      Sino si Joshua na apo ni Cory magiging presidente ng pilipinas ? naykupo !!!!!!!!!!!!!!! nagdudusa na nga tayo kay panot eh !!!!

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_E2V7QUMFK3JR7GWHPUF7MNVIJQ Kudi

        mas masarap pang tumae kesa basahin post mo.    para kang si tulpo!

      • Anonymous

        i like you joke ……..hoy gising … maka makatototo …hu hu hu hu

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_YAU43R25CAHGNYPHE6HLAM3V6Y Benjamin

    manahimik ka na nga baka gulpihin ka na naman ni atong ang

  • Vincent Maldia


  • antonioluna

    if mr. tulfo had joined the NPA he could have been a commander, commander AC/DC hehehe

    • Anonymous

      ka twisted or commander twisted 

  • Anonymous

    tulfo(PWE) = arrogant, egocentric, ac/dc twit.

  • Anonymous

    You don’t deserve to join the NPA at that time because you don’t have enough courage to fight and stand against oppression and corruption.  In other words, you’re a coward.

    While your country is being raped, abused, tortured and taken away their own freedom, you are just there standing, watching and shamelessly hiding instead of doing something to make a difference for your beloved nation.  That is why, our country is still the same as it was because of some people like you — holding back the fight for real freedom for their own vested interest.

    So which side you want to be on, Tulfo? — the heroes or villains?

    • Anonymous

      I am no great fan of Tulfo but I fully agree with him that  Acebedo and Alvarez do not deserve to be called martyrs of the Filipino people. It was not just the Marcos regime that the NPA wanted to overthrow but  our system of government. Their intention is also to put the country under a totalitarian system far worse than Martial Law. If that’s the kind of freedom you want for the country and you have the courage to fight for it unlike this cowardly Tulfo, then feel free to join the CPP/NDF/NPA – that’s if you are not already part of it. 

      • Anonymous

        My argument is not about the system of government.  So your missing the point.  It’s about doing what you need to do at that time.  Please try to read between the lines.  Obviously, Tulfo is a coward.  Whether or not he wants to join the rebel group, the thing is, he didn’t do anything to fight the dictatorship because his father was with the PC and didn’t stand up for what is right.  Do you see what I mean?  And to this day, we can see that he’s just playing the political games — serving his corrupt patrons in the high places of government.

  • Anonymous

    every once in a while i do agree with this columnist although most of his columns are twisted truths

    • Anonymous

      twisted truths ? is there such a thing as twisted truth ?    hahahahahahahaha i like that twisted truths !!!! hahahahahahahahahaha

  • Anonymous

    Correction Mr. Tulfo: November 30 is actually is Andres Bonifacio’s birthday….his death was on May 10…. they wanted to have the holiday honoring Bonifacio on his birthday to please the rival who was a Filipino (who also ordered the execution of Bonifacio)….

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_KK3VYEGXHLKAGX5LS36MQMSLPE Lava

      Mon Tulfo is so bad with his facts, nagko quote yan mali mali, eh uso na Google ngayon kahit walang secretary madaling mag research at mag compare ng mga results.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_E2V7QUMFK3JR7GWHPUF7MNVIJQ Kudi

    topic is so boring.   pwedeng pag usapan uli si pnoy?  please,  please!   
    bring back pnoy!   bring back pnoy!   

    • Anonymous

      yes bring back panot, panot, panot , panot please !!!!!!

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_E2V7QUMFK3JR7GWHPUF7MNVIJQ Kudi

        it’s sarcasm,  bobo!     magtanim ka na lang ng kangkong para me pakinabang ka!

  • Anonymous

    Hoy Tulfo! mukhang tama yata ang hinala namin sa yo…binabasa ng mga amo mo column para malaman kung they are getting their money’s worth….hmmm

    Abad was named by Horn as the one who allegedly insinuated threats at Arroyo during a cabinet meeting with President Benigno Aquino III. Horn said Ramon Tulfo also mentioned this in his November 21 column published in the Philippine Daily Inquirer.
    ting their money’s worth…

  • Anonymous

    nung 70’s justifiable pa mag NPA.. pero sa panahaon ngayon, yung may mga personality problems at galing sa dysfunctional family ang mga nagpupunta sa bundok.. aba, kung talagang may kabuluhan pa ang mag NPA sa panahon ngayon, bakit wala sa kabundukan mga anak at apo nung mga nasa BANTAYOG NG BAYANI, na boluntaryong nagpasya na pumatay ng kapwa nya pilipino?

    bakit hindi impluwensyahan ng mga kapamilya nung ibang mga nasa BANTAYOG mga anak nila na mamundok din??

    kase nga, na-realize nung mga kumilos nung dekada ’70, na kalokohan lang yung pinasok nila. nasayang lang panahon nila.

    tanong, bakit may matatanda pang nakaupo/namumuno sa NPA.. aba, ikaw ba naman yung kumita at makatanggap ng “sweldo” buwan-buwan..

    • Anonymous

      May kabuluhan mag-NPA ngayon kasi bibigyan ito ni Panot 31 million pesos yung nga 5 million ng MILF natangap na nila. eh.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_TRVNLKY7J3ZCRUGJCGE4NJULZM NineFour

    Sir Mon, you don’t have to wonder why communists NPA  are being heralded as heroes now. The government of BS Aquino III are filled with communists and leftists advisers. Why don’t you ask Deles, Llamas etc? Don’t you see or know that the communists were also given million pesos of livelihood money for them? By the way, BS Aquino III is true blue communist donning the attire of a democratic demagogue.

    • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/TEJPIVCXMONPNBXNWRYVLWVYPE next timer

      BOBO KA! parehas ka ni Mon Tulfo bobo na frustrated military, pa-sir sir ka pa! nyahahahahaha!

  • Anonymous

    Wala ng likes earned. now i can change my username whenever i want. I don’t need to stick on my username for likes received. hehehe. 

    or, it is just my screen. :(

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_RNJYX4OMNWEQEPRDAPR6D6FENI marco

    Yes, you would not be here but with Sison in the Netherlands!

  • Anonymous

    puro kayo reklamo panay naman ang basa nyo sa artikulo ni Mr Tulfo nyahahah peace pips!!!

    • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/TEJPIVCXMONPNBXNWRYVLWVYPE next timer

      nyahahaha, mga walang trabaho eh

  • Anonymous


  • Anonymous

    Hero? – Presidente Panot
    Villain? – Naka wheelchair at braces Gloria

    ahaha. ibang klaseng laban! 

  • Anonymous

    mon, you should have joined the npa so your space could have been given to a sagacious decent columnist (oppositionist or otherwise) unlike you who would write only bad things to whom you’ve had a personal quarrel with even if they’re already dead!

    no wonder if tomorrow your column will not as well accept feedback to avoid the overwhelming dissenting comments on what you write just like mr tiglao who is now like a dog running away from a fight after a bite with its tail in between of his legs? he only now preferred through email so he can hide the readers opinion. he just simply now like to throw attacks but coward to accept public feedback!

  • Anonymous

    Baka naman ang Bantayog ay mga CPP-NPA…di ako magtaka pag gagawa ng monumento ni Jose Maria Sison sa Luneta…..CPP-NPA …wala kayong pagkakaiba sa ABu Sayyaf.

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/TEJPIVCXMONPNBXNWRYVLWVYPE next timer

    Eto ang mga hero sa panananaw ng futhangiang Mon Tulfo na yan, Chavit SIngson, ERAP kurap, Mike Arroyo, Pineda Clan atbp na kasamahan nya sa kabugukan!

  • Anonymous

    tuflo missed his chance to become npa

    what a wasted opportunity

  • Anonymous

    i agree with tulfo on this column. walang mintis.

  • Anonymous

    Bakit si Tulfo ay pinagtyagaan pa ng Inquirer.  Segurado ako hindi mabawasan ng kahit isa ang mga readers ng Inquirer pag mawala si Tulfo, bagkus, madadagdagan pa.

  • Anonymous

    O tulfo may assasination plot daw (kuno) sa idol mong si GMA. Baka gusto mong mag komento uli at mag advise kuno sa malacanang.

  • Anonymous

    bakit alang bagong on target ngayon?…..naubusan ng maiimbentong story?….o inaayos pa ang script ng “oplan put the little girl to sleep”?….or….nagbibilang ng kotong?…bwahahahaa

  • Anonymous

    Tiopaero, are you a friend of Mr. Tulfo? How come you knowhis physical traits? Are you also a journalist? Uour red-pepper hot slugs for Tulfo looks like its coming from a slighted friend or acquaintance. lol. They are not commentaries by aimed to insult, malign and ruin everything that Tulfo has. 

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