RIZAL WAS A RACIST AND GENOCIDAL MURDERER OF FILIPINOS IN REJECTING, DENOUNCING AND BETRAYING THE REVOLUTION AND THE FILIPINO PEOPLE… OR:
RIZAL’S SUICIDE MISSION TO KILL ANDRES BONIFACIO AND SUPPRESS THE REVOLUTION
Quite a number of years ago now, I discovered an ultimate scandal: the Philippine Revolution as depicted in all the textbooks and portrayed in all the films, the plays, the novels, the short stories, the journalistic commentaries, the holiday rituals and government programmes on the subject did not exist. That is to say, it never happened. Not merely that it never happened that way, no; but that it “happened” in a violently opposite way.
And in a deviously, invidiously violent, opposite way.
Such that what is there of “revolution” is anything but revolution, and the “history” of it is anything except history.
In all the textbooks and the other media, everything about the Revolution is a lie. But it is not a simple lie. It is an inversion. And it is not a simple inversion either. It is a distorted, perverted, twisted inversion. It is pure fiction. But not a simple fiction. It is a vicious fiction. And the viciousness of the fiction is not all random—it is in certain parts systematic.
It goes without saying that my discovery of this vicious fiction is the same as my discovery that all those vicious fictionists responsible for the production and reproduction of this vicious fiction not only do not know how to use documents to prove a historiographic point—they never used any. For they do not even see the need to prove a point, documentarily, or otherwise. This vicious fiction is all hearsay, tsismis, shaggily proliferant; blown this way or that by class, tribal, regional, clan, personal, even animal, prejudices, and by an all-powerful bêtise.
The new History that, simultaneously with my discovery of this vicious fiction, I of course discovered, is thus the first and only documented Philippine History there is to-date. This new History is, needless to say, absolutely shocking to us Filipinos. That is why we have to document in the most exhaustive way and retrace with utmost critical rigour its every twist and turn.
Shocking—and none more so than this central aspect of it that concerns our former National Hero, Dr. Jose Rizal…
Everything Rizal wrote that bore any connection with the Revolution was a rejection and a denunciation of it. In my classes and in my many lectures in UP Diliman, UP Baguio, UP Manila, PUP, and in several national conferences and symposia, it has become a habit on my part to challenge the audience to cite even just a single sentence by Rizal that directly or indirectly advocated revolution or Philippine independence from Spanish colonial rule.
Every political sentence then that Rizal wrote constitutes a document that testifies to his rejection and denunciation of the Revolution–and to his unrelenting opposition to, nay, abhorrence of, independence.
From out of that mass of counterrevolutionary and anti-independence documents, four stand out for their unsurpassable shamelessness and malevolence. They are, in their order of temporal appearance, 1.) Rizal’s Letter of Absolute Sacrifice & of Absolute Spanish Heroism to Governor General Ramon Blanco written and delivered between August 21 and 23, 1896, offering to the Spaniards unconditionally,–as a token of his unconditional love of and devotion to his Mother Spain and therewith his unconditional abandonment and betrayal of his native land and the Filipino people—all his services, his very life, and even his name for them to use “in the manner they might deem best, to suppress the rebellion”; 2.) Rizal’s Data for My Defense, written on December 12, 1896; 3.) his December 15, 1896 Fort Santiago Manifesto; and 4.) his Additional Data for My Defense, written on December 26, 1896.
Let us present and analyze them here. But before we make such presentation it will greatly facilitate comprehension if we first make a brief calendar of events in order in its light to more concretely contextualize these documents. Let us begin with the Rape of Calamba by the Dominican friars.
1.) October 1891, The Rape of Calamba—the Dominicans forcibly expropriated the town of Calamba, claiming it to be part of their estate of the diocese of Binan. They assaulted the town at the head of 500 heavily armed soldiers lent them by Gov. Gen. Valeriano Weyler. All the inhabitants were driven out of the town. All the wealthy families were exiled including Rizal’s. Rizal himself related in a letter to a fellow reformist the case of a woman named Estanislawa, who was raped and dismembered by the Dominicans. The same Dominicans burned the whole town. This event prompted Rizal’s second return to the Philippines. He first stationed himself in Hong Kong and was able within a few months to gather his entire exiled family in a house there.
2.) June 20, 1892, Rizal wrote two letters, one addressed to “The Filipinos”, and the other to his family and friends. He told them that he was going home to the Philippines to die at the hands of the friars, and “to put the finishing touch to my life’s work”. He was expecting that after killing him the friars would restore his family and his town-mates to their homes. He imagined that his death would create a universal scandal that would impel the Madrid government to expel the friars from the Philippines, expropriate their properties, restore the lands and houses grabbed by the friars to their colonial middle class owners like the Rizal family, and finally assimilate the Philippines as a province of Spain. This was what he meant by his “putting the finishing touch to my life’s work”. This was his Assimilationist Martyrdom Plot. Needless to say, the whole thing was a grandiose delusion of an irreparable mental-colonial counterrevolutionary agent.
3.) June 22, 1892, Rizal left Hong Kong for Manila.
4.) June 26, 1892, Rizal arrived in Manila.
5.) Between June 26 and July 2, 1892, Bonifacio presented to Rizal his plan to organize the Revolution; Rizal bitterly opposed it and vehemently argued against it.
6.) July 2, 1892, Rizal launched the Liga Filipina as an integral part of his Assimilationist Martyrdom Plot. In the first place, he wanted to provoke the friars to have him arrested and martyred soon enough. Launching such a suspicious organization as the Liga was such a sure-fire provocation. Secondly, he, in his assimilationist delirium and megalomaniacal self-estimation, was expecting that, as a result of his scandalous murder by the friars, the Filipinos would at last become assimilated Spaniards who would need to unite in order to secure the concrete reality of their formally granted rights as brand-new citizens of Spain. He expertly designed the Liga for that purpose.
7.) July 3, 1892, the day after the launching of the Liga, Rizal was arrested.
8.) July 6, 1892, Rizal was exiled to Dapitan.
9.) July 7, 1892, Andres Bonifacio formally founded the Revolution.
10.) Sometime in November, 1892, during the presidency of Deodato Arellano, the Katipunan sent an emissary to Rizal. He betrayed the Katipunero to the military governor who, according to Rizal, “sent him to Manila”. Needless to say, the Katipunero emissary must have been tortured to death. We can conclude that he died without confessing anything about the Revolution; otherwise, it would have been discovered that early.
11.) During the four years that he stayed in Dapitan, there were attempts by family and friends to “rescue” him or facilitate his escape. He refused all of them. This is important because it confirmed his rejection of the Revolution.
12.) November 23, 1895—In a letter, Blumentritt informed Rizal that the Spaniards needed military doctors in Cuba in order to help them kill as many Cuban Katipuneros as possible. He advised him to apply.
13.) November 25, 1895—Rizal replied to Blumentritt saying it (i.e., the Cuban international counterrevolutionary doctoral project) was an excellent idea and that he was applying at once.
14.) July 1, 1896—Dr. Pio Valenzuela arrived in Dapitan to confer with Rizal concerning the Revolution. Through Valenzuela, Bonifacio invited Rizal to join the Revolution and even offered him its leadership. Rizal refused. According to Rizal, he was able instead to convince Valenzuela to abandon the Revolution, which the latter did. Upon his return to Manila, Valenzuela the traitor surrendered to the Spaniards, begged their forgiveness, and betrayed many of his former comrades.
15.) July 31, 1896—Governor General Blanco’s letter accepting Rizal’s application and designating him as a Spanish military doctor assigned to Cuba arrived.
16.) August 1, 1896—Rizal in great hurry sailed to Manila to catch the mailboat to Spain.
17.) August 4, 1896—Rizal arrived in Manila but missed the mailboat and had had to wait a whole month for the next boat to Spain.
18.) August 5, 1896—Rizal requested his friend Gov. Gen. Blanco to hide him and hold him incommunicado except to his immediate family. He was evidently afraid of getting into any kind of contact with the Revolution, which, from Valenzuela, he knew, could get exposed anytime.
19.) Night of August 6, 1896—Rizal was transferred to the Spanish warship Castilla; however, before the transfer, Emilio Jacinto was able to climb the boat and offered to take him away. Rizal refused.
20.) August 19, 1896—The Revolution was exposed by Fr. Mariano Gil.
Let us now present the documents.
1.) The Letter of Absolute Sacrifice & of Absolute Spanish Heroism. Of course we have not seen this letter, and it is entirely possible that only three people had read it at all, namely Rizal, Blanco, and the Spanish commander of the warship Castilla, Col. Santalo, who signed it as witness to the great Spanish heroic deed of our foremost national traitor. Col. Santalo (whose first name Rizal neglected to mention in his references to this letter of absolute treason) was Rizal’s gallant host when for 27 days he, through his own request, was hidden incommunicado on that warship by Gov. Gen. Blanco.
Rizal had hoped to pressure the court enough for it to order the presentation of that letter by no less than its addressee, Gov. Gen. Blanco himself. He was however outmaneuvered once more by his mortal enemies, the friars, who were able to have Blanco removed from office a few hours before he could thus testify on Rizal’s behalf. Had Blanco been allowed to testify thus, and still as the Governor General that he was, it was almost a certainty that Rizal would have been exonerated and freed.
Blanco must have known that he was being replaced and sent home, and must have alerted Rizal about it. Rizal made the revelation of that letter of absolute sacrifice to the court on December 12. The very next day, Blanco was, so to speak, terminated, and Polavieja assumed office. The all-important letter was never presented as evidence in court. It is entirely possible that a long long time ago the letter as a material artifact had ceased to exist. Which is not to say—and of course!—that it had ceased to exist as a symbolic, cultural, political, historical, and yes, literary, and, if you want, even a spiritual thing, in that case an evil spiritual thing. A transcendent thing—that is to say, a thing that transcends mere nature, like a smile, for instance, or a kiss, or a work of art, or, in this particular case of Rizal’s letter of absolute treason, a work of evil, of moral, political, and historical evil and of unspeakable shamelessness.
We are therefore presenting this absolutely crucial document here in absentia. And that means presenting it in the light of Rizal’s own references to it in the self-evidentiating context of the trial. These references can be found, perhaps nowhere else than, in the three other documents.
1.1. In the December 15, 1896 Fort Santiago Manifesto, Rizal wrote: “From the very beginning, when I first learned of what was being planned” (namely, the Revolution), “I opposed it, fought it, and demonstrated its absolute impossibility. This is the fact, and witnesses to my words are now living. I was convinced that the scheme” (namely the planned Revolution) “was utterly absurd and, what was worse, would bring great sufferings. I did even more. When, later, against my advice, the movement materialized, of my own accord, I offered, not alone my good offices, but my very life, and even my name, to be used in whatever way they might deem best towards stifling the rebellion…”(Rizal’s Political & Historical Writings, National Historical Institute, 2007, p 350). Rizal did not say, in the eloquent evil and grandiloquent shamelessness of this manifesto, when and where and to whom and how he made his offer of absolute sacrifice. These details he supplied in the two other documents.
1.2. In the December 12, 1896 Data for my Defense, Rizal wrote: “…Nay, when the uprising broke out, I was on the Castilla, incommunicado, and I offered myself unconditionally to His Excellency (a thing I had not done before) to suppress the rebellion. But this was a personal letter and it was witnessed by Col. Santalo. This cannot be used without the permission of His Excellency.” (ibid., p. 339) He has here neglected to tell us when his offer of absolute sacrifice was made. This he let us know in the fourth document we are considering.
1.3. In the December 26, 1896 Data for my Defense, Rizal wrote: “When the movement started, I was on board the Castilla and I placed myself at His Excellency’s service unconditionally. Twelve or fourteen days later, I sailed for Europe…” (ibid., p. 353). Rizal sailed on September 4, 1896. Counting fourteen or twelve days backwards (he himself was not very sure of the exact date), we have August 21 or 23 as the date of the letter.
Rizal’s suicide mission to kill Andres Bonifacio
& put down the Katipunan Revolution (2)
Let us now present the second document on this, Dr. Jose Rizal’s all-important suicide mission, to murder Andres Bonifacio and deceitfully persuade the Filipino people to abandon the Revolution…
2.) The December 15, 1896 Fort Santiago Manifesto
“Countrymen: On my return from Spain, I learned that my name had been in use among some who were in arms, as a war cry. The news came as a painful surprise, but, believing it already closed, I kept silent about an incident which I considered irremediable. Now I notice indications of the disturbances continuing, and if any still, in good or bad faith, are availing themselves of my name, to stop this abuse and undeceive the unwary, I hasten to address you these lines that the truth may be known.
“From the very beginning, when I first learned of what was being planned, I opposed it, fought it, and demonstrated its absolute impossibility. This is the fact and witnesses to my words are now living. I was convinced that the scheme was utterly absurd and, what was worse, would bring great sufferings. I did even more. When, later, against my advice, the movement materialized, of my own accord, I offered, not alone my good offices but my very life, and even my name, to be used in whatever way they might deem best towards stifling the rebellion; for, convinced of the ills which it would bring, I would have considered myself fortunate if, at any sacrifice, I could prevent such useless misfortunes. This, equally, is of record.
“My countrymen, I have given proofs that I am one most anxious for the liberties of our country, and I am still desirous of them. But I place as a prior condition the education of the people, that by means of instruction and industry, our country may have an individuality of its own, and make itself worthy of liberties. I have recommended in my writings study and civic virtues, without which there is no redemption. I have written likewise (and I repeat my words) that reforms, to be beneficial, must come from above, for those that come from below are irregular and insecure. Holding these ideas, I cannot do less than condemn, and I do condemn, this savage and absurd uprising plotted behind my back, which dishonours us Filipinos, and discredits those who would plead our cause. I abhor its criminal methods and disclaim any part in it, pitying from the bottom of my heart the unwary who have been deceived.
“Return then to your homes, and may God pardon those who have worked in bad faith!
Signed: Jose Rizal
Fort Santiago, December 15, 1896”
1.) In the long essay The Philippines A Century Hence (written at a time when he was finishing the Fili), revolution was that “unfortunate rupture” which is “an evil for all”. Everywhere in his works, the idea of revolution is advanced in order to scare the Spanish ruling class and the Madrid government to grant assimilation status to the Philippines (“the Philippines as a province of Spain”, etc.) with all the accompanying “reforms” (“expulsion of the friars”, “return to their former Filipino owners”, like the Rizal, Del Pilar, Jaena families, of the churchfully and evangelically landgrabbed “friar lands”, etc.), at once, very soon, or else—or else, the rapacious and sadistic friars through their unlimited greed and rampant lusts would soon enough push the Indios, the native masses, into revolution.
Here, in this Manifesto, revolution, no longer as mere idea but in its Katipunan actuality, is cursed, insulted, and calumniated as irrational, absurd, impossible, savage, criminal, as dishonour to the Filipinos, and fomented by people who, because undiplomaed and lacking in civic virtues (which, here, is Rizal’s way of saying, “uncivilized”), are therefore not true, not real human beings yet and therefore do not yet deserve to be free!
It is not only justice that is denied in its postponement but that of which the active affirmation of justice is but a part, namely, humanity. Whilst he, of course, is a fascist who denies the humanity of human beings anytime, anywhere, and to whatever degree. Colonialism does exactly that, and does it to an entire people, and throughout centuries. Colonialism is fascism, massive, multicenturial fascism. And Rizal the colonialist defender of Spanish colonialism who in that infamous offertory letter of absolute sacrifice considers himself “fortunate” if he could die defending it against the Filipino people’s collective attempt to put an end to it, namely the Revolution? Fascist of course!–a multicenturial fascist! Like that (falsely and absurdly) rumoured son of his, Adolf Hitler…
2.)“On my return from Spain…”:–Rizal was referring here to his final return to the Philippines which must have been sometime in November 1896, in the wake of his foiled attempt to become a national Spanish hero in Cuba by helping mightily kill Cuban Katipuneros there as a most valiant and heroic Spanish military doctor—an international counter-revolutionary and a till-death-do-us-part defender of European global colonialism.
That this avowal of life-and-death devotion to his Mother Spain, and of his martyric, his suicidal, dedication to the cause of eternal Spanish colonialism, of his unwavering readiness to die for the defense of Spanish colonialism whenever that colonialism was being threatened by revolution anywhere in the world—that this Spanish international counterrevolutionary super-patriotism of his was no mere conservationist affectation, or pose, or rhetoric, or opportunist ploy was, as we have already begun to see, even more dramatically demonstrated in the crime of crimes he here boasts about to his Spanish military judges, namely, his “unconditional” offering of himself, of his very life, of his very name, of all his services, i.e., of anything whatsoever that the Spaniards might order him to do, to “suppress the rebellion”—to murder Andres Bonifacio and put down the Katipunan Revolution, for instance.
He was ordered re-arrested on board the Isla de Panay on September 28, 1896 somewhere on the Mediterranean Sea, thanks to the tremendous pressure exerted by the friars on the Spanish government in those days of intense panic and terror, and upon reaching Barcelona was shipped back immediately to the Philippines to face trial. Here he is saying that as he arrived in the Philippines as a prisoner once more, he learned of how his name was being used by, of course Andres Bonifacio and his Katipunero comrades, as a “war cry”.
Rizal’s suicide mission to kill Andres Bonifacio
& put down the Katipunan Revolution (3)
The December 15, 1896 Fort Santiago Manifesto (cont’d)
Countrymen: On my return from Spain, I learned that my name had been in use among some who were in arms, as a war cry. The news came as a painful surprise, but, believing it already closed, I kept silent about an incident which I considered irremediable. Now I notice indications of the disturbances continuing, and if any still, in good or bad faith, are availing themselves of my name, to stop this abuse and undeceive the unwary, I hasten to address you these lines that the truth may be known.
From the very beginning, when I first learned of what was being planned, I opposed it, fought it, and demonstrated its absolute impossibility. This is the fact and witnesses to my words are now living….
4.) “The news came as a painful surprise…” Rizal had been forewarned by that other ilustrado traitor, Dr. Pio Valenzuela in Dapitan on July 1, 1896, that the Revolution could break out anytime and that he could get implicated in it. He might not have been primed by this other traitor doctor though that this implication could be as horrible as Bonifacio and company’s using his name as a war cry. We can then believe that he was quite surprised when he came to learn about this “war cry” thing. As for its being “painful”, nothing could indeed be more painful and absurd to this brown Spaniard of most ardent Spanish patriotism and burning love of Mother Spain (and thus hatred and fear, horror and abhorrence and execration of revolution) than such abuse of his brown Spanish name and such pollution of his brown Spanish honour.
5.) “…and if any still, in good or bad faith, are availing themselves of my name, to stop this abuse…” Let us merely point out here that this brown Spanish lover of his very own Mother Spain curses and excoriates Bonifacio and his Katipunero comrades and, in that the archipelagic spread of the Revolution in effect constituted a full ratification of it by the Filipino people who also first became the Filipino people at that exact moment of their unification into such by the Revolution, curses and excoriates thus the Filipino people also, in making use of his name for revolutionary purposes; whilst he here boasts to his Spanish judges of how when the Revolution broke out he spontaneously and unconditionally offered to the Spanish authorities that very name of his, and with it his very life and all his services, for the Spaniards to use in the manner they might deem best to “suppress the rebellion”!
6.) “..to stop this abuse and undeceive the unwary, I hasten to address you these lines that the truth may be known…” The “truth”, and, but, indeed the truth, namely, that:
1.) even before it was born, he, Rizal, had already done the greatest harm and damage to the Revolution by most powerfully rallying the entire colonial middle class against it;
2.) causing it to be delayed so:–by at least ten years, more than enough time for it to have obviated the encounter with that pestilential pig traitor hostager and vendor of it, Emilio Aguinaldo, and for it to have triumphed before the Spanish-American War, and to have pre-empted therewith the coming of American colonialism and the murder by the Americans of some 2 million Filipinos;
3.) and causing it to be sorely unfunded and practically armless even after its four underground years of archipelagic propagation, so much so that the Katipuneros had had to face the cannons and rifles of the enemy with fewer than five decrepit guns to a battalion and with plenty of buho spears and boloes;
4.) and the truth, the glorious and eloquent truth that, if his Spanish military judges did not yet know it, he, Rizal, in actual and demonstrated fact loved Spain better, more ardently, more self-sacrificingly, than any of them, loving her to very death, and that he then was actually a greater Spanish patriot than all of them:–for had he not, sometime between August 21 and 23, 1896, without the slightest compunction stabbed his own native land, his own native mother, in the back, by thus spontaneously and unconditionally offering his very life and his famous and well-palmed name and everything he could do, to the Spaniards, for them to use in whatever way they wished to suppress the Revolution that would liberate his own people from his most dearly beloved Mother Spain?
7.) “From the very beginning, when I first learned of what was being planned, I opposed it, fought it, and demonstrated its absolute impossibility…” When was this? Was he referring here to his conference with that other doctor ilustrado traitor Valenzuela on July 1, 1896? Or might this not have been a kind of “slip” on Rizal’s part which, if they were subtler, could betray to his Spanish judges that he knew of the “planned” revolution years before, in fact, 4 years and five months before that date? For what he learned about the Revolution in Dapitan from that other ilustrado traitor doctor, Pio Valenzuela, was not a revolution being planned but a revolution which had become so huge and difficult to keep secret that it could be discovered anytime by the authorities and could thenceforth break out anytime. Which, exactly for that reason, did break out a month and 19 days after that Dapitan conference.
We can then only conclude that he must have been referring here to that “first”, that “very beginning”, which was the week from June 26, when he arrived in Manila from Hong Kong to implement his plan of assimilationist martyrdom, to July 2, 1892, when, in pursuit of this plan he launched the Liga Filipina, immediately after which he was arrested and on July 6, 1892 was deported to Dapitan.
And who must have been that fiery one, that super-brilliant one who then must have toppled him and overthrown him, Jose Rizal himself, and his devious doctrine of reformism called assimilation (a synonym for “eternal colonialism” as Rizal himself formulated it in a draft essay) in his own mind and soul, and who sometime between June 26 and July 2, 1892, must have secretly conferred with Rizal to apprise him of his plan and without a doubt to recruit him to it? None other than Andres Bonifacio, of course! Who, in founding the Revolution and making of it an archipelagic movement across four underground years, had for the first time united all the hitherto disparate tribes (which the Spanish colonizers had been using against each other) into a nation. And had thereby founded this nation itself called the Philippines. And was thus the father of this nation for being the founder, the father, of the Revolution.
At the transcendent and thus infinite depth of the life-and-death struggle for independence and for the people’s sovereignty that was the Revolution itself, Andres Bonifacio and his Katipunan comrades effectively made the different tribes one people first of all and thence a nation. Andres Bonifacio was thus also at the same time the founder, the father, of the Philippine nation-state whose original form was precisely the Katipunan, the revolutionary nation-state which was the Katipunan.
Which means that the Revolution which Andres Bonifacio formally, so speak, launched on July 7, 1892, the day after Rizal was bundled and trundled and shipped to Dapitan, must already have been informally but effectively existent sometime before Rizal came home to try to die an assimilationist counterrevolutionary martyr’s death on June 26, 1892. Which was also why it could have been formally founded at a day’s notice on July 7, 1892, upon Bonifacio’s knowledge of Rizal’s arrest and deportation.
Rizal and Bonifacio then, we have to assume, did confer about the Revolution sometime within that one week. The younger but deeper, wiser, more intelligent, immeasurably huger man must have passionately argued and pleaded with the older, the tiny, depthless, narrowminded, wealth-and-privilege prejudiced and perverted colonial collaborationist mental-colonial doctoral man—to no avail. What could have happened had the doctor agreed—and accepted the proffered leadership of the Revolution?
This:–Rizal would not get arrested since he would at once go underground and from a mountain hideaway direct the propagation of the revolutionary movement; his ilustrado and other colonial middle-class confreres and sympathizers would very quickly join in; we would then have had a normal anti-colonial revolution led by the most intelligent, wealthy, young intellectuals; it would have been well-funded, and therefore well-armed; and above all, in the unique case of the Philippines, the semi-illiterate vendorial gangster boss Emilio Aguinaldo would from the outset have been stringently excluded from the circle of power—boxed-out culturally, even academically, and yes even linguistically (Aguinaldo’s Spanish, as even his hagiographic documentary biographers Achutegui and Bernad could not resist pointing out and testifying to, was crude and ungrammatical) by Rizal himself and the likes of Juan Luna and Antonio Luna, Graciano Lopez Jaena, perhaps even Marcelo del Pilar, Edilberto Evangelista, Jose Alejandrino, Mariano Ponce, Emilio Jacinto, and together with these, by, most certainly, the most intelligent, the one and only genius of the group, Andres Bonifacio.
With Rizal and Bonifacio and the abovementioned ilustrado intellectuals there to organize and lead it, the semi-illiterate Aguinaldo would never have been able merely to imagine to dare what he dared and succeeded to do, namely coup d’etat Andres Bonifacio and the Katipunan, murder him, hostage the Revolution, and surrender it for pay. The uncounted Katipuneros who died by droves as they faced the cannons and remingtons and mausers of the enemy with buho spears and bows and arrows and boloes would not have been massacred thus. The Revolution would have been surer and swifter in its progress and it would have been able to liberate the country before the onset of the Spanish-American War, and the Americans would not even have been able to dream annexing us. The two million Filipinos killed by the Americans would not have been killed, and we would not have been the genocided victims of another colonialism.
1.) See his The Philippines as a Spanish Colony, in Rizal’s Political & Historical Writings, National Historical Institute 2007; p. 355, in which among other things Rizal wrote: “We therefore say that the modification of the colonial policy in the Philippines is not impossible so that the Philippines can remain a colony as she ought to remain as such. Now we need to find out what kind of colony the Philippines shall forever be. For this purpose it is necessary for us to examine the different kinds of colonies…”
2.) In point of fact, and as we shall documentarily demonstrate sometime in the future in this space, Antonio Luna, Graciano Lopez Jaena, Edilberto Evangelista, Jose Alejandrino, Mariano Ponce, among others had, prior to Rizal’s pre-announced and pre-advertised (by him himself) and much-debated coming home to the Philippines from Hong Kong on that June 26, 1892 day, had written Rizal fiery letters professing separatism and revolution in the mistaken belief that Rizal was going home precisely to found such revolution: in those letters, which also assured Rizal that, as Edilberto Evangelista put it, “the entire Barcelona colony” was with Rizal in finally making the leap to revolution, they volunteered their revolutionary services to their chief, Rizal!
3.) To whatever degree, because every human being is absolute, is the absolute, and the absolute can only be denied—or affirmed—absolutely. This is why human beings, in the absoluteness of their humanity, are equal: no absolute is greater or lesser than another. This—that every human being is the absolute—is why and how democracy is the primordial structure of the transcendent relationship among human beings in human society. Transcendent because transcending the merely natural level of animality, and transcending it, nature itself, thus, infinitely, that is to say, ontologically, in terms of the orders of being; transcending it onto the level of freedom which is the level of transcendence itself, which is the level of the social, and thus of the political, of the cultural, of the historical, of the ethical, of morality, of the poetic, of the aesthetic, of art, the level then of the good, the true and the beautiful—and of their opposites.
In nature, for nature, say for the animal, nothing is good or bad, true or false, ugly or beautiful. In nature, being is, so to speak, immanent. Left to itself there is no such thing as meaning in nature—only dumb, unshimmering causality. In nature, in being’s immanence of itself in itself, being simply is, it causes there to be, it effectuates, it happens and makes happen, but it never means.
This dumbness is because being in itself, in its immanence, does not reflect, cannot reflect. Reflection requires, presupposes, distance, in fact infinite distance between being and itself:–between being and itself because whatever it is that is thus distanced from being itself in order to reflect it, being, itself, must, of course, be, if it is at all and not rather absolutely nothing from which (as such absolute nothing) nothing can come, including, and specifically that most stupendous thing called reflection.
This distance then, this infinite distance of reflection, is a totalizing distance, that is to say, a transcending of being, a being beyond being, in such a way as to be able to grasp it as such and signify it, being, itself, make it mean, make meaning itself be as the very meaning of being. And what else indeed but as that which is not nothing?
The meaning of being from which all meaning derives, is–that which is not nothing. Which means of course that only that being who has known nothingness can thus totalize being from across the infinite distance of such nothingness. And who else indeed but the being who has known death as absolute nothingness, as its own absolutely no longer being there?
Whilst it is not anxiety for one’s being that gives being as such in its totality, but anxiety for the being, for the be-ing, in fact for the ex-istence of the Other for which alone one could choose to die, and this is proved by the very fact that one cannot absolutely sacrifice oneself for oneself but only for the Other: one is the power of absolute sacrifice—i.e., the power to die–only for the Other, never for oneself. I cannot be a hero on my own account.
But what else is this infinite distance of reflection, this transcending of being itself, this being beyond being itself, but freedom, which then is in this ultimate sense freedom from being?
Rizal’s suicide mission to kill Andres Bonifacio
& put down the Katipunan Revolution (4)
THE DECEMBER 15, 1896 FORT SANTIAGO MANIFESTO (CONT’D)
…From the very beginning, when I first learned of what was being planned, I opposed it, fought it, and demonstrated its absolute impossibility. This is the fact and witnesses to my words are now living. I was convinced that the scheme was utterly absurd and, what was worse, would bring great sufferings. I did even more. When, later, against my advice, the movement materialized, of my own accord, I offered, not alone my good offices but my very life, and even my name, to be used in whatever way they might deem best towards stifling the rebellion; for, convinced of the ills which it would bring, I would have considered myself fortunate if, AT ANY SACRIFICE, I could prevent such useless misfortunes. This, equally, is of record.
8.) “…I opposed it, fought it, and demonstrated its absolute impossibility.” Rizal, so he says here, upon learning of the planned revolution from Bonifacio and company (there were then “witnesses now living”, he says), when, of course, it was such in its newness and incipiency as to be not much more than a plan, a “scheme” (he later says in this same document), opposed it, fought against its implementation, and tried to convince Bonifacio and company of its “absolute impossibility”.
But Rizal, surely, had read and known about the Latin American anti-colonial Revolutions led by, among others, Bolivar through which, in a matter of six years, from 1820 to 1826, all the South American Spanish colonies (except Cuba and Puerto Rico) were able to liberate themselves from Spanish tyranny. How then could he speak here of the “absolute impossibility” of the Philippine Revolution when the equivalent of that revolution had been possible and were victorious 80 plus years ago in South America?
What kind of moral and mental, soul-stunting evil, prejudice, perversity, was it that seeped into his head to enable him to think this supposed “absolute impossibility”?
So he “demonstrated” to Bonifacio and company that it was absolutely impossible. He orates here that he opposed it and fought against it from the very beginning, and added that there were witnesses who at that point in time (December 15, 1896) were still living and could—and should!—be summoned by the Court to testify that he indeed opposed it and fought it and demonstrated its absolute impossibility. This is important. It not only inclines us, it compels us even more to believe what he says here (and elsewhere, in fact everywhere in his works and correspondence) about his being absolutely against revolution in general and the Philippine Revolution in particular:–because he says it in Court and adds that there were living witnesses whom the Court could and should summon to testify to the veracity of his claim.
9.) “…I was convinced that the scheme was utterly absurd and, what was worse, would bring great sufferings.” “…the scheme…”: this is additional indication to bolster our thesis that this first acquaintance with the fact of the Revolution happened not through that other ilustrado doctor traitor Valenzuela in Dapitan in July 1896, but through Bonifacio himself somewhere in Tondo or Binondo (the Liga was launched in the Binondo house of a Chinese mestizo assimilationist supporter, Pedro Ongjunco). Relevant to this important and very interesting chronology is also the fact that when the Liga was reconvened sometime after Rizal’s deportation and Bonifacio’s founding of the Katipunan, it was ripped in two on the question precisely of the Revolution, and that the counterrevolutionaries (the compromisarios) who of course wanted to go on with the propaganda movement for eternal colonialism, i.e., assimilation, counted amongst its leaders Apolinario Mabini, who showed thereby that it was not only his legs that were lame but his mind also, or his soul, or his humanity. Bonifacio of course led the separatistas, the revolutionists who would not compromise with anything or anyone on the question of independence, and were ready to die fighting for the sovereignty of the Filipino people.
10.) “…and even my very name…”:–For having used the very same name without his permission, and in the service of the Revolution, this evil writer from Calamba excoriates and curses his own Katipunero country(wo)men as criminals and absurd beings, as uneducated (they “lack education”) and uncivilized (lacking in “civic virtues”), savages etc.; and now here he boasts of how he had, sometime in August of that year, offered this very name of his for the Spaniards to use in concocting stratagems that would kill as many Filipinos as possible and put down their revolution.
11.) “…for, convinced of the ills which it would bring, I would have considered myself fortunate if, at any sacrifice, I could prevent such useless misfortunes…”:–At any sacrifice!…Here Rizal repeats his boastful resolve, originally delusively boasted about in the August 21-23, 1896 suicide mission letter to Gov. Gen. Blanco, offering to die and with his name deceive the Katipuneros in order to kill as many of them as possible and thereby “suppress the rebellion”
Can a single counterrevolutionary agent such as Rizal of course was, can a lone national traitor such as Rizal of course was, no matter how charismatic and devious in maskedly perpetrating his special and necessarily massmurderous evil such as Rizal of course was, put down, suppress, defeat, a revolution? And this revolution an anti-colonial one, a rising by a people subjugated for centuries by an alien entity, by, what else indeed but, an alien all-embracing evil, by an evil people, by a rampantly and enduringly evil because colonizing, subjugating, exploiting, oppressing, enslaving, freedom-denying, humanity-negating, necessarily mass-murderous people, such as, of course, the colonizing Spaniards were?
For of all possible kinds of revolution, the anti-colonial one is the purest, the justest; as far as it concerns the affirmation and fulfillment of that essence that sustains and maintains human beings in their humanity, it is the most imperative. In this sense, once sufficiently securely launched—as was Bonifacio’s Katipunan Revolution—it is the most irreversible, the most unstoppable in its process of truth which is at the same time a people’s practically ceaseless struggle for truth–for its own truth as demanded by the essence of humanity itself. Only human beings revolt; only human beings write poetry. It is for the truth of the poem which is the truth of humanity that there is revolution…
Revolution means a complete turning around or revolutionization of an entire people in their collective will (psyche, soul,) from being pacific slaves or timorous subjects of an oppressive regime into glorious rebels ready to die anytime for something which then is at once fierily demonstrated to be infinitely more important and more desirable than life itself, namely freedom and the sovereign dignity of the free. This is what we mean by human beings’ being (by the very principle–which is the principle of freedom, the principle of transcendence–that makes them the human beings they are) the power to die that each of them is.
1.) Nothing is more clearly evil than the colonial negation of the humanity of an entire people. Evil is a human being or a group of human beings denying, reducing, diminishing, injuring—negating– the humanity of another human being or group of human beings.
Only free beings can be evil or victims of evil. Nature can neither be good nor evil. Nietzsche, repeating Hobbes in reducing the human into a thing, into a calculus of forces mistakenly named “power”, has merely perpetrated such reduction of the human into the natural—into cosmic force, into “life”. Which then is spoken of as “beyond good and evil”. The “beyond” of this “beyond good and evil” thus is another misnomer. For there is only one possibility (and actuality–in view of ourselves in the daily honesty of our good or evil or half-good half-evil existences) of a beyond here, and that is the being beyond nature of human existence, that is to say, beyond life, beyond mere life. Hence this Nietzschean “beyond good and evil” is nothing but the erasure of the human by reducing it into the natural, the cosmical.
2.) The injury done by centuries of colonial negation of the essence of humanity in the subjugated people does not concern merely and in any whatever sense does not concern mainly, the material sphere of the multi-centurially subjugated people’s existence (the centuries of poverty engendered by the centuries of colonial thievery, etc.). What it pre-eminently concerns is rather the long-term injury, the deep and comprehensive harm done by such total, fascistic denial of the enslaved people’s very humanity, their centuries of habituation in a degraded existence, in an honourless, dignity-less, beastified existence, engendering in them the habits of unfreedom which are at once the vices of slaves. In short, it concerns the harm done to the subject people’s very capacity for humanity, for existence in collective freedom and sovereignty, and their capacity to resume their collective process and struggle for the truth of their own humanity. It is a harm and an injury that can only be reversed and surmounted by the cataclysmic upsurge of the truth of the power to die which is the collective act of defying and fighting to very death the evil, the necessarily evil, the necessarily massively perduring evil, of colonial subjugation.
3.) The power to die is the power to go beyond, to transcend, mere life and the interests of merely living, indeed to transcend being itself and the interests of being, for to risk death is to risk ceasing to be at all, and to choose to die is to reject being itself. The human being is free because s/he is this power to transcend life itself, being itself; and since this transcending is a willing, i.e., a valuing, it is a transcending towards a meaning and a value that for it is then demonstrated to be infinitely more than life itself, and is beyond being itself. This transcending, this willing, this be-ing free, is the origin of meaning itself.
The inability to transcend thus by some former members of humanity, notably the Western, is then a being-reduced into a certain perverse kind of piggity or beastly downfall into thingness that nevertheless somehow senses its own wretched neuterity–a commodity, a thing for sale for instance, a crude, ambiguous form of money, which is the universal instance of global-intimate capitalist man;–which must as such somehow sense its being absolutely futilely so, reflects it in his own diffuse inability to be sad… The somehow of the doing, of the existing, of the be-ing of this being and the sensing of the same as a specimen of absolute futility is what is called nihilism, the state of the total nullity of the human, sensing, feeling itself as such. It is this sensing, this feeling, that separates the nihilist from the robot or indeed this footstool or even that toad over there, no not that one that affects to be able to read but that literal one over there–there; the latter, but not necessarily the former, does not and cannot know itself to be the existence, the fact, itself of absolute meaninglessness.
Rizal’s suicide mission to kill Andres Bonifacio
& put down the Katipunan Revolution (5)
THE DECEMBER 15, 1896 FORT SANTIAGO MANIFESTO (CONT’D)
“…I would have considered myself fortunate if, AT ANY SACRIFICE, I could prevent such useless misfortunes. This, equally, is of record”.
My countrymen, I have given proofs that I am one most anxious for the liberties of our country, and I am still desirous of them. But I place as a prior condition the education of the people, that by means of instruction and industry, our country may have an individuality of its own, and make itself worthy of liberties. I have recommended in my writings study and civic virtues, without which there is no redemption. I have written likewise (and I repeat my words) that reforms, to be beneficial, must come from above ((of course, since they are medre reforms!)), for those that come from below (((which can only be revolution, not reforms))) are irregular and insecure. Holding these ideas, I cannot do less than condemn, and I do condemn, this savage and absurd uprising plotted behind my back, which dishonours us Filipinos, and discredits those who would plead our cause. I abhor its criminal methods and disclaim any part in it, pitying from the bottom of my heart the unwary who have been deceived.
Return then to your homes, and may God pardon those who have worked in bad faith!
Signed: Jose Rizal
Fort Santiago, December 15, 1896
12.) “…such useless misfortunes…” How utterly and exceptionally perverted Rizal’s mind and person was can be gleaned from this simple observation: Anywhere and anytime in the history of the world, the greatest heroism is universally reckoned to be that of risking life and all to liberate one’s own people from foreign tyranny. Rizal did not think so. Rizal was alone (together with his ilustrado assimilationist followers of course) in thinking that such a movement for liberation as the Katipunan Revolution was nothing but an absurd and impossible occasion for “useless misfortunes”. And it was not only here that he declared it to be so; for he had written it, and had presupposed and implied it, in all his propaganda works including the two lying and wrong novels. The Revolution to him was, as he put it in The Philippines a Century Hence, “the worst disaster that could befall us” and “an evil for all”.
According to Rizal then, Andres Bonifacio and company were farthest from being heroes:–they were execrable villains, absurd and horrible and abhorrent inflicters of “useless misfortunes” upon the Filipino people…
13.) “This, equally, is of record…” Equally with what? What else in the declamatory enumeration of Rizal’s crimes in this document is “of record”? Answer:–That when he first learned of the Revolution being planned he opposed it, attacked it, and demonstrated it to be “absolutely impossible”; and this because, according to Rizal here, witnesses that he did so were still living at the time of the trial, and should therefore be summoned by the court to testify on his behalf.
14.) “My countrymen, I have given proofs that I am one most anxious for the liberties of our country, and I am still desirous of them…” Rizal’s desire was for “liberties”, not Liberty, not Independence, for the Filipinos.
Such “liberties” were what supposedly would be granted by the Spanish colonizers to the Filipino natives by way of assimilation, making of them thus refurbished slaves. Necessarily, they were bogus freedoms, fake rights, for by definition they were to be enjoyed by the natives not as free citizens of a free country but as terms of servitude under the same colonial masters. They were not premised on the abolition of the master-slave relationship between Spanish colonizers and Filipino natives. Rather the precise contrary:–they were to be granted, and by Rizal and company were being prayed for, in order first of all to ensure the perpetuity of colonial rule, of the Philippines’ remaining, as he himself put it in the draft essay, The Philippines As A Spanish Colony, and in the celebrated lengthy La Solidaridad article, The Philippines A Century Hence, a “Spanish possession”, a “Spanish colony”, “forever”.
And even then, sham and duplicitious freedoms and rights as they were, they were ab initio made impossible by the inexorable racism of the white man and of the Spanish in particular, the special violence of whose racist truculence was world-embracingly infamous.
In other words, even as such bogus freedoms and prestidigitous rights, they were nothing but the wild and insane delusions of such irrefrangible mental colonies and shameless metropolitan social climbers as Jose Rizal and his ilustrado propagandist company.
It was to secure those “liberties” that Rizal sought martyrdom when he came home on June 26, 1892. The securing of those assimilationist “liberties” by way of his death at the hands of the friars was what he meant by his being able “to put the finishing touch to my life’s work” (as he put it in his June 20, 1892 letters of martyrical intent addressed to the “Filipinos” and to his family and friends, which he left in Hong Kong in the care of his friend Jose Ma. Basa, with the instruction that they be published after his expected assimilationist martyrical death—see Letter 321 in Rizal’s Correspondence with Fellow Reformists, NHI, Manila.).
Rizal launched the Liga with two aims in mind, one immediate, and the other long-range. The immediate one was to make sure he would get arrested at once and martyrized thus by the friars. The long-range one was to enable the Filipinos through such national native organization to defend and make concrete those expected assimilationist “liberties”.
Most importantly, the expeditious securing of those assimilationist “liberties” and therewith assimilation status for the Philippines (“the Philippines as a province of Spain”, etc.) was to Rizal and his ilustrado counterrevolutionary propagandist confreres the sole and most urgently needed way to prevent “that unfortunate rupture” and “worst disaster” which was “an evil for all” from breaking out, namely, revolution.
To prevent the Revolution—i.e., Liberty, Independence—thus, was what Rizal, Del Pilar, Jaena, and his ilustrado assimilationist cohorts fought for, and it was what Rizal came home to die for on June 26, 1892. It was what he eventually died for on December 30, 1896.
15.) “But I place as a prior condition the education of the people, that by means of instruction and industry, our country may have an individuality of its own, and make itself worthy of liberties. I have recommended in my writings study and civic virtues, without which there is no redemption…”
In other words, according to Rizal here, people who have no diploma—like Andres Bonifacio himself and Gregoria de Jesus herself—and are thus far uncivilized or insufficiently civilized in lacking certain “civic virtues” or in being deficient in good manners and right conduct, do not deserve to be free, and are as such irredeemable; in fact, they do not deserve even merely the actually fake “liberties” accorded to assimilated slaves, let alone the genuine freedoms and rights which in a colonial situation can only be had by force of arms, by revolution.
In which case, if at all in Rizal’s mind an enslaved people could deserve to revolt and thereby be free, they should first have diplomas and “civilized” manners. From which follows that, according to Rizal, Bonifacio and the Katipunan and the Filipino people must not be allowed to gain not only “liberties” but Liberty itself, Independence itself, and should thus not be allowed to revolt, and should be prevented at all costs from making a revolution to gain such Liberty, such Independence…And that no doubt was why he was willing and even most zealous to die to “suppress the rebellion”…
In other words, people without diploma and without “civic virtues”, i.e., “uncivilized” (do not forget that he condemned Bonifacio and the Katipunan and therefore the Filipino people as a whole in archipelagic revolt as savages ) do not deserve to be free—are not “worthy of liberties”, not to speak of Liberty, Independence, and are thus “without” “redemption”:–irredeemable. Does this not mean that according to Rizal, Bonifacio and the Katipuneros and with them the entire Filipino people did not (yet) belong to the human race, for, certainly, anyone who belongs there must by virtue of belonging there be such as to deserve to be free? And with what odious name shall we call this racism of this rabidest of all known and perhaps even unknown mental-colonial sycophants so evilly ignominiously aimed against his very own country(wo)men thus?
Freedom, as Rousseau was I think the first to fully realize and declare and philosophically-theoretically explicate, is every human being’s birthright. “Man is born free, and yet everywhere he is in chains…”—so he says in the opening paragraphs of that epochally great and most powerful work, The Social Contract. And Kant, his greatest disciple in this line of ethical and political sagacity, concurs. This is true. And not because Rousseau and Kant said so, but because it is true. And that it is true anyone with enough common human sense will, once comprehended in its own self-evidentiating light, at once recognize and acknowledge to be so.
It is freedom—the fact and the principle of it—that separates the human being from the animal, human society from the animal herd. Language is the touchstone. The human being is s/he who speaks. S/he who speaks is free. The human being is above all the being who speaks. The proof and the concrete reality of freedom is language. Human society is the society of beings who speak. The human being is the being who is born into language. Language is the birthright and the primordial condition of the human being. Language is the life and the practice of freedom itself. Born into language in a collectivity of speakers, every human being is born thus into freedom. This is what is meant by Rousseau’s saying that man is born free.
Note: It is hardly an exaggeration that the French Revolution was (and is) unthinkable without this little book (Rousseau’s The Social Contract). In this work for the first time the thoroughly intellectual, purely philosophical insight and truth was proclaimed—and worked-out!–that the true, objective, original, and originary principle of (socio-) political constitution is not bestial might or divinely ordained power or any metaphysically endowed sovereignty to an individual or party or race or people (not “might is right” or its even more nihilistic and pigly formulation as will to power, not the divine right of kings, or the metaphysical superiority of philosopher-kings, nor the beastly metaphysics of the chosen race, nor the theological metaphysics of the Chosen People) but the freedom of the individual, and therefore the essential, the ontological, the existological equality of all human beings.
And that therefore except as founded upon the solely possible and the solely conceivable mode of relationship of being-with amongst free beings, namely original, originary, primordial democracy, no human society and polity can exist.
Without such underlying primordial democracy—which is such that the more profound and vigorous it is in the inevitable anti-democratic errancy and alienation of the given polity/society, the more democratic and thus authentically human such polity/society is—there can only be herds of semi-human beasts lorded over by super-beasts, or, near-future of the global-intimate western-christian capitalist society of walking-talking commodities, a society of the living-dead, a zombie colony…—in which no one, properly, existologically speaking, speaks anymore, for authentically to speak is to be free…