Monday, July 12, 2004

Diplomatic nightmare
Having a citizen of your country in peril is every diplomat's nightmare. There are steps and protocol to be observed for every situation that arises. Naturally your first priority is to look after the interests of your citizens. After all, you are the emissary of your country in a foreign land.
It is truly a thankless job.
I think the government committed a major faux pas by prematurely announcing to the world that Angelo De la Cruz had been released by his Iraqi captors.
But I don't blame the government.
I blame the media!
The media in this country is so power hungry, they hound everybody for their so called 'expertise'. Interviewing all the political analysts they can find. Analysts who give their opinions without knowing all the facts of the situation. A media who despite having a news block out imposed on them won't stop at anything just to outscoop the rival network station. What do they intend to accomplish by interviewing the hostage's brother who is working in Saudi Arabia? Why are they now co relating the Flor Contemplacion case with this crisis?
The government imposes a ban on workers going to Iraq for their own safety.
What does the media do? They interview every single worker who was stranded at the airport from leaving and ask him is it fair to be put on hold? Of course the said worker having his face in front of the camera would say it isn't fair. That they still want to go despite the ban. That they can't find work here. But once they reach Iraq and something untoward happens to them - guess who they blame? The government who else?
People need to be held more responsible for their actions. They always malign the government for not doing enough but once they get into trouble who do they turn to?
It's true that this hostage taking incident was bound to happen sooner or later. That the policy of the government is to not give in to the demands of terrorists. That Angelo Dela Cruz is 'collateral damage' in this unfortunate situation. But if you are looking for someone to blame ... I suggest you blame the person who started this whole mess in the first place.

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