CHINA is not alone in condemning the slaughter of innocent civilians and the idiocy of the authorities who handled the hostage crisis in the historic Luneta. The entire Filipino nation is aghast and furious. Precious lives were wasted in a hostage drama where the handlers and police operatives displayed such contemptible inefficiency, lackadaisical sense of urgency and utter lack of readiness and proficiency.

The hostage taker can fry in hell but we cry and mourn the loss of innocent civilians who came to the Philippines as tourists. The killing of the gunman is not enough to assuage China and neither should we content ourselves with that death sentence. While we can call this an isolated case, the entire Filipino nation has just lost face in the world community. We cannot be euphoric over Venus Raj's title as one of the five most beautiful women in the universe when the rest of the image of the Philippines is splattered with blood. How can we be euphoric when our ranking government officials who could have assuaged the incensed and despondent suspect were glued on TV instead of conveying an assuring message that his plaint will be heard?

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Who do we see in the entire 11 hour of idiotic saga? Countless of policemen cowering helplessly around the bus. If they cannot even break the glass window with a sledge hammer how do you expect them to hold curious civilians at bay?

The suspect was listening and was talking. He was releasing hostages. He was demanding and his demand is not a matter of national security. In fact it was petty: that he be re-instated to his post. The negotiators could have just simply agreed and even promised him a star on his shoulder. But that is a hard bargain to grant and so they detained, even manhandled, the brother of the suspect. Every movement under the klieg lights and on TV camera not only for the world to see but for the hostage-taker to watch and be angry about. Naturally, whatever sanity was left in the suspect it certainly must have snapped.

We can continue to rage over this outrageous event but nothing can bring back those wasted lives. China can call us derogatory names. That, we should let pass for we are a more civilized nation who accommodated not a few Chinese nationals who came to our shore to seek peaceful dwelling, freedom and opportunity. We need not throw insults back.

But we have to prove to the world that we do not tolerate this incompetence. Since this is basically a police matter, the Chief of the Philippine National Police and the PNP head of the National Capital Region must resign from their posts. And Pres. Noynoy Aquino ought to personally address this disgrace and not leave to Kris Aquino this matter of significant national repute.