MANILA, December 21, 2004 (STAR) By Col; (Ret.) Frank B. Quesada, Former Senate Committee Secretary Veterans and Military Pensions Associate, PMA Ď44)  The year 2005 commences a new and fresh bid of Fil-Am WW-II veterans bid for full equity settlement of the remaining unpaid wartime compensations and benefits earned by Fil-Am ex-servicemen of the U.S. Army in WW-II.

Tumultuous Past

So much confusion beclouded the real issue of full equity settlement created by ineligible, pretenders and shamans here in the U.S. with shameless temerity of a handful of kababayans - who do not have any legal standing in the official (government-to-government) legislative lobby in Congress.

Tough Decision

Principal sponsors of the bill, HR-677 seeking full equity settlement (Reps: B. Filner (D-CA) and R. Cunningham (R-CA) have distance themselves from the reported self-anointed ineligible pretenders allegedly sheltered by the Naffaa and ACFV. Said solon sponsors have therefore denied access to notorious adversarial individuals and units usurping the vested right and property interests of bona-fide WW-II veterans. The Rationale Veterans have finally demanded full equity settlement of all their battle-earned unpaid compensations and benefits because the US government have played them as fools through fraud for the last 60 years by retardation of settlement of vested rights and property that flagrantly violated the ďtaking clauseĒ.

Victims of Cruel Attrition

Out of the original 200,000 Fil-Am WW-II conscripted by Pres. D. Roosevelt in 1941, to fight for the U.S. flag and its imperial interests in the Philippines, only less than 21,000 of them as survivors are wallowing under old age, poverty and neglect by the U.S. government that have hoarded their money for politicianís pork.

Deliberate Cruelty

For the past over 60 years, both political parties took turns in conveniently turning blind, deaf and dumb in denying these intrepid veterans of Bataan. Corregidor and the Philippine Campaign by abandoning them as filthy trash in the white society. Who ever heard of human rights right here in America? Preponderant veterans majority who reside in the Philippines have been intentionally precluded from their rightful compensation and benefits by a powerful bunch of avaricious segregationist solons under racial and economic discrimination. Remedial Measure Thanks to well-meaning and compassionate solons whose conscience is Godís presence in them. Principal sponsors of HR-677 along with their bi-partisan co-sponsors have worked hard to secure the much-needed budget authority for HR-677 from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO). Make no mistake about that ! It was an internal permanent legislative process contrary to the claims of callous shamans and impostors who beguiled the public through press releases to captive local media, and in the internet claiming bogus credit.

A Legislative Internal Process

It is to the honest credit and tenacity of the principal authors of HR-677, Reps: Filner and Cunningham along their bi-partisan co-sponsors that secured the budgetary estimate from the CBO at the cost of $115 million dollars, allotted for the first year of implementation which was computed at a little over $1.2 billion dollars that would maintain HR-677 if passed into law for the ensuing 10 years. Guidance to the Public Above data, for the enlightenment of the public is the procedure of how such budgetary allocation is estimated for support for any legislative measure. This is a legislative process that the ignorant shamans and pretenders issuing press releases must comprehend,, otherwise be strangers from the truth Thus, are abhorred by decent citizens.

Fair Distribution of Benefits

This budget authority estimate by CBO was based from the inclusion of $800 monthly pension for both Philippine-based and US-based WW-II veterans. It removed the past notorious racial and economic discrimination between preponderant veterans majority residing in the Philippines and the small number of USĖbased veterans. In-so-doing, such equal grant of benefits made clear and removed the lies peddled by he different ineligible pretenders and impostors who were milking veterans under false intentions. Reps: Filner and Cuningham exposed those scams coming from the ranks of our kababayans.

Procedural Public Hearing

It is only after such budgetary authority that has been secured by the principal sponsors of the bill, when a public hearing of any bill like HR-677 could be done in the House Veterans Committee headed currently headed by Committee Chairman Rep. C.. Smith (R-NJ). Filner and Cunningham are well prepared to secure a public hearing of HR-677 by January or February as the case may be.. Eligible veterans and units may be invited to testify, or submit their testimonials in writing. It would also distinguish separately who are the legitimate advocates from the bums and impostors.

More Work Needed

Proponents of HR-677, albeit, has still a lot of work to do. Politics of compromise must be able to overcome the requirements of a mandatory spending provision. In the next national budget, there is a great need to provide a line item that would include provisions for the Fil-Am WW-II veterans benefits. Otherwise, these veterans would be left out again in the cold to die bald and naked of their rightful benefits. They will all die in the next remaining 5 to 7 years without enjoying what they shed blood for, and died for in WW-II.

Denial Trough Fraud

And their hard-earned money in WW-II would accrue to US politicianís pork under a perpetuated false pretences. This would be the greatest swindle against veterans the world would ever see and abhor. An eminent conspicuous parallel of the European holocaust of the Jews through criminal extinction of Fil-Am veterans through 60 years of truculent denial.and rejection. Top-Level Negotiation It is when Pres. G.M Arroyo, in behalf of he veterans could again persuade Pres. Bush to once and for all settle the remaining balances of what the US owed the Fil-Am WW-II veterans by securing final settlement of the U.S. retarded obligation to the Fil-am veterans.

Prudence of, and by Pretenders

This time,, those ineligible shamans and pretenders that have injured the veteranís official lobby must shut up and leave alone the official lobby process. Veterans no longer have the luxury of time to waste who are on their twilight years of their oppressed existence that deserved respect.

Acting Together

It is time for the Office of Veterans Affairs (OVA) and the recreant Embassy in Washington D.C. to worked hand-in-hand with the Veterans Federation of the Philippines (VFP) and the Sons and Daughters, Inc (VFPís S&Dís Inc.) to set aside petty wrangles. Benefits Claimed only belong to Veterans Let it not be forgotten that the RP government is only a conduit of the veterans in their demand for justice and fairness from the US government. It cannot dictate its caprices over what veterans legitimately demand. Leave Veterans Alone!

And finally, it is opportune time for the shamans and pretenders in the ranks of our kababayans who betray veterans to observe strict discipline by leaving the veterans lobby alone . Democracy should be a kingless regime short of infested impostors who are disruptive individuals and units seeking fame and fortune at the expense of its military servicemenís sacrifices. # # #

Reported by: Sol Jose Vanzi

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