[News] US Marine Guilty for Raping Filipina

Anti-Imperialist News news at freedomarchives.org
Mon Dec 4 19:39:06 EST 2006

We are pleased to forward two statements from two sister women's 
organizations.  Three of the four US marines under trial for the rape 
of a 22-year-old Filipina were acquitted;  one was adjudged guilty 
and sentenced to 40 years in prison.

4 December 2006

Reference: EMMI DE JESUS,
GABRIELA Secretary General 09173221203, 3712302

On the conviction of Smith, acquittal of 3 other US Marines

"Though we welcome the guilty verdict against Lance Corporal Daniel
Smith, the exoneration of Lance Corporals Keith Silkwood and Dominic
Duplantis and Staff Sergeant Chad Carpenter more than offsets such a
verdict. And it would not surprise us if Smith got a light sentence, a
suspended sentence or a presidential pardon or is smuggled out of the
Philippines back to the U.S.  Justice for Filipinos cannot be
obtained from the US-puppet Arroyo administration. We, the people, should
ensure that crimes committed by US and foreign troops in the archipelago
are rendered commensurate justice."

This was the firm statement of the militant women's group GABRIELA given
through its secretary-general, Emmi de Jesus, in reaction to the
conviction of Smith in the Subic rape case.

"True justice for Nicole can only be achieved with the abrogation of the
US-RP Visiting Forces Agreement. Justice cannot be complete if the threat
against Filipino women and children represented by the VFA and US
military intervention is not removed."

Appalled, GABRIELA slammed Malacanang's utter disregard of the massive
calls for the abrogation of the VFA despite its being proven as a very
lopsided agreement. "The Arroyo government turned a deaf ear to people's
call for the abrogation of the VFA, which was proven to be detrimental to
Nicole's case, as it ignored the demand for a halt to foreign military
exercises, which gives opportunity to US soldiers to abuse and violate
the rights of Filipino women and children. Mrs. Arroyo did not mind the
fact that VFA is clearly the reason why Nicole's struggle for justice was
made more difficult."

"Without the abrogation of the VFA, the public will see not only the
Arroyo government's incapacity and inability to defend its women but also
its subservience to the imperialist US. Its lack of interest and inaction
will only further prove that Filipino victims of violence could expect
nothing from the Arroyo administration, especially if the crimes were
perpetrated by American soldiers."

"Adding insult to injury, US troops continue to arrive in increasing
numbers to intensify US military intervention in the archipelago, as if
there had been no Subic rape case or any crime against the Filipino
people. With VFA and US troops around, Nicole will not be their last
victim. VFA would only bring never-ending violence to the Filipino
people, particularly women and children. The Filipino women and people
will not rest until the VFA is abrogated and the Macapagal-Arroyo
government ousted."

GABRIELA also commended Nicole for standing up for her rights and
demanding justice. "We hope that the people of Zamboanga, from where
Nicole comes and where US troops are often based, will see through the
pathetic allegations of economic gains from the presence of foreign
troops.  We hope that they will see the crimes, indignity, slavery
and abominations such presence brings." ###

December 3, 2006

For Reference: DR. ANNALISA ENRILE, GABNet National Chair

PHILIPPINE-US Women's  Group, GABRIELA Network Demands Philippines 
Assert Jurisdiction- Put US Marine Smith in Philippine Jail

At 9 pm this evening (already December 4, 1pm in the Philippines), 
GABRIELA Network  (GABNet) stood vigil waiting for the verdict of the 
Nicole Subic Bay Rape  case.  Lance Corporal Daniel Smith, one  of 
the four US Marines accused of the rape of Nicole, was found guilty 
by the  Makati Regional Trial Court.  Lance  Corporal Smith's three 
co-defendants were acquitted.  For Lance Corporal Smith who was found 
guilty, women's groups  led by GABRIELA Philippines and the GABRIELA 
Women's Party call for the  Philippine government to now exercise 
their sovereignty and take Lance Corporal Smith into custody to serve 
his time in a  Philippine jail.

"We are not happy with the full verdict," Lalee  Vicedo, GABNet 
Campaigns Director said, "We fully believe that the four 
acted  together and so no one should have been acquitted of their 
actions, but given  the verdict, the guilty should  be treated as 
such."  GABNet will continue to call for the  remanding of Lance 
Corporal Smith into Philippine  custody as well as an overall call to 
junk the Visiting Forces Agreement.
This case is a landmark as it is the first time an American soldier 
has been found guilty of a crime since the US bases were shut down in 1992.
As with the fight for the removal of the US bases from the 
Philippines more than a decade ago, Philippine women were 
instrumental in demanding justice for Nicole.  It was the women's 
militant stance, their unwillingness to let Nicole continue to suffer 
from blatant victim blaming, and their commitment that has been able 
to expose US Military's exploitation and oppression of the Filipino 
people.  This has occurred on a global level with vigils being held 
all over the world in Canada, Europe, and the United States.  Last 
week, GABNet held vigil right at the gates of US Marine bases in San 
Diego, California.  This was held amongst catcalls and insults hurled 
by US soldiers, indicative of the US's view of the Philippines.

 From the  beginning of the case, the US government has shown 
absolute contempt of the criminal justice system of the Philippines, 
not even bothering to go through the motions of as the accused 
rapists were never put under the custody of Philippine 
authorities.  In fact, the Philippine government under Gloria 
Macapagal Arroyo  has colluded with the United States by complying 
with the unfair provisions of the  Visiting Forces Agreement such as 
having the judicial proceedings completed  within a one year period 
and the custody of the four accused US Marines being  under the 
supervision of US rather than Philippine authorities.  Now that  a 
verdict has been handed down and Lance Corporal  Smith judged guilty, 
he should be treated as any other criminal and serve his  time in a 
Philippine prison.
  "This is not just a case about one woman,"  GABNet Chair Annalisa 
Enrile states, "This case is about the Visiting Forces  Agreement and 
how it has reintroduced the US Military back to Philippine soil  and 
all the issues that go along with that such as rampant violence 
against  women.  The judge in this case has ordered that Smith be 
handed over to a Philippine jail, but we'll see.  The Arroyo 
government has gone out of its way to remain a puppet of the  United 
States than she has done in upholding the rights and dignity of 
the  Filipino people, especially the women."

Now that the decision of  custody is in the hands of the Arroyo 
government, we urge the Arroyo  government to take a stand for Nicole 
by taking her rapist into custody for  life in a Philippine 
jail.  The United States should not be allowed to  invoke the VFA to 
provide further reasons to keep Corporal Smith out of  Philippine 
custody.  GABNet urges all women's groups, all 
people's  organizations, and freedom loving people to stand with us 
to demand real  justice for Nicole and real sovereignty for the 
Filipino people.


Women's Anti-Imperialist League (WAIL)
Member, International League of Peoples Struggles
wailcentral at yahoo.com
The road to women's liberation lies through the terrain of the 
anti-imperialist struggle. -- WISAP2004

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