STATEMENT OF SUPPORT FOR THE JUSTICE FOR NICOLE, JUSTICE FOR OUR NATION CAMPAIGN OF THE TASK FORCE SUBIC RAPE
The trial of the Subic Rape Case in which four U.S. servicemen have been accused of raping a Filipina is coming to an end. We wholeheartedly commend the victim â€œNicoleâ€ for gathering the courage to defend her dignity and demand justice for herself and our nation.
We believe that the Subic rape case is a landmark case for being the first that has come to trial in our country against U.S. servicemen, and for its importance in challenging the implementation of the Anti-rape Law in the furtherance of womenâ€s rights.
It is frustrating indeed that Justice Sec. Raul Gonzales showed lack of sensitivity and resoluteness to defend the victim and the interests of the Filipino people by consistently acting and issuing statements inimical to the case, i.e., downgrading the case of three U.S. marines, insinuating that Nicole could be merely imagining the prosecutorsâ€ â€œincompetenceâ€ just as she may have imagined being raped, and his stubborn refusal to change the prosecutors in spite of the unethical and unprofessional conduct of the senior prosecutor.
We denounce the lead state prosecutorâ€s attempt to broker a deal for Nicole to withdraw her case, thus acquitting the U.S. marines in exchange for some compensation and possible sojourn in the United States. At the same time, insinuations were made that a Jocjoc Bolante deal could ensue if the case is not settled soon.
We support Nicole and her family in their refusal to further attend the trial due to their absolute loss of trust and confidence in the state prosecutors, whom Nicole and her family accused of â€œincompetenceâ€ in cross-examining the U.S. marines, particularly the No. 1 principal accused, a situation aggravated by the refusal of the lead state prosecutor to allow Nicoleâ€s private counsel to participate in the cross examination.
We believe that the Subic Rape Trial has denied due process and fair trial to the victim Nicole through the one-year limitation period for trial imposed by the Visiting Forces Agreement.
We renew our call for the Senate to scrap the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) for undermining our laws and judicial system, extending more rights and privileges to U.S. soldiers and denying equal treatment to Filipino citizens. Moreover, the VFA has been a convenient cover for continuing U.S. intelligence and military operations in the country in pursuit of U.S. military adventurism and their strategic economic interest in this region.
We firmly believe that the ultimate judge of this case will be the Filipino people in their aspirations for justice and national sovereignty, and in solidarity with peopleâ€s movements everywhere to establish the conditions for lasting peace.
We, the undersigned, therefore, call on the Filipino people to rally behind Nicole who as a rape survivor is fighting not only for herself but for the dignity of all Filipinos, and for the sake of Filipino women and men who are at risk from various types of abuse that may arise from the Visiting Forces Agreement.
Please leave your full name and e-mail address in the form on this site.
Or, you may send an e-mail to the Task Force Subic Rape Secretariat at firstname.lastname@example.org, with this in the subject line: “Online Petition: Justice for Nicole, Justice for Our Nation.”
For updates and other information on the case, please visit: subicrapecase.wordpress.com