. Even such touching acts of the United States as issuing commemorative stamps and establishing her Asian version of the Nobel Foundation seem to be so inadequate against the clouds which are fast dimming the luster of the Magsaysay name.
MAR and RM
Now, there is something in common between President Roxas and President Magsaysay, something which makes them brothers in spirit, so to speak.
They were both unabashed in their pro-Americanism.
In justice to them, however, let it be properly recorded that they felt had to be so for purely personal reasons.President Roxas, for instance, was liberated by General Douglas MAcArthur's Americans and cleansed of the
taint of collaboration
. This proved to be a crucial event in Mr. Roxas’ career, for, later on, he was able to capture the presidency. To his dying day he was grateful to his benefactors.President Magsaysay, on his part, was even proud that American officials in the Philippines openly took up his cause. He never was able to get over the fact that he was singled out by the Americans as their candidate. It was probably for this and more that he never could be convinced that it was the Filipinos and not the Americans who were responsible for his election.
His last speech on earth, like the last speech on earth by President Roxas, was a reaffirmation of his eternal gratitude to the Americans.
But both President Roxas and president Magsaysay could not resist the temptation of expressing their gratitude officially. Thus
President Roxas engineered the acceptance of the
Parity Amendment to the Philippine Constitution
and agreed to every onerous detail of the
Military and Bases Agreements with the United States. Thus too, President Magsaysay took infinite care not to pursue policies and render judgment which would displease the Americans.Current events, however, show that the extremely pro-American economic and foreign policies of the two men have not been beneficial to the Filipinos. Indeed,
the Filipinos are realizing now, when it is a little bit late in the day, that they have paid dearly for the so-called
“special relations” between the Philippines and the United States. In these circumstances they can not be expected to remember for long the men who did their best to perpetuate those
The advocacy of “special relations” may have its political uses, but it is a deterrent to the attainment of independence. And since the Filipinos are supposed to be a sovereign people,
the heroes and presidents
they will ultimately and respectfully remember