QUEZON CITY (MindaNews / 05 May) — “Ehem, Ehem.” Bazookatried to join back into the conversation. Instead in pursuing his answer on Garand, it had to clarify the point of 30 Caliber:
“Why do you point to that second master when we were together in the hands of our third master who is sitting in the middle of the group? He is called Mayul Saing Sing. He used to own the three of us. When he lost in the election, you were sold to master number two. Later, when Col. Dimapantayan pressured Mayul SSS to produce the foreign priest, you were donated to the MNLF. In the war in Kan-wai between the MN and “Buhukan” (i.e., ASG), you were taken as “ganima” (booty) by your Abu Sayyaf master.”
“Are you crazy?” Armalitereminded them. Why are you talking all this non-sense? Do you know the danger in revealing your connection up there?”
30 Caliberresponded: “What’s wrong with knowing who we are?”
Armalite: Yes, there is nothing wrong. But I am concerned that we did not hear Lupah Sug in our roll call earlier. I thought we are from this place. Instead, we heard: U.S, U.K, Russia, China, Israel, and so on.
A lighting flashed across the sky. Nature heard their conversation.
Garand, while sealing off his ears, could only shake his head seeing that Rifle Grenadewas unmindful of their conversation while still fixing his gungutan making sure it won’t fall again. Even the thunder did not distract him.
Interested to know about his father and their two masters, Garand moved closer to Bazooka.
Meantime,Rifle Grenadewas about to wrap a sabitan (belt) around its waist when he saw Garandstill looking at him.
Sensing what that look meant, he confronted Garand: “You don’t need to ask me why I am not interested in pointing out our masters.”
Rifle Grenade: “Why should I point him when this fate of ours is a big help for our masters, a big help to the Tausug we dearly loved.”
“Are you an AFP agent?” Garandcharged Rifle. “Why are you talking like one?
“Astagfirullah!”Riflerebutted. “Do you know how many Tausugs who’d be saved as we are being taken from our masters today?
Then,Rifleasked again: “Do you see that guy in full battle gear with sunglasses – that guy standing in the fourth row?”
He is Maj. Dimasupil, the master of Mayul Saing Sing.
“He regularly provided the Mayor our siblings and our “food.”
Ring! Ring! Ring!
“That’s the answer to your bewilderment,” Rifleanswered Garand.
“What?”Garandpleaded, “I don’t get it.”
Riflepointed to a cellphone.
[MindaViews is opinion section of MindaNews. This series is a satire on the politics of guns in the Sulu Archipelago as undergirded by arms trade in the Philippines. It is interlaced with historical and cultural issues with some linguistic ingredients among Tausug while framed in the politics of arms in the Philippines. The aim is to reveal the impact of proliferation of firearms in Sulu society as it forms part in the network of global arm industry. Julkipli Wadi is Professor of Islamic Studies at the University of the Philippines.]