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Being spied upon all the time

When I was writing a book about the unilateral, arbitrary, an unlawful sale of two ancient political institutions of Mindanao and Sulu under an international diplomatic document forged between two warring countries, two mean- looking and muscled Caucasians appeared like phantoms of the opera at my work area and pretended to be interested in a curricular offering that was the most popular for overseas employment. I could tell that they were undercover intelligence agents who were sent to investigate and eliminate me if they found any inconvertible proofs of my links to terrorist organization. Two erase any doubt in their minds, I immediately gave them a copy of the book I wrote and requested them to read it from cover to cover to find out whether there was anything subversive about its contents.  And then they disappeared as mysteriously as they came.

Their surprise coming was followed by an unexpected telephone call from the Embassy of their country of origin informing me that on a certain date, a key political officer connected with their homeland security network would come to a certain hotel on a certain date to discuss certain issues related to the occupation of Mindanao and Sulu by two colonial powers. Afraid of the possible sudden loss of my dear life, I requested the company of two very close friends and colleagues in Media to be present during this blue moon meeting. He did come and was very prompt in meeting us at an isolated area of the Coffee Shop of this popular plush hotel. Our conversation turned out to be highly professional and candidly diplomatic. WE parted as friends for he fully understood the underlying reasons for the writing of the book. A week after a consul of another country came dressed as an ordinary man on the street looking and wanting to buy a copy of the book. I politely gave him the direction where he could buy one and after that, I never saw him again. He gave me his business card for he did not know who I was.

I thought my trouble with all these spies and undercover agent would end after the interest in the little book subsided over time. To my shock, I recently discovered that all along I and some of my media friends have been under the watchful eyes of powerful individuals who consider us to be stumbling blocks or obstacles to their power ambitions. Our articles were banned from being published and very lately even our e-mails have been hacked and monitored. We know who these officials are that is why we have decided to write their names and placed them in  sealed envelopes so that in  case something tragic happens to any one of us or members of our families, the people whom we have entrusted these envelops will give these to the authorities for their immediate arrest and investigation. It is easy for them to find out who the master minds are by just going over the articles we have written. This, we came to realize, is the best way to know who the masterminds are, in case we are brutally shot, hacked, kidnapped, or tortured to death  for speaking up our minds and asserting our press freedom and right to free expression like those journalists who were ruthlessly killed in the different parts of the Philippines. So people concerned and whose names we have secretly placed in several sealed envelopes, please think twice.

By Prof. Clem Bascar

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