Tarlac, Philippines – On the eve of the planned Million Protest March in Manila, presidential sister and TV host Kris Aquino has finally broken her silence on the Priority Assistance Development Fund (PADF) or pork barrel, which has consumed the country’s daily business due to a massive scam that has robbed Filipino taxpayers of more than 10 Billion pesos.
The Monday “people’s march” calls for the total abolition of pork barrel and the prosecution of citizens and politicians who have personally benefited from the scam. Philippine president NoyNoy Aquino, bowing to public pressure, had announced that he would scrap the pork barrel.
Kris Aquino, who had previously announced her intention to run for governor of her native province of Tarlac in Central Philippines in 2016, has all but been silent on the pork barrel scandal. Finally, at a press conference in Tarlac this weekend, Aquino declared, “As governor of Tarlac, I will not need any pork.”
Potential opponents in the 2016 Tarlac governor’s race were quick to dismiss Miss Aquino’s statement. “Of course it’s easy for her to say that,” said one local political foe, “she’s vegetarian!”
Chicago, Illinois – Anonymous sources at the Office of the Judge Advocate General (JAG) today announced that the conviction of Bradley Manning, the U.S. soldier sentenced to 35 years in military prison for leaking government classified documents, is likely to be overturned soon.
Manning received the sentence on Wednesday for giving more than 700,000 secret files, videos and diplomatic cables to WikiLeaks. His lawyers had argued the former Army intelligence analyst suffered a sexual identity crisis when he leaked the files while serving in Iraq in 2009 and 2010.
JAG’s opinion came after Manning, in a statement read on NBC’s “Today” show declared, “As I transition into this next phase of my life, I want everyone to know the real me. I am Chelsea Manning, I am a female.”
“Given the way that I feel and have felt since childhood, I want to begin hormone therapy as soon as possible,” Manning said. “I also request that starting today you refer to me by my new name and use the feminine pronoun.”
In view of this development, JAG said the military has no legal standing to carry out the conviction and sentence of the 25 year-old Manning, since SHE is no longer the same person it charged with the crime. “We have no choice but to drop the conviction and sentence,” JAG said.
Meanwhile, lawyers for Chelsea said they will file for compensation for time already served in prison by the former Bradley.
The Hague, Netherlands – The territorial disputes that have threatened the peace and stability of Asian countries like China, Vietnam, Indonesia and the Philippines seem to have spread to the West.
In recent months, tensions have escalated among at least seven Asian governments due to disputed claims over oil-rich islands in the South China Sea, including the Spratly Islands.
Today, Great Britain filed a formal complaint with the United Nations’ International Court of Justice (ICJ), claiming that the Hawaiian Islands rightfully belongs to the British government. Hawaii became the 50th state of the U.S.A. in 1959. To this day, there continues to be a Hawaiian Sovereignty Movement that maintains, among other things, that the U.S. illegally overthrew the last monarchy in 1893.
The British argue that the Hawaiian islands were discovered by British naval captain James Cook in 1778. “Besides, the original form of government in Hawaii — a monarchy -is more closely linked to that of Great Britain,” Lyal Grant, U.K. Permament Representative to the U.N., said. “But our most compelling argument to support our claim,” Grant continued, “is the fact that the Hawaiian flag mimics that of the British flag.”
The United States has not yet issued a formal response to the British complaint.