Photograph of the Marcos Museum in Batac, PH by Yoodz
Diary of a Dictator – Ferdinand & Imelda: The Last Days of Camelot
by William C. Rempel
Published by: Smashwords, 2013
The Marcoses were once “the Kennedys of Asia,” likened to America’s beautiful and charismatic Jackie and JFK. But Camelot in the Philippines vanished amid deadly political intrigues, sex scandals, lies, spies and bribes. The Philippines of the mid-1960s and early 1970s was strategically vital to the U.S. war efforts in Vietnam. That importance allowed the Marcoses to wring major concessions out of the White House. President Johnson felt blackmailed by Ferdinand. President Nixon was confronted by Imelda’s warning that he risked losing the Philippines to communism. Against this backdrop, Diary of a Dictator follows the fall of Philippine democracy.
Today, the long-secret Marcos diary opens a rare insider’s view of the dictator couple’s lust for power and their plot to kill democracy–history that reads like a soap opera.
Juan Ponce Enrile’s career spans six presidencies from Ferdinand Marcos to Benigno S. Aquino III, during which the Philippines metamorphosed from a free-wheeling republic into a brutal dictatorship that eventually gave way to a turbulent return to democratic rule. Sheer longevity, proximity to power and a forceful personality have made Enrile difficult to trivialize, much less ignore. Neither his friends nor his enemies have the power to exaggerate or misrepresent his gifts as well as his faults; they would have to reckon with the man’s personal point of view, here most eloquently told from where he stood and contributed his share to the nation’s narrative.
Bride of War. Memories of love forged in a time of war, bequeathed by a mother to her daughter. A retelling of Flora Aguilar’s harrowing experiences as a young bride of a soldier who fought with various Filipino guerilla units in Mindanao, Cebu and other parts of Eastern Visayas during World War II. Throughout the Japanese Occupation of the Philippines, Flora’s husband, Lt. Vicente Marigomen Gimenez, took his wife with him whenever he could, or she herself would seek him out at her own peril. Their lives were inextricably bound to one another. In a period of grave danger and uncertainty, their love was the constant that gave them the strength to brave harsh conditions and the will never to surrender to the enemy.
It was the encouragement of our children that made me decide to write the biography of their father, my husband, Raul (Ronnie) T. Concepcion. My children convinced me that there is not one person who knows Ronnie better, and as well as I do. The numerous information I got from family, employees of Concepcion Industries, Inc. (CII), business associates, and friends was a wealth that helped me write the book. The volumes of albums of clippings about Ronnie, picture of the family, as well as important mementos are all part of the biography. My co-author, Joanne Rae M. Ramirez, assisted me in putting the book together.
To most people, Ronnie is an industrialist. But, he once said, “I want to be remembered more for my advocacy work rather than my achievement in business.” Ronnie is a man of commitment and involvement. He is very passionate about his advocacies. In times of crisis, he is called upon to head various task forces. He is the untiring spokesman of the business industry in issues of national and public concern. His advocacies are all directed to the good and benefit of the common “tao”.