Wars of Extinction, the first book produced by the Mindanao Interfaith Institute on Lumad Studies (MIILS), was successfully launched on 12 August 2017, at the Xavier University Little Theater.
The program was dedicated to the Lumad, the Indigenous Peoples of Mindanao, who are at present among the most vulnerable communities to attacks of human rights violations and abuses. This was in time to the commemoration of the International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples.
The author, Prof. Arnold Alamon, in his speech, reminisced his public foray into the discussion of peace in the same venue some years ago. It was an inter-school debate with the proposition: “Should the communist rebels be given general amnesty by the government?”
“I remember pleading to the opposing team to take the matter seriously and lamented that if the real negotiations mirrored their flair for comedy and histrionics, instead of debating on substantive matters on the root causes of why Filipinos rebel against government, then there would be no chance for peace in this land,” Alamon said. “25 years later, at the XU little theatre again, I am still making the same appeal for a just and lasting peace in the two books that were just launched.”
Among the program’s guests were Lumad leader Jomorito ‘Datu Imbanwag’ Goaynon, the chairperson of Kalumbay Regional Lumad Organization, who represented the Lumad communities in receiving the book offering of Alamon. Misamis Oriental Provincial Governor, Yevgeny Emano, also graced the event, and also received a book offering from the author. Alamon also ceremoniously gave books to his alma mater, Corpus Christi, SunStar Cagayan de Oro, and his family.
The book was launched together with the Mindanao introduction of The Nation in Our Hearts, also by the same author, published by the University of the Philippines Press. The latter book is a compilation of selected columns of Mr. Alamon in the local daily, SunStar Cagayan de Oro.
The program was co-sponsored by the Xavier University Office of Culture and the Arts, Museo de Oro, the XU Sociology and Anthropology Department, and SunStar Cagayan de Oro.
MIILS is a research and media institution supported by the European Union through the project, Healing the Hurt, lead-implemented by the Rural Missionaries of the Philippines-Northern Mindanao Sub-Region.
Other books dissecting issues of mining, agribusiness plantations, logging and of mega-dams are coming out soon, while the volumes on the mental health effects of militarization, paramilitarism, review of laws impacting Lumad communities, and on Free, Prior and Informed Consent will be released before the year ends.###
[PHOTO: Book author, Prof. Arnold Alamon, signs a copy for Misamis Oriental Governor Yevgeny Emano]