Hostages in Philippines… WTF?

I don’t want to gripe about the lack of training of the SWAT force or police that were attempting to end the standoff with the ex-policeman that took the hostages on the bus. That’s life… Philippines is a country that is much poorer than Thailand. They have a lot of challenges that aren’t going to be met. It’s just a fact of life that not every country in the world has the high level of skill necessary to end a situation like that with only the death of the hostage taker, or some other outcome – maybe even with no death at all. It’s this 2nd possibility that is eating me right now.

People that have done nothing to anyone else and are innocent as they are killed, raped, tortured, or anything along those lines – really affects me. I can’t come to grips with it. My response is always that the perpetrators should be killed. If they are tortured – it’s fine with me – but, we need to eliminate these people as fast as possible from the face of the planet. So my first mental response after reading about this bus hostage drama was that someone needed to shoot this guy immediately – at the very first opportunity. Apparently there were opportunities – but, the way it was playing out – the powers that be figured they’d end it with just talking to the guy. After all, he was a cop – he’s not going to shoot innocent people, is he?

So my first response – hit the guy with a small anti-tank bullet that isn’t deflected by the thick glass of the bus, or even the metal of the bus. Just take his head right the fuck off – you know?

You can see in this video – the police, hell, I COULD HAVE shot this guy with handgun from :23 to :32 and again, with an M-4 from 1:16 to 1:20.

The next thought I had was about why in this technologically advanced age don’t we have some instantaneous ways to stop hostage dramas like this? I came up with two ideas.

1. We have tear gas grenades. Why can’t we have anesthesia grenades? Or something that explodes with a gas that knocks out every living thing on the bus or in the room within seconds? In this case, with the bus running the engine and air conditioning it wouldn’t have been too hard to be pumping something into the engine air intakes that eventually renders people unconscious.

Most hostage takers don’t bring full oxygen gear. This is one area I think we could develop something, or we already HAVE something that can do this. Sure there will be liability for hostages that hurt themselves or have adverse reactions, or death during the use of it – but, when you’re dealing with hostage situations where many innocent people could die I think it’s worth the risk and society would have to accept that as well.

2. Magnets. The guy in this case had a handgun and an M-16. I’m guessing both had a hell of a lot of metal construction to them. Don’t we have magnets that are so strong that, if we put one right up the front window of the bus that EVERYTHING metal will come ripping towards the magnet and stick there, totally immovable? This one would require some thought – because metal things flying through the air in a crowded bus at 100mph could take heads off. But, on the other hand, hostage drama ends instantly unless there are explosives involved!

If you have an idea too – drop it in the comments, I think I’ll get a kick out of some other solutions you might have…

Author: Vern

I'm an American expat living in Thailand. I like to write informative pieces about life in, living in Thailand, including topics like: Thai People, Thai Culture, Nightlife, Technology, and I have published a lot of photographs, videos, and even books on Thailand that you can find at There are many photographs of Thailand here - feel free to share with attribution (a link back to the home page). All written content on this site by Vern Lovic. Contact me at Google+.

One thought on “Hostages in Philippines… WTF?”

  1. Hi Vern,
    To me, they should have given this guy his job back (desk duty) and reviewed his case. End of story/no body hurt/everybody happy…So simple. I really don’t see the problem. If the review found him guilty he should be locked up. Why he was walking around after being fired from the force baffles me. Of course ,to be fair, many things baffle me and I’m always confused.
    Best wishes always,

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