Monday, March 22, 2010


Alan Rio Luga, was then a Lt. Colonel when he was assigned as the Chief of a Command Center during the AFP's all out campaign to neutralize the Abu Sayaf. The operation commanded by Luga as Center Chief led to series of encounters with the main force of the ASG. It resulted to series of clashes with ASG's splinter groups that eventually led to an encounter with its leader Khadafy Janjalani along with his loyal followers. After his body was dug up in a grave to confirm his identity, Janjalani was given a decent burial in a Muslim tradition. It was an honorable warfare.

While in Compostela Valley, when some activists were allegedly summarily executed by the military, Col. Alan Luga, who was then the Commander in Chief of the 1001st Infantry brigade, stood firm: "Even NPA members are safe, unless actively involved in armed combat. The only legitimate targets are armed groups. We must be legal, we must do good."

Like his Great Grandfather before him, the late Gen. Mateo Noriel Luga, a national hero, who once told the American expeditionary forces in Cebu : "I return to you deserters from your camp who sought service with me. I request that you do the same should any of my men weaken from their duty. It is my desire to wage honorable warfare." In a surprise attack, General Henry Lawton with his men run away from battle in the island. Gen. Lawton never set foot in the island of Cebu again. While his grandson, Gen. Emilio S. Luga, Jr., then Commanding General of the 1st Infantry Tabak Divsion once said: while we wages honorable warfare, it is with deep regret that we were not given an opportunity to wage such a war as Filipinos defending our nation against foreign colonizers, like our ancestor. It is with deep regret that we have to defend this nation against our fellow Filipinos that threatens the Republic and the institutions it represents, which our ancestors have dearly fought for.

Today, the AFP Central Command 802nd Infantry Brigade Commander declared that, the battle against the communist insurgency in the Cebu-Bohol-Leyte Development Triangle (CEBOLEY), Cebu and Bohol have been declared insurgency-free. The Brigade Commander's name was Col. Alan Rio Luga, the son of Gen. Emilio S. Luga, Jr., and the Great Grandson of Gen. Mateo Noriel Luga, who once defended Cebu from foreign colonizer and thereafter from brigands and lawless elements, as the American, who saw much battle in the Philippines, once said: "That then, was Luga, who in 1908 was wearing the red epaulets of the Constabulary. He had been sent to Cebu Island with instructions to keep the island clean and bandit free. And Cebu was clean, under the administration of this capable and valiant native officer. Before me lies Luga's accolade, written by an American officer who saw much service in the Philippines: "In Mateo Luga, you saw a man to remember as long as you live."

The accomplishment of Col. Alan Rio Luga in his recent assignment may not be that colorful in terms of armed encounters. His assignment, however, opens the gateway for the province of Bohol and Cebu to reach the height of peace and development in the Region, never have been experienced in the annals of the Region's history. Today, Bohol and Cebu has one of the lowest crime rate in terms of population ratio with a tourism turn-out, unprecedented in the region's history. This could have never been accomplished by Col. Luga alone. It is the people of Bohol and Cebu, who were the real winners of this war, to whom Col. Alan R. Luga owes his gratitude to earn a coveted star in Armed Forces of the Philippines.



(ACKNOWLEDGMENT: We would like to acknowlege the Armed Forces of the United States of America and the combatants in the American Expeditionary Forces who saw battle in the Philippines, who, out of respect and admiration to Gen. Mateo Noriel Luga have written historical accounts of the late General - without whom, his name must have been forgotten by history.)

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