Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

attention, in which we believe the United States have failed to meet the requirements of this framework of decolonizations. The first is the attempt by the administering power to manipulate the "self" to its own benefit and the second is the limitation imposed by the administering power of the range of "determination" among which can be chosen by the people of Guam.

Unfortunately, time constraints prevent the elaboration of these points in a written position paper 24 hours in advance of the upcoming hearing and so will have to await our anticipated oral presentation.

Sincerely,

Pokú Laenui

Poka Laenui

Mr. DE LUGO. Now, our next witness will be Mr. Antonio T. Artero.

Mr. ARTERO. Mr. Chairman, before I start, I see the green light is on but I would like to advise the Chair that my oral presentation is going to be slightly different from the written report submitted.

Mr. DE LUGO. That is quite all right. It will be on the record, too, so go ahead.

Mr. ARTERO. Honorable Ron de Lugo, honorable members of the committee and staff, greetings and warm hafa adai.

My name is Antonio Torres Artero, born on Guam, and my father is a recipient of a Congressional Medal of Freedom. As a concerned citizen, I have been privileged and have served proudly for 21 years in our Submarine Force, protecting our freedom and world peace.

As a realtor now, I offer my testimony in support of the passage of Guam's Commonwealth Act bill, H.R. 98. World history shows that Guam and its people have been more than accommodating to the various countries of the world but the people from the various countries, including the U.S., have demonstrated their support over us and exercised total dominance and control over us.

As a people we have lost our rights even to our private property. We are not questioning the United States' right to own, operate and maintain property on Guam. What we are questioning is the manner in which the properties were taken and the misuse of the properties taken.

Private property rights is deserving the protection of the military, but the military does not have the right to oppressive property takeovers.

The military base on Guam can exist on Guam without Guam having to be the military bastion. Forty-five years after World War II, the so-called land claims compensation that Congress authorized in 1977 had turned into a fiasco of a settlement proposal wherein the people involved were pitted against each other in seeking their fair share of a forced settlement and yet, still, another unjust amount.

The mishandling of the claims have blown up the class action suit into three separate options due largely to the manipulation of facts to cover up the wrongdoing of the government. Or could it be that it is a deliberate application of it the divide and conquer routine? At any rate, it clearly shows the unwillingness of the United States to render justice for us on Guam

You can count on one hand the number of times Judge Peckam, or his replacement, came to Guam. There are many property owners who have not been compensated even to this day.

Although Guam had been flying the American flag for 91 years and the economic condition today is good for the privileged few, the situation we are in is in one word “vulnerable.” It is vulnerable primarily because America's stewardship of Guam centers on total self-interest, neglect of property rights, and clearly a violation of the Constitution.

We have been given our U.S. citizenship for 38 years now and have conducted ourselves in accordance with the United States Constitution. However, unconstitutional practices have been a very consistent U.S. policy on Guam. Our concerned voice about oppres

sion for the past 45 years is treated by America like the sound created by wood eating termites in one's home. You don't hear it until it is too late.

This commonwealth bill for Guam is making it possible for our puny voices emanating from dinky Guam 10,000 miles from Washington, D.C. to be heard for the first time. This commonwealth bill for Guam, if passed, will prevent a crashing blow to America's reputation as a world leader in democracy, peace, and freedom.

Mr. Chairman, the private property rights problem on Guam must be solved first and soon, because they stand in the way of the island-wide comprehensive economic development plan. If that cannot be done, then we are all wasting our time, because Congress cannot legislate greed.

In addition, Mr. Chairman, I would like to comment that I question why this hearing has to be conducted in Hawaii instead of on Guam. The commonwealth bill hearings must be on Guam because it concerns the people of Guam, and their participation is impaired by plane fares and hotel fees.

In closing, Mr. Chairman, I would like to say that we can only hope that the removal of the Berlin Wall will serve as an eye opener for America to acknowledge that the time is overdue for America to practice that which it preaches-democracy.

Democracy is freedom. America must allow total and unconditional political, civil and human rights to the people of Guam who are shackled with military oppression since World War II bypassing the Guam Commonwealth Act bill, return the lands that can be returned to the rightful owners, and justly compensate the landowners who are eminently qualified for just compensation. Mr. DE LUGO. Thank you very much, Mr. Artero. Mr. ARTERO. Thank you, sir. [Prepared statement of Mr. Artero follows:]

[merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]

ANTONIO T. ARTERO TESTIMONY ON GUAM'S COMMONWEALTH BILL
PRESENTED TO THE SUBCOMMITTEE ON INSULAR AND INTERNATIONAL

AFFAIRS INTERIOR AND INSULAR AFFAIRS
100TH CONGRESS OF THE UNITED STATES

IN HONOLULU, HAWAII

Honorable Ron de Lugo, members of your committee, and staff,
greetings once again. My name is Antonio Torres Artero. I
appear before you in support of Guam's Commonwealth Act.

As a concerned citizen, I have been privileged and have served
proudly for 20 years in the submarine force protecting our
freedom and world peace. As a Realtor now, I offer my testimony.

World history shows that Guam and its people have always been
more than accommodating to people from various countries. But
the people from the various countries including the U.S. have
demonstrated their superiority over us and have exercised total
dominance and control on us. As a people, we have lost our
rights even to our private property.

We are not questioning the United States' right to own, operate,
and maintain property on Guam. What we're questioning is the
manner in which the properties were taken and the misuse of the
properties taken. Private property rights is deserving the
protection of the military but the military does not have the
right to oppressive property takeover.

45 years after WWII, the so-colled "Land Claims Compensation"
that Congress authorized in 1977 had turned into a fiasco of a
settlement proposal wherein the people involved were pitted
against each other in seeking their fair share of a forced
settlement and yet, still, another unjust amount. The
mishandling of the claims has broken-up the class action suit
into three separate options due largely to the manipulation of
facts to cover up the wrong doing of the government. Or could it
be that it's a deliberate application of the "divide and conquerr"
routine. At any rate, it clearly shows the unwillingness of the
U.S. to render justice for us on Guam. You can count in one hand
the number of times Judge Peckam or his replacement came to Guam.
There are many property owners who have not been compensated even
to this day.

[ocr errors]

THE INTERNATIONAL REAL ESTATE FEDERATION. THE NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS. THE GUAM BOARD OF REALTORS

[merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]

Although Guam had been flying the American flag for 91 years, and
the economic condition today is good for the privileged few, the
situation we're in is, in one word, vulnerable. It is vulnerable
primarily because America's stewardship of Guam centers on
selfish interest to the extent of total neglect of private
property rights - clearly a violation of the Constitution.

If the problem with private property rights on Guam is not going
to be solved soon, then we are all wasting our time because you
can not legislate greed. In addition I am questioning why this
hearing has to be conducted in Hawaii instead of on Guam. The
Commonwealth Bill hearings must be on Guam because it concerns
the people of Guam and their participation is impaired by plane
fares and hotel fees.

We can only hope that the removal of the Berlin Wall will serve
as an eye opener for America to acknowledge that the time is
overdue for America, to practice that which it preaches,
"Democracy." With democracy is freedom. America must allow
total and unconditional political, civil, and human rights to the
people of Guam who are shackled with military oppression since
WWII by:
1) Passing the Guam's Commonwealth Act Bill:
2) Return the lands that can be returned to the rightful owners;
3) Justly compensate the land owners;

There's nothing we would love better than to see the Reagan
Regiment for freedom that becomes the Bush Brigade, similarly for
freedom, to be a freedom in reality for us on Guam USA.

Thank you once again for the opportunity to be heard.

[merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small]
« AnteriorContinuar »