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By: Atty. Rommel M. Bernardo

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1 By: Atty. Rommel M. Bernardo
Rizal’s Trial By: Atty. Rommel M. Bernardo

2 Trip to Cuba Rizal's warm friend, Dr. Blumentritt, wrote him from Bohemia, early in 1896, about an epidemic of yellow fever in Cuba and the pathetic lack of doctors to attend the sick. For Rizal any call of distress was like the voice of God. This would not be running away from trouble, but going to meet need under the constant danger of contracting the fatal disease. He kept asking Governor General Blanco for permission to go to Cuba, and gave money to Josephine "so that she might be able to retire in Manila. (01) When he least expected it, the notice came that he was to become a volunteer physician in the Cuba government hospitals. (02) He was again a free man -- and again he was to become a wanderer!

3 El Canto del Viajero Hoja seca que cuela indecisa
y arrebata violente turbión, asi vive en la tierra el viajero, sin norte, sin alma, sin patria ni amor. A withered leaf which flies uncertainly And hurled about my furious hurricanes, So goes the traveler about the world, No guide, no hope, no fatherland, no love.

4 El Canto Del Viajero Busca ansioso doquiera la dicha
y la dicha se aleja fugaz: ¡vana sombra que burla su anhelo! ... ¡por ella el viajero se lanza a la mar! Anxiously he seeks a better fortune And fickle fortune always takes to flight; A shadow vain that mocks at his desire! For her the wanderer has plowed the seas,

5 El Canto del Viajero Impelido por mano invisible
vagara confín en confín; los recuerdos le harán compañia de seres queridos, de un día felíz. Driven on by hands invisible, Wandering from land to weary land, Only memories to keep him company, Or loved ones and of bygone happier days.

6 Una tumba quizá en el desierto
hallará, dulce asilo de paz, de su patria y del mundo olvidado ... ¡Descanse tranquilo, tras tanto penar ! A tomb perhaps upon the desert Calls him -- refuge sweet of peace, -- Where, by his country and the world forgotten, Tranquil he may sleep who knew such pain.

7 El Canto del Viajero Y le envidian al triste viajero
cuando cruza la tierra veloz ... ¡Ay! no saben que dentro del alma existe un vacio de falta el amor! And if they envy this sad traveler When he speeds so swiftly round the world, Ah, little do they know that in his soul Exists an aching void for want of love.

8 El Canto del Viajero Volverá el peregrino a su patria
y a sus lares tal vez volverá, y hallará por doquier nieve y ruina amores perdidos, sepulcros, no más. Should the wanderer turn back to his country, And to his home, it may be, make his way, He would find but snow and ruins everywhere, All Love destroyed, and sepulchers,-- no more.

9 El Canto del Viajero Vé, Viajero, prosigue tu senda,
extranjero en tu propio país; deja a otros que canten amores, los otros que gocen; tu vuelve a partir. On, then, traveler, pursue your journey, Stranger to the land where you were born. Letting others sing their songs of love And feel their joys, while you fare on again.

10 El Canto del Viajero Vé, viajero, no vuelvas el rostro,
que no hay llanto que siga al adiós; vé, viajero, y ahoga tu penas; que el mundo se burla de ajeno dolor. And traveler, as you go, do not turn back, For none will shed a tear to say farewell, Go, pilgrim, try to drown your sorrow, Because the world but scoffs when strangers grieve.

11 Rizal’s letter to his Mother on board the Castilla
"Aboard the Cruiser Castilla September 2, 1896 "My dearest Mother, "I write you a few lines before leaving. My health is good, thank God, only I am worried as to what will happen to you in these days of confusion and unquiet. God grant that my old parents may have no trouble. "I will write to you at points where the mail boat stops. I expect to be in Madrid, or at least in Barcelona, at the end of this month. Nothing is certain; we are all in the hands of Divine Providence. Not everybody dies who goes to Cuba. At last one must die at any rate, and it is better to die doing some good.

12 Rizal’s Letter to His Mother
"Take care of yourself, and take care of my old father, so that we may all see one another again. Loving remembrances to my brother, my sisters, nephews, aunts, etc. . . You are the bond that ties us all together. "His Excellency, the Governor General, has been good to me; I am going to show him, if God gives me health and opportunity, that I can return his kindness. "In closing, my dearest mother, I kiss your hand and that of my father, with all the feeling and love of which my heart is capable; give me your blessing for I greatly need it. An affectionate embrace to each of my sisters, and a token of how much I love them all. Your son, José

13 Letter from General Blanco
On September 3, 1896, bearing letters of introduction from the Governor General to the Secretaries of War and Foreign Affairs in Spain, he departed for Barcelona. The letters which he carried are both alike. They must have cheered him more than anything had done for months:

14 Letter from Blanco Manila, August 30, 1896
Esteemed General and Distinguished Friend: I recommend to you with genuine interest Dr. José Rizal, who is leaving for the Peninsula to place himself at the disposal of the government as volunteer army surgeon to Cuba. During the four years of his exile at Dapitan he has conducted himself in the most exemplary manner, and he is, in my opinion, the more worthy of praise and consideration in that he is in no way connected with the extravagant attempts we are now deploring, neither those of conspirators nor of the secret societies that have been formed. I have the pleasure to reassure you of my high esteem, and remain, Your affectionate friend and comrade, Ramon Blanco

15 Ramon Blanco General Blanco was entirely too mild for the friars who demanded that he execute conspirators by wholesale. The Archbishop excoriated Blanco for his failure to deliver Rizal to the torturers. Why was the traitor kept alive awaiting the next boat to Cuba? The friars cabled to Spain for Blanco's recall at once.

16 The Trial Of Rizal September 22, 1896 – a week after the outbreak of the Philippine Revolution, Jose Rizal left Manila bay bound for Spain. He was destined to serve in Cuba in the hope of contributing his medical skill. Previously, Governor General Ramon Blanco approved Jose Rizal’s request to be a military doctor in Cuba. On his way to Spain, he was arrested by Spanish Authorities, jailed in Barcelona, was shipped backed to Manila, and imprisoned in Fort Santiago, Intramuros. (Jose Rizal, Life, Works & Writings by Gregorio Zaide)

17 Stop over at Singapore Antonio Maria Regidor, through telegrams sent to friends, requested that a petition for issuance of a writ of habeas corpus be filed before the Singapore Supreme Court. “Rizal returns as a prisoner on board that streamer “Colon” which will arrive there (Singapore) shortly. He holds letters from Governor General Blanco denying charges against him. The Spanish Constitution prohibits imprisonment without order of a judge. Colon when anchored in English Territory (becomes subject to English laws thus these laws) authorize anybody to deman liberty of Rizal. Instruct Solicitor telling him that Sir Edward Clarke, Ex-Solicitor-General, having been consulted advises an application for a writ of habeas corpus. Make Affidavit stating Rizal’s imprisonment on vessels (without) any judicial sentence…

18 Leon XIII Case 1882 Case of Leon XIII granted Writ of Habeas Corpus. This allowed British subjects held prisoner in Leon XIII to disembark in Singapore. The Chief Justice of Singapore rejected the application for a writ after reviewing the case overnight because Rizal was a Spanish subject on board a Spanish ship. Even if a writ were issued, the Spanish consul could protest and produce documents proving Rizal was a dangerous prisoner awaiting trial in Manila. Rizal was shipped home to face a kangaroo court that sentenced him to death (Rizal without the Overcoat by Ambeth Ocampo)

19 Stop Over at Singapore Meanwhile, the news had spread among his friends in all parts of Europe. Dr. Antonio Regidor, Sixto Lopez, and others in London devised a shrewd plan to have Rizal removed from the boat by legal processes when he reached the British port of Singapore. Two long telegrams containing over a hundred words were sent to Mr. Fort, a lawyer in Singapore, asking him to file in the Singapore Court a demand for an immediate writ of habeas corpus, on the ground that Rizal had been illegally arrested without an order of the court. "Funds are being provided by the Chartered Bank of England," said the telegrams. It happened that the great Chinese patriot Sun Yat-sen was saved by the same method the very day Mr. Fort made his affidavit. But the Singapore judge said that the S. S. Colon was practically a warship, since it carried Spanish troops from Spain to Manila, and as such did not come under the law obtaining for merchant ships. While they continued to argue, the Colon weighed anchor and left Singapore for Manila.

20 What is the Writ of Habeas Corpus?
The writ of habeas corpus, literally means "you have the body," is defined as a writ or order directed to the person detaining another, commanding him to produce the body of the prisoner at a designated time and place, with the day and cause of his caption and detention, to do, submit to, and receive whatever the court or judge awarding the writ shall consider in the behalf. Its essential object and purpose "is to inquire into all manner of involuntary restraint as distinguished from voluntary, and to relieve a person therefrom if such restraint is illegal." (

21 Paciano Rizal’s Torture
On November 3, 1896, José Rizal, heavily guarded, reached Manila and was locked in Fort Santiago prison. His brother Paciano was tortured with a screw which was twisted into his left hand, while a pen was thrust into his right hand to make him sign a statement that his brother had been connected with the Katipunan. Paciano would not sign. The torture continued until he fainted. The next day he was tortured again until he began to act insane. But he never signed anything. What courage flowed in the Rizal veins, in father, mother, sons, and daughters!

22 Beginning of the Revolution
Two katipuneros, Teodoro Patiño and Apolonio dela Cruz, were engaged in a bitter personal dispute. The former, Patiño, deciding to seek revenge, exposed the secrets of the Katipunan to his sister who was a nun, who in turn revealed it to a Spanish priest, Father Mariano Gil. The priest was led to the printing press of Diario de Manila and found a lithographic stone used to print the secret society's receipts. A locker was seized containing a dagger and secret documents. Several arrests ensued which included some of the wealthiest ilustrados. Despite their denial, many of them were executed. It was speculated that Bonifacio intended for the events leading to their arrest to happen in order to coerce the wealthy into joining the Katipunan. The news immediately reached the top leadership of the organization. Panic-stricken, they immediately called a meeting of the remaining members, first in Kangkong and then in the house of katipunero Juan Ramos in Pugadlawin in Balintawak. The first meeting yielded nothing. On the second meeting, Bonifacio, fed up with the seemingly-endless squabbling, tore up his cedula (residence certificate) and cried Mabuhay ang Katagalugan! (Long live Katagalugan!). It was a cry to arms and was echoed by the majority of the men in attendance. The Revolution had begun.

23 Beginning of the Revolution
Katipunan became popular in the suburbs of Manila and Central Luzon. Friars began to denounce the nightly meeting held by the Katipuneros. August 19, 1896 – Teodoro Patino exposed the society (to Fr. Mariano Gil) Bonifacio had no alternative but to take to the field (Cry of Pugadlawin) (History of the Filipino People by Teodoro Agoncillo)


25 Rizal and the Revolution
Bonifacio had known Rizal personally during the La Liga days, but the former was not known by Rizal personally. Bonifacio wanted Rizal’s opinion on the necessity of rising in arms against Spain. June 1896 – Dr. Pio Valenzuela was commissioned by Bonifacio to confer with Rizal. Valenzuela immediately proceeded to Rizal’s home. In the evening after supper, Valenzuela whispered to Rizal the real purpose of his visit. He then related the founding of the Katipunan and its aims, among which was the overthrow of the Spanish authority.

26 Rizal’s Response Rizal pointed out that a revolution without sufficient arms should not be started against an armed nation. He remembered the first Cuban revolution against Spain which failed because of lack of arms. Even so, he suggested that influential and wealthy Filipinos be attracted to the cause of the society in order to ensure the success of the revolution. In such case, he said, there would be unity among all classes of Filipinos. Knowing that the society had no competent military leadership, he suggested that Antonio Luna be appointed to directall military operations against the enemy.


28 Rizal and Valenzuela Valenzuela pointed out the difficulty of winning over the wealthy Filipinos to the Katipunan side. This was one problem which Rizal failed to suggest a solution. It is obvious that Rizal was not against the rvolution in itself, but was against it only in the absence of preparation and arms on the part of the rebels. This was because Rizal feared that without arms the rebels would surely be defeated and thereby cause irreparable damage to the innocent people. Rizal’s knowledge of history of revolutions in other lands led him to believe that any revolution was useless unless the rebels were at least as armed as the enemy. Valenzuela sailed back to Manila and reported the matter to Bonifacio. Bonifacio, having been apprised of the opinion of Rizal, admitted that it would be fatal for them to start a revolution without enough arms (History of the Filipino People by Teodoro Agoncillo)

29 Why Antonio Luna? Rizal asked Luna to join the Katipunan to serve as liason between the masses and the rich; but Luna refused, stating that a revolution was premature. When the Katipunan was finally discovered by the Spanish authorities, Luna was imprisoned and tortured. The Spanish authorities made false claims that his friends had implicated him in the Katipunan revolution as one of its prominent members. Weakened by mental and physical torture, Luna decided to reveal all that he knew about the Katipunan. He denounced the Katipunan and revealed the names of his friends who were members of the secret society. In return for his cooperation, he was exiled to Spain in 1897 and was locked up in Madrid Prison. He was later released through the assistance of a government official. While the revolution raged in the Philippines, Antonio Luna was in Madrid and different parts of Europe. While traveling Europe, he studied military tactics, strategy, field fortifications, and artillery. He studied military tactics under Belgian general Gerard Leman.


31 Rescue Attempts by Katipunan
In the early days of August 1896 before the outbreak of the Philippine Revolution, Andres Bonifacio, Emilio Jacinto and other katipuneros plotted to rescue Rizal from the cruiser “Castilla”, then anchored at Manila Bay. Jacinto and some Katipuneros. Disguised as sailors on the motor launch Caridad boarded the cruiser. Jacinto approached Rizal and told Rizal about the planned rescue. Rizal refused to be rescued. Rizal could have escaped with the aid of the Katipunan. But he chose to remain within the clutches of Spain rather than flee. Being a man of honor, he though that the Spanish Colonial authorities were also honorable men. This was his mistake, his tragic undoing. (Rizal’s Life, Works and Writings by Gregorio Zaide)

32 Preliminary Investigation
After fishing as much evidence as possible, on November 20, 1896, the preliminary investigation on Rizal began. During the five-day investigation, Rizal was informed of the charges against him before Judge Advocate Colonel Francisco Olive. He was put under interrogation without the benefit of knowing who testified against him. Presented before him were two kinds of evidences – documentary and testimonial. There were a total of fifteen exhibits for the documentary evidence. Testimonial evidences, on the other hand, were comprised of oral proofs provided by Martin Constantino, Aguedo del Rosario, Jose Reyes, Moises Salvador, Jose Dizon, Domingo Franco, Deodato Arellano, Pio Valenzuela, Antonio Salazar, Francisco Quison, and Timoteo Paez.

33 Preliminary Investigation
These evidences were endorsed by Colonel Olive to Governor Ramon Blanco who designated Captain Rafael Dominguez as the Judge Advocate assigned with the task of deciding what corresponding action should be done. Dominguez, after a brief review, transmitted the records to Don Nicolas de la Peña, the Judge Advocate General, for an opinion. Peña's recommendations were as follows: Rizal must be immediately sent to trial He must be held in prison under necessary security His properties must be issued with order of attachment, and as indemnity, Rizal had to pay one million pesos Instead of a civilian lawyer, only an army officer is allowed to defend Rizal. Although given with “privilege” to choose his own defense counsel, this was limited to a list of 100 names – both first and second lieutenants - that the Spanish authorities provided him. Of the list, one familiar name stood out – Lt. Luis Taviel de Andrade. Rizal discovered that the said lieutenant was the brother of Lt. Jose Taviel de Andrade who worked as Rizal's personal body guard in Calamba in 1887.

34 Charges against Rizal / Arraignment
On the 11th of December 1896, in the presence of his Spanish counsel, charges against Rizal were read. When asked regarding his sentiments or reaction on the charges, Rizal replied that: He does not question the jurisdiction of the court He has nothing to amend except that during his exile in Dapitan in 1892, he had not dealt in political matters; He has nothing to admit on the charges against him He had nothing to admit on the declarations of the witnesses, he had not met nor knew, against him. Two days after, Rizal's case was endorsed to Blanco's successor, Governor Camilo de Polavieja, who had the authority to command that the case be courtmartialed. On December 15, inside his cell at Fort Santiago, Rizal wrote the controversial Manifesto addressed to his countrymen – a letter denouncing bloody struggle, and promoting education and industry as the best means to acquire independence. However, Judge Advocate General Nicolas de la Peña requested to Gov. Polavieja that the publication of the manifesto be prohibited, and so, the governor did.

35 The Trial Proper Accustomed to share the merry season with family, friends and relatives, the 1896 Christmas was in did, Rizal's saddest. Confined in a dark, gloomy cell, Rizal was in despair and had no idea of what his fate may be. Under this delusion, he wrote a letter to Lt. Taviel de Andrade requesting the latter to visit him before his trial for there was a very important matter they need to discuss. Likewise, Rizal greeted the lieutenant a joyous Christmas. The next day, December 26, about 8 o'clock in the morning, the court-martial of Rizal commenced. The hearing was actually a kind of moro-moro – a planned trial wherein Rizal, before hearing his verdict, had already been prejudged. Unlike other accused, Rizal had not been allowed to know the people who witnessed against him. The trial took place at Cuartel de España, a military building, with a court composed of seven military officers headed by Lt. Col. Jose Togores Arjona. Present at the courtroom were Jose Rizal, the six other officers in uniform (Capt. Ricardo Muñoz Arias, Capt. Manuel Reguera, Capt. Santiago Izquierdo Osorio, Capt. Braulio Rodriguez Nuñez, Capt. Manuel Diaz Escribano, and Capt. Fernando Perez Rodriguez), Lt. Taviel de Andrade, Judge Advocate Capt. Rafael Dominguez, Lt. Enrique de Alcocer (prosecuting attorney) and a number of spectators, including Josephine Bracken. After Judge Advocate Dominguez opened the trial, it was followed by Atty. Alcocer's reiteration of the charges against Rizal, urging the court that the latter be punished with death. Accordingly, the three crimes accused to him were rebellion, sedition and illegal association – the penalty for the first two being life imprisonment to death, while the last, correctional imprisonment and a charge of 325 to 3,250 pesetas.

36 The New Governor-General
But in the midst of the trial, December 13, Governor General [Ramon] Blanco, who had become Rizal's sincere friend, lost his position, and Governor General [Camilo] Polavieja took his place. It was a triumphant event for the enemies of Rizal, for they knew, and doubtless he knew, that he was doomed. Polavieja at once sent to the Military Court a terrific attack on Rizal which the Governor General's secretary had prepared. The heart of his accusation was "that Dr. Rizal, with the publication of his works Noli Me Tangere, Annotations to the History of the Philippines by Morga, El Filibusterismo, and endless pamphlets, proclamations and printings of all kinds, against religion, the friars and the Spanish authorities, has been inculcating in the Philippines the ostensible idea of expelling the religious orders, as the more or less secret method of obtaining the independence of this territory."

37 Camilo de Polavieja

38 Prosecution Evidence A letter of Antonio Luna to Mariano Ponce, dated Madrid, October 16, 1888, showing Rizal’s connection with the Filipino Reform campaign in Spain A Letter of Rizal to his family, dated Madrid, August 20, 1890, stating that the deportations are good for they will encourage the people to hate tyranny. A letter from Marcelo H. del Pilar to Deodato Arellano, dated Madrid, January 7, 1889, implicating Rizal in the Propaganda campaign in Spain A poem entitled Kundiman, allegedly written bby Rizal in Manila on September 12, 1891.

39 “Kundiman” In the Orient beautiful Where the sun is born,
In a land of beauty Full of enchantments But bound in chains Where the despot reigns. Ah! That is my country. The Land dearest to me. She is a slave oppressed Groaning in the tyrant’s grips; Lucky shall he be Who can give her liberty!

40 Prosecution Evidence A letter of Carlos Oliver to an unidentified person, dated Barcelona, September 18, 1891, describing Rizal as the man to free the Philippines from Spanish oppression A Masonic document, dated Manila, February 9, 1892 honoring Rizal for his patriotic services. A letter signed Dimasalang (Rizal) to Tenluz (Juan Zulueta) dated Hongkong. May 24, 1892 stating that he was preparing a safe refuge for Filipinos who may be persecuted by the Spanish authorities. A letter of Dimasalang to an unidentified committee, dated Hongkong June 1, 1892 soliciting the aid of the committee in the “patriotic work” An anonymous and undated letter to the Editor of the Hongkong Telegraph, censuring the banishment of Rizal to Dapitan. A letter of Ildefonso Laurel to Rizal, dated Manila, September 3, 1892, saying that the Filipino people look up to him (Rizal) as their savior, A letter to Rizal Segundo, dated Manila, September 17, 1893, informing an unidentified correspondent of the arrest and banishment of Doroteo Cortes and Ambrosio Salvador.

41 Prosecution Evidence A letter of Marcelo H. del Pilar to Don Juan A. Tenluz (Zulueta) dated Madrid, June 1, 1893 recommending the establishment of a special organization, independent of Masonry, to help the cause of the Filipino people. Transcript of a speech of Pingkian (Emilio Jacinto) in a reunion of the Katipunan on July 23, 1893, in which the following cry was uttered “Long live the Philippines! Long live liberty! Long Live Dr. Rizal! Unity!” Transcript of a speech of Tik-tik (Jose Turiano_ in the same Katipunan reunion, wherein the katipuneros shouted: “Long live the eminent Doctor Rizal! Death to the oppressor nation!” A poem by Laong Laan (Rizal) entitled “A Talisay” in which the author makes the Dapitan school boys sing that they know how to fight for their rights. (Rizal Life, Works and Writings by Gregorio Zaide)

42 Defense Lt. Taviel de Andrade, on the other hand, later took the floor reading his speech in defense of Rizal. To supplement this, Rizal read his own defense which he wrote in his cell in Fort Santiago. According to Rizal, there are twelve points to prove his innocence: as testified by Pio Valenzuela, Rizal was against rebellion he had not written a letter addressed to the Katipunan comprising revolutionary elements without his knowledge, his name was used by the Katipunan; if he really was guilty, he could have escaped while he was in Singapore if he was guilty, he should have left the country while in exile; he shouldn't have built a home, bought a parcel of land or established a hospital in Dapitan. if he was really the leader of the revolution, the revolutionists should have consulted him. he did not deny that he wrote the by-laws of the La Liga Filipina, but to make things clear, the organization was a civic association, not a revolutionary society.

43 Defense after the first meeting of La Liga, the association banished because of his exile in Dapitan, thus, did not last long. if the La Liga was reorganized nine months later, he had no idea about it if the La Liga had a revolutionary purpose, then Katipunan should not have been organized. if the Spanish authorities found his letters having bitter atmosphere, it was because in 1890 his family was being persecuted resulting to their dispossession of properties and deportation of all his brothers-in-law. he lived an exemplary life in Dapitan – the politico-military commanders and missionary priests in the province could attest to that. if according to witnesses the speech he delivered at Doroteo Ongjunco's house had inspired the revolution, then he want to confront these persons. If he really was for the revolution, then why did the Katipunan sent an unfamiliar emissary to him in Dapitan. It is so because all his friends were aware that he never advocated violence.

44 Rizal’s Manifesto   Fellow countrymen: Upon my return from Spain I learned that my name was being used as a rallying cry by some who had taken up arms. This information surprised and grieved me but thinking that the whole affair was finished, I refrained from commenting on something that could no longer be remedied. Now, rumors reach me that the disturbances have not ceased. It may be that persons continue to use my name in good or in bad faith; if so, wishing to put a stop to this abuse and to undeceive the gullible, I hasten to address these lines to you that the truth may be known. From the very beginning, when I first received information of what was being planned, I opposed it, I fought against it, and I made clear that it was absolutely impossible. 

45 Manifesto to Certain Filipinos
This is the truth, and they are still alive who can bear witness to my words. I was convinced that the very idea was wholly absurd -- worse than absurd -- it was disastrous. I did more than this. When later on, in spite of my urgings, the uprising broke out, I came forward voluntarily to offer not only my services but my life and even my good name in order that they may use me in any manner they may think opportune to smother the rebellion. For I was convinced of the evils which that rebellion would bring in its train, and so I considered it a privilege if at whatever sacrifice I could ward off so much useless suffering. This is also of record.

46 Manifesto to Certain Filipinos
Fellow countrymen: I have given many proofs that I desire as much as the next man liberties for our country; I continue to desire them. But I laid down as a prerequisite the education of the people in order that by means of such instruction, and by hard work, they may acquire a personality of their own and so become worthy of such liberties. In my writings I have recommended study and the civic virtues, without which no redemption is possible. I have also written (and my words have been repeated by others) that reforms, if they are to bear fruit, must come from above, for reforms that come from below are upheavals both violent and transitory. Thoroughly imbued with these ideas, I cannot do less than condemn, as I do condemn, this ridiculous and barbarous uprising, plotted behind my back, which both dishonors us Filipinos and discredits those who might have taken our part.

47 Manifesto to Certain Filipinos
I abominate the crimes for which it is responsible and I will have no part in it. With all my heart I am sorry for those who have rashly allowed themselves to be deceived. Let them, then, return to their homes, and may God pardon those who have acted in bad faith. (December 15, 1896)

48 Trial Proper The Trial of Rizal was an eloquent proof of Spanish injustice and misrule. More than a farce, it was patently a mistrial. Rizal, a civilian, was tried by a military court composed of alien military officers. His case was prejudged; he was considered guilty before the actual trial. The military court met not to judge him, but to accuse and condemn him. It accepted all the charges and testimonies against Rizal, and ignored all arguments and proofs in his favor. Moreover, Rizal was not given the right (which any accused is entitled to have in a real court of justice) to face the witnesses against him in open court. (Rizal’s Life, Works and Writings by Gregorio Zaide)

49 Polavieja Signs Rizal’s Execution
December 28, 1896 Conformably to the foregoing opinion; I approve the sentence dictated by the Court Martial in the present case, by virtue of which the death penalty is imposed on the accused Jose Rizal Mercado, which shall be executed by shooting him at 7 o’clock in the morning of the 30th of this month in the field of Bagumbayan. For compliance and the rest that may correspond, let this be returned to the Judge Advocate, Captain Don Rafael Dominguez.

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