For the last couple of years, President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. and his family have stuck to their script whenever the Martial Law atrocities are brought up––they either deny or dodge it or feign ignorance.

But in his recent interview, Marcos Jr., who appeared to be still riding high from his victory, addressed the matter in a new and alarming manner.

Instead of his usual response of evading the issue, Marcos Jr. downplayed the human rights abuses and extrajudicial killings that occurred during his father’s strongman rule.

The ever-devoted son of the late strongman defended the latter’s declaration of martial law, stressing that it was a crucial move against communist and separatist rebellions that were determined to topple the government.

“Martial law was declared because of the two wars we were fighting on two fronts and that is CPP-NPA (Communist Party of the Philippines) were fomenting revolution––they wanted to bring down the government through violent means so the government had to defend itself,” Marcos Jr. said.

“The second front was the secessionists’ movements down in the South led by MNLF (Muslim separatist movement of the Moro National Liberation Front) and chairman Nur Misuari at the time––he started the uprising of the secessionist movements and that eventually turned into violence and essentially war,” he added.

Marcos Jr. acknowledged the atrocities committed during his father’s reign but said it happened “like in any war.” This kind of reasoning is the epitome of a false analogy fallacy.

It’s either Marcos Jr.’s camp finally gave up on denial as a defense mechanism or he has become cockier all thanks to his recent win in the elections.

But to oversimplify the abuses based on an implausible comparison exactly a week before its 50th anniversary is downright insulting to Martial Law survivors and the remaining families of victims.

Not to mention, many critics argued that Martial Law should never have been declared in the first place.

Marcos claimed the imposition of Martial Law, a year before the expiration of his term, was the last defense against the rising disorder caused by student demonstrations and the alleged threats of communist insurgency but one could easily call foul on the circumstances.

Martial Law Museum said several independent reports suggest that at the time there were only about 1,000 NPA guerrillas, whose arms were old-fashioned. In the NPA’s own history, only 350 men with first-line rifles were documented at the time of Martial Law.

The museum further said that it was the declaration of Martial Law in 1972 which prompted the increase of membership in radicalized groups.

“Reports on the increased following of the radical movement emphasize the role of idealistic youth, fed up with the abuses committed during the regime. Toward the end of Martial law, recorded numbers had grown from about 1,500 in 1976 to 35,000 in 1985,” the museum said on its website.

It is obvious that Martial Law was used to extend Marcos’ term. His obsession with clinging to power resulted in widespread abuses and killings.

Rights group Amnesty International estimates some 70,000 people were imprisoned and 34,000 tortured under the 20-year Marcos regime.

But according to Marcos Jr. the rights group based their findings only on “hearsay,” falsely claiming that the group “never” visited the country.

Pretty comedic and ironic for someone who is eager to “talk about facts, not political opinion.”

When asked why their side of the story never made it into history books and mainstream media, Marcos gave a cringeworthy but honest answer: “Because the victors write history, don’t they? It is the victors in the conflict that will write the history.”

He did not lie there, history is indeed not grounded in facts but rather in the winners’ interpretation.

Perhaps his answer was already a hint of what he hopes to accomplish in the future now that he has successfully returned to the Malacañang Palace.

The people must remain vigilant against Marcos Jr.’s filthy ploys to distort history.

Whether he denies, evades or trivializes the Martial Law atrocities, the fact remains that thousands of people were killed, wrongfully imprisoned and tortured during his father’s rule and that they are family of plunderers. No stunt nor strategy could ever erase that.