Although the history of kidnapping and hostage-taking is a very long one, it is only relatively recently that there has been a systematic attempt to understand the effects, both long-term and short-term, on individuals and their families. This is an important issue for clinical and academic reasons. The advice of mental health professionals is sought with increasing frequency with regard to the strategic management of hostage incidents and the clinical management of those who have been abducted. There is evidence to suggest that how best to help those who have been taken hostage is a sensitive and complex matter, and those who deal with such individuals should be as well informed as possible since such events can have long-term adverse consequences, particularly on young children.

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The Manila hostage crisis, officially known as the Rizal Park hostage-taking incident occurred when a dismissed Philippine National Police officer took over a tourist bus in Rizal Park, Manila, Philippines on August 23, 2010. Disgruntled former senior inspector Rolando Mendoza of the Manila Police District (MPD) hijacked a tourist bus carrying 25 people (20 tourists and a tour guide from Hong Kong, and four Filipinos) in an attempt to get his job back.

He said that he had been summarily and unfairly dismissed, and that all he wanted was a fair hearing and the opportunity to defend himself. Negotiations broke down dramatically about ten hours into the stand-off, when the police arrested Mendoza’s brother and thus incited him to open fire. As the shooting began, the bus driver managed to escape, and was shown on television saying “Everyone is dead” before being whisked away by policemen.

Mendoza and eight of the hostages were killed and a number of others injured. The MPD’s failed rescue attempt and gun-battle with the hijacker, which took around 90 minutes, were watched by millions on live television and the internet. The Philippine and Hong Kong governments conducted separate investigations into the incident. Both inquiries judged that the victims had been unlawfully killed, and identified the Philippine officials’ poor handling of the incident as the cause of the eight hostages’ deaths. The assault mounted by the MPD, and the resulting shoot-out, have been widely criticized by pundits as “bungled” and “incompetent”, and the Hong Kong Government has issued a “black” travel alert for the Philippines as a result of the affair.


It was August 23, 2010 when the whole world alarmed in one of the most tragic hostage taking happened in Quirino Grandstand Manila, Philippines. Many people were sad and shocked to what happened in the said event. At about 9:30 in the morning, dismissed commission police officer Rolando Mendoza took hostage 25 tourists from Hongkong and some Filipino staff who were in a bus to leave Fort Santiago for Manila’s Rizal Park. The ensuing hostage lasted 11 hours and ended with nine individuals, including the hostage taker, dead.1 and the other hostages were injured.

According to the report Mendoza is a hard-working and kind. He received lots of award for being brave and loyal to his profession. Mendoza said he was summarily dismissed without the opportunity to properly defend himself, and that all he wanted was a fair hearing.2 and to get his job back. He did this way just to get attention the government official.

As we all know Media is the most likely source of information for most people. In this kind of situation it is very dangerous job for the media because he has to put himself in a place that should be right.3 but in what happened in the Quirino Grandstand Hostage taking crisis it seem that many media people were blamed because they reported beyond the limit.

We are in the fact that a media person serve as access of information of issues that are of public concern even if they are at risk. There were many media lapses in that incident. Towards the evening of the hostage taking, many media networks were covering the hostage taking crisis live. Among none of them did it seem to have occurred to that irresponsible coverage of the event could cost lives.4 Some of them during the hostage event reported the unconfirmed information, they revealed the police and troops movement and many more lapses that caused the anger of Mendoza.



Taking hostages has a long history as a method, with variable effectiveness, of securing concessions from individuals, organisations and governments. More recently, it has become a popular tactic among terrorist organisations. Although the resilience of individuals should never be underestimated, there is evidence that being taken hostage can have enduring effects, particularly on children. Individuals vary in how they cope with such an experience, both during and subsequent to it.

The literature demonstrates that the research base is limited, and many important questions remain to be answered. Hostage-taking is an area of clinical and scientific interest. Apart from the need to establish the most effective post-incident interventions for individual hostages and their families, there are opportunities to develop further insights into the dynamics and effects of unequal power relationships.


The ideal equipment of a SWAT team more or less are as follows: communication apparatus, armor vest, helmets, gas mask, pistols, assault rifles for close quarter battle, handcuffs, synchronized watches, binoculars, telescopes, night vision goggles, battering rams, ladders, ropes, stun grenades, teargas, smoke grenades, stick lights, flashlights, spotlights, telescopic gun sights, hydraulic jacks, bolt cutters, glass shutter explosives, fire extinguisher, fireman’s ax, chain saw, SWAT van, gloves, carpentry tools, acetylene torch and rain gears. There was lack of equipment on the part of Manila SWAT to handle the situation. Although they had their basic weapons such as their armor vest (the effectiveness are already in deep question), their rifles, pistols and Kevlar helmets but still by standards, these are not adequate to address the hostage crisis situation.

It is very evident that they were not even carrying with them flashlights but all of the time they were reporting and complaining that the interior of the bus was dark. The lack of equipment already put the breaching operation into a compromise. The element of surprise was gone that resulted into a stall that lasted for sometime thereby endangering lives. The doubt regarding the effectiveness of their armor vest contributed to the apprehension of the SWAT members to rush inside the bus during the assault.

The Manila SWAT was not only ill-equipped but they were not trained in different kinds of situations. In fact they had to rehearse on the very day of the hostage situation. The trainings of the Manila SWAT as provided by the Manila Police District are not updated and simulated operations were conducted, if ever conducted, was a long time ago. They don’t even know the serial numbers of their guns at an instant query. They train on their own personal account. Skill acquired through trainings diminishes after some time and needs to be constantly updated.



The reasons presented for the decriminalization are obviously overwhelming. In a nutshell, by all standards, Gen. Magtibay was an incompetent commander, organizer and manager. To top this off, he was also grossly and recklessly insubordinate at a most crucial moment. One is tempted to put the whole blame on the hostage debacle upon him, if not for the equally incomprehensible lapses and indecisions committed by both his superiors and men all throughout the hostage crisis, specifically on strategy, intelligence, coordination, and deployment. But it is without question that he carries the biggest accountability for the disastrous and murderous outcome of the hostage crisis. As such, it stands to reason for the Senate and the House of Representatives to give decriminalization of libel a chance.

Honestly, as an individual I got pissed off because those people tasked to handle the situation didn’t do it by the book. First and foremost to be considered is the safety of the hostages which as viewed was never the order of priority of those people expected to save same. In all hostage-taking drama that I’ve known, neutralizing the hostage-taker is no. 1 in the agenda, which if initially done could have prevented the carnage. I just hope this won’t happen again, but if it does- just neutralize the hostage-taker once and the drama will end! It’s such a shameful and horrific event that the only positive thing we get out of the experience is to learn something from it. From that Learn we have to our mistakes. .


The investigation report also recommended administrative or criminal charges for 15 individuals and organizations, including Manila mayor Alfredo Lim, Vice-Mayor Isko Moreno, ombudsmen Merceditas Gutierrez and Emilio Gonzales III, government undersecretary Rico J. Puno, retired Philippine National Police chief director general Jesus Verzosa, National Capital Region Police Office director Leocadio Santiago Jr., Manila Police District chief superintendent Rodolfo Magtibay, MPD hostage negotiator Orlando Yebra, SWAT commander Santiago Pascual, journalists Erwin Tulfo and Mike Rogas, and three broadcasting networks.

The IIRC recommended that an administrative case be filed against negotiator police Superintendent Orland Yebra and that possible criminal liability should be determined, but the Palace only recommended neglect of duty without any recommendation on possible criminal case. The IIRC also recommended that Chief Inspector Santiago Pascual be held liable for gross incompetence and possible criminal action, but the Palace affirmed the gross incompetence case without recommendation for possible criminal liability. The filing of administrative and criminal cases against Manila Mayor Alfredo Lim, but Malacanang said that Lim should be held liable for simple neglect of duty and misconduct. Charges be filed against several personalities but the recommendation was revised when it reached Malacañang.

1.First Report of the INCIDENT INVESTIGATION and REVIEW COMMITTEE on the August, 23, 2010 Rizal Park Hostage-taking Incident: SEQUENCE OF EVENTS, EVALUATION and RECOMMENDATIONS, Incident Investigation and Review Committee, September 16, 2010, pp. 9–10, 16, 22, 24. 2.”Hong Kong criticizes handling of Manila hostage crisis”. Reuters. August 23, 2010. http://www.reuters.com/article/2010/08/23/us-philippines-hostage-hongkong-idUSTRE67M35B20100823. Retrieved July 14, 2011. 3.Mair, John; Blanchard, Ben (August 24, 2010). “Philippines defends handling of bus hostage crisis”. International Business Times. 4.http://uk.ibtimes.com/articles/45880/20100824/philippines-defends-handling-