Emil Jurado, a columnist with the Manila Standard Today, described Thursday's events in the Manila business district of Makati as a “A PatheticTragic Comedy.

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“Comedy, yes, because we all know nothing will happen,” Jurado wrote.

“Tragic in the sense that while the economy is turning around we have characters who can't wait for 2010 for President (Gloria) Arroyo to step down. Pathetic that something like this should happen now.”

A small group of soldiers who were on trial for a 2003 military mutiny against Arroyo walked out of a court hearing, seized the Peninsula Hotel and appealed to the rest of the military to withdraw support for her.

They also appealed to the Filipino people to join them, but the appeals fell on deaf ears.

The rebels were led by former naval officer Senator Antonio Trillanes and army Brigadier General Danilo Lim, both of whom are on trial for various coup attempts.

They surrendered after a six-hour stand-off and were re-arrested.

The Philippine Star, in an editorial headlined “DTja Yu”, said: “Both men are not new to trying to topple the government from posh accommodations.

“Lim led the takeover of hotels in Makati in December 1989, in the bloodiest attempt to topple the administration of Corazon Aquino.

How the government dealt with him has to have a bearing on his actions yesterday and on those of Trillanes and their supporters,” it said.

“After getting a slap on the wrist for the 1989 coup, Lim was eventually reinstated. Under Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, who rose to power on the wings of a military-backed popular revolt, Lim was even appointed to head the elite Army Scout Ranger Regiment.”

The Philippine Daily Inquirer said the rebellion “had failure written all over it.”

“The idea that a commander-in-chief can be forced out of office by taking over a secluded building in Makati was ridiculous in 2003; it is only pathetic now,” it said.

“The idea that a mass of supporters, the possible nucleus of a People Power uprising, will throng to an inaccessible camp was preposterous in 2003; it remains risible today.”

Coup attempt ridiculed