Sunday, February 28, 2021

Kalinaw News: 1.4M natanggap ng 72 na dating rebelde ng Sarangani Province

From Kalinaw News (Feb 27, 2021): 1.4M natanggap ng 72 na dating rebelde ng Sarangani Province

Malita, Davao Occidental – Nakatanggap ng halagang PhP 1.4M ang 72 na mga dating rebelde ng Sarangani Province na sumuko sa kasundaluhan ng 73rd Infantry Battalion sa ginanap na “Releasing of Financial Assistance to Former Rebels” sa Capitol Gymnasium, Alabel, Sarangani Province nitong ika-26 ng Pebrero 2021.

Nagkaroon ng simpleng programa ang pamamahagi ng “financial assistance” sa mga dating rebelde ng Sarangani Province na kung saan nabigyan ang 18 na mga dating rebelde ng livelihood at immediate assistance sa halagang PhP 65,000 at 1 ang nakatanggap immediate assistance sa ilalim ng Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program (E-CLIP) ng Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG).

Samantala, 45 naman na mga dating rebelde ang nakatanggap ng PhP 5,000 cash assistance na ibinahagi ng Department of Social Welfare and Development.

Sa ibinahaging mensahe ni Engr. Samuel Camaganacan kanyang nabanggit sa mga dating rebelde na hikayatin ang mga natitira pang rebelde na sumuko na. “Narito ang ECLIP upang kayo ay matulungang magbagong-buhay. Kaya naman, kung may mga kakilala pa kayong hindi pa sumusuko, hikayatin ninyo at i-avail ang assistance na binabahagi ng gobyerno.”

Sa pakikipag-usap ng Pinuno ng 73IB na si LT. COL. RONALDO G VALDEZ sa mga dating rebelde, kanyang binigyang-diin na gamitin sa tamang paraan ang matatanggap na pera. “Malaki ang ibibigay na pera sa inyo at nagkaroon na din kayo ng sapat na trainings at seminar. Ito na ang hinahangad niyong bagong-buhay na sinabi ninyo sa aming kasundaluhan nang kayo ay sumuko at nagbalik loob sa gobyerno,” kanyang sinabi.

Bilang pagtatapos, nagbigay ng mensahe ang gobernador ng probinsya na si Hon. Steve Solon at nagtanong ng kung ano pang karagdagang pangangailangan ng mga dating rebelde. Malugod naman nila itong tinugunan at nagbahagi ng kanilang kailangan.

Walang katumbas ang saya na makikita sa mukha ng mga dating rebelde sa isinagawang aktibidad. Kanilang napagtanto na taliwas ang ipinamulat sa kanila ng kilusan. Sa katunayan, hindi sila itinakwil at pinabayaan sa kabila ng karahasang kanilang ginawa sa gobyerno noon.

Ang kasundaluhan, lokal na pamahalaan, at mga ahensya ng gobyerno ay walang sawang tumutulong at maghatid ng serbisyo ng gobyerno sa ilalim ng administrasyong Pangulong Rodrigo Duterte sa kaniyang programang End Local Communist Armed Conflict upang wakasan ang insurgensiya sa bansa.

[Kalinaw News is the official online source of information on the pursuit for peace in the Philippines This website is a property of the Civil-Military Operations Regiment, Philippine Army located at Lawton Avenue, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City. Contact us:]

Kalinaw News: 48IB Closes Community Support Program (CSP) Training for Red and White Area Operations and Sends Off CSP Teams

From Kalinaw News (Feb 27, 2021): 48IB Closes Community Support Program (CSP) Training for Red and White Area Operations and Sends Off CSP Teams

Bislig City, Surigao del Sur – The 48th Infantry (Guardians) Battalion closes its Community Support Program (CSP) Training for Red and White Area Operations and subsequently sends off CSP Teams in its Headquarters at Purok 1, Barangay Maharlika, Bislig City, Surigao del Sur on February 26, 2021.

CSP Teams aim to support the Local Peacebuilding Initiatives of the 701st Infantry (Kagitingan) Brigade in its goal for Zero NPA, Zero Recruitment and Zero Support System. Likewise, CSP will strengthen the support and capacity building of various Peoples Organizations, assist and facilitate the delivery of basic services, help fill-in the gaps by identifying prevailing issues and concerns in focused communities and safely deliver quality service by amplifying government presence in their respective areas.

81 Guardians troopers were declared graduates and were sent off by the Keynote Speaker and at the same time the 701st Brigade Commander, Brigadier General Krishnamurti A. Mortela PA. Members from the Provincial Government of Surigao del Sur represented by Executive Assistant Mr. Inocencio Sayawan Jr, Bislig City Executive Assistant Mr Jose Candia Sr., Hinatuan Mayor Shem G. Garay, Barangay Maharlika Chairman Samuel R. Lahoy and other stakeholders to include Bislig City Eagles Club also embraced the event.

Likewise, Police Lieutenant Colonel Jerome Dela Cruz who represented Agusan Del Sur Police Provincial Director Police Colonel Ringo C. Zarzoso and Police Lieutenant Joymar Prieto to represent Surigao del Sur Police Provincial Director Police Colonel James T. Goforth also manifested their support as PNP counterparts.

Surigao del Sur Executive Assistant Inocencio Sayawan, in his message, expressed their support in behalf of the Provincial Government of Surigao del Sur.

To highlight the event, the signing of the Local Peacebuilding Initiative “Guardians” by the Army’s 701st Brigade,48IB and representatives from the Provincial and Local Government and PNP counterpart was conducted.

Brigadier General Mortela said, “My expectations to the 48IB as one of the best units of the Philippine Army.I believe fifty percent of what you need has already been acquired in training the rest, you will definitely learn it during your deployment. Let us work altogether as we end this insurgency .”

Relatedly, Lieutenant Colonel Enrique G. Rafael , Acting Commanding Officer 48IB added, “The 48th Infantry (Guardians) Battalion is privileged to be part of the 701st Brigade, much more we are glad for the warm welcome we received from the provincial and local government both from Agusan and Surigao del Sur. This is just the start of our stronger partnership, for peace, progress and further development.”

[Kalinaw News is the official online source of information on the pursuit for peace in the Philippines This website is a property of the Civil-Military Operations Regiment, Philippine Army located at Lawton Avenue, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City. Contact us:]

Duterte to scrap VFA if proven US brought nuke armaments to PH

From the Philippine News Agency (Feb 28, 2021): Duterte to scrap VFA if proven US brought nuke armaments to PH (By Azer Parrocha)

Balikatan military exercise between the Philippines and the US (File photo)

President Rodrigo Duterte on Sunday said he would immediately terminate the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) between the Philippines and the United States (US) of America the moment he receives proof that American troops have brought nuclear armaments into the country.

In a press conference at Villamor Air Base in Pasay City, Duterte said he will not make second thoughts about scrapping the military pact for good once he gets hold of “hard information” regarding nuclear armaments.

“I am warning you that if I get hold of a hard information that nuclear armaments are here brought by you, I will immediately ask you to go out and I will terminate the Visiting Forces Agreement ora mismo (right now),”
he said.

Duterte added that should a war break out between the US and its enemy, it would cause serious damage to the Philippines.

“Kung magka-giyera (if a war breaks out) and it will surely start maybe in the theater of war would be the Spratly and China Sea. Katabi lang tayo. Pangasinan, it’s just --- nakaharap. Maraming probinsiya nandiyan. Alam mo kung may armaments sila dito ang unang tatamaan ‘yon. Saan? Sa Pilipinas (We’re just beside it. Pangasinan, it’s just --- in front. There are so many provinces there. You know if they have armaments here we’ll be first to get hit. Where? The Philippines),” he said.

He said US troops have also stored their weapons “all around the Philippines.”

“Ang unang matamaan, ang Pilipinas. Kasi nandito ‘yong base, nandito ‘yong mga armas nila …(The Philippines would be first to get hit. There bases are here, their arms). The arms are stored everywhere in the Philippines, baka hindi niyo alam. May mga (maybe you don’t know. They have) depots all around the Philippines where the arms are,” he added.

Last Feb. 24, Duterte admitted that he was still “undecided on the fate of the VFA, saying he wanted public input on the controversial defense deal.

“I will be talking about the Visiting Forces Agreement na pinag-usap usapan na ngayon (which is already making headlines). And I said I must be frank, I do not keep secrets to the people. I have not yet, as yet, decided on what to do. Meaning to say, to abrogate or renew [the suspension of termination], because I want to hear the people,” Duterte said.

Duterte on Feb. 12 said the US needs to “pay” the Philippines first before he reconsiders his earlier decision to revoke the VFA.

He, however, expressed confidence that China will not allow US armaments to be stored in the Philippines.

“Not because it will antagonize China but it is in the Philippine constitution, which prohibits the presence of nuclear armaments in the country,” he said.

After China’s donation of an initial 600,000 doses of Sinovac-made vaccines to the Philippines, Duterte assured the public that their generosity would not compromise current issues between Philippines and China.

“China never asked for anything. China has been giving us everything but never asked anything from us actually,” he said.

Duterte also stood by his declaration that his administration will adopt an independent foreign policy of “friend to all and enemy to none.”

Friday, February 26, 2021

New commander to maintain 'excellent performance' of 3rd Mech

From the Philippine Information Agency (Feb 26, 2021): New commander to maintain 'excellent performance' of 3rd Mech (By Gabriela Liana Barela) 

SAN JOSE, Tarlac, Feb.26 (PIA) -- Newly-installed commander of the Army 3rd Mechanized Infantry Battalion (3rd Mech) committed to maintain the unit's excellent performance.

In his speech during the Change of Command Ceremony, Lt. Col. Eugene Henry Cabusao said he is grateful for his new position even if it entails more responsibility.

"3rd Mech entails a broader mission, larger area of operations, and many more factors and elements to consider," Cabusao said.

"Nonetheless, I’m both excited and eager to keep learning and facing the challenges," he furthered.

Cabusao noted that he is in awe of the accomplishments of the former commander particularly the good relationship with the stakeholders.

"Following in your footsteps, it will be very hard to do better but I will serve all efforts to maintain the standards that you and our predecessors has set," he highlighted.

Newly-installed 3rd Mechanized Infantry Battalion Commander Lt. Col. Eugene Henry Cabusao. (3rd Mechanized Infantry Battalion)

With this, he asked for the continuous guidance of the former commander and assured his new chiefs in the 703rd Brigade and 7th Infantry Division.

"To my new bosses, please be assured that I will do my best to ensure the success of my unit’s mission," he convinced.

For the personnel of 3rd Mech, he promised to be just and fair living up to the unit's tagline "Pusong Mabangis pero Makatarungan."

Prior to becoming the new commander of 3rd Mech, Cabusao served as Service Battalion Commanding Officer at Armor Division Headquarters.

Initially a cadet at the Philippine Military Academy, he eventually qualified and became part of the United States Military Academy Class of 1997.

3rd Mech's area of operation covers 3 cities, 31 municipalities, and 812 barangays in the provinces of Tarlac, Pampanga and Zambales. (CLJD/GLSB-PIA 3)

Armor Div commander commends outgoing 3rd Mech head

From the Philippine Information Agency (Feb 26, 2021): Armor Div commander commends outgoing 3rd Mech head (By Gabriela Liana Barela)

SAN JOSE, Tarlac, Feb.26 (PIA) -- Armor Division commended the outgoing commander of the Army 3rd Mechanized Infantry Battalion (3rd Mech) for accomplishments under his stint particularly in the fight to end local communist armed conflict.

In his speech during the Change of Command Ceremony, Armor Division Commander MGen. Efren Baluyot congratulated Lt. Col. Norberto Aromin Jr. for various tactical operations that resulted to numerous surrenderees.

3rd Mech facilitated their return to the government through the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program, allowing them to reintegrate in the communities and start their normal lives.

"You have confirmed and illustrated the Philippine Army's genuine thrust to end the catastrophic attacks and damages of the local terrorists in the area,” Baluyot told Aromin.

He likewise lauded Aromin's engagements and partnership with their civilian stakeholders and counterparts which helped in their promotion of peace and development.

Armor Division Commander Major General Efren Baluyot. (3rd Mechanized Infantry Battalion)

"Undeniably, you have spurred the bayanihan spirit within your area of operation, not just you unit but the entire Armor Division and Philippine Army as a partner in nation building,” he complimented.

On another note, Baluyot told personnel of 3rd Mech to always work as a team despite the change of their commander from time to time.

"Commanders come and go but your dedication and honesty in your duties shall not change nor fade, but continue in fulfilling the mission and objective of your unit,” he said.

3rd Mech's area of operation covers three cities, 31 municipalities, and 812 barangays in the provinces of Tarlac, Pampanga and Zambales. (CLJD/GLSB-PIA 3)

2 Basilan warring clans settle dispute, yield 20 loose firearms

From the Philippine News Agency (Feb 26, 2021): 2 Basilan warring clans settle dispute, yield 20 loose firearms (By Teofilo Garcia, Jr.)

LOOSE FIREARMS. Lt. Col. Alex Ampati, 4th Special Forces Battalion commander; Col. Domingo Gobway, Joint Task Force Basilan commander; and, Col. Rodrigo Maramo, Basilan Provincial Police Director, (right to left) inspect the 20 loose firearms surrendered by the two warring clans of Tabuan Las town that settle their decades-long dispute Wednesday afternoon at the headquarters of the 4SFBn in Barangay Cabunbata, Isabela City, the capital of Basilan province. Since January 1 this year, a total of 70 loose firearms were turned over to the different Joint Task Forces under the command of the Westmincom. (Photo courtesy of Western Mindanao Command Public Information Office)

Two warring clans of Basilan province have peacefully settled their decades-long dispute and surrendered 20 loose firearms as they renounced violence, military officials announced Friday.

Lt. Gen. Corleto Vinluan Jr., Western Mindanao Command (Westmincom) chief, said the protagonists signed a peace covenant in a ceremony around 3 p.m. Wednesday at the headquarters of the 4th Special Forces Battalion in Barangay Cabunbata, Isabela City, the capital of Basilan province.

Vinluan named the protagonists as that of Basi Aba and Uztadz Gapur of Barangay Sulloh, Tapiantana Island, Tabuan Lasa town, and Barahim and Mirang Hassan of Barangay Tong-Umos of the same island.

The municipality of Tabuan Lasa, which comprises 12 barangays, is divided into four islands. The other three islands are Lanawan, the town’s capital, Bubuan, and Saluping.

Vinluan said the settlement of disputes was realized through the efforts of the 4SFBn in coordination with Basilan Police Provincial Office, Ulama Council, Council of Elders, and the municipal government of Tabuan-Lasa.

“Based on the report submitted by the Joint Task Force (JTF)-Basilan, the warring parties signed a peace covenant as a firm commitment to the settlement,” he added.

Lt. Col. Alex Ampati, 4SFBn commander, said that both parties turned over a total of 20 loose firearms, which include two “Baby” Armalite rifles, an M-16 Armalite rifle, 14 U.S. caliber .30 M1 Garand rifles, an M-14 rifle, a caliber .30 M1 Carbine, a caliber .357 revolver, and assorted magazines and ammunition.

The firearms were presented to Brig. Gen. Domingo Gobway, JTF-Basilan commander.

“I would like to commend our SF (Special Forces) troopers, our partners, and stakeholders for taking the active action to end the rido (clan war) in Tabuan-Lasa,” Gobway said.

“This gesture of the former feuding clans is very much appreciated. May they serve as a good example for others to follow so that everybody will have a chance to live in harmony and prosperity,” Vinluan said.

Since January 1 this year, a total of 70 loose firearms were turned over to the different Joint Task Forces under the command of the Westmincom.

Some 21 of the 70 were turned over to the JTF Central, eight to JTF ZamPeLan, 13 to JTF Tawi-Tawi, one to JTF Zamboanga, five to JTF Sulu, and 22 to JTF Basilan.

Ex-rebels form group to rebuild lives

From the Philippine News Agency (Feb 26, 2021): Ex-rebels form group to rebuild lives (By Sarwell Meniano)

NO LONGER 'REDS'. Officers of the Leyte-Tandaya Integrated Peace and Development Workers Federation during their first general assembly in Matag-ob, Leyte on Thursday (Feb. 25, 2021). More government support awaits the 231 former rebels in Leyte province formed into an association to help rebuild their lives shattered by armed conflict. (Photo courtesy of Philippine Army)

More government support awaits the 231 former rebels in Leyte province who formed an association to help rebuild their lives shattered by armed conflict.

This first initiative of the local task forces to end local communist armed conflict (ELCAC) was to formalize the Leyte-Tandaya Integrated Peace and Development Workers Federation, an organization of former New People’s Army (NPA) fighters who abandoned the communist terrorist group's ideology in the past years.

Tandaya refers to the name of Leyte Island during the Spanish era.

"By organizing them, they can easily access government programs and support each other in their journey to fully reintegrate to communities," Capt. Kaharudin Cadil, Philippine Army 802nd Infantry Brigade spokesperson, said in a phone interview Friday.

On Thursday, at least 191 of the 231 association members joined the first general assembly held in Matag-ob, Leyte since their formation last November 2020.

The members are from Ormoc City, Baybay City, Calubian, Carigara, Jaro, Leyte, Villaba, San Isidro, Tabango, Mahaplag, Hilongos, and Kananga towns.

Among the highlights of the gathering were the election of officers, signing of the manifesto, oath-taking of officers, presentation of issues and concerns of former rebels, and distribution of food packages.

Cadil said various government agencies and non-government organizations have committed to extending skills training, livelihood grants, and financial aids to the association.

Some parts of northwest Leyte were strongholds of NPA until about a thousand fighters and die-hard supporters surrendered to the government on April 13, 2019.

The NPA, the armed wing of the Communist Party of the Philippines, listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, the European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines.

Manhunt on vs. NPA ‘political guide’ in Agusan Norte

From the Philippine News Agency (Feb 26, 2021): Manhunt on vs. NPA ‘political guide’ in Agusan Norte (By Alexander Lopez)

The Police Regional Office (PRO) 13 (Caraga region) on Friday ordered a manhunt for an alleged political guide of the communist New People’s Army (NPA) in Agusan del Norte who has evaded arrest for illegal possession of firearms.

Brig. Gen. Romeo M. Caramat Jr., PRO-13 director, issued the order hours after Menhart Pagaran, a resident of Santiago town, managed to elude local police personnel who were implementing a search warrant on Friday morning

Pagaran is allegedly the political guide of the Sandatahang Yunit Pampropaganda of Guerrilla Front 16A, of the NPA's North Eastern Mindanao Regional Committee.

“Personnel from SMPS (Santiago Municipal Police Station), with the support of the 2nd Agusan del Norte Provincial Mobile Force Company and the 15th Special Action Force, implemented Search Warrant No. 2021-118-02 against Pagaran on Friday for violation of Republic Act 10591, or the Comprehensive Firearms and Ammunition Regulation Act,” Caramat said.

Pagaran, he said, was no longer in the area when the operating troops arrived.

Police recovered from the suspect’s residence a caliber .45 pistol, a caliber .38 pistol, various types of ammunition, and other pieces of evidence.

Police also seized a booklet containing subversive information and military and police uniforms.

Caramat ordered Santiago's neighboring police stations to provide support in the operation.

"We are calling for the support of the public in the PNP's (Philippine National Police’s) more serious and aggressive efforts against criminality and terrorism in the region. It is through our partnership that we will truly put an end to local communist armed conflict," he said.

Sarangani town mayor warns banning firms supportive of NPA

From the Philippine News Agency (Feb 26, 2021): Sarangani town mayor warns banning firms supportive of NPA (By Richelyn Gubalani)

Malapatan, Sarangani Mayor Salway Sumbo Jr. (File photo courtesy of the municipal government)

The municipal government of Malapatan town in Sarangani province on Friday warned businesses and construction companies they will be banned from operating in the area if they support the New People’s Army (NPA).

Malapatan Mayor Salway Sumbo Jr. issued the warning as he ordered an investigation into the reported resurgence of extortion activities by NPA rebels among businesses and construction firms working on government projects in the area.

“They should not be afraid of these terrorists. We can assure their protection 101 percent,” he said, adding that it is illegal to entertain such demands or make any form of payment to the NPA and their allies.

Acting on reports that a number of business establishments and contractors in the area have received extortion letters demanding the payment of “revolutionary taxes” to the communist terrorist group, he said they already requested police and Army units operating in the area to monitor the situation and conduct appropriate actions.

Among those affected are private construction companies assigned in road opening projects in upland villages, he said.

“We’re trying to confirm right now if any of them already gave in to these demands,” Sumbo told reporters.

He advised the companies and business establishments that received the extortion letters to just ignore them and report them to the local government, Philippine National Police, and the Armed Forces of the Philippines.

He said the local government has already requested the deployment of additional troops and intelligence personnel to properly secure the affected areas, especially the construction sites.

NPA units previously thrived in the mountainous villages of Malapatan but their presence in the area significantly declined in the past several years due to the continuing military operations and the government’s efforts to deliver various development projects and services to the people.

Several incidents of heavy equipment burning by communists were recorded in the area in the past years but none since Sumbo assumed office in 2019.

“According to reports, only a few armed rebels are left in the area as of the moment and the extortion activities are just part of their desperate efforts to become relevant again,” he added.

The NPA is listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines.

Army uses mobile audio-visual system vs. insurgency

From the Philippine News Agency (Feb 26, 2021): Army uses mobile audio-visual system vs. insurgency (By Nanette Guadalquiver)

MOBILE INFO SYSTEM. The mobile audio-visual system or MAVS of the Philippine Army’s 14th Civil-Military Operations shows videos of former rebels in Barangay Linaon, Cauayan, Negros Occidental. This undated photo shows the MAVs on board a military truck and traveling to barangays in Cauayan and Hinobaan towns benefiting from the Army’s community support program. (Photo courtesy of 14th CMO Battalion)

The Philippine Army’s 14th Civil-Military Operations (CMO) Battalion has stepped up its anti-insurgency campaign through the deployment of a mobile audio-visual system (MAVS) in various rural communities.

In Negros Occidental, the unit has assembled the first of the three MAVS on board a four-wheel drive military truck.

Maj. Arturo Dumalagan, commanding officer of the 14th CMO based in Murcia, Negros Occidental, said on Friday since they launched the initiative earlier this month, the mobile facility has been traveling to barangays in Cauayan and Hinobaan towns benefiting from the Army’s community support program.

“This innovation will address the need to dominate the information environment, especially in communities mostly affected by the false information fed to them by the left-leaning organizations allied with the Communist Party of the Philippines - New People’s Army - National Democratic Front,” Dumalagan said.

Two other MAVS will soon be deployed to Cebu and Iloilo once the procurement and installation are completed.

He said part of the audio-visual equipment has been donated by private firms and fraternity groups supporting the thrust of the 14th CMO Battalion.

“This will also help boost the operations of the brigades under the Joint Task Force Spear of the 3rd Infantry Division as we now have the equipment to fulfill the multi-roles of the army in the field,” he added.

Dumalagan said they initially used the mobile loudspeaker system but eventually saw the need to also show videos to the people in the communities.

“We are showing the recorded interviews of former rebels to raise awareness among the youth, especially minors, who are targets for CPP-NPA recruitment,” he said.

The MAVS is considered as a highly maneuverable CMO equipment that can be used up to the farthest areas that can be reached by the military truck.

In August last year, the 14th CMO, or “Voice of Peace” Battalion, was awarded the plaque of recognition for Best CMO Battalion of the Year for 2020.

It was cited for its “outstanding performance for both administrative and operation matters that greatly contributed to the significant accomplishment of the CMO Regiment mission in pursuing the ‘winning hearts, winning minds’ core purpose through unwavering commitment in service.”

13 villages in Panay island declare NPA persona non grata

From the Philippine News Agency (Feb 26, 2021): 13 villages in Panay island declare NPA persona non grata (By Perla Lena)

NO TO CTGs. Residents of Barangay Bagongbong in Lambunao town, Iloilo swear allegiance to the government and denounce the CPP-NPA in this undated photo. Bagongbong is among the 13 barangays in Panay island that declared the CPP-NPA-NDF persona non grata in February 2021. (Photo courtesy of 301st Infantry Brigade, Philippine Army)

Thirteen barangays in Capiz and Iloilo provinces, classified as under the influence of the communist terrorist group (CTG), have joined the list of local government units (LGUs) in Panay island that have denounced the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF) this February.

The villages are among the 49 barangays in Panay yet to be declared as cleared from the influence of the CTGs, said Major Cenon Pancito III, spokesperson for the 3rd Infantry Division of the Philippine Army (PA) in a phone interview on Friday. Panay is comprised of the provinces of Iloilo, Capiz, Aklan, and Antique.

“For us to complete the liberation of Panay we have to clear all affected barangays,” he said.

Of the 49 barangays, 43 are in Iloilo, two in Aklan, and four in Capiz.

Community support programs (CSP), the tool being used by the Philippine Army to clear barangays, have been deployed in those villages, he said.

The declaration of the NPA as persona non grata is one of the parameters to determine that the barangay has changed its perspective, Pancito said.

“These barangays used to be part of the guerilla base of the enemy. The CPP-NPA has been there for so long,” he added.

The 13 barangays are located in the towns of Janiuay, Maasin, and Lambunao in Iloilo and Tapaz in Capiz.

The barangays are Aglobong, Barasalon, Canauillian, Panuran, and Monte Magapa in Janiuay; Agsirab, Bagongbong, and Panuran in Lambunao; and Bolo and Punong in Maasin.

Meanwhile, in the municipality of Tapaz, the barangays are Lahug, Nayawan, and Siya.

The towns of Janiuay, Maasin, Lambunao, and Tapaz, Capiz have previously declared the CPP-NPA-NDF persona non grata.

Apart from proclaiming the communist group persona non-grata through their respective barangay resolution, the barangay residents also held an indignation activity and burned CPP-NPA flags to mark their withdrawal of support. They also signed their oath of allegiance to the government.

"Hopefully the rest of the barangays will do the same so we can say that we can proceed with the clearing of the barangays," Pancito said.

The Communist Party of the Philippines-New People's Army (CPP-NPA), which has been waging a five-decade armed struggle against the government, is listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, the European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines.

40 CPP-NPA supporters surrender to Army in NegOr town

From the Philippine News Agency (Feb 26, 2021): 40 CPP-NPA supporters surrender to Army in NegOr town (By Mary Judaline Partlow)

SURRENDERED FIREARMS. Forty individuals believed to be either supporters or members of the New People's Army in Barangay Carol-an, Ayungon, Negros Oriental recently surrendered to the Philippine Army. They also turned over their firearms (in photo) after three months of "immersion" with the 94th Infantry Battalion's Community Support Program team. (Photo courtesy of 94th IB)

A total of 40 supporters of the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army (CPP-NPA) in Barangay Carol-an, Ayungon in Negros Oriental are now under validation following their recent surrender to the 94th Infantry Battalion (94IB) of the Philippine Army.

Capt. Oliver Usog, 94th IB’s Civil-Military Officer/spokesperson, in an interview Friday afternoon said these individuals also surrendered 40 firearms to the battalion’s Community Support Program (CSP) Sustainment Team early this week.

This is the result of sustained “immersion” in their barangay from October to December of last year, Usog said.

Those who surrendered are still being processed to determine whether they are merely mass base supporters or members of the NPA’s Yunit Militia, he said.

The CSP is one of the Philippine Army’s programs to encourage NPA supporters and members to depart from the underground movement and return to mainstream society, he added.

Usog said Barangay Carol-an chairman Osias G. Teves initiated among his constituents the surrender of 22 shotguns, six .357 caliber pistols, eight .38 caliber revolver handguns, three 9mm pistols and one KG9 9mm pistol machine gun.

Lt. Col. Angelo S. Guzman, 94IB commander, lauded the efforts of the CSP team and Teves for this accomplishment.

Barangay Carol-an was previously classified as an NPA-influenced barangay.

Last Jan. 12, the barangay was declared cleared of insurgency by the Philippine Army’s higher headquarters.

Usog said the Army continues its CSP in different areas in the province as part of President Rodrigo Duterte’s whole-of-nation approach under the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC).

NTF-ELCAC whole-of-nation approach vs Reds most effective: Senate

From the Philippine News Agency (Feb 26, 2021): NTF-ELCAC whole-of-nation approach vs Reds most effective: Senate (By Marita Moaje)

The “whole-of-nation” approach by the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) in dealing with communist terrorist groups (CTGs) was given a positive feedback by the Senate panel that recently investigated the alleged red-tagging by the military of certain personalities, individuals, and organizations.

In the panel report dated February 22, 2021, the Senate Committee on National Defense and Security, Peace, Unification, and Reconciliation believed that the whole-of-nation approach “could be the most effective anti-insurgency program as evidenced by the continuous and consistent reduction of the influence and strength of the CPP-NPA-NDF (Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army)” despite “isolated blunders.”

The communist rebellion in the country, said to be the longest-running insurgency in Asia at over 50 years, remains a major threat to national security.

The armed struggle has hindered the national government's goal of securing peace and order towards a meaningful and sustainable development, especially in the countryside.

“Executive Order No. 70, s. 2018, adopting the whole-of-nation approach against insurgency through the creation of the NTF-ELCAC, is effective and provides a better alternative to the unsustained and intermittent peace talks which the CPP-NPA-NDF has taken advantage of over the years,” Senate Committee Report No.186, signed by committee chair Senator Panfilo Lacson and 12 other senators, read.

The 66-page report said the NTF-ELCAC refocuses existing government policy concerning armed conflicts as a manifestation of a broader and deeply-rooted social problem, more than being a military concern.

The information campaign being undertaken by the NTF-ELCAC is also vital in encouraging parents, whose children were recruited and turned into child warriors, to speak up and seek government help.

“This Committee recognizes the duty of the NTF-ELCAC to raise awareness against the CPP-NPA, considering the increase of child recruitment and deaths of young Filipinos in military and NPA encounters,” the report stated.

The Senate committee encouraged the security sector, where NTF-ELCAC is part of, to further strengthen its intelligence gathering and analysis capability to ensure that every information used Is verified and actionable.

It added that accomplishments gained through the localized peace talks should be highlighted to counter vilification campaigns made by CTG sympathizers targeting the genuine purpose of EO 70 while earning the support of the public towards a long-lasting peace in the country.

The European Union, through Council Decision 2011/70/CFSP dated January 11, 2011, designated the CPP-NPA as a terrorist organization.

The CPP-NPA is also listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines.

Navy to decommission 4 'legacy ships' March 1

From the Philippine News Agency (Feb 26, 2021): Navy to decommission 4 'legacy ships' March 1 (By Priam Nepomuceno)  February 26, 2021, 1:41 pm

The Philippine Navy (PN) will formally decommission four legacy ships in Sangley Point, Cavite on Monday (March 1).

Decommissioning ceremonies will take place at 4 p.m. at Captain Salvo Pier, Naval Base Heracleo Alano, Sangley Point, Cavite City, PN public affairs office chief Commander Benjo Negranza said in an advisory on Friday.

The ships to be decommissioned are the BRP Quezon (PS-70), a former Auk-class minesweeper of the US Navy constructed during World War II and transferred to the PN in 1967; the BRP Pangasinan (PS-70), a former US Navy patrol craft escort built in 1943 and turned over to the country in 1948; the Tomas Batilo-class fast patrol craft, BRP Salvador Abcede (PC-114); and the BRP Emilio Liwanag (PC-118), which were acquired from South Korea in 1996.

PN chief Vice Admiral Giovanni Carlo Bacordo earlier told the Philippine News Agency that these ships need to be decommissioned as they are now too old and costly to maintain and operate.

"These ships have already served our nation more than enough and are now too costly to maintain," he said.

Bacordo said the PN is phasing out these ships so that the Navy can "devote more resources to our newly-acquired ships".

"We have to allocate our meager budget to maintain our more modern warships," Bacordo added.

The PN chief, however, assured the public that they have sufficient ships remaining to conduct their various missions.

"Notwithstanding, we have a sufficient number of ships to continue performing our mandate to protect our people, secure our sovereignty and the integrity of our national territory," Bacordo said.

PH Navy welcomes 2nd missile frigate BRP Antonio Luna

From the Philippine News Agency (Feb 26, 2021): PH Navy welcomes 2nd missile frigate BRP Antonio Luna (By Priam Nepomuceno)

NEW MISSILE FRIGATE. The country's second missile frigate BRP Antonio Luna is docked at the Pier 13, South Harbor in Manila on Friday (Feb. 26, 2021). The BRP Antonio Luna was earlier given at-sea honors by the PN last February 9 through a meeting procedure conducted by the country's first guided-missile frigate BRP Jose Rizal (FF-150) and a fly-by of the Air Force's FA-50 jets as it entered the Philippine territorial sea. (Photo courtesy of Naval Public Affairs Office)

The Philippine Navy (PN) on Friday officially welcomed the prospective BRP Antonio Luna (FF-151), the country's second guided-missile frigate, and its crew.

Gracing the arrival ceremony at Pier 13, South Harbor in Manila were Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) Secretary Mark Villar who served as guest of honor, PN chief Vice Admiral Giovanni Carlo Bacordo, Offshore Patrol Combat Force head Commodore Joe Anthony Orbe, Littoral Combat Force chief Commodore Roy Vincent Trinidad, and other senior military officials.

In his speech, Villar called the BRP Antonio Luna “the most modern surface combatant of the Philippine Navy…it is world-class and capable of competing with other world-class ships in armed forces around the world".

"With our sailors who are among definitely the best in the world, I can say that with this addition to the Navy we’re definitely improving our position as one of the stronger armed forces and navies in the world… I give all my praises to the skilled and experienced sailors of the Philippine Navy," he said.

Bacordo called the arrival of BRP Antonio Luna as "a momentous event in the history of the Philippine Navy. "As our competence and capacity continue to grow through the years, the Philippine Navy consistently pursues its modernization thrust – with the people and more importantly, for the Filipino people,” he said.

“From the decommissioning of PN legacy assets to our continuous effort in upgrading our fleet, the Philippine Navy is fully committed to becoming a more credible unit of the Armed Forces of the Philippines,” he added.

The BRP Antonio Luna was earlier given at-sea honors by the PN last February 9 through a meeting procedure conducted by the country's first guided-missile frigate BRP Jose Rizal (FF-150) and a fly-by of the Air Force's FA-50 jets as it entered the Philippine territorial sea.

The ship had to stay in the anchorage off Subic Bay, Zambales to observe the mandatory quarantine period for the crew prior to this event. The BRP Antonio Luna has a maiden crew of 101 officers and sailors and is commanded by Capt. Charles Merric Villanueva.

The frigate will be formally handed over to the Philippines, christened, and commissioned into service tentatively on the fourth week of March.

Parlade cites several cases of Reds’ kidnap of minors

From the Philippine News Agency (Feb 26, 2021): Parlade cites several cases of Reds’ kidnap of minors (By Priam Nepomuceno) 

Lt. Gen. Antonio Parlade, Jr., Southern Luzon Command chief (PNA File photo)

A ranking military official dismissed claims made by the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People's Army (CPP-NPA) that it is not involved in the kidnapping of minors or children.

"Marco Valbuena, Chief Information Officer of the CPP, denies NPA kidnapping of children exists. Wow! Where is this denial coming from? From Utrecht, Netherlands? Let's refresh Valbuena of just a few of these kidnappings of minors by the NPAs," said Lt. Gen. Antonio Parlade, Jr., Southern Luzon Command (SolCom) chief, in a statement sent to the Philippine News Agency Thursday.

In debunking Valbuena's denial, he cited the case of Mary Jane Ganay alias "Elsie", who surrendered to the government with the help of the clergy in Oriental Mindoro in December 2020.

He added that in Elsie’s testimony, she claimed that she was only invited to attend the wedding of NPA member Daisylyn Castillo alias "Tikya" and Marjun Malucon, alias "Warren" in Sitio Mantay, Barangay Monteclaro, San Jose, Occidental Mindoro, not knowing that she will be held against her will.

"After the said wedding, she was never allowed to return (home) and she was only 16 years old during that time. She underwent courses and trained with NPAs, got pregnant, raped, until her surrender in 2020," said Parlade, who is also a spokesperson of the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict.

He also mentioned the cases involving Layag Sanyuan alias "Layka", Helen Villanueva alias "Jenny", Maylin Ligduman alias "Joan" who are all minors who surrendered with four others after their leader Lorelyn Saligumba alias "Farah", reportedly a member of the Morong 38, was killed in an encounter in Baco, Oriental Mindoro in June 2020.

"They were asked to fetch water, bring backpacks of NPAs to the mountains, and were never allowed to return to their homes.

These minors, aged 15-17 became communists, married fellow NPA members to protect themselves from being raped, until they had a chance to escape and surrender to the government’s pastor friends.

“Alias 'Joan' was forced to marry NPA (member) Nilo Ligduman alias 'Roel', also a minor. Alias 'Jenny', on the other hand, was forced to marry Renante Villanueva alias 'Rens/Joe'," he added.

The CPP-NPA is listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines.

Parlade said he could go on enumerating the kidnapping of minors by the NPA but added that the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) and the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) can provide complete details on minors recruited and sexually abused by their comrades.

"I can go on Valbuena, but the CHR and DSWD can also provide you a more complete list of NPA child warriors who were forced to have sex with NPAs while they were minors. And that will fall either as qualified or statutory rape, Mr. Valbuena. That's a double major offense, and no amount of denying will exonerate your terrorist colleagues," he added.

CPP/Ang Bayan: National freedom has no price tag

Propaganda article from the English language edition of Ang Bayan posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Website ( Feb 21, 2021): National freedom has no price tag

The Filipino people were seriously disgusted by President Rodrigo Duterte’s February 12 speech where he declared “if America requires the presence of their troops here, I’m okay with that” under the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA)–as long as they pay with military weapons.

He said the US has not been paying enough, especially since it is already stockpiling weapons in the former Subic Naval Base in Zambales and Palawan. Malacañang insisted that the US must give the Philippines an amount equal to what it gives Pakistan, a country used by the US for its aggression, occupation and continued intervention in Afghanistan in one of its longest wars of conquest. It claims the Philippines should get enough since it will surely be drawn into a war between the US and China should one breaks out in the South China Sea.

Duterte treats the country’s sovereignty as a commodity: “it’s all about money” he declared in 2016. He ended his drama of “terminating the VFA” and claims of upholding an “independent foreign policy.” He has exposed his unabashed puppetry to the US. More guns and bombs is all he wanted all along.

Over the past years, Duterte pretended to be “angry” at the US even when in reality, he has done nothing to defend Philippine national sovereignty. He surrounded himself with US yes-men who perpetuated old pro-US policies, especially in the military and economy. He promised Trump in 2017 that he will end peace negotiations with the NDFP, crush the armed revolutionary movement and amend the constitution to give foreign capitalists full ownership rights over land, business and other Philippine resources. That same year, the US initiated Operation Pacific Eagle-Philippines (OPEP).

Duterte never questioned the lopsided military agreements including the Military Assistance Agreement (MAA), the Mutual Defense Treaty (MDT), the VFA, the Mutual Logistics Support Agreement (MLSA) and the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA). These treaties bind the country’s foreign policy to the US and is the reason why it cannot be considered independent.

Duterte’s “angry at America” stance is a sham. He merely used this to show off to China, the imperialist rival of the US. In return, Duterte was promised tens of billions of dollars worth of infrastructure project grants for his cronies. Duterte and his cohorts strengthened ties with the Chinese drug and casino syndicates. On the mere promise of China, Duterte gave China the license to establish military facilities in seven artificial islands within Philippine territorial waters, lay claim to Bajo de Masinloc in violation of the 2016 decision of the International Arbitration Tribunal and drive away Filipino fishermen from their seas.

Duterte’s ties with China fully benefited a few big bourgeois compradors, bureaucrat capitalists as well as military officers. Some of them are keen to the growing economic and political strength of China. This was such a cause for concern for US imperialism that it is taking measures to ensure the support and loyalty of its followers in the country.

The new Biden government of the US aims to strengthen its control of the neocolonial state, mainly by tightening its grip on the AFP. This is in line with its plan to more aggressively defend US economic and geopolitical interests in the face of the growing strength of its rival China. While posing as “progressive” in domestic issues against the ultra-Right policies of the previous Trump government, Biden is also known to favor aggressive military posturing.

After speaking recently to the newly appointed US defense secretary, Defense Sec. Delfin Lorenzana declared he and the military favor the continuation of the VFA. This was a clear message from the US that it will no longer tolerate Philippine rapport with China. It is now mobilizing its forces in the Philippines, inside and outside the ruling regime, to further strengthen and ensure its military, economic and political control of the Philippine ruling class.

Because of this, expect the pro-US politicians to intensify opposition to growing Chinese economic and political influence. The US may accommodate Duterte’s demand for “bigger payment” but only because this will also serve strategic US interests. On the other hand, expect also China to take measures to counter US influence by using both its economic and military might.

The Filipino people must stand up and denounce Duterte’s slavishness to the US and China, to the detriment of the country’s sovereignty and benefit of the economic and military interests of foreign imperialists. The people must assert that national freedom has no price tag. They must push for countries in Southeast Asia to defend their rights and the freedom in international waters against China’s expansionism.

They must demand for the complete abrogation of the VFA, EDCA, MDT, MLSA and other one-sided military agreements that give US military forces extraterritorial rights in the Philippines and trample on its national sovereignty. On the other hand, they must denounce the Duterte regime for kowtowing to China’s annexation of Philippine territories and plunder of the country’s natural resources.

The Party calls on the American people to censure the Biden government for aligning itself with the Duterte tyrannical regime in exchange for securing US geopolitical interests. The American and Filipino people must cooperate to fight US interventionism and support for the bloody war of suppression in the Philippines.

[Ang Bayan is the official news organ of the Communist Party of the Philippines and is issued by the CPP Central Committee. It provides news about the work of the Party as well as its analysis of and views on current issues. Ang Bayan comes out fortnightly and is published in Pilipino, Bisaya, Ilokano, Waray, Hiligaynon and English.]

CPP/NDF-North Central Mindanao: 3 minors killed by the 5th IB in Lanao del Sur

Posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Website (Feb 26, 2021): 3 minors killed by the 5th IB in Lanao del Sur


FEBRUARY 26, 2021

Three minors were killed when members of the 5th Infantry Battalion fired upon civilians in the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) Extension Camp, under the Darapanan Camp, in Amai Manabilang, Lanao del Sur on February 20, around 4:00 PM.

The military soldiers fired several shots followed by three big bombs that the residents assume as cannon bombs. The series of strafing and bombing lasted for 15 minutes.

The victims were four families consisting of 21 individuals mostly children and women. A four-month pregnant woman was among the victims.

The bodies of the three killed were brought to the 5th IB 99 camp in Ranao-Baning Amai Manabilang, Lanao del Sur.

CPP/NPA-Central Negros: Pagsilot-patay sa Isa ka Ex-CAA, ginpatuman sang LPC-NPA!

Posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Website (Feb 26, 2021): Pagsilot-patay sa Isa ka Ex-CAA, ginpatuman sang LPC-NPA!


FEBRUARY 26, 2021

Ginkalipay sang pumuluyo sa Guihulngan City ang pagsilot-patay sa isa ka masupog nga Ex-CAA nga si Lander S. Garde, anay naga duty sa Candalanon CAA Detachment sa Sityo Candalanon, Brgy. Trinidad sang nasambit nga syudad.

Ginpatuman ang pagpatay kay Garde sa Sityo Tuko sakop sang Brgy. Trinidad, Guihulngan City, Negros Oriental, alas 2:00 sang hapon sadtong Pebrero 7 paagi sa SPARO-team sang Leonardo Panaligan Command-New People’s Army. Nakuha sang team kay Garde ang isa(1) ka 38 calibre kag apat(4) ka bala nga wala pa makalupok.

Madugay na nga ginareklamo sang pumuluyo sa Brgy. Trinidad ang kasupog sini bangud sa kaso sini nga pagpamahog kag pagpangtaya sang pusil, pagpangkastigo sa mga sibilyan, pagpalupok sang armas, ginagamit sang mga militar kag pulis bilang giya sa mga ginalunsar nga operasyon, kag aktibo nga nagapaniktik sa mga aktibidad sa pumuluyo sa komunidad bisan ini ang indi aktibo nga nagaduty sa Detachment.

Rason nga ginpasakaan siya sang kaso sang mga pumuluyo kag ginpamatbatan ini sang rebolusyonaryong korte sang pumuluyo sang silot nga kamatayon.

Ini nga pagsilot naghatag sang hustisya sa mga biktima sang kahalitan ni Lander, pagpang-abuso sang mga kapulisan kag teroristang militar sa malapad nga pumuluyo sa Central Negros. Ilabi na sa mga biktima sang madinuguon nga Oplan Sauron.

Panawagan sa mga isganan nga mga Pulang Hangaway sang LPC-NPA nga depensahan ang palangabuhian kag kabuhi sang malapad nga pumuluyo. Silutan ang mga kontra rebolusyonaryo kag malain nga elemento nga may utang nga dugo sa pumuluyo.Mas nga pasingkion ang paglunsar sang lapnagon nga taktikal nga opensiba para mahatagan sang hustisya ang mga biktima sang pagpamigos kag pagtapak sang tawhanon nga kinamatarong sang pasistang US-Duterte nga rehimen.

Maghimakas kag Indi mahadlok para sa pag-angkon sang tinuod nga hustisya!

CPP/NDF-KM: Let the triumphs of the EDSA uprising embolden the people in marching towards the Duterte regime’s downfall

Posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Website (Feb 25, 2021): Let the triumphs of the EDSA uprising embolden the people in marching towards the Duterte regime’s downfall


FEBRUARY 25, 2021

We commemorate the 35th anniversary of the EDSA uprising today by remembering the valor of all those who made the ultimate sacrifice in the fight for liberation from Marcos’ martial law dictatorship.

The EDSA uprising that resulted in the dictator Marcos’ removal from power is more than just a four-day affair. It was built-up by decades of defiance of those who boldly opposed the US-Marcos regime’s vicious reign. It began with the First Quarter Storm in 1970 that manifested the boiling points of unrest among students, urban poor communities, and other sectors during a period of economic turmoil, and was ultimately carried to fruition by workers, peasants, youth, semiproletariat, and all democratic forces who have had enough of human rights violations, the state’s denial of the people’s civil liberties, and the overall erosion of bourgeois liberal rights.

Moreover, we remember the EDSA uprising as characterized by the scores of youth and masses who trooped to the countryside and took up arms with the New People’s Army. They belong with the great many people who were forced to go underground by the repressive policies of Marcos’ dictatorship that caused the abrupt dissolution of all democratic spaces, especially in cities and urban centers.

Fundamentally, to remember the EDSA uprising is to remember the decades-long struggle that gave the mass movement the strength and volume it needed to end Marcos’ martial law.

However, thirty-five years later, the Filipino people find themselves under a rule no different from the US-Marcos regime, save for being bloodier, a lot more nefarious, and incomparably corrupt.

In the more than four year of the Duterte regime, the masses in the cities have witnessed more state-sponsored killings and illegal arrests than those of past regimes combined. Starting with the infamous Oplan Tokhang to supposedly rid the streets of illegal drugs, Duterte has gained international scrutiny for being indifferent to human rights. More recently, these illegal arrests and extrajudicial murders have been taking place under the pretext of the Anti-Terror Act of 2020 and Duterte’s war against “left-leaning” organizations and individuals.

In the countryside, unparalleled destruction to land and property has been caused by intensified bombing and strafing, all in an impossible bid to squash the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) and New People’s Army (NPA) once and for all. The regime has also made its counterinsurgency efforts as its number one milking cow for kickbacks—borrowing billions upon billions to purchase war materiel. All it has been able to achieve thus far is traumatize peasant masses and destroy farming lands.

Furthermore, these fascist attacks never once missed a beat even during the onslaught of the Covid-19 pandemic. Rather, Duterte repeatedly used the CPP-NPA as a scapegoat and distraction from the state’s criminal neglect.

Almost a year since his lockdown started, the country is still at the exact same position. Covid-19 cases continue to rise while the economic crisis rages on at the same time. With still no free mass testing for all, aggressive contract tracing, and safeguards for the resumption of work and classes, and with rising prices for pork and vegetables, the people find themselves unable to make ends meet.

Meanwhile, Duterte and his cohorts are swimming in pools of cash that are deeper now than they were pre-pandemic. His staunch supports and gofers in the administration and military has been afforded VIP inoculation of the Covid-19 vaccine; and his emergency powers granted him the authority and freedom to control appropriations for the unchecked procurement of personal protective equipment, testing kits, and other necessities for a pandemic response.

This is on top of the ₱19 billion budget for his pet National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) that has done nothing but red-tag groups and individuals. Now, the NTF-ELCAC is starting a Barangay Development Program (BDP) that aims to subsidize localities for their counterinsurgency operations. Nearing the 2022 elections, it will not be surprising if these “subsidies” end up funding the campaign of Duterte’s local minions. Less surprising even, if the NTF-ELCAC’s staggering budget becomes part of Sara Duterte’s 2022 Presidential campaign.

Now, as the country celebrates the triumphs of the first and second EDSA uprising and all similar victories of the mass movement, it is the highest and most urgent task for the entire Filipino people to allow these memories to collectively embolden them as they march toward the downfall of the US-Duterte regime.

With a political and economic forecast as grim as what the country has today under the terrorist and fascist regime, the masses are starving for his ouster. It is apparent that no type of band-aid solution can assuage the crisis and the worsening situation of the people.

Duterte has proved himself to be the the exact copy of Marcos; except this time, it is in high-definition print. His insatiable greed and fascism mirrors Marcos’ corruption and brutality. And even without an official declaration, Duterte’s martial law has long been in effect with his police and military running amok and committing human rights violations left and right with the unrestrained power they have been given.

As it was demonstrated in the past, the masses cannot and will not rest their faith on electoral politics, especially with the level of consolidation of power that Duterte has reached inside his administration and among his generals. As it was demonstrated in the past, the regime’s ouster is key to ending the nightmare the Filipino people are living in right now.

It is especially of utmost importance for all patriotic and democratic youth to brave the challenges of resisting the terrorist and fascist Duterte regime amid the state’s heightened attacks on the people’s freedoms.

The youth and students must integrate with workers and peasants and must at all times carry the calls for their democratic rights. It must learn from the struggles and victories of the EDSA uprising to resolutely and immediately remove Duterte from the seat of power.

More importantly, the youth must now more than ever embrace the life-and-death struggle of confronting a terrorist regime and accept the difficulties and sacrifices that it comes with. Ultimately, the youth must decisively and militantly imbibe the lessons of the EDSA uprising and join the Kabataang Makabayan and New People’s Army in taking the struggle for genuine liberation to its highest form.

CPP: Mark the 35th EDSA uprising with a determination to wage social revolution

Posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Website (Feb 25, 2021): Mark the 35th EDSA uprising with a determination to wage social revolution

FEBRUARY 25, 2021

We mark today the 35th anniversary of the EDSA uprising. For four days, millions of Filipinos took to the streets to finally put an end to the 14-year brutal rule of the martial law regime of the Marcos dictatorship.

The EDSA uprising served as culmination of years of difficult and life-and-death struggle waged by the Filipino people. It is but appropriate to remember the thousands of heroes and martyrs who sacrificed their lives in the struggle against the US-Marcos dictatorship.

The uprising arose from grounds made fertile by the blood of sacrifice of tens of thousands of Filipinos who bravely resisted Marcos’ fascist onslaught. They carried forward the people’s aspiration for freedom and democracy through all forms of resistance: from the underground, to the factory picketlines, to campus strikes and to the revolutionary armed struggle in the countryside.

The Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP), as well as the whole range of national democratic organizations of workers, peasants, semiproletariat, students and other sectors were among the biggest, most resilient and determined force to wage resistance against the US-Marcos dictatorship. They were also the principal targets of the regime’s campaign of suppression under martial law.

The reign of terror imposed by martial law will be shattered not long after it was declared in 1972. Workers strikes erupted in the mid-1970s which eventually led to mass demonstrations of tens of thousands of people in the next years. In the countryside, the New People’s Army (NPA) grew in strength as a nationwide people’s army and carried out ever more frequent and daring raids, ambushes and other tactical offensives.

The strength of the Party and the NPA, as well as that of the democratic mass movement of the basic classes and sectors galvanized the entire country and made possible the emergence of a broad united front against the US-Marcos dictatorship taking the form of informal cooperation and formal alliances. As such, when opposition leader Sen. Benigno Aquino was assassinated by Marcos’ armed minions in 1983, a wave of mass protests was ignited where a broad range of anti-dictatorship forces were mobilized.

Depictions by the bourgeois press of the EDSA uprising as a purely spontaneous response to the calls of church and political leaders are historically inaccurate and erroneous. The EDSA uprising was a product of the efforts of the broad anti-Marcos united front with the national democratic forces serving as among the most determined core of the mass demonstrations. Day and night, workers and student organizations trooped to EDSA and mounted marches to Mendiola and Malacañang to press for Marcos ouster.

The EDSA uprising, however, was no social revolution. It brought about a change in the form of reactionary class rule from fascist dictatorship to pseudo-democracy. Bourgeois liberal rights were restored but only to a limited degree. The post-Marcos regimes secured the semicolonial and semifeudal system and the interests of US imperialism, the big bourgeois compradors and big landlords to the detriment of the country’s sovereignty and economic patrimony. It perpetuated the debt-dependent and foreign capital-led economic policies. Bureaucrat capitalists continue to aggrandize wealth through corruption and plunder. Landlessness remained the most widespread problem in the countryside. The grave socioeconomic conditions of the people were continuously exacerbated by anti-worker and anti-people laws and policies, and by all-out liberalization, privatization and deregulation under the neoliberal policy regime.

At the base of the Philippine ruling state remains the fascist machinery built by Marcos. Not one of the criminals behind the massacres, tortures and other brutalities and crimes of martial law was ever punished under the reactionary state. On the contrary, the key personalities of Marcos’ martial law remained in power and at the core of the security and defense establishment. The torturers and murderers rose among the military and police ranks, become senators and congressmen and appointed to various agencies of the reactionary state. Not only were the state armed forces and police not reformed, their brutal and repressive orientation was further heightened, especially with US indoctrination, training and support. Fascist crimes and rights abuses remain unabated. Any mass initiative by workers, peasants and other sectors to uphold their national and democratic aspirations continue to be suppressed with arms.

The state terrorism and tyranny of the US-Duterte regime is the starkest reminder how the Marcoses and its fascist machinery persisted through the past reactionary regimes. Not only were the Marcoses not punished, they have been politically rehabilitated and continue to aim to restore themselves on top of the reactionary state. Like Marcos, Duterte catered to the interests of the AFP and PNP, appointing generals to key government positions, unleashing the police in the drug war and emboldening them with assurances of immunity, allotting a large portion of the budget to acquire more weapons and giving the military increasing powers to control “the whole of nation” by making counterinsurgency the central policy of his government.

The national democratic forces gathered strength in the course of mass struggles against the US-Marcos dictatorship by firmly upholding the basic interests and democratic demands of the broad masses of workers and peasants. Through EDSA, they proved that with enough organized strength and broad unity, the people can overthrow a reactionary government even if they could not yet effect the transfer of political power from the ruling classes to the oppressed and exploited masses themselves.

The same process and lessons were learned in the second EDSA uprising when the people overthrew the Estrada regime in 2001. It is crucial for the Filipino people to grasp these lessons now as they confront the Duterte regime and demand its ouster.

To effect a fundamental change in the socioeconomic and political conditions of the Filipino masses, however, there must be a real social revolution where economic and political power is taken away from the imperialists, the big bourgeois compradors and big landlords by the oppressed and exploited masses themselves. This is the fundamental aim of the national democratic revolution led by the Party which is being carried forward by millions of Filipinos across the country.

In the countryside, guided by the Party and through the efforts of revolutionary peasant organizations and the NPA, organs of the people’s democratic government are being built in the form of revolutionary committees at the village or intervillage levels. These organs of governance carry out land reform, implement its laws and policies and provide various social services to the people. These will continue to multiply as the revolutionary armed struggle continues to gain strength across the country. In due time, the entire reactionary state together with its military and police force, will be completely smashed by the New People’s Army and the revolutionary masses, and in its place, establish a new democratic government and build a country free from imperialism and social injustice and lay the conditions for socialist revolution and construction.

CPP/NDF-Negros Island: Militantly relive the spirit of EDSA People Power Uprising! Fiercely struggle for justice and accountability and oust the tyrannical Duterte!

Posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Website (Feb 25, 2021): Militantly relive the spirit of EDSA People Power Uprising! Fiercely struggle for justice and accountability and oust the tyrannical Duterte!


FEBRUARY 25, 2021

National Democratic Front-Negros is one with all revolutionary organizations, different patriotic and progressive sectors and all freedom-loving Filipinos in commemorating the 35th year of EDSA People Power Uprising that ended Marcos dictatorship in 1986.

Today, as we look back on the power of unified and collective action of our fellow Filipinos, may we be reminded to fight against the tyrannical government and oppression in our country. The lesson of the EDSA people’s uprising teaches us to rise against tyranny and dictatorship. EDSA People Power Uprising in 1986 is one of the significant proofs in our history of how we exercise democracy to topple down a dictatorship.

Thirty five years after the People Power Uprising, the country is still fighting for freedom that was once regained through people’s collective action.The horrors that shrouded our nation during the dark days of martial law are haunting us again today. The country remains in the hands of a President who resembles a dictator. The dictator of the past that found new clothes in the leader of today but even much worse than Marcos.

Five years into Rodrigo Duterte’s term, the Philippines has already been subjected to undeclared Martial Law through the implementation of Memo Order 32 in Negros Island, Samar and Bicol; Executive Order 70 and the Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020 that continue to warrant state terrorism in the country.

Under Duterte’s reign of terror, patterns of the late Ferdinand Marcos’ approach to power manifests in the form of unbridled corruption, increasing foreign debts, crackdown on legal democratic activists, gross human rights violations, and subordination to the hegemony of his imperialist masters.

With Duterte’s obsession to stay in power beyond his term, his fascist government is hell-bent on preserving repression and oppression in the country. Duterte continues to wave his iron fist and maximizing all of his machineries to quell the growing dissent. Activists, progressives, and defenders of truth are being systematically attacked, demonized and silenced under this administration.

Even at a time of worldwide pandemic and economic crisis, Duterte keeps on unleashing terror against the people and silencing dissent.

However, despite of the attempts to silence dissent, Negrosanons and the Filipino people stand firm and more determined in their struggle to champion genuine justice, freedom and democracy.

In the face of another authoritarian regime, NDF-Negros call on all Negrosanons and Filipino people to relive the militant spirit as we commemorate the 1986 EDSA People Power Uprising. We must continue to collectively fight and struggle in putting forward people’s rights for a fully democratic country.

The history of our country is a history of bravery and militancy. We should be reminded of the challenge to continue to strive as a nation to keep the democracy alive. Together with the broad masses, we must fiercely struggle for justice and accountability and oust the tyrannical Duterte regime.

With the masses as the decisive force, it can and will once again end a dictatorship. ###

CPP/CIO: Trotskyites regurgitate military lies around Plaza Miranda bombing

Posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Website (Feb 24, 2021): Trotskyites regurgitate military lies around Plaza Miranda bombing


FEBRUARY 24, 2021

Over the past few months, the American Trotskyite zealot Joseph Scalice has staged one attack after another to vilify the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP).

In a lecture slated for March 2, Scalice will again take the stage to spew more lies and slander the CPP. This time, he will regurgitate the long-exposed falsehoods of the Philippine military and US CIA claiming that the Party is behind the grenade throwing during the August 21, 1971 rally of the Liberal Party at Plaza Miranda which killed nine and injured scores of other people.

The bombing, which Marcos and his political lieutenants immediately blamed on the Party and New People’s Army, was used by the regime to justify the suspension of the writ of habeas corpus and the subsequent wave of arrests targeting the national democratic mass organizations. It formed part of the overall plan of Marcos to consolidate his authoritarian regime leading to the imposition of martial law the following year and his 14-year dictatorial rule of abuses, plunder and corruption.

For close to fifty years now, the exact truth about the Plaza Miranda bombing has been kept secret by the minions of the Marcos dictatorship, as with the facts surrounding the assassination of Sen. Benigno Aquino Jr in 1983 (which Marcos also pinned on the NPA) and so many of the fascist and political crimes perpetrated during and after the Marcos regime. Vast resources have been mobilized by the masterminds behind these dastardly crimes who have successfully protected their political and military careers even with the demise of the dictatorship.

Despite having kept Prof. Jose Ma. Sison in prison for nearly nine years until 1986, the Marcos regime failed to build a formidable criminal case against him or the CPP over the Plaza Miranda bombing. In his accounts, Prof. Sison describes how he rejected Marcos’ insinuated offer for him to denounce Sen. Aquino and an NPA unit in Tarlac as responsible for the bombing in exchange for his freedom.

For many years, there has been a broad consensus among Philippine historians, journalists and writers that Marcos himself or his minions (with or without his knowledge) are behind the Plaza Miranda bombing, just as people in the inner circle of the Marcos ruling clique are accused of masterminding the 1983 assassination of Aquino. The core truth of the Plaza Miranda bombing as well as the Aquino assassination have never been unearthed, despite the fact that the anti-Marcoses ruling class clique has held power for many years

The concocted narrative that Prof. Sison and the CPP are behind the Plaza Miranda bombing would only be revived several years later by the US psywar experts and political operators in the CIA. The US imperialists were seeking to heal the deep animosity between the rival factions–between the ruling Aquino clique, including Salonga and the retinue of Liberal Party members, on the one hand, and Enrile, Ramos, Cojuangco, and other key political and economic figures aligned with the Marcoses). The US operators were keenly aware that this “healing” would be difficult to achieve as long as responsibility for the Plaza Miranda bombing remained pinned on the Marcoses.

In 1989, the US CIA published a book authored by Gregg Jones, described as a correspondent of the US News and World Report. Drawing from polluted sources described as “former top officials of the CPP” to make them appear credible despite the fact that they have become military agents, the book “Red Revolution” assembled a convoluted storyline that the Plaza Miranda bombing was ordered by Prof. Sison as then chair of the CPP Central Committee.

Jones’ narratives were taken up by the Philippine Senate on the prodding of its president Salonga, who was apparently convinced by the US to take the line against the CPP over the Plaza Miranda bombing. While the Blue Ribbon Committee spent months of hearings in 1989-1990, it found nothing conclusive against Prof. Sison or the CPP. The same narratives and testimonies were used by the Philippine National Police-Criminal Investigation Service to file a last-minute complaint against Prof. Sison before August 21, 1991 before the Manila City Prosecutor’s Office. In its March 2, 1994 resolution, the Manila prosecutor dismissed the complaint against Prof. Sison which it described as based on sheer speculation. (For a detailed exposé of the lies and trickery propounded by Jones, we invite our readers to review the 1989 article “Communist Party and Plaza Miranda” by Prof. Sison.)

Fast forward three decades later, Scalice comes trotting, with no new evidence, but claiming to have “established that the overwhelming weight of historical evidence reveals that the CPP was responsible for the bombing.” In his 2017 doctoral dissertation, Scalice, who describes himself a historian, uses his Trotskyite erudition to propound an unabashedly anti-communist version of Philippine history to vilify the communist party and the national democratic movement.

In his upcoming lecture, we anticipate Scalice to repeat the atrocious lie that the CPP and Prof. Sison are behind the horrendous Plaza Miranda bombing. In his thesis, Scalice basically recycles the impeached sources cited in the Gregg Jones’ book. While he recognizes that Prof. Sison “accused correctly (the sources) of now being either military or intelligence operatives,” he insists that this “does not invalidate their claims.” He then goes on to uncritically repeat the same old hearsay and concocted statements and then makes his assessment of the “credibility of the account” after his reconstruction. He makes no mention of the fact that the same “evidences” he is presenting in his dissertation, were also exhaustively presented before the Philippine Senate and a Manila prosecutor, both of which found no reason to act on them.

Scalice acknowledges that “there is certainly insufficient evidence to convict Sison of the bombing in a court of law,” but then goes on to conclude in a patently dishonest manner that based on his completely biased reconstruction, “the preponderance of available evidence strongly indicates that Sison and leading members of the CPP carried out the Plaza Miranda bombing.” Yet despite the clause “strongly indicate” (which suggests doubt), he proceeds to deconstruct the Party’s “motives” behind the bombing (suggesting he is quite certain).

Scalice justifies this sleight by claiming “The task of the historian … is not to establish guilt beyond reasonable doubt; it is to demonstrate what the preponderance of evidence suggests and to establish on this basis what likely happened. Additional evidence may further substantiate this conclusion or compel its revision.” We do not know what kind of historian Scalice was trained to be, but certainly, not one who practices discipline of drawing conclusions only from irrefutable facts.

The Trotskyite then presents as evidence the Party’s view that repression breeds resistance. He insists that the criminal motive of the CPP behind the Plaza Miranda bombing was to provoke fascist suppression as this will push people to support the armed revolution.

Scalice distorts and denigrates the CPP’s historical materialist view that fascist suppression engenders revolutionary resistance as what he sees as motive for carrying out terrorist crimes such as the Plaza Miranda bombing. Scalice makes it appear that the CPP subscribes to a fatalist view that state repression will spontaneously push people to take up arms.

In declaring that fascist suppression engenders resistance, the Party points out the dialectics of history that while counterrevolutionary violence breeds fear, silence or indifference, it also has the contradictory effect of fostering a revolutionary tendency for people to fight back to regain the freedoms taken away from them.

It is important for the Party to point out such dialectics in order to promote revolutionary optimism and courage, and to steel the determination of the Party’s cadres and the people to actively resist fascist suppression, confront the brutalities and shoulder the difficult and often dangerous tasks in fighting a tyranny.

Citing the made up stories of his sources, Scalice further on makes the ridiculous assertion that the CPP wanted Marcos to suppress the people because the Party was pressed to recruit more NPA fighters due to a then upcoming arms shipment from China. His illogic reminds us of a recent statement by the fascist braggart Gen. Parlade who said the CPP should welcome the Anti-Terror Law following a Party statement that anticipates how that the draconian law would push many to join the NPA.

The Party abhors the fascists for inflicting counterrevolutionary violence against the broad masses of the people. Fascists intimidate the people and instills fear and terror to enable the unmitigated rule of autocrats. It suppresses the people and subjects them to worse oppression and exploitation by destroying their unity and organizations. Reactionary state suppression aims to prevent the revolutionary and progressive forces from carrying out their task of arousing, organizing and mobilizing the people.

However, the Party does not fear counterrevolutionary violence and rouses to people to wage resistance, both armed and unarmed. In waging revolutionary armed struggle, the CPP is guided by its strategic line of waging protracted people’s war to build the people’s army in the countryside, mounting tactical offensives during the strategic defensive stage until it has the strength to overthrow the reactionary state entrenched in the capital city.

At the same time, the CPP considers the democratic mass movement as an indispensable realm for people’s resistance, for them to advance their socioeconomic interests and democratic rights along the antiimperialist, antifeudal and antifascist line and to serve as a school to raise their political and revolutionary consciousness.

To allow the full play of the national democratic mass movement, the Party urges the people to take advantage of the legal courses of action to draw in the biggest number of people in mass struggles. The Party builds- underground mass organizations and Party cells and branches to serve as the strong core of the democratic mass movement. It repudiates putschism and premature insurrectionism in the urban areas which can unduly isolate the advanced forces. The NPA carefully selects partisan armed action in the town centers and urban areas to punish the fascists and defend the masses against state terrorist attacks.

In repeating the lie that the chair of the CPP Central Committee ordered the Plaza Miranda bombing, Scalice betrays his complete ignorance of the ideological, political and organizational principles of the Party. Democratic centralism prevents the chair of the Party from issuing orders or taking actions in behalf of the Party that contravene its fundamental principles, such as to cause harm against civilians or non-combatant, or in this case, to violently attack friendly political forces. The chair “cannot avoid either the authority or the scrutiny of the central collectives to which he belongs as well as that of the lower collectives responsible for the personnel to be ordered to do anything of major significance or consequence” (Sison, “The Communist Party and Plaza Miranda,” 1989).

After repeating the lies and shifting from either insinuating or directly accusing the CPP and Prof. Sison to be behind the Plaza Miranda bombing, Scalice makes the wild Trotskyite conclusion that “(t)he CPP facilitated the declaration of martial law above all, not through the Miranda bombing, but by subordinating the opposition to military dictatorship in the working class and youth to a rival section of the ruling class.” Scalice perversely bends and overstretches fragments of information as well as outright conjectures.

Scalice’s claims that the CPP “facilitated” the declaration of martial law is ludicrous. He ignores the fact that the Party consistently exposed all of Marcos’ schemes to impose a one-man dictatorship and how it urged the people to unite and resist such schemes. Scalice is practically saying that forging a united front among the different anti-Marcos forces which cut across the various democratic classes, to resist martial law actually “facilitated” its declaration. This is desperate polemical acrobatics to denigrate the Party’s united front policy as “class subordination” to the reactionary classes. It exposes his deceit in seeking to justify his Trotskyite view that the working class must fight fascism and wage revolution on its own and demand the subordination or support of other classes.

We can deal with Scalice’s aversion against the Party’s policy on alliances and united front more extensively at a later time. It suffices to say for now that through the efforts of the Party and the united front, martial law and the Marcos dictatorship failed in its aim to crush the people’s revolutionary resistance. On the contrary, the Party grew in strength by building itself as a proletarian vanguard on firm Marxist-Leninist-Maoist ideological grounds; building the New People’s Army along the strategic line of protracted people’s war; building independent organs of political power in the countryside under proletarian leadership along the antifeudal line of relying on poor peasants and farm workers; arousing, organizing and mobilizing the people in great numbers in democratic mass struggles; and taking advantage of splits among the ruling classes to isolate the most rabid and despotic reactionaries in power. The aim of the Party is to accumulate strength through revolutionary armed struggle and by mobilizing the broad masses of the people in one political struggle after another against the ruling reactionary state.

In their obsession with “permanent revolution,” Trotskyites such as Scalice stop at nothing to denounce the CPP at every possible turn, heaping lies and baseless slander, but ignore the fact that it has been able to persevere, grow and lead millions of people to the revolutionary cause of national democracy and socialism. As always, the ultimate aim of the Trotskyites is to weaken and destroy the communist party by inducing it to isolate itself from and unduly cause antagonism with other revolutionary, democratic and positive classes and forces.

In terms of class location in the Philippines, the Trotskyites are pettybourgeois elements who overstate their social and historic importance through revolutionary phrase-mongering and seeking to lead the working class away from the two stage revolution and onto the path of isolation and self-defeat.

As the Filipino people mark the 50th anniversary of the bombing of Plaza Miranda a few months from now, it is propitious to quote the Central Committee statement published in the August 24, 1971 special issue of Ang Bayan:

The Communist Party of the Philippines on its own behalf and also on behalf of the New People’s Army which it leads expresses the strongest indignation over the Plaza Miranda massacre of August 21st which resulted in the death and injury of so many people, including the top leadership of the Liberal Party.

The dastardly act is directed not only against the Liberal Party but also against all opposition and the entire Filipino people. The terrorist character and mad scheming of the U.S.-Marcos clique are amply proven not only by the latest massacre and previous massacres but also by the suspension of the writ of habeas corpus on a nationwide scale and without any basis. Beyond doubt the Marcos fascist puppet clique is bent on monopolizing political power through militarist, anti-communist and anti-democratic methods.

After five decades, all the post-Marcos reactionary puppet regimes have failed to punish the masterminds of the Plaza Miranda bombing. Promoting pseudo-history and the CIA-line that the CPP is behind this carnage will only favor the madmen who are the actual perpetrators of this crime.