The Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) today called on its members to resist the government military’s declared plan to end the 53-year old armed revolution by the end of the Rodrigo Duterte administration in six months.
In its traditional anniversary statement, the underground group rallied its forces to “resist and frustrate the declared plans of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) to carry out a ‘last push’ to end the armed revolution.”
Founded by seven young activists on December 26, 1968 in Pangasinan province, the CPP is a Marxist-Leninist-Maoist party that launched an armed revolution three months later on March 29, 1968 through the New People’s Army (NPA).
The NPA wages the oldest continuing Maoist armed struggle in the world.
The CPP said the “diehard fascists” of the Rodrigo Duterte government are doing their utmost to crush the Party and have resorted to the most vicious means of “defending and preserving their reign of corruption and plunder.”
The group’s leadership said the CPP is “ever determined to lead the people’s democratic revolution, shoulder all the difficult tasks and make all the necessary sacrifices in order to surmount all obstacles to frustrate the enemy’s counterrevolutionary war and carry forward the people’s war to ever greater heights” however.
The group said the Duterte government has carried out “relentless counter-revolutionary war” against CPP members in the regime’s desperate attempt to preserve the “rotten ruling system” that only intensified during the COVID-19 pandemic.
CPP revealed the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) it described as “the Duterte civil-military junta” serves as the government’s nerve center of state terror that has blurred the line between armed combatants and civilians in its counter-insurgency campaign.
“It (NTF-ELCAC) has subjected leaders and activists of mass organizations and communities to massacres and extrajudicial killings, surveillance, abductions, torture, unlawful arrests and detention, threats and intimidation and other gross violations of human rights,” the CPP said.
The CPP also said the AFP has violated international humanitarian law in employing brutal aerial bombardments that terrorize civilians and forcing “tens of thousands” to evacuate their communities out of terror.
“Mountainous areas, farms and areas adjacent to communities have been targets of 500-lb bombs dropped from fighter aircraft, rockets fired from attack helicopters and artillery shelling. Aerial and artillery bombardment and strafing are inherently indiscriminate and endangers the lives of civilians and destroys their property,” it said.
The Duterte government has taken delivery of multi-purpose jetplanes from South Korea and Black Hawk military helicopters from Europe this year that have already conducted military operations in Iloilo, Bukidnon and Samar provinces.
AFP and PNP commanding generals have also promised to crush the New People’s Army (NPA) before the end of Duterte’s term in six-months’ time.
The CPP however said civilians have become victims of “indiscriminate” airborne attacks against suspected New People’s Army (NPA) strongholds.
“Bombs dropped by the AFP have damaged farms and ravaged forests which also serve as sources of food, water, medicine and livelihood of peasants and minority peoples,” the CPP said.
The CPP said the government’s declarations are in vain even as it admitted that “some NPA units suffer(ed) some losses” in the year, including the death of NPA spokesperson Jorge “Ka Oris” Madlos last October in an operation in Bukidnon.
Growth and strength
The CPP claimed majority of the NPA’s guerilla units are successfully frustrating their enemy’s attacks, even with the military’s use of new bomber aircraft and intensifying ground warfare.
“[T]he great majority of the guerrilla units of the NPA have rendered the enemy’s superiority (in equipment) ineffective and have successfully grown in strength and expanded their base of support,” the CPP said.
“Despite the Duterte regime’s brutal tactics of counterrevolution, the people’s war continues to
move forward and steadily accumulate strength,” it added.
The CPP revealed that despite division-sized military operations against their forces, its Central Committee, Executive Committee and Military Commission, as well as officers of the NPA’s National Operational Command continue to provide leadership to the underground movement.
It added that the NPA’s 14 regional operational commands and their sub-regional and front operational commands remain intact.
The group said NPA units in Cagayan, Ilocos Sur, Quezon, Camarines Norte, Masbate, other Bicol provinces as well as in the islands of Mindoro, Palawan, Samar and Negros have also frustrated military operations during the year.
Support from the masses
The CPP said the NPA’s masterful use of guerilla tactics of dispersal, shifting and concentration allows the guerilla army to frustrate government military operations that also allows them to continue their “mass work” even in communities hit by calamities and disasters.
“They [the NPA] continue to enjoy the deep support of the peasant masses and Lumad minorities, especially as the AFP’s lies, corruption and collusion with mining companies and plantations are increasingly exposed,” it said
The CPP explained that the even worsening social conditions are inciting the masses to fight back with all forms of resistance.
“By resorting to brazen state terrorist attacks, the Duterte tyrannical regime is rousing more and more people to join the NPA, wage armed struggle and help carry forward the people’s war,” the group explained.
The CPP said more underground Party branches and committees continue to be built in both cities and rural areas that, along with NPA fighters and National Democratic Front of the Philippines allied organizations, “valiantly and boldly” carry their revolution forward.
Meanwhile, both the Duterte government and the NDFP did not issue their traditional reciprocal ceasefire declarations over the Christmas and New Year holidays for the second straight year following President Duterte’s announcement last year that he would no longer declare a truce with the NPA.
New PNP chief Gen. Dionardo Carlos said police personnel in regional offices and national operating units are on alert today, alleging the NPA launches attacks on December 26 and March 29 on its own founding anniversary.
“The CPP and its armed wing, the New People’s Army (NPA), are known to stage armed offensives to drumbeat commemoration of significant dates in the underground communist organization,” Carlos was quoted by news reports as saying.
The NPA are not known to launch military offensives on those dates during the Duterte presidency however.
CPP spokesperson Marco Valbuena for his part confirmed to Kodao that: “There is no declaration of ceasefire in the face of the AFP’s intensified military offensives, indiscriminate aerial bombardment and artillery shelling, and heightened suppression and terrorism in rural communities.”
There are also no announcements of traditional public gatherings of both NPA fighters and their supporters for today.
Valbuena said the CPP and the NPA are instead concentrating on helping communities within their areas of influence that were battered by Typhoon Odette.
“In the areas severely affected by typhoon Odette, NPA units are focused on extending assistance to help peasant communities rebuild their homes and repair their farms. At the same time, they are on high alert against treacherous attacks of AFP units against the NPA’s units involved in rehabilitation work,” Valbuena said. # (Raymund B. Villanueva)