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Throng fills Rizal Park for anti-tyranny rally

Speeches, songs and poems filled the air last night at Rizal Park as tens of thousands of protesters condemned extra judicial killings and tyranny on the 45th anniversary of Ferdinand Marcos’ declaration of martial law.

The mass protest rally at Rizal Park in Manila, one of several across the country led by the Movement Against Tyranny, is yet another huge event opposing to Pres. Duterte’s own declaration of martial law in Mindanao, the spate of extra-judicial killings (EJKs), the bombing of Marawi and the militarization of indigenous peoples’ communities.

Music by Bituin Escalante (“Sa Ugoy ng Duyan”), Tubaw (“Kapayapaan”) and Buklod (“Tatsulok”).

Progressives slam Duterte for ‘historical revisionism’ on 100th birth anniversary of Marcos

Activist groups commemorated the 100th birth anniversary of the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos last September 11 at the Libingan ng mga Bayani.

In fiery speeches, they accused President Rodrigo Duterte’s “historical revisionism” for his efforts to picture Marcos as a good president and worthy of a place at the so-called Cemetery of Heroes.

Members of the Philippine National Police blocked the protesters at the cemetery gate.

CPP says it’s time to fight Duterte’s ‘repressive tyrannical rule’

The Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) called for the isolation of the Rodrigo Duterte administration after the successive killings of minors believed connected with the government’s war against drugs as well as its martial law in Mindanao and counter-insurgency program.

In an editorial of the party’s official organ Ang Bayan, the CPP’s said the Filipino people’s outrage is rapidly accumulating against Duterte’s “repressive tyrannical rule.”

“They indict Duterte for the successive killings of several youths these past days by his armed minions: Kian delos Santos, 17 years old, Carl Angelo Arnaiz, 19 and Reynaldo de Guzman, 14, who all were tortured and killed by stabbing and shooting by the police in the “war against drugs”; and Obillio Bay-ao, 19, Lumad youth in Talaingod, Davao del Norte, who was shot and killed by paramilitary forces,” the article said.

The CPP said the people blame Duterte for the killing of many thousands by the three wars he has launched: the Oplan Tokhang “war against drugs”, the Oplan Kapayapaan war of suppression and martial law in Mindanao, and the anti-Moro war and destruction of Marawi.

“The people detest Duterte for repeatedly ensuring protection and giving incentives to police and soldiers for blindly following his kill orders,” the CPP said.

The revolutionary group said almost 20 were killed under Oplan Kapayapaan and Oplan Tokhang in the last two weeks alone.

The CPP also scored the Armed Forces of the Philippines’ failure to end the war in Marawi after more than 100 days of siege.

“The people are fed up with Duterte’s repetitious, scornful and self-conceited speeches. His pretensions, spectacles and false images are rapidly losing efficacy in the face of actual measures, policies and programs which harm the interests of the people and oppress the downtrodden,” the CPP said.

The party called on its forces to “act vigorously to expand and consolidate the ranks of mass organizations and build the people’s broadest unity in order to isolate and resist the US-Duterte regime.”

The group urged the formation of broad alliances, that could include “Duterte’s political rivals.”

“Various forces can also unite against Duterte’s measures to suppress his political rivals (through detention, impeachment and murder) and to monopolize political power through charter change under its supposed pursuit of ‘federalism,’” the CPP said.

The CPP said the people are slowly overcoming and repudiating the climate of awe and fear imposed by Duterte.

Sparrow’ teams and commando units

CPP founding chairman Jose Maria Sison for his part said there is a public clamor to form self-defense units in communities in addition to New People’s Army and People’s Militia forces to defend the people against Duterte’s “triple war.”

“The CPP’s Central Committee may study and decide on this clamor as it sees fit,” Sison in an online interview told Kodao.

Sison said it is justified that the Filipino people fight the Duterte regime using all forms of struggle in light of the killings of civilians, including minors.

“If ever-increasing and ever-widening rallies won’t be enough to isolate and oust the Duterte regime, the people’s war should move resolutely forward so that it won’t just be Duterte but the corrupt ruling system that would be brought down,” Sison said. # (Raymund B. Villanueva)

AFP-PNP group calls for Duterte’s ouster

A group claiming to be officers and members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) called for the ouster of President Rodrigo Duterte for “betrayal of public trust.”

In a statement issued Monday, the Patriotic and Democratic Movement (PADEM) said they condemn and hold Duterte accountable for alleged gross crimes that violate national sovereignty and democratic rights of the people.

“We pledge to work for the withdrawal of military and police support for Duterte and his administration in conjunction with mass mobilization of the Filipino people in millions to manifest their demand for the resignation or ouster of Duterte and his administration,” the group’s spokesperson Antonio Bonifacio said.

PADEM said Duterte and his administration committed the following crimes:

  1. Treating the AFP and the PNP as these were his private armies and practising favoritism and violating professional and service standards in the promotion and assignment of officers;
  2. Corrupting the PNP and the AFP with a system of monetary awards for the extrajudicial killing of alleged illegal drug users and of NPA suspects;
  3. Condoning and protecting top-level illegal drug lords (including Davao City vice mayor Paolo Duterte) and protectors (at the level of governors and generals);
  4. Emboldening /Inciting police officers to engage in extrajudicial killings of poor suspected illegal drug users and pushers by publicly telling officers to plant evidence and by guaranteeing their pardon and promotion in case of conviction;
  5. Aggravating corruption in government and criminality through the collusion of Duterte trustees and crime syndicates;
  6. Allowing China to occupy maritime features in the West Philippine Sea and to violate Philipine sovereign rights upheld by decision of the Arbitral Tribunal in accordance with the UN Convention on he Law of the Sea;
  7. Bungling the operations in Marawi City and indiscrinately destroying lives and property through aerial bombings, artillery and mortar;
  8. Favoring certain Chinese businessmen and Duterte relatives and cronies in the award of projected infrastructure projects using loans from China;
  9. Betraying the sovereign rights of the Filipino people by making the Philippines a debt vassal of China and offering to China the oil and gas resources under the West Philippine Sea as collateral for Chinese loans; and
  10. Seeking to replace the partnership with the United States in matters of national security with an even more lopsided relationship with China and Russia.

“Upon the change of administration, we pledge to follow the principle of civilian supremacy and support a new civilian administration, in accordance with the 1987 Constitution and the rule of law,” Bonifacio said.

PADEM is the first group of disgruntled AFP and PNP personnel to form and call for Duterte’s ouster.

Unfounded and uncalled for

The AFP quickly downplayed the group and declared its full support to Duterte.

“The AFP categorically denies the recent statement issued by a group that pretends to be representative of the men and women of the AFP and the PNP that calls itself the Patriotic and Democratic Movement (PADEM),” AFP spokesperson BGen. Restituto Padilla Jr., said.

“Such issues are clearly politically motivated and a matter that the AFP does not and will not subscribe to,” he said.

Padilla warned the military will act against forces that undermine the Duterte government, especially through unconstitutional means.

“Current developments and issues that this group wishes to take advantage of is now being addressed by the Department of Justice and parties to a possible crime are now under detention. Let us respect these processes and not allow ourselves to be used by individuals or groups with vested interests,” he said.

“The AFP appeals to the public and the various political groups to respect the apolitical stance of the AFP and help bring unity and healing instead of fomenting divisiveness and collapse,” he added.

The AFP and the Philippine Constabulary-PNP, however, has contributed to the ouster of Presidents Ferdinand Marcos and Joseph Estrada by their withdrawal of support in 1986 and 2001, respectively.

Corrupt and cruel regime

PADEM, however, immediately earned the support of a former officer and Philippine Military Academy (PMA) professor.

“Fellow PMAers, let us join the Patriotic and Democratic Movement (PADEM),” Professor Dante Simbulan said on his Facebook account.

A member of PMA Class of 1952, Simbulan returned to his alma mater in 1965 after active field duty in the AFP.

But Simbulan left the PMA in 1967 due to “more disillusionment,” saying the PMA only produces soldiers for the status quo.

He was credited for influencing Lts. Crispin Tagamolila and Victor Corpuz who both defected to the New People’s Army and inviting Jose Maria Sison to lecture at the academy.

Strongman Ferdinand Marcos detained Simbulan for three years from 1974 without charges. In 2016, he published the book “Whose Side Are We On?”

“It is time to put an end to this (Duterte’s) corrupt and cruel regime!” Simbulan said. # (Raymund B. Villanueva)

Martial Law activists call on youth to remember horrors of dictatorship

PROGRESSIVE groups marched to Mendiola last Wednesday, September 21, to mark the 44th year since dictator Ferdinand Marcos declared Martial Law and to press their opposition to talk of another military rule in the country.

Martial Law survivors and National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) consultants narrated their torture under Martial Law and called for the release of current political prisoners numbering more than 500.

First Quarter Storm Movement chairperson Bonifacio Ilagan said that tyranny has not been completely eliminated by the ouster of Marcos in 1986. Read more