Expose and oppose the Aquino regime's deception and militarism
October 21, 2010
Not for a moment since Benigno Aquino III's new regime took power did the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) relent in its counterrevolutionary military campaign against the Filipino people. The US-Aquino regime is making full use of the political capital it gained from the last election to court support for its campaign of repression.
But it is this same campaign that is rapidly dissipating whatever political capital Aquino has left. The people who were blinded by the glare of his promise to change the old ways are gravely disappointed with the extension of the US-Arroyo regime's bloody Oplan Bantay Laya (OBL). The present regime is turning out to be no different from its predecessor in terms of the intensity and brutality of its fascist repression.
The AFP has been conducting a relentless and allout military campaign for more than two months now in Ilocos-Cordillera, Bicol, Eastern Visayas, Negros and practically the whole of Mindanao. Up to seven Philippine Army divisions are now launching military operations and sowing terror among the people in these areas. AFP military operations have also continued in other regions.
These operations have resulted in myriad cases of fascist violence and human rights violations and wrought havoc on the people's livelihoods. The AFP has been brazenly abusing human rights and international humanitarian law.
In a matter of a little over two months, soldiers and other military operatives have committed massacres, abductions and torture, destroyed crops and other sources of livelihood, conducted illegal searches, theft and forcible recuitment and terrorized civilians. There has so far been an average of more than one victim of extrajudicial killing per week under the new regime.
The renewed spate of fascist suppression by the AFP in the first few months of the new puppet Aquino regime is driven by three factors that are inextricably intertwined.
The first are Aquino and the AFP top brass' marching orders to crush the people's armed revolutionary resistance in three years. The orders were issued after the AFP's failure to defeat the NPA despite a decade of the bloody OBL. Aquino has ordered its extension while he prepares his own "internal security operational plan" for next year. He has practically doubled the AFP budget for 2011, announced plans to expand the military and is now begging for more military assistance from his imperialist master.
Second, there has been an outpouring of US support to the AFP and the puppet Aquino regime's counterinsurgency program. The US has recently approved $434 million in aid for programs related to the counterrevolutionary war, on top of the financial aid and surplus military equipment it has been providing to the AFP and the police. The 2010 Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training (CARAT) is currently being held in various areas of Luzon involving more than 4,000 American soldiers and 1,000 elements from the Philippine Navy and Marines. The US continues to intervene and call the shots in the AFP's counterinsurgency operations. It is the moving force behind the new operational plan being drafted for next year, which will focus on stepping up psywar and political gimmickry to justify and support an intensified campaign of suppression.
Third, current massive military campaigns are closely connected to particular big foreign comprador and bourgeois comprador projects. These campaigns are aimed at suppressing the people's resistance to plans to initiate and expand the operations of large-scale mining and agro-industrial companies as well as other plunderous projects that are detrimental to the people's livelihoods, rights and other interests.
No matter how much the US-Aquino regime and the AFP rely on psywar gimmicky and lies, they cannot cover up the brutality of their fascist acts. The AFP has been taking instruction from the US Counterinsurgency Guide to rev up its psywar and civil-military operations (CMO). Thus, alongside its military operations, the AFP has been conducting showcase medical and dental missions. Alongside its terroristic acts, the AFP has continuously been prating about "advocating human rights." It has been utilizing the mass media to spread distorted information and malign the NPA and the revolutionary movement.
Aquino and his subalterns have also been going on and on about "peace" despite the absence of any decisive step towards the resumption of talks with the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP). In perpetuating the policies that have served as stumbling blocks to the peace talks' resumption, Aquino has shown his lack of intention to resolve the roots of the civil war through political negotiations.
The large-scale campaign of repression and unrelenting violence against the people expose the US-Aquino regime's militarist, reactionary and antipeople character lurking behind its promises of change. Aquino's much-vaunted "straight path" is in fact a crooked road paved by fascism and watched over by its armed forces in order to give full vent to foreign monopoly capitalists and their big bourgeois comprador, landlord and bureaucrat capitalist cohorts to plunder and oppress the people.
Aquino's intensification and expansion of his campaign of repression and violations of the people's rights are stoking the people's anger and fuelling their determnation to defend themselves and wage resistance.
We must pull all stops to expose and oppose the deceitful US-Aquino regime's worsening militarism and oppression.
The Filipino people must unite against the puppet regime's US-dictated militarist policy. We must continuously expose the US-Aquino regime's pretenses and its sham promises of change. We must support the widespread clamor to resume the peace talks in order to seek a just and lasting resolution to the civil war raging in the country.
We must fire up the people's courage to resist the various ways by which the military and the state's armed forces have been brutalizing and terrorizing the countryside and urban areas. The people must mobilize themselves in their numbers to show that they see through the US-Aquino regime's deceptions and have not been crushed.
The NPA must step up its tactical offensives to thwart the AFP's fascist military operations and punish it and the Aquino regime for its atrocities against the people. Let the US-Aquino regime shake to its very foundations as it confronts tactical offensives growing in scale and intensity. Let us show the entire nation that the national democratic revolution continues to advance and gain strength.