Facebook helping cause of communist rebels, says leader*
By Jeffrey M. Tupas
First Posted 15:02:00 04/13/2011
DAVAO CITY, Philippines—Government chief negotiator Alexander Padilla was wrong when he claimed that Facebook was pulling the youth away from the ideals of communism, a communist rebel leader said Tuesday.
Fidel Agcaoili, spokesperson of the National democratic Front peace panel, denied that Facebook was "pushing Filipino rebels into oblivion" as Padilla had claimed.
He described the statement as “mendacious.”
"Alex seems to be suffering from the same arrogant sickness as some of those who left the national democratic movement to join the government bureaucracy. Like them, he thinks that the movement has stopped growing and recruiting from the ranks of the educated youth since he left 25 years ago," Agcaoili said on the sidelines of a peace forum organized by the Sowing the Seeds of Peace Movement here.
On the contrary, Agcaoili said, Facebook and other social networking sites have been helping the revolution.
"The problem with him is that he failed to see how social networks and the Internet are really helping the movement. These are the same tools that are being used by the youth to spread the national democratic aspiration of the people," he said.
Agcaoili said Padilla should not have spoken about the imagined demise of the communist revolution.
"It does not speak well of the government's negotiating panel chairperson to declare publicly that the use of Facebook determines the course of the revolutionary movement of the Filipino people. The people's war will continue and advance for as long as imperialism, feudalism and bureaucratic capitalism exploit and oppress the people and prevent the development of the Philippines," he said.
Instead of wasting his time on how Facebook plays a role in the communist revolution, Agcaoili said, Padilla should concentrate on why the people were rebelling.
“The discourse should have been on how to address the root causes of the armed revolution,” he said.
Agcaoili also dismissed Padilla’s call for members of the New People’s Army to lay down their arms and come to terms with the government, adding that it will never happen.
"For as long as there is domination of large multinational corporations, foreigners, big landlords, the revolution will be there—never will it be wiped out," he said.