By RUDY D. LIPORADA
Goaded by Operation Pacific Eagle – Philippines (OPE-P), described by Professor Roland Simbulan as “the new US intervention in Asia” and “which raises the Philippines to the same level as Syria and Iraq for the Pentagon’s war plans,” President Rodrigo ‘Digong’ Duterte is helping to plant more seeds and is fertilizing the grounds for the further expansion of the New People’s Army (NPA). Entering its 49th year of armed struggle this March 29, 2018, the NPA is bound to face its fiercest and bloodiest years.
Elliot Gabriel, reporting for Mint Press News, states that “critics contend that OPE-P is aimed at strengthening Washington’s grip on the long-subjugated people of the Philippines, defeating a half-century leftist insurgency, and securing the country for the interests of U.S. multinational corporations”. Gabriel also deems that execution of the OPE-P uses the “1999-2015 counterinsurgency initiative ‘Plan Colombia’ as a template for OPE-P, as well as the use of the operation to continue the encirclement of China by US bases.”
Amid total secrecy in the US and the Philippines, the OPE-P was hatched in Sept. 1, 2017 and paraded as a “continuation of Operation Inherent Resolve, the US military’s crusade against the Islamic State group (ISIS) in Iraq and Syria.” The OPE-P “allows for an unlimited budget” for armed operations in the Philippines, described by President Donald Trump as “prime piece of real estate,” against ISIS and others, described as terrorists.
The willingness of Digong, who sang for his commander-in-chief, Trump, to be goaded by OPE-P exposes further his hypocrisy during his presidency campaign when he lambasted the US imperialists, promising to kick the imperialist troops out of the country. Denying the belligerent status of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) and the NPA, he is now re-branding them as terrorists. He is ignoring their status as such had already been lifted to the dismay of former President Gloria Arroyo. He has also tagged 600 and more activists, advocates, and those who speak against him as terrorists, denying them of their freedom of expression as enshrined in the Philippine constitution.
This signals a new stage in the efforts of the imperialists and the Digong regime to quell the revolutionary movement in the Philippines. According to Gabriel, “Critics see the use of the term ‘other terrorist organizations’ as a red flag signaling that the Pentagon’s focus is far from limited to those who are seeking to help establish a global ‘caliphate’ from the Southeast Asian archipelago.” Digong has also signed a law giving the Philippine National Police (PNP) the power to issue subpoenas, which are only supposedly to be issued by the courts.
With the swelling of 2,500 recruits for the PNP and other military expansion, Digong has put in place the groundworks for a martial situation worse than the salvaging phenomenon during dictator Marcos’s era. With this open season against anybody who could be branded as a suspected terrorist, Operation Tokhang killings against branded poor drug addicts will appear as a minor pretest to the massacres that are at the fore. There is no need for declaring martial law. It is already in place.
If there is one thing that Digong should learn from his Marcos idol, with martial law or none, he will only help fan the blaze of expansion of the revolutionary movement with the implementation of OPE-P by his imperialist masters. Marcos declared martial law to quell the NPAs when they were just a miniscule ragtag group confined a minute number of spots in the Philippines. He also declared martial law to quell the Moro rebellion in Mindanao. Now, the NPA is in 70 provinces in the Islands, able to march in uniformed battalions. While in the 70s, an NPA ambush is big news, now an almost daily occurrence is normal.
The on and off Moro rebellions are brewing to become widespread. The BBL forces are once again poised to erupt for the apparent non-passing of the Bangsa Moro law as promised. If the Marawi destruction is being used as a sample of what could happen to the Islands, Iraq, Syria, and Afghanistan are wars that have not yet ended for their people, dubbed as terrorists, ISIS, or whatever derogatory tags continue to fight.They continue to fight against those they consider as imperialist occupiers who parade themselves as freedom fighters for the American people.
Moreover, if true that Digong used to be an activist himself, he is forgetting the dictum that repression begets revolution. Tagging peaceful activists, advocates, and those supposedly expressing their redress and grievances as terrorists with the intention to harm with the Sword of Damocles, will only drive them to the safety of the underground or push them to fight back by joining the armed revolutionaries. This was true during the Marcos martial law. This will be true at this time with more NPA arms to embrace those who would want to join their ranks. You have more modern arms donated or sold to you by the imperialists – planes, tanks, drones – you say? Tell that to the North Vietnamese veterans.
Furthermore, with Digong’s lies, misspeaks, misogynist stance and dirty words of his foul mouth everyday now being exposed more blatantly, the release of drug lords making his drug war a fake at the expense of murdered poor supposedly addicts, the rising cost of basic needs for everyday survival, the unsolved traffic, corruption in the government, and many more are fast exposing his lies and psychotic chicanery.
His palace spinners are proving themselves as court jesters trying to justify his minute by minute incoherence about the disarray in this government. With the ICC breathing on his neck, Digong is also becoming more pugnacious against international bodies as he also attempts to clamp down on print, broadcast, and social media that are critical of his regime.
All these contribute to his planting seeds of new rebels against his regime while he continuous to fertilize the grounds of the existing belligerents. If Vietnam and Cuba were able to topple their oppressive regimes, the CPP-NPA could also do it no matter how long it takes. Thanks to their latest avid recruiter – Rodrigo ‘Digong’ Duterte. # nordis.net