By CPP Information Bureau
The Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) today blasted at Benigno Aquino III’s “severe criticism of the use of command-detonated explosives by the NPA as nothing but a smokescreen to camouflage the indiscriminate and brutal aerial bombing campaigns being carried out by his armed forces in the countryside, in their increasingly desperate aim to reduce the people’s armed resistance to inconsequentiality by year’s end.”
The CPP issued this statement in reaction to a statement yesterday by Aquino lauding the Armed Forces of the Philippines for chancing upon a New People’s Army munitions factory in Loreto town, Agusan del Sur. Aquino went on to criticize the NPA saying, “only combatants should be involved in fighting… (b)ut these land mines kill or injure people regardless of whether they are combatants or not.”
“Benigno Aquino III is engaging in the duplicitous game of misdirection by severely criticizing the NPA for using small-scale explosives against the AFP, while ordering his armed forces to drop large-scale killer bombs from M-520 attack helicopters and indiscriminately firing 105m howitzer canons against undetermined targets, mostly directed towards civilian communities and farms,” said the CPP.
“He is deliberately circulating misinformation about NPA command-detonated land mines and explosives with his claims that these are indiscriminate,” said the CPP. “The NPA’s command-detonated explosives are, in fact, very discriminate. They are detonated only against specific military targets engaged in combat.”
“In contrast, it is the AFP’s aerial bombing runs, the howitzer canon fires, and machine gun strafing that are not only indiscriminate but cause widespread and intense damage,” pointed out the CPP.
The most recent aerial bombing campaign was carried out by the AFP from 18 November to 4 December in Davao del Norte and Compostela Valley provinces. It also carried out an aerial bombing run in Malibcong town, Abra, towards the end of May, and another one on 29-30 August in Sagada and parts of Bontoc, Mountain Province. Such bombing campaigns have endangered the lives of, and traumatized, civilians in nearby communities. They have also resulted in widespread damage to agricultural fields, natural formations, and watershed areas.
The AFP also carried out an indiscriminate aerial bombing run in the three-week siege of Zamboanga City last September, causing widespread fires, the destruction of tens of thousands of homes, and the forcible evacuation of more than a hundred thousand people.
The CPP reiterated its call for an intensified local and international campaign to expose and demand an end to the aerial bombing campaigns being carried out by the AFP.