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NDFP condemns worsening war crimes, rights violations in Negros

By NDFP-Negros

The National Democratic Front of the Philippines – Negros condemns the escalating war crimes and human rights violations committed by the Armed Forces of the Philippines and Philippine National Police against the people as a result of the US-Aquino counter-revolutionary war Oplan Bayanihan.

The truth is being systematically covered up by President Benigno Aquino III and other high officials of the government and the AFP/PNP on the bloody and brutal US-sponsored Oplan Bayanihan. The US Central Intelligence Agency, the AFP and the Office of the Communications Group of Malacañang coordinate with each other and orchestrate in manipulating public opinion through a heavy dosage of psychological warfare propaganda.

They try to demonize the Communist Party of the Philippines, New People’s Army and the NDFP, while deodorizing the image of the Aquino regime’s human rights record that they feed to the channels of the mainstream mass media, social networking, public relations and social survey firms, and anti-communist front organizations. They try to conceal the rampage of state terrorism of extra-judicial killings, illegal arrests and detention, tortures, enforced disappearance, forced evacuations, recruitment of minors as war combatants, forced occupation of public institutions and other atrocities. On the other hand, the reactionary regime protects the criminals in the military from being jailed, promote others, and indifferent in punishing the Ampatuans.

The ambitious Oplan Bayanihan of the Aquino regime aims to wipe out the armed revolution of the people in three years (2011-2013) with the full support of US imperialism, this together with the intensification of the military operation in the cities and the countrysides, attacks on the revolutionary forces, military and legal offensives against progressive forces. Their policy framework of “whole of the nation approach” involves the mobilization of “all the stakeholders for peace”. In essence this is the direct involvement of all the agencies of government, AFP/PNP initiated-sectoral organizations and alliances, reactionary, reformist and anti-communist organizations, NGOs and institutions for combat, intelligence, and civil-military operations of the AFP/PNP. Oplan Bayanihan has enflamed the civil war in the country on a higher degree of escalation of fascist terrorism and human rights violations against the people.

The encounter between a unit of the NPA and the armed PNP and Barangay Peacekeeping Action Team (BPAT) on 27 January 2013, in Barangay (village) Puso, La Castellana, Negros Occidental, is a clear case that shows the systematic application of the CIA-AFP and Office of the Communications Group psywar plan, as implemented by the officials of the AFP/PNP and the Civil Military Operations Battalion of the 3rd Infantry Division, Philippine Army (Western Visayas), and supported by Governor Alfredo Marañon. They sensationalized the military-police version of the incident as an “ambush” and “massacre”, and they played up the issue about the two civilians who were killed and others who were wounded to influence public perception that will turn negative against the revolutionary movement. Along with this is their objective to cover up the truth behind the very basic character of the PNP and the BPAT as part of the fascist instruments of the reactionary state in suppressing the revolutionary movement and in protecting the interests of the big comprador bourgeoisie, landlords and foreign capitalists.

Let us remember the words last October 2012 of Chief Supt. Agrimero Cruz, regional police director of Western Visayas, on the additional deployment of 450 police officers for the police stations of Negros and Panay, and that the 6th Regional Public Safety Battalion will be getting 480 police personnel. He said that he will “maximize the deployment of PNP personnel for anti-criminality and insurgency campaign”, to include the mobilization of “Barangay Peacekeeping Action Teams, tanods and volunteers for intelligence monitoring, crime prevention and control…” and to target the revolutionary forces.

Based on the initial investigation of the Apolinario Gatmaitan Command of the New People’s Army, the BPAT groups in the towns of La Castellana and Don Salvador Benedicto, Negros Occidental, and the towns of Pamplona and Siaton, Negros Oriental and other towns, are armed with high and low caliber weapons, and that they are being mobilized by the PNP and the Philippine Army for combat, intelligence and psywar operations. Some active BPAT members and ex-RPAs* are also hired by landlords and corrupt Department of Agriculture (DAR) officials in dividing and creating trouble, and threatening the peasants, landgrabbing of the lots of CARP farmer beneficiaries.

The arming of the BPAT and mobilizing them for counter-insurgency operations and anti-people activities will make them legitimate targets by the military and police operations of the NPA. In order to maintain their civilian status, the AFP and PNP should stop arming and utilizing them in anti-people and anti-revolutionary activities.

Despite the anti-revolutionary and anti-people record of BPAT, it was not the intention of the NPA unit in Central Negros to punish or ambush the PNP and BPAT aboard the canter truck. The NPA guerrilla unit employed the tactic of surprise-checkpoint in order to stop the Canter truck of the barangay in order to dis-arm the police and the armed BPAT members in fatigue uniforms. However, the NPA on standby were forced to fire back when they were fired upon by members of the PNP and the BPAT.

NDFP-Negros laments that civilians were involved in the 27 January incident encounter. In order to avoid the repeat of such incident and minimize civilian casualties, we are reminding the public on the reality that the civil war in the country between the bourgeoisie compradors–landlords and the oppressed and exploited  people is escalating. The people should avoid and resist to be used as human shields by the AFP and PNP against the NPA, by intended ride-on aboard with armed soldiers-policemen on military and police vehicles or government and private vehicles; by their occupation and stay in health clinic centers, day care centers, schools and houses of the masses; and by the establishment of their military and police detachments in the populated centers of the barrio (village).

We also call on the officials of reactionary government units and individuals not to allow the use of their vehicles in the transport of AFP and PNP and their military equipment.

The long history of the world revolutionary movement shows that just wars cannot avoid errors in the process of struggle for the fundamental interests of the people against the exploiting and oppressive foreign occupiers-aggressors and local reactionaries. The Communist Party of the Philippines, NPA and other allied organizations of the NDFP do not deny that it has committed mistakes, do self-criticism, and are determined to rectify mistakes. Just like in the Second Great Rectification Movement of the 1990s against the grave errors of the 1980s and in admitting them, do self-criticism and rectification from 1990-2012. However, what cannot be denied is the fact that the revolutionary forces of the CPP-NPA and the NDFP represent the advanced force of the people, in order to carry forward their historical and fundamental interests, in launching their revolutionary struggle until the victory of the national democratic fight against US imperialism, local feudalism and bureaucrat capitalism.

No matter how strong the psywar machinery of the Aquino regime and the AFP/PNP is in deodorizing their image, it is impossible to erase their very nature as instruments of reaction and fascist terror against the exploited people. They only serve the interests of the foreign capitalists and the local big comprador bourgiesie and landlords. In the face of the worsening crisis of the economy that is being shouldered by the people and the strengthening of the peoples’ struggle, the reactionary government, the AFP and the PNP become more desperate and commit more war crimes, errors and violations of human rights against the people. And the naked truth has manifested the war crimes of the US-Aquino regime — its AFP/PNP will always insist the“policy of denial” in their murder of Benjamen Bayles of Himamaylan City and the massacre of the Fableo family of Canlaon City.

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