By NDFP International Information Office
The international office of the National Democratic Front of the Philippines marked the 45th Founding Anniversary of the New People’s Army by hosting a multinational cultural and educational event on Sunday, 30 March 2014, at the Mirror Center in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. Guests from Belgium, Germany, Greece, Indonesia, Kurdistan, Netherlands, Norway, Peru, Turkey, and the UK delivered solidarity speeches and cultural performances, and joined in the discussions.
Short video presentations paid tribute to the martyrs and heroes of the revolution, and highlighted the various aspects of work of the people’s army – health and medical, literacy and numeracy, economic production, cultural activities, and military trainings and offensives. A five-minute voice recording was also played, wherein Filipinos now working in Europe saluted the NPA and vowed to help forge international solidarity for the people’s war. They vowed to gather political and material support for the NPA and the armed revolution.
Prof. Jose Maria Sison, Founding Chairperman of the Communist Party of the Philippines, spoke on “Building the People’s Army and Waging the People’s War”. He recalled his experiences during the founding and early years of the people’s army.
“I recall how I presided over the founding of this revolutionary army of the Filipino people on 29 March 1969 in my capacity as Chairman of the CPP Central Committee and its Military Commission.
“We started the NPA from scratch in the second district of Tarlac in 1969. We had only nine automatic rifles and 26 other inferior firearms to rotate among 60 Red fighters to whom we had given politico-military training.” He stressed, “But we were confident. We had a party that had avidly studied Marxism-Leninism, the revolutionary experience of the Filipino people, the teachings of Comrade Mao Zedong, and the writings of Vietnamese comrades on building the people’s army and waging the people’s war.”
Prof. Sison also discussed the growth and victories that have been accumulated in the last 45 years, and the prospects of the people’s war in the country. “At present, the CPP is reported to have about 150,000 members, the NPA has about 10,000 fighters, the people’s militia tens of thousands of personnel, and the self-defense units hundreds of thousands.”
He continued, “The guerrilla fronts number more than 110, covering significant portions of 71 provinces. The mass organizations have members in the millions; and the people’s democratic government has millions of people in its territory.
“The CPP and NPA are determined to realize the plan to advance from the strategic defensive to the strategic stalemate in the near term. They intend to bring up the number of CPP members to 250,000, the NPA to 25,000, the guerrilla fronts to 200, and the scope of the agrarian revolution and the mass base to many more millions of people.”
The NDFP’s Chief International Representative, Luis G. Jalandoni, spoke on the anti-feudal united front. He stressed on the resolute determination of the majority peasant population to fight for agrarian revolution, serving as the rock-like foundation of the anti-feudal united front and the main content of the New Democratic Revolution.
Jalandoni, a Member of the NDFP National Executive Committee, disclosed the many gains achieved by the NPA through the successful combination of agrarian revolution, mass base building and armed struggle. (This) has resulted in the building of Red political power in more than 110 guerrilla fronts in 71 out of 81 provinces of the country. The people’s democratic government has been set up in more than ten thousand villages and some municipalities.”
He explained, “The minimum program of agrarian revolution consists of the lowering of land rent, the eradication or lessening of usury and the raising of farm workers’ wages. In some areas, where the peasant association and the people’s army are sufficiently strong, the maximum program of land confiscation and free distribution of land is carried out. The gains in the agrarian revolution benefit many millions of peasants and farm workers.”
Jalandoni stressed, “The gains of the agrarian revolution fire up the enthusiasm of the peasantry for the revolution. They are ready to give their best sons and daughters to the New People’s Army. As the agrarian revolution grows and the mass base building and organs of political power consolidate, the People’s War advances.”
Excerpts from the message of the CPP Central Committee to the NPA Red commanders and fighters were also read during the program.
Visual artworks from NPA artists adorned the walls of the meeting hall, as revolutionary songs and music videos were presented throughout the afternoon. The program ended with the singing of “Internationale”, in the various languages of the guests, and chanting of praises for the Philippine revolution. Long live the New People’s Army!
Photos by Marion Yomodo and NDFP-IIO.