The armed struggle will live on

ImageBy Martin Montana, Spokesperson
Chadli Molintas Command – New People's Army
Ilocos-Cordillera Region

A statement on the capture of Comrade Jovencio “Ka Dawa” Balweg

On 19 May 2009, the leadership of the Philippine National Police in the Cordillera announced to media the capture of Comrade Jovencio “Ka Dawa” Balweg, and the subsequent arrest of his wife. Ka Dawa has been in Baguio City on extended medical leave for treatment of several illnesses including spinal canal stenosis, hypertension, and a recent mild stroke among others. His captors continue to parade him as a prized catch to squeeze as much media mileage as they could, and even daydream that Ka Dawa's capture would spark an end to the revolutionary movement in his home province of Abra and in the region. This is farthest from reality.

The revolutionary struggle waged by the Filipino masses is a protracted and arduous undertaking full of sacrifices, losses and vacillations. The Communist Party of the Philippines and the New People's Army have prepared organizationally for this by implementing a system of understudy whereby other comrades can immediately step up and assume the responsibilities of those killed in battle, captured, and ravaged by illness. Ideologically, the tens of thousands of NPA guerillas and CPP cadres are prepared to bear the sacrifices and losses for the great cause of national liberation and democracy.

Leaders of the revolutionary movement play an important role, but it is the millions of oppressed and exploited Filipinos who give life and drive the struggle for national liberation and democracy. This is historical fact. Those trod upon by the boot of tyranny rise up to break the chains of their bondage. Ka Dawa and many other revolutionary cadres from Abra are products of the fierce and valiant mass struggles against the oppressive Marcos dictatorship. And like them, many more cadres and guerillas are being produced by the mass movement in Abra and the rest of the region against the tyranny of the US-backed Arroyo regime. 

Ironically, the regime and the oppressive systems it represents are prime recruiters for the revolutionary movement. There is no end to the number of people who willingly join the armed struggle because of the Arroyo regime's brutal violation of the economic and political rights of the people. The number of NPA recruits in Abra and the rest of the region rises with the entry of rapacious big business interests eager to establish mines, dams, logging concessions, and large-scale agro-commercial farms at the expense of the people.

The saying that “some trees fall, others rise, the forest lives on,” is apt in this case. Ka Dawa is a member of the regional organs of the CPP and NPA. Even in prison he remains part of the deep and undying forest that stands steadfast in the face of the storms cast by the enemy. He can continue with his revolutionary work even while under detention. Undeniably, his capture is a tactical setback for the local revolutionary movement. But it is nowhere near the doomsday scenario painted by PNP officials and their propagandists. The revolutionary movement has proved itself resilient in the face of adversity and losses. The armed struggle will live on.

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