The toiling masses and their supporters today celebrate in wide swathes of the Eastern Visayas countryside the 50th anniversary of the founding of the New People’s Army under the absolute leadership of the Communist Party of the Philippines. They salute the Red fighters who gallantly laid down their lives in the tactical offensive yesterday, March 28, in Victoria, Northern Samar, and all other martyrs who made the ultimate sacrifice in five decades of the just war for national and social liberation. The NPA was founded fifty years ago with a few dozen Red fighters and inferior weapons against the rising fascist dictatorship of Marcos and prevailed over all attempts in the ensuing years to nip it in the bud and ground it into the dust.
Today the NPA has thousands of Red fighters with high-powered rifles nationwide and is far more ready to bleed and defeat another rising fascist dictatorship in the US-Duterte regime that is already steeped in mass murder, war crimes, corruption, treason, narcopolitics and wholesale state terrorism.
The people are thus ever more emboldened to wage armed revolution because of the lack of fundamental changes and because they have a powerful weapon in the NPA that is deeply rooted among them and that they cherish.
Under the US-Duterte regime, the people remain afflicted more than ever by socioeconomic ills such as mass landlessness and mass unemployment, declining prices of agricultural products, rising costs of basic commodities, high taxation, and emaciated social services while military and police forces are fattened.
Furthermore, the people hate the US-Duterte regime for its mass murder and other gross violations of human rights and international humanitarian law in its “war on drugs” and state repression through the “counterinsurgency” and anti-Moro wars. At least 545 barangays are affected by militarization in Eastern Visayas. In 2018, there were 15 victims of extrajudicial killings in the region, while mass evacuations because of intensified military operations have occurred in Samar and Leyte, most recently in San Jorge and San Jose de Buan towns in Western Samar. The soldiers of the 8th Infantry Division of the Philippine Army violate international humanitarian law by camping in civilian communities and using civilians as human shields, illegally intervening in the election campaign as well as harassing those whom they accuse of supporting the NPA.
Thus the NPA can take confidence in having established itself in the region and is poised to intensify and widen guerrilla warfare according to capabilities. To do this, it carries out the integral tasks of armed struggle, agrarian revolution and mass base building. The NPA wins over the peasants by helping carry out the agrarian revolution from lowering land rent, eradicating usury and other minimum demands to the maximum program of confiscating and redistributing the land to the landless. The mass organizations, Party branches and organs of political power are also built in the countryside towards founding the people’s democratic government.
It is the principal task of the NPA to carry out tactical offensives in the duration of the May 2019 election period and beyond. This is the correct response to the heightened counterrevolutionary war and state terrorism of the US-Duterte regime. Moreover, the guerrilla offensives further weaken the rule of the dictatorial US-Duterte regime and register that revolution and not the bourgeois election is the real solution to the Philippine crisis.
The NPA carries out annihilative tactical offensives to confiscate more firearms and further strengthen itself. It also carries out attritive tactical offensives along with the people’s militia to wear out the enemy. It must carry out special operations to punish the worst human rights violators, plunderers and other criminals among legitimate military targets and the worst minions of the US-Duterte regime sentenced by the people’s court. This serves notice to them that they cannot go on without being punished for their crimes against the people.
The NPA looks forward to widening and intensifying offensives and raising the level of people’s war in the next few years. The US-Duterte regime is daydreaming that it can finish off the NPA and the revolutionary movement during Duterte’s term. It is Duterte who is bound to be overthrown by a convergence of the broad united front and further hastened by the sound and fury of the people’s war in the countryside.#