On the occasion of the 47th anniversary of the re-establishment of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) on December 26, 1968, the NDF-Mindanao conveys its warm congratulations and salutes the Party for its correct leadership which has ensured the continued advance of the people’s democratic revolution and has assured its final victory. This is also a fitting occasion to salute all revolutionary martyrs who offered their very lives in the service of the Philippine revolution and the people.
Since its re-establishment, the Party’s dauntless leadership has ascertained that the revolution continues to advance in the face of attacks by past reactionary regimes, including the current US-Aquino III regime. Particularly in Mindanao, through the correct leadership of the Party, the revolution has stood its ground and continues to strengthen despite being the focus of almost ceaseless attacks of the US-Aquino III regime’s OPlan Bayanihan, implemented to protect the economic interests of imperialists and the local ruling classes and to defeat the revolutionary movement.
The OPB, however, has miserably failed, causing the regime to augment AFP troops in Mindanao, which now numbers to 60 battalions or 60% of the entire AFP forces, 60% of which are deployed in NPA areas. This does not include PNP, CAFGU and other paramilitary forces such as BULIF, Alamara, Gantangan, Bagani, Magahat, the Calpet group and a host of others. These have unleashed exceedingly brutal and dirty terrorist tactics and methods only to sow fear among the people and suppress their armed and non-armed resistance.
Within the US-Aquino III regime’s term alone, the victims of massacres and extra-judicial killings in the country stand at 377, which include mass leaders, activists and innocent civilian, half of which occurred in Mindanao. These cases include the massacres in Han-ayan, Lianga, Surigao del Sur and Pangantucan, Bukidnon and the murder of Fr. Fausto “Pops” Tentorio in North Cotabato. AFP troops, in cahoots with paramilitary groups, also burned down communities and schools and inflict many vile forms of terrorism in order to stop the advance of the people’s struggle. These acts of terrorism have forced hundreds of thousands of people in Mindanao to evacuate.
However, under the leadership of the Party, the revolutionary forces in Mindanao has stood its ground and grown stronger under the US-Aquino III regime.
Marxism-Leninism-Maoism (MLM) as the ideological foundation of the Party has been further fortified by launching the three-level course, namely Basic, Intermediate and Advanced Party courses, and combining theory and practice in the conduct of revolutionary work in the five regions of Mindanao. Party membership in the entire Mindanao Island has increased to tens of thousands, many of whom are rooted and lead the mass struggles in barrios, communities, factories, schools and mass organizations. Generally, regional committees down to the local Party Branches and NPA units have all gained strength and advanced.
Despite being the primary focus of OPB, the armed struggle in Mindanao continued to advance. From only 40 guerrilla fronts in the first year of the US-Aquino III regime, this has increased to 46 guerrilla fronts, spread throughout the five regions of Mindanao, and none of which was crushed by OPB’s brutal onslaught. In more than 200 municipalities and cities where the revolutionary movement operates, from only 1,850 barrios in 2010, guerrilla fronts now cover 2,500 barrios, a third of which is consolidated while many are with standing Organs of Political Power or people’s government at barrio level, while others are at municipal level. The millions of mass base of the NPA continued to expand wherein this has increased to more than 200,000 from the previous number of 130,000 in 2010 of those registered in the mass organizations throughout the whole of Mindanao. These ever expanding and deepening bases render great advantage to the NPA’s maneuver, the launching of tactical offensives (TO), the recruitment of Red fighters, the implementations of widespread agrarian revolution and the launching of mass struggles.
NPA membership has increased, thereby increasing the number of squad, platoon and company formations, including units of the People’s Militia. The number of tactical offensives in the whole of Mindanao continue to increase from 250 TOs when the US-Aquino III regime began its term in 2010 to 350 TOs in 2011, then 400 in 2012, more than 400 each in 2013 and 2014, and more than 500 in 2015.
Some of these big successful NPA military actions include the raid on Mayor Brilliantes’s private army in Compostela Valley, the raids against PNP Headquarters in the municipalities of Tigbao, Zamboanga del Sur, Don Victoriano, Misamis Occidental, and Alegria, Surigao del Norte, and the raid on the Earth Savers Security in Butuan City, raid against the COPD in Gingoog City, Tandag City and San Fernando, Bukidnon, raids against Army-Cafgu detachments in Binicalan, San Luis, Agusan del Sur, in Balingasag, Misamis Oriental and in Banay-Banay, Davao Oriental, the punitive actions levelled against the giant mining in Taganito, Claver, Surigao del Norte as well as against the agri-plantation of Del Monte Phils in Bukidnon, the raid against Del Monte in Quezon, Bukidnon, the ambush in Matan-ao, Davao del Sur, and many others. In the year 2015 alone, the NPA was able to confiscate a relatively large number of high-powered firearms from the reactionary state’s armed forces. As the number of NPA guerrilla units increase, it covers and consolidates wider areas and defended, the people’s interests and revolutionary victories, such those in agrarian reform.
In the year 2015 in Mindanao alone, there were more than a battalion enemy troops killed, if taken as a whole, in battles between the NPA and state armed forces, not counting those wounded in action, while there were only a few NPA casualties. In the entire term of the US-Aquino III regime, 61 from the armed forces of the state were captured and declared Prisoners of War (POW) in Mindanao. They were treated according to the guidelines prescribed by the CARHRIHL and Protocols under the Geneva Conventions, which demonstrated the political and military capabilities of the revolutionary forces. Almost all were released following the requisites stipulated in the guidelines of the NDFP and other considerations as well, including proving the revolutionary movement’s interest, readiness and sincerity in resuming the peace talks. But, on the other hand, the regime was not at all that interested in the talks; in fact, it showed its contempt when it refused repeatedly to cooperate in the safe and orderly release of the POWs.
In the absence of genuine land reform under the US-Aquino III regime, the revolutionary movement has implemented both the minimum and maximum land reform. In Mindanao, genuine agrarian reform or agrarian revolution (agreb) was, in an ever widening coverage of areas, implemented, benefiting hundreds of thousands of peasants and national minorities from reduction in the rent of land and tools and implements, reduction of usury, increase in the wages of farm-workers, increase in price of farmers’ agricultural products and the launching of campaigns in bolstering productivity, cooperativization, health services, culture and others. Agrarian reform is coordinated and aids to further widen and strengthen our base, and this has reaped support from people for the armed revolution.
We have firmly linked the anti-feudal struggle with the anti-fascist and anti-imperialist struggles, generating broad support from various sectors in Mindanao. The agreb mass movement is intrinsically linked with the mass movement against the plunder of our natural resources by multinational mining and agri-plantation companies and their ruthless devastation of the environment. The mass movement has exposed and opposed the land monopoly by imperialists and the local ruling classes that has deprived vast lands for agrarian reform and the ancestral domains of the Lumad peoples.
Under the US-Aquino III regime, a similar mass movement surged against large-scale mining in Caraga, against A. Brown in Pantucan, Comval Province, Xstrata in SOCSARGENDS, TVI in Zamboanga del Sur and many others. In different parts of Mindanao, a people’s struggle has also been launched against multinational pineapple and banana plantations owned by DolePhil, Sumifru and Del Monte Phil, and oil palm plantations as well.
People’s campaigns for the victims of typhoons Sendong and Pablo were also launched, which exposed the corruption and utter contempt of bureaucrat-capitalists against the victims and the imperialists’ destruction of the environment. The people of Mindanao also sympathized with the victims of typhoon Yolanda by joining them in their struggles.
Under the US-Aquino III regime, huge anti-fascist mass movements surged that reverberated not only in Mindanao but also in the national and international levels as well. The campaign against the 2011 killing of Fr. “Pops” Tentorio in North Cotabato was launched. When militarization became widespread and intensified in Mindanao, people from various sectors in Mindanao initiated in 2014 the first Manilakbayan, which exposed and fought against military brutality in the entire island.
This year, an even bigger open anti-fascist movement in Mindanao took off, which became a nationwide campaign that was sparked by the murders of ALCADEV’s executive director and two Lumad leaders in Han-ayan, Lianga, Surigao del Sur, and supported by various groups from other nations against vile state terrorism in the island. It has interwoven other major issues of fascism in the entire island. Under this context, the people of Mindanao launched the second Manilakbayan that even more staunchly condemned state fascism, gathering broad support from the regions the caravan passed through as well from the peasants, workers, youth and students, LGU officials, big universities and schools, religious groups including the CBCP, artists and athletes from universities, the mass media, international groups and many others.
Despite efforts by the US-Aquino III regime to pacify Bangsamoro resistance, the Moro people continues to struggle. The Moro Resistance and Liberation Organization (MRLO) continues to organize and expand amongst the Moro people for their genuine right to self-determination. The revolutionary movement links and coordinates with different armed and non-armed Moro groups against the current regime.
The Party’s correct political line in cooperating with various social forces has reaped for itself revolutionary victory. The strength of the basic alliance of peasants and workers and its link with the society’s middle forces has won the support of other classes and sectors that it has not dealt with before. Through issue –based unities, we have even cooperated alongside politicians and institutions that we have not linked with before.
The objective economic and political conditions and the advance of the revolutionary forces in Mindanao are favorable for the continued advance of the revolution in the island. The correct leadership of the CPP ensures the continuing advance of the people’s democratic revolution.
Long live the Filipino people!
(Sgd) Ka Oris