By Prof. Jose Maria Sison
Chairperson, International League of Peoples’ Struggle
December 22, 2014
We, the International League of Peoples’ Struggle, share with the Cuban people and their leadership the great joy of celebrating the release of the remaining 3 of the Cuban 5 and the return of all these anti-terrorist heroes to their homeland. We demanded their freedom for a long time and we are elated that they are free. They were unjustly imprisoned in the US for more than 16 years.
We also welcome the decision of the Cuban and US governments to reestablish diplomatic relations and to work for their normalization. It is the prerogative of any independent state, be it socialist or not, to establish and develop normal diplomatic and trade relations with other countries, irrespective of ideology or social system. We demand the immediate and complete lifting of the economic, commercial and financial blockade that the US has imposed on Cuba for more than 50 years.
It is a great victory for the Cuban people and their leadership that because of their protracted revolutionary struggle against imperialism the US government has finally admitted the failure of its policy of hostility and blockade. We share with all the peoples, forces and movements in solidarity with the Cuban people the joy in celebrating such historic victory.
We have confidence that the Cuban people and their leadership will continue to uphold, defend and promote their national sovereignty and independence and their socialist ideals. We continue to stand in solidarity with them and support them in fending off attempts of the US to demand the unbridled license of US corporations, agencies and imperialist-funded NGOs in exchange for the lifting of the blockade. There are indeed risks and dangers to reckon with.
History has shown that revolutionary states can maintain their independence, their own principles and social system, even as they have normal diplomatic and trade relations with other states of whatever ideology and social system. The Cuban people have their firm revolutionary principles, historical experience and continuing revolutionary will, vigilance and militancy to be able to counter any trap or trick of the imperialists and their reactionary agents.###
By JOSE MARIA SISON
Founding Chairman, Communist Party of the Philippines
Chief Political Consultant, NDFP Negotiating Panel
I join the people and revolutionary force in expressing most heartfelt condolences to the families and comrades of the leading cadres of the Communist Party of the Philippines, Red fighters of the New People’s Army and civilian victims whose valiant lives were snuffed out by the fascist agents of the US-Aquino regime on 4 September in Lacub, Abra.
The highest honors are deservedly accorded to Arnold ‘Ka Mando’ Jaramillo, Recca Noelle ‘Ka Tet’ Monte, Brandon ‘Ka Sly’ Madranga, Robert ‘Ka Dawyan’ Beyao, Ricardo ‘Ka Tubong’ Reyes, Pedring ‘Ka Jess’ Banggao, and Robert ‘Ka Limbo’ Perez, as well as to the two civilians Engr. Fidela Salvador and Noel Viste, who have all put their lives on the line and made the ultimate sacrifice in the service of the people.
I join the family, comrades and friends of the Lacub Martyrs in condemning the savagery of the 41st Infantry Battalion soldiers under the command of 2Lt. Joe Mari S. Landicho and Capt. Deo Martinez and in demanding their prosecution and punishment as murderers and war criminals.
Based on initial investigation, the NPA fighters had been rendered hors de combat by the AFP troops. Instead of treating their wounds and holding them as prisoners of war, the Red fighters were brutally tortured and slaughtered, and their lifeless bodies mutilated. Comrade Mando’s body, in particular, was riddled with bullets, with at least one gunshot wound inflicted at point blank range.
The fascist troops also arbitrarily arrested Engr. Salvador and accused her of being an NPA guerrilla, before she was tortured and summarily executed. Lacub resident Noel Viste was one of the numerous civilians who were forced by the military to act as their guides and human shields. He was also tortured and executed by the AFP troops. We join calls for justice against these brutalities.
The Lacub Martyrs are all models of being proletarian revolutionaries who took up the challenge of self-less sacrifice and dedicated struggle in the service of the exploited and oppressed classes. They came from different class backgrounds, and they underwent the process of remoulding themselves in order to contribute to the revolutionary struggle for national liberation and genuine democracy. In the various functions that they undertook, they showed unrelenting dedication to fulfilling their tasks however great the difficulties and sacrifices.
Their supreme sacrifice will inspire countless people, especially the youth, to follow their footsteps in the service of the oppressed and exploited. Let us honor the memory of the Lacub Martyrs by carrying on with greater resoluteness and militancy the revolutionary struggle for national democracy and socialism.
By Delfin T. Mallari Jr.
Reposted from Inquirer.net 27 March 2014
LUCENA CITY, Philippines—To break the current impasse on the peace talks between the government and communist rebels, exiled Communist Party of the Philippines Jose Ma. Sison on Wednesday has proposed that both parties should meet again to pave the way for the resumption of the aborted peace negotiation.
“The teams of the GPH (Government of the Philippines) and NDFP (National Democratic Front of the Philippines) should have informal talks to pave the way for the formal talks,” Sison said in an online interview Wednesday afternoon.
He said NDFP has already agreed to the proposal of Royal Norwegian Government to host another round of peace negotiation in the next few months.
Short of demanding the replacement of chief government peace negotiator Alexander Padilla and Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Teresita “Ging” Deles, Sison called the two as “arrogant and lazy.” Asked for his basis, Sison has yet to reply though.
Sison said the government side should be represented by the likes of former government negotiating panel chairman and now 1-Bap partylist Rep. Silvestre H. Bello III and the late Tarlac Rep. Jose Yap.
“Dapat mga negotiators katulad nila Apeng Yap at Bebot Bello. May tindig sila sa panig ng GRP pero marunong sumalubong sa mga demands ng kilusang rebolusyonaryo alang-alang sa kabutihan ng mga mamamayan,” (It should be negotiators like Apeng Yap and Bebot Bello who are committed to the government side but know how to respond to the demands of the revolutionary movement for the sake of the people‘s welfare) said Sison.
He added: “Dahil kina Bebot at Apeng sa isang panig at si Louie Jalandoni sa kabila nagkaroon ng 10 agreements sa panahon ni Ramos. Pagkatapos nito, mga negotiators ng GRP o GPH ay mga arogante at antemano gusto nilang patawan ng surender at pasipikasyon ang kilusang rebolusyonaryo.” (Because of Bebot and Apeng on one side and Louie Jalandoni on the other side there were 10 agreements made during the time of Ramos. But the negotiators after them were arrogant and insistent at once on imposing surrender and pacification of the revolutionary movement.)
Sison recalled that during the term of former President Fidel Ramos, the two parties made headway in the peace negotiation by forging 10 agreements that served as the foundation for further peace talks.
Sison assailed the present policy of the Aquino administration with regards to the future of the peace negotiation. Sison alleged that the Aquino government is determined to kill the peace negotiations “by always trying to attack and destroy the linkage between the NDFP Negotiating Panel and the revolutionary forces in the field.”
“It is consistent but stupid for them to claim falsely a disconnect between the NDFP Negotiating Panel and the forces in the field and to realize their own self-fulfilling prophesy by negating the JASIG (Joint Agreement and Safety Immunity Guarantees)-protected individuals who act as peace consultants and support the peace negotiations,” Sison said.
Sison warned that if the detained NDFP political consultants are not released, “the Aquino regime will only be killing the peace negotiations and inciting the NPA and other revolutionary forces to intensify the people’s war.”
“Is that what Aquino and his bureaucratic and military subordinates really want?” Sison asked.
Sison argued that the peace negotiation is still ongoing with the absence of formal notice of termination from both parties as mandated under Jasig signed in 1995.
“Kailangan ang formal talks para pag-usapan at pagkasunduan ang social and economic reforms, kasunod ng CARHRIHL, alinsunod sa substantive agenda. At saka lang puedeng pag-usapan ang posibilidad ng truce and cooperation kahit batay lamang sa isang general statement of common intent tungkol sa mga pundamental na problema ng bayan,” he said.
(After the Carhrihl [Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law] there is need for formal talks to discuss and agree on social and economic reforms which would follow the substantive agenda. Only then can the possibility of truce and cooperation be discussed even if only based on a general statement of common intent about the fundamental problems of the people).
Sison recalled that he had agreed to meet with Mr. Aquino since November 2012. But in the Amsterdam meeting of the government and NDFP delegations, Sison said the task to simply prepare the communique for a prospective meeting in Hanoi in April 2013 “was fouled up by a premature demand of Office of Presidential Affairs for Peace Process for a confused and baseless ‘indefinite unilateral simultaneous ceasefires’ instead of a possible truce and cooperation agreement to be worked out within three months after my supposed meeting with Aquino.”
“This aborted meeting had been presented to me by Political Adviser Ronald Llamas as a historic moment, similar to the Aquino-Murad meeting in Tokyo in August 2011. But Alex Padilla as agent of Deles sabotaged the delegation headed by Llamas by drawing attention away from the task of drafting the aforesaid communique in advance,” Sison said.
On the arrest of Benito Tiamzon and Wilma Austria
Interview with Prof. JOSE MARIA SISON
Founding Chairman, Communist Party of the Philippines
By ROSELLE VALERIO
Roselle Valerio (RV): What was your immediate reaction to the arrest of Benito Tiamzon and Wilma Austria?
Jose Maria Sison (JMS): I thought immediately that the arrest of these two NDFP consultants in the peace negotiations is in violation of the Joint Agreement on Safety and Immunity Guarantees (JASIG). They are holders of the document of identification under JASIG and are protected from surveillance, harassment and arrest.
RV: Is it true, as Alex Padilla, the military and other Aquino government officials claim, that you are on opposite sides with the Tiamzon couple regarding peace negotiations? That Tiamzon and Austria are “hardliners” and “war freaks” and that they are at odds with you and the NDFP negotiating panel?
JMS: The Tiamzon couple are in support of the peace negotiations. That’s why they are consultants in the peace negotiations. The claims of high officials and military officers of the reactionary government that the Tiamzon couple are at odds with the CPP founding chairman and the NDFP Negotiating Panel is a malicious intrigue. They should read the official declarations of the CPP Central Committee supporting the work of the NDFP Negotiating Panel and its consultants, including myself.
RV: How well do you know Benito Tiamzon and Wilma Austria?
JMS: I knew them as excellent cadres of the Manila-Rizal regional committee of the Communist Party of the Philippines in the early 1970s. Then Benny Tiamzon became secretary of the Eastern Visayas regional committee of the CPP in the mid-1970s onwards. He was outstanding for his comprehensive ability in ideology, politics and organization. Wilma was also outstanding. It is not surprising that they would rise to the highest central positions in tne CPP.
RV: What do you know of Tiamzon’s involvement and role in the CPP in the 1990s, in the Second Great Rectification Movement?
JMS: Tiamzon played a leading role in the Second Great Rectification Movement, which started in 1992. This was an educational campaign that reaffirmed basic revolutionary principles and resulted in the rectification of serious subjectivist and opportunist errors and the revitalization and resurgence of the CPP, NPA, the mass base and the people’s democratic government. The CPP cadres and members held on to the general line of democratic revolution through protracted people’s war, while a few rabid opponents became NGO racketeers, yellow labor dealers, bureaucrats of the reactionary government and even spies and psywar experts of the military
RV: What do you know of the Tiamzon couple’s current roles in the CPP and their activities in the Visayas when they were arrested?
JMS: My reliable source of information regarding the current roles of the Tiamzons is the CPP official statement published in Ang Bayan. They are described as senior leaders of the CPP paying close attention to the plight and rehabilitation of the communities and families victimized by the supertyphoon Haiyan (Yolanda) in the Visayas.
RV: What will be the impact of the arrest of the Tiamzon couple on the CPP leadership? The military say that without Tiamzon the CPP will suffer from a vacuum of leadership.
JMS: Leadership in the CPP is collective. It does not depend on any single leader no matter how excellent. When I was arrested in 1977, I was the CPP Central Committee chairman. But the armed revolution continued, grew in strength and became a major factor in the overthrow of Marcos despite his boast that he had finished off the CPP upon my arrest.
Like me and Julie when we were arrested in 1977, Benny Tiamzon and Wilma Austria will be replaced automatically by comrades. To use basketball parlance, I say that the CPP has a deep bench. The Central Committee is replenished and further strengthened by the increasing number of national cadres as well as regional cadres from some 17 regions.
RV: What will be the impact on the New People’s Army and the people’s war?
JMS: The NPA will become even more determined to wage people’s war. The ground is fertile for people’s war because of the system of oppression and exploitation that subjects the people to intolerable suffering. The people desire the overthrow of the rotten system of big compradors and landlords servile to US imperialism.
RV: What was the status of the NDFP-GPH peace negotiations before the arrest of the Tiamzon couple? What will now be consequences to the peace negotiations?
JMS: Before the arrest of the Tiamzon couple, the peace negotiations were paralyzed by the Aquino regime’s noncompliance with and violations of existing agreements between the NDFP and the Manila government. The imprisonment of JASIG-protected consultants has had adverse consequences to the peace negotiations.
RV: Do you have a message you would like to convey to Benito Tiamzon, Wilma Austria, and their five companions?
JMS: Luis Jalandoni and the NDFP Negotiating Panel are working hard to demand their release in accordance with the JASIG. But the Aquino regime is extremely reactionary, narrow-minded and short- sighted. I told Marcos in 1977: you have imprisoned me but the revolutionary movement is free to grow in strength and advance. Imprisonment is an opportunity to perform an important form of service to the people. By manifesting their defiance, revolutionary prisoners can inspire the people to fight more fiercely for their national and social liberation.
RV: What is your message to the Aquino regime?
JMS: Respect the The Hague Joint Declaration and the JASIG and release the NDFP peace consultants. Respect the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law (CARHRIHL) and release the political prisoners imprisoned on trumped-up common crimes. Thus, there will be a sound basis for resuming the peace negotiations.