Armed Forces Chief of Staff Gilbert Gapay is very optimistic– the military will eradicate the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army from the face of the earth before President Rodrigo Roa Duterte leaves office. Question— what is the basis, if there is, of the General’s highly optimistic assessment?
Aside from highly sophisticated killing equipment the AFP got from the United States and several other allied states, Gapay says they will be able to cripple the insurgents because the people hate these Communists. That explains why they placed several tarpaulins in different parts of the metropolis announcing that the NPA’s are “persona non grata” in Metro Manila.
First of all, General Gapay, what prompted you from saying that the NPAs are hated by the people. If this is true, then, it would not be too hard to expect that these rebels would have been thrown out of their respective camps right now and left without recourse than to surrender. Numbers do not lie General. There is an increasing number of civilians turning into rebels all because of the highly oppressive and dehumanizing conditions these civilians are experiencing in their respective localities. I would not belabor this here. General Gapay, you can get information from the Philippine Statistics Authority and you’ll see what I mean here.
Rising levels of relative deprivation is expected even in urban cities since the government failed to stop the contraction of the economy. Taking a look at the sources of family income data from the PSA reveals the sorry state our people are encountering now. Majority of those in the lowest family income strata get their finances from sources other than salaries and entrepreneurial pursuits. This means that most, if not all of them, are dependent on dole outs coming from government. And if one would take a hard study of this, it would reveal that most are unable to get their fair share of these dole outs primarily because this has been transformed into a highly lucrative cottage industry by corrupt men and women of the bureaucracy, not just the Department of Public Welfare and Development. And even if government allocates a sizable amount to maintain current foldout levels, government will surely be hard put addressing concerns of other families who will now transition from the middle income groups into the lower income groups. Why? Data reveals that most members of the middle income groups lost their jobs due to the erroneous policies being implemented by government in relation to the pandemic.
Economic pressures is one thing, oppressive and highly irregular acts being undertaken by cops and state security forces against communities throughout the country are some of the factors that influenced those who went out of their homes and unto the bosom of rebellion. The anti-terror law was passed to curb the rising numbers of insurgents. Instead, the law has made people consider only two options: resist and fight or just keep your mouths shut and swallow the shit that this administration is dishing or has dished for the past few years. This is the right time for idealistic elements of the youth movement to transition themselves from activists to rebels. Undeniably, this is happening as we speak.
In countries such as Malaysia and Thailand, their governments respectfully erased Communism amongst them because of one reason: irrelevancy. I am in the opinion that total war is definitely not the answer against insurgencies especially intractable ones such as the one being conducted by the CPP-NPA-NDF. This Maoist inspired group continues to exist because economic and political oppression remain fixtures in our history.