By Francis Wakefield
Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana Friday said that government may not be able to finish off the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF) within the term of the Duterte administration but they will make sure that they will be reduced to a police problem.
Lorenzana made the remark after CPP founding chairman and National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) chief political consultant Jose Maria Sison said President Rodrigo Duterte resetting by three years the deadline for its scheme to destroy the New People’s Army will surely fail.
In a statement, Lorenzana said Sison is underestimating President Duterte by speaking too soon.
“We’ll see. Too soon for him to talk. He is underestimating this President. We may not be able to finish them off completely to the last man but we will reduce them into purely police problem – a simple peace and order problem of running after robbers, criminals and extortionists,” Lorenzana said.
Lorenzana also said the CPP-NPA-NDF has not won against the government in the last 50 years of existence, thus making it impossible for them to defeat them in the succeeding years.
“They did not win in 50 years, what makes them think they could win within his (Sison’s) remaining short time on this earth?” Lorenzana asked.
“He should accept the fact that his communist-inspired rebellion and insurgency is a total failure. The blood of thousands of Filipinos who were sacrifices in the altar of his discredited ideology is in his hands,” he added.
In a previous statement, Sison said the government’s scheme will surely fail from day to day, week to week, month to month and from year to year as the NPA will intensify tactical offensives and mass work.
“The same military and police of the same exploiting classes cannot accomplish in three years what they failed to accomplish in 50 years,” Sison said.
“In the next three years, Duterte himself will have difficulty surviving politically. These are lameduck years for him, during which infighting among his followers will be debilitating and challenges will rise from within the ruling system as well as from the revolutionary forces,” he added.