Reds using democratic processes to halt gov’t exposés

Published May 7, 2019, 10:12 PM

by Ellalyn De Vera & Richa Noriega

By Philippine News Agency

MANILA – Despite being an avowed enemy of democracy, the Communist Party of the Philippines and its armed wing, New People’s Army (CPP-NPA) and their allies are using the judiciary to get back at the government for exposing the lies, duplicity, and violence they have perpetuated through the years.

Brig. Gen. Antonio Parlade (Souther Luzon Command / AFP / MANILA BULLETIN)
Maj. Gen. Antonio Parlade
(Souther Luzon Command / AFP / MANILA BULLETIN)

Major General Antonio Parlade, Jr., of the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF ELCAC), made this observation on Tuesday noting that communist rebels and their supporters have the temerity to seek redress before the Supreme Court after the government succeeded in blowing the covers of their so-called legal fronts.

“Finally we have a government who openly unrobes and exposes these terrorists of their masks and legal cover. And now everyone (cries) foul by going to the Supreme Court (SC), ” he added.

Parlade was referring to the SC’s en banc decision on May 3 to hear the writ of amparo and habeas data pleas of the National Union of Peoples’ Lawyer (NUPL).

In its petition to the SC last week, NUPL claimed that “their rights to life, liberty and security have been violated and continue to be violated through the persistent threats and harassment and red tagging allegedly done to vilify and intimidate them and prevent them from pursuing their profession as members of the Bar and from practicing their advocacy as peoples’ lawyers serving the poor and the marginalized”.

It also claimed that some NUPL members have died in the line of duty.

Publicity and lies

“Those press releases of yours about the filing of writ of amparo is about publicity to the international community. It is about perpetuating your lies about ‘threats’ and ‘attacks’ happening here against your people. It’s about perpetuating those lies to demonize the government,” said Parlade, who is also Armed Forces of the Philippines Deputy Chief of Staff for Civil Military Operations.

He said communist rebels’ efforts to silence the government is aimed at protecting their rich funding source in Europe and foreign non-government organizations to whom they are obtaining millions of Euros that they are using to fund their insurrection against the duly-elected government.

“By exposing you and letting out the truth be known by the people, you call it ‘attack’ and ‘vilification’? By clarifying that it was (CPP founding chair) Jose Maria ‘Joma’ Sison who identified you as his allied organization, you complain of red-tagging? By quoting your NDF (National Democratic Front) Panay spokesperson Concha (Araneta) who claimed that you are proud to have contributed to the more than 50 casualties in Panay alone, you attribute that to us as red-tagging?” Parlade added.

These claims were made by Araneta on April 24 which incidentally was the 46th anniversary of the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP).

“For parroting the NDFP’s claim that you are all proud contributors to the ranks of the CPP and NPA, you went to get back at us?” he said.

Parlade also chided the group for getting back at the military and government for quoting their “CPP anniversary statements” on the thousands of NPA members and supporters they have killed and tortured along with the Indigenous Peoples’ (IP) and former rebels.

On the claims that using these statements are “dangerous rhetoric”, the NTF ELCAC official called these militants “hypocrites” and challenged them to denounce the CPP-NPA for all the atrocities they perpetrated through the years.

“The challenge is so damn simple: denounce the NPA and we are good,” he said.

The CPP-NPA is listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, European Union, United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines.

Abuse of  hard-won freedom

Meanwhile, Parlade also lamented that some members of the media failed to carry the side of AFP regarding the writ of amparo and habeas data filed by the NUPL, and a similar petition filed by Karapatan, Rural Missionaries of the Philippines, and Gabriela on May 6.

“On the contrary, they have published fake news which essentially aided the NUPL in their propaganda. These papers are carrying the line of NUPL that the SC acted on its petition when clearly none of the respondents received the writ from the SC. In short, these media are allowing their government to be punched and bullied without giving it an opportunity to air its side, or more appropriately, to express the truth,” he added.

An earlier AFP statement, released by military spokesperson Marine Brig. Gen. Edgard Arevalo, said they respect the SC decision but said that the May 3 ruling “is not yet the decision on the merits of the case but the procedures of the writs.”

Such actions, Parlade said, are clearly an abuse of the freedom that the country has won after the fall of former president Ferdinand Marcos some 32 years ago.

He added that the abuse can be seen by the way the Filipino society, especially the poor and marginalized, has tolerated violation of laws, regulations, and ordinances.

“That’s what happened to Boracay. That’s what happened to government easements along highways, rivers, coastlines, and railroads. We allowed squatting because they are poor but at the expense of other’s rights,” he said.

Another example of such abuse is the way Filipinos have allowed illegal drugs syndicates to proliferate because it allegedly provides livelihood opportunities to the poor, he said.

Parlade also cited the danger of rampant activism in the Philippines such that Filipinos no longer know the difference between what is legal or not.

“So was democracy back, or was it anarchy that we promoted?” he asked.

It is a situation that is very favorable for the CPP-NPA as it has allowed them to advance their national democratic revolution through their dual tactics, or simply duplicity.

“So now we have a biased media who do not want to expose the truth about these front organizations of the CPP. We have lawyers from NUPL who threw away their oath to the Constitution and Republic and proclaim to represent the oppressed terrorists. We have Karapatan, human rights defenders, who mulct the European Union and foreign organizations to rescue NPA terrorists,” he said.

Parlade also slammed some people who hide under missionary work but provide support to the terrorist CPP-NPA.

“We have terrorist organizations running and taking advantage democratic processes thru the party-list system. And all of them hide under the legal cloak of the NDF, while doing illegal acts against the State and the people,” he added.