As chairperson of the International League of Peoples’ Struggle (ILPS), I convey warmest greetings of solidarity to the member-organizations and individual adherents of Tongtongan ti Umili-Metro Baguio, the distinguished chapter of BAYAN and Cordillera People’s Alliance.
We wish to express our admiration to all of you for your loyal service to the Filipino people and your militant efforts to advance their revolutionary cause and struggle for national liberation and democracy against US imperialism and the local exploiting classes of big compradors and landlords.
We congratulate you for your achievements in arousing, organizing and mobilizing the workers, urban poor, mining affected communities, youth and students, women, teachers, government employees, church workers, cultural workers, political prisoners and other affected peoples.
The crisis of the world capitalist system and that of the semicolonial and semifeudal ruling system are ever worsening and bringing out the worst of US imperialism, dopmestic feudalism and bureaucrat capitalism. The Aquino regime is the instrument of all these evil forces and knows no bounds for its puppetry, exploitativeness, corruption, brutality and mendacity.
The big lie is being spread that the Philippines is the new economic miracle, the new tiger in Asia. In fact, the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) has been bloated from year to year mainly by a rising public debt and by so-called hot money or portfolio investments, which cannot long sustain import-dependent consumption, the private construction boom in certain urban areas, the super-profit remittances of foreign corporations and the foreign bank deposits of the big compradors and corrupt bureaucrats. This year the GDP is expected to plunge because of so-called tapering in the US and credit tightening in China.
There is no real economic development because there is no genuine land reform and there is no national industrialization. Unemployment, falling incomes, poverty and misery are widespread. Millions of our compatriots are compelled to leave their families to seek jobs abroad. Foreign corporations and their local cohorts are grabbing the land and misdirecting resources in the course of expanding export-oriented plantations, mining, logging and building skyscrapers and tourist facilities. The widespread and rapid extraction of mineral ores for export is ruining agriculture and the environment and is preempting the industrial development of the country.
Exploitation and oppression are escalating in the Philippines. The workers still on the their jobs are subjected to worsening wage and living conditions. The peasant masses and farm workers are suffering worse conditions of feudal and semifeudal exploitation. Oplan Bayanihan is engaged in gross and systematic violations of human rights, including extrajudicial killings, illegal arrests and detention, torture and forced eviction of the urban and rural poor from their shanties.
The Aquino regime is notorious for its corruption and hypocrisy. It pretends loudly that it follows the straight path. But the relatives, business cronies and political allies of the president are engaged in all kinds of corruption as a consequence of the political power that they share and enjoy. They use loans from financial institutions of the state and secure other privileges to build or expand their businesses. They cut into contracts of the corporations of other people. They privatize state corporations for the benefit of their foreign masters and their clique. They engage in tax evasion and smuggling operations. They steal public funds through the pork barrel system. Thus, the broad masses of the people want to oust the Aquino ruling clique.
The Aquino regime is completely treasonous and is running counter to provisions in the 1987 constitution that were won by the people as a result of the struggle against the Marcos fascist dicatorship. It is pushing the amendment of the economic provisions in order to allow US and other foreign corporations to have unrestricted ownership of land and all kinds of businesses up to 100 per cent. It is circumventing the constitutional ban on foreign military bases, troops, facilities and nuclear weapons by allowing these in so-called Agreed Areas and practically making the entire country an aircraft carrier of US imperialism under the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement.
This message cannot mention all that are grievously wrong in a rotten social system. But it tries to indicate that you are faced with so many challenges and issues. You have to be ever resolute, vigilant and militant. You must stand firmly and fight fiercely for the national and democratic rights of the people as you confront long standing basic problems and their latest manifestations at the national and local levels. You can only be as successful in your principled stand and struggle only as you can arouse, organize and mobilize the people to fight for their rights.
To fight effectively the powerful, cruel and greedy adversaries, we must rely on the conscious and organized strength of the broad masses of the people.