The Duterte government of the Philippines is trying to cover up its deteriorating government fortunes by accusing a growing number of its critics of being communist or of being supporters of terrorism.
This “red tagging” and” terrorist tagging” is a desperate attempt by Duterte to cover up the fact of a a deteriorating economy moving into greater crisis, growing unemployment and poverty, a U.S. corporate domination of key sectors, deteriorating human rights and democratic rights for the people, a massive health crisis intensified by the pandemic, and an environmental crisis, to mention a few.
Typical of dictators the world over, the U.S.-Duterte government, instead of having a programme to deal with these and the many other problems facing the Filipino people, turns to vilifying the very justified critics who are calling for overdue solutions for the peoples’ sake.
The Duterte government has murdered trade unionists (50 since his government came to office), murdered tens of thousands of people in poor and marginalized communities under cover of its so called anti-drug campaign, murdered over 60 lawyers, murdered and threatened many human rights workers. This was all done without proper due process and under cover of manufactured and planted “evidence”.
In the Philippines, civil society groups, democratic rights, and the peoples human rights are being crushed by government routinely harassing, intimidating , and committing violence and murder against them. This is in their desperate attempt of silencing criticism and preventing them to speak up about the legitimate concerns of the people.
As a direct recent example, on December 30 last year, 9 Tumandok leaders were murdered and another 16 were arrested in a joint police and military operation. Tumandok is an alliance of 17 villages opposed to the construction of the South Korean funded- Jalaur, a mega dam which threatens their rights to land and livelihood.
This is fascist oppression, pure and simple.
In a further example the International League of Peoples Struggles has been targeted and labeled as “terrorist” and “communist” for its continuing international exposure of the Philippine government’s crimes against its own people.
Beyond red-tagging, leaders of the ILPS have been placed on an immigration blacklist that prevents them and some members to express their solidarity to friends and peoples of the Philippines directly. ILPS members in the Philippines have been subjected to more than red-tagging as some of them have been arrested, slapped with warrants of arrest for trumped up crimes, even tortured and killed.
The ILPS is an organization without political party affiliation or government organization affiliation. These are expressly prevented from joining the league. The ILPS is made up over 400 mass people’s organizations across the globe and has been in existence and active for over 20 years.
The ILPS campaigns against Imperialist war and aggression on the people, fights to protect people’s human and democratic rights and defends the rights of people to their independence, liberation and democracy. We are fundamentally and implacably opposed to terrorism, and that includes state terrorism practiced by governments.
Duterte’s vicious fascism has targeted Filipino migrant welfare organizations, women’s organizations, religious organizations, and others . These groups are being labeled as “terrorists” or “communists” in the misplaced hope to intimidate and silence them, and cover up the regime’s real crimes against human rights.
ILPS condemns in the strongest possible terms the fascism being practiced by the U.S.- Duterte government in the Philippines. Duterte is simply a tool of the corporations, international and local and the big landlords who operate at the expense of the landless peasants, the unemployed and underemployed, and the working class in general. These are the same people who continue to suffer from terrible working and living conditions economic crisis and from the raging pandemic .
The Duterte regime’s fascist program will also be the very reason of its downfall. More and more Filipinos, along with the strong international solidarity, will resist and rise up for peace and social justice.
Stop the state terrorism and killings against the Filipino people!
Stop the attacks on peasants and working class in the Philippines!
Down with imperialism!
Long live international solidarity!