1999 - FIGHT THE ENEMY UNTIL COMPLETE VICTORY IN THE NEW-DEMOCRATIC REVOLUTION
On behalf of the Central Committee and the entire membership of the Communist Party of the Philippines, I salute all the Red commanders and fighters and convey to them warmest comradely greetings and congratulations on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the New People's Army.
The New People's Army has won great victories in fighting heroically for the national and democratic rights, interests and aspirations of the Filipino people. It is the principal weapon of the Communist Party of the Philippines and the Filipino people in waging the principal form of revolutionary struggle and inspiring other forms of struggle. Its place in Philippine history is assured.
The armed revolution waged by the New People's Army under the leadership of the Party continues the Filipino people's unfinished struggle for national independence and democracy and has surpassed all previous armed struggles waged against US imperialism and the local reactionaries in the last hundred years.
First of all, the NPA is waging a protracted people's war along the line of the new-democratic revolution, with a socialist perspective. Secondly, the NPA has gained all-round strength nationwide, surpassing in this regard the achievements of the revolutionary army of the old democratic revolution, the People's Army against Japan (Hukbalahap) and the People's Army for Liberation.
Following the absolute leadership of the revolutionary party of the proletariat, the NPA has accumulated significant strength since starting from scratch on March 29, 1969. It has surmounted tremendous odds and has advanced from victory to victory. Our revolutionary armed struggle will continue until complete victory is won.
Brilliant Victories of the New People's Army
Upon its reestablishment, the Party proved itself a true and serious revolutionary party of the proletariat by conceiving of the New People's Army in the Party Constitution and establishing it in three months' time. The NPA was born out of the First Great Rectification Movement against the Lava dynasty and the Taruc-Sumulong gangster clique and inherited the good remnants of the old people's army and their revolutionary experience and mass base.
The people's army came under the test of severe attacks by the enemy from 1969 onward and went through the prolonged unbridled terror of the Marcos fascist dictatorship to build its nationwide foundation and strengthen itself by fighting the enemy. The Red commanders and fighters have won astounding political and military victories by adhering to the line of new-democratic revolution through protracted people's war and by waging guerrilla warfare on the basis of an ever widening and deepening mass base.
But in the late '70s, "Left" and Right opportunist lines started to overlap with and subvert the correct line and the continuing successes of the armed revolution. The opportunists superimposed such erroneous lines as the "strategic counteroffensive" and "Red Area-White Area recombinations" on the correct line and wrought havoc in different regions at various times from the early '80s up to the early years of the current decade.
Since 1992, the Central Committee of the Party has led and carried out the Second Great Rectification Movement to reaffirm the basic revolutionary principles, sum up experience and set forth the tasks. The Party and the people's army have identified, criticized and repudiated the errors that have harmed the revolutionary cause and have proceeded to score great achievements in carrying out the constructive tasks of the revolution.
The victories of the New People's Army shine brilliantly on the pages of Philippine history. But we must never forget that these victories as well as the lessons learned from experience are paid for by sacrifice, hard work and fierce struggle. Let us therefore take a pause to pay the highest tribute to our martyrs and heroes.
Let us not become complacent with our achievements. Let us remain ever vigilant and militant. No matter how far we have gone forward in the revolutionary struggle, the counterrevolutionary state of big compradors and landlords still stands and needs to be overthrown and smashed completely. We must fight until the enemy is defeated and the new-democratic revolution triumphs.
We have a sound basis for raising the revolutionary struggle to a new and higher level until complete victory is won. The rectification movement has revitalized and further strengthened the entire Party and the Party organization within the NPA and has raised the level of revolutionary consciousness and militancy among the Red commanders and fighters.
The NPA has grown far stronger than in 1992 when the rectification movement started. Total NPA strength amounts to several regiments. By having been reoriented, reorganized and redeployed for mass work, the NPA has been able to increase the number of guerrilla fronts to eighty-one (81) nationwide.
The typical guerrilla front has a total force of a company, with a platoon as the center of gravity and the other units spread over a wider radius. In certain regions, main guerrilla units sew up various guerrilla fronts and are capable of regionwide maneuvers.
The thousands of men and women serving full-time in the NPA are augmented by tens of thousands of those in militia and self-defense units. All of them draw support from the organs of political power, the mass organizations and the broad masses of the people.
There is an ample mass base for further expansion and further consolidation of mass work and for carrying out extensive and intensive guerrilla warfare on the basis of ever widening and deepening mass base. Every increase of tactical offensives is related to an increase in mass base within a guerrilla zone, within a guerrilla front, within a region and on a nationwide scale.
The NPA has been able to carry out tactical offensives, like raids and ambuscades, as well as various types of actions to enforce the laws and policies of the people's democratic government. In seeking targets for tactical offensives, it constantly looks for the weak points of the enemy or tries to force him to make mistakes and expose his weak points.
The tactical offensives of the NPA have increased gradually and have forced the enemy to acknowledge its growing strength. The enemy's officialdom and the bourgeois media have given much attention to the capture of high-ranking military and police officers by the NPA from 1997 to the present, as in the current case of one general and several other officers. Thus, the enemy propaganda that the revolutionary movement is disintegrating or disappearing has been repeatedly disproved.
The principal function of the NPA is to fight and defeat the enemy. It carries out only those battles it can win. Over a protracted period of time, it launches battles of quick decision to seize weapons from the enemy, accumulate strength in the countryside and goes through stages and phases of development, until it becomes capable of seizing power in cities on a nationwide scale.
But the fighting function cannot be successfully carried out if it were not based on the widespread and deep support of the people. The NPA is the main organization of the Party not only for destroying the enemy but also for organizing, arousing and mobilizing the masses. Through mass work, it draws support from the people as the inexhaustible source of strength.
The NPA has persevered in conducting revolutionary mass education, building various types of mass organizations for workers, peasants and farm workers, fishermen, women, youth, children and cultural activists and in promoting mass campaigns. The most important of these campaigns is the one for land reform because it responds to the main demand of the peasantry and seeks to realize the main content of the democratic revolution.
In the countryside, the Party and the people's army rely mainly on the poor peasants and farm workers, win over the middle peasants, neutralize the rich peasants and take advantage of the split between the enlightened and evil gentry (while the minimum land reform is still being carried out) in order to isolate and destroy the power of the evil gentry. The class line that runs through the antifeudal united front is in consonance with the general line of the new-democratic revolution.
In waging the people's war, the NPA follows the principle of self-reliance. It recruits the fighters from the people, organizes production for the army and families of the fighters, receives contributions from the people, seizes weapons from the enemy and collects taxes from the enlightened gentry and from enterprises that follow the laws of the people's democratic government. Resources raised by the New People's Army are for the maintenance and growth of the Party and the NPA as well as for the social needs of the people.
Exceedingly Favorable Conditions for People's War
The objective conditions for waging people's war are exceedingly favorable in the Philippines. The semicolonial and semifeudal ruling system is in grave crisis. Factions and cliques of the big compradors and landlords and even within the ruling circle of the US-Estrada regime are seriously contending with each other over the diminished economic ground for mutual accommodation.
The broad masses of the people are undergoing intolerable suffering from the economic and social crisis. They are outraged by the return to power of the Marcos family and the worst political descendants of the Marcos fascist dictatorship, headed by the former movie actor Joseph Estrada. These scoundrels have recovered their ill-gotten wealth and are again plundering the country.
For some years to come, there is no way for the US-Estrada regime to override the longrunning global crisis of overproduction of raw materials and the current crisis of overproduction of low-value added semimanufactures. The drying up of international credit for financing consumption-driven trade deficits makes conspicuous the crushing foreign and local public debt burden and the backward agrarian and semifeudal character of the economy.
The regime aggravates the economic and social crisis by auctioning off the national patrimony and economic sovereignty to the foreign monopolies. It opposes national industrialization and land reform and offers to the foreign monopolies 100 percent ownership of land, banks, manufacturing, public utilities, social services, telecommunications, mass media, retail trade and all kinds of enterprises.
The people are victimized by rapidly mounting mass unemployment, abrupt peso depreciation, inflated prices of food and other basic commodities, heavier tax burden and rising fees for deteriorated social services. Not satisfied with these, the regime is pushing legislation to abolish the right to strike and the minimum wage law and encouraging the foreign monopolies and domestic landgrabbers to amass land under various pretexts.
In charge of an economy laid prostrate by the imperialists and their local running dogs, the regime is ready to give away everything to the imperialists, not only economic privileges but also the privilege of bringing in military forces that enjoy extraterritoriality and are immune to prosecution for crimes that they commit on Philippine soil. Preparations are underway for the amendment of the reactionary constitution to further violate the national and democratic rights of the people.
Vainly trying to stop the rise of the people's resistance, the regime is carrying out a policy of repression without formally declaring martial law, especially against the working people and ethnic communities. It is encouraging the military, police and paramilitary forces to perpetrate extrajudicial killings, kidnappings, torture and the most brutal acts to force people to abandon their homes and farms.
All of these violate the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law (CARHRIHL) mutually approved by the Government of the Republic of the Philippines and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines. The regime has been violating all other bilateral agreements in the GRP-NDFP peace negotiations. It has in fact terminated these negotiations.
We have no problem with ending the peace negotiations as a form of legal struggle. We have conducted these along the clear line that a just and lasting peace can be attained only by pursuing the new-democratic revolution through the protracted people's war. Having strengthened the revolutionary forces and the mass base, we are in a position to intensify the people's war from year to year.
We cannot tolerate the brazen attempts of the enemy to junk The Hague Joint Declaration and impose on the NDFP a framework of capitulation and self-criminalization. The GRP has violated so many provisions of the CARHRIHL, such as those pertaining to the release of political prisoners, the indemnification of the victims of human rights violations under the Marcos regime, the repeal of repressive decrees, the end of policies and campaigns that brutally victimize entire communities and take away their homes and land and the formation of the Joint Monitoring Committee.
In violation of the framework of the GRP-NDFP peace negotiations and the CARHRIHL, the GRP has refused to negotiate the issue of prisoners of war, has viciously misrepresented the acts of revolution as common crimes and has arbitrarily "suspended" the safety and immunity guarantees for NDFP negotiating personnel and consultants, also in brazen violation of the JASIG.
The treacherous Estrada regime demands that the peace negotiations be held and put under its mercy in Manila as in 1986 and 1987 and arbitrarily rejects the stipulation of the Joint Agreement on Safety and Immunity Guarantees (JASIG) for a neutral venue abroad. And yet, it refuses the peace negotiations to be held in the territory of the people's democratic government or within a neutralized zone between the territories of the GRP and the revolutionary government.
It is just fine that an already isolated regime, which is daily buffeted by a severe economic and political crisis, challenges the revolutionary forces to intensify the people's war. Instead of trying to explore the possibility of truce and alliance with the current enemy through peace negotiations, the revolutionary forces must develop alliances with all possible forces at various levels in order to isolate and destroy the enemy. It is within the realm of probability that a broad united front can put the Estrada regime to an end before its term runs out.
Among the recent alliances that we can publicly announce and consider as highly significant is the formal alliance between the NDFP and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front. This is an alliance for armed struggle and its significance is not only regional but national because it can effectively deliver lethal blows against the enemy.
If there were no revolutionary armed struggle, a ruling system or regime can muddle through an economic and social crisis. But the revolutionary armed struggle exists and can intensify. The ensuing aggravation of the political and socioeconomic crisis can be fatal to the Estrada regime.
To complement the revolutionary armed struggle, the Party is vigorously building the united front. This involves an echelon of alliances, such as the basic worker-peasant alliance, the alliance of the progressive forces (including the urban petty-bourgeoisie), the alliance of patriotic forces (including the middle bourgeoisie) and the temporary alliances with the reactionaries opposed to the enemy.
Worsening Crisis of the World Capitalist System
The current crisis of the world capitalist system does not allow the imperialist countries to let foreign loans and direct investments flow to the Philippines up to any level comparable to that during most years (1972-79) of the Marcos fascist dictatorship and during four years (1993-97) of the Ramos regime.
We can therefore be sure that the socioeconomic and political crisis of the ruling system will worsen and the entire ruling system will weaken in the face of a rising broad mass movement and the tactical offensives of the New People's Army.
There is a chronic crisis of overproduction in all types of goods in the world. There is a contraction of the world market. The so-called emerging markets have sunk and are still sinking further in the direction of the raw-material producing countries depressed since the late '70s. Under the "laissez faire" or "free trade" policy rationale of "neoliberal globalization", the monopoly bourgeoisie has accelerated the concentration and centralization of capital, the destruction of productive forces and shrinkage of the global market.
The worsening crisis of the world capitalist system is intensifying all the basic contradictions in the world, such as that between the imperialist countries and oppressed peoples, between the monopoly bourgeoisie and the proletariat and among the imperialist countries. The whole world is in turmoil.
The social turbulence is most acute and widespread in Asia, Africa, Latin America and most of the former Soviet bloc countries. Using the slogans of bourgeois nationalism, fascism, racism, ethnocentrism and religion, reactionary forces are generating widespread disorder in their factional strife. This disorder is conducive to the rise of revolutionary forces among the people, if there were a resolute and courageous Marxist-Leninist party to lead them.
The imperialist countries are wracked by the contradiction of inflated productive and financial assets and the reduced incomes of the proletariat and the rest of the people. There is chronic mass unemployment, most conspicuously in Japan and in Europe. In the United States, touted to have a high employment rate, regular jobs are being lost and replaced by part-time jobs. Thus, the class struggle of the proletariat is breaking out into the open even in the imperialist countries.
Cutthroat competition and protectionism under various guises are arising among imperialist countries. Interimperialist contradictions appear to be restrained only because the imperialist countries are united in further oppressing and exploiting the proletariat and the oppressed peoples and in carrying out wars of aggression and "police actions" under the guise of "peacekeeping" and "humanitarian missions" in various parts of the world, especially in the Balkans, Middle East, the Caucasus, Central Asia and Africa.
The imperialist countries are competing for markets, fields of investment, sources of raw materials and positions of strength. However, still under the chieftainship of the US, the Western imperialists have enlarged the NATO up to the borders of Russia. The US-Japan security partnership is geared for aggression in East Asia. The imperialist countries are stirring up trouble everywhere and are generating conditions of war.
The Communist Party of the Philippines is actively propagating the Marxist-Leninist theory of state and revolution and the applicability of protracted people's war in many agrarian countries where the peasant masses can be the main force of the new-democratic revolution under the leadership of the proletariat. Together with other Marxist-Leninist parties waging or supporting people's war, the CPP has recently undertaken the International Seminar on Mao and People's War.
The Party maintains bilateral relations with parties in all types of countries and is active in various multilateral gatherings to promote at the least the global anti-imperialist struggle and at the most the world proletarian revolution. In all cases, the Party respects the independent and equal rights of parties to conduct revolutionary struggle according to the concrete conditions and judgment of such parties.
Fighting Tasks of the New People's Army
The central task of the New People's Army is to destroy the counterrevolutionary state of the comprador big bourgeoisie and landlord class and enable the working class and the peasantry to establish the people's democratic state. Such task can be accomplished over a protracted period of time along the general line of the new democratic revolution.
Right now, thanks to the people's army, there are local organs of political power, now comprising the people's democratic government, even as the reactionary government is still entrenched in the cities. Two kinds of government now exist in the Philippines. The revolutionary government aims to replace the reactionary government in due course.
Without the people's army, the people have nothing. They would only be subjected to oppression and exploitation, without any hope of creating their own political power and achieving national and social liberation from the imperialists and the local reactionaries.
It is clear that the New People's Army is mainly a fighting force for defeating the enemy. But it cannot perform its fighting tasks without performing the tasks of arousing, organizing and mobilizing the broad masses of the people to defend, promote and advance their national and democratic rights and interests.
The NPA must ceaselessly carry out mass work in order to further develop a strong foundation for carrying out the central task, to have an inexhaustible source of strength and to be able to recruit the best sons and daughters of the people. The broad masses of the people cherish and nourish the people's army only because it serves them and fights for their rights and interests.
Revolutionary politics must be in command of the New People's Army. This army must follow the absolute leadership of the Communist Party of the Philippines, serve as the main organization for carrying out the Program for a People's Democratic Revolution set forth by the Party and pursue the mass line of learning from the masses and trusting and relying on them.
The Party acts as the revolutionary vanguard of the proletariat and the Filipino people and determines the general line and direction of the revolution. It wields both the people's army to destroy the counterrevolutionary state and the united front to rally the people in their millions to the revolutionary cause.
Even while the NPA is based in the countryside in pursuing the strategic line of protracted people's war, it is of utmost importance for the Party to coordinate all forms of mass struggle that arise and develop in both urban and rural areas.
To strengthen the bonds between the revolutionary forces in the rural and urban areas, workers and educated youth must be encouraged to join the people's army and serve the masses in the rural areas. The Party must deploy them accordingly. They bring with them much-needed knowledge and skills even as they must first learn from the masses that they seek to serve in the localities.
The deployment of cadres and mass activists from the cities to the countryside facilitates the coordination of the struggles in the urban and rural areas and prepares the day when the New People's Army shall be able to seize the cities on a nationwide scale.
The new-democratic revolution has a socialist perspective. We seek to overthrow the existing counterrevolutionary state and bring to an end the semicolonial and semifeudal conditions in order to proceed to the socialist revolution as the next stage of the Philippine revolution.
At this moment, the new-democratic revolution being carried out in the Philippines is one of the outstanding revolutions in the world. That is because we have a people's army successfully following the strategic line of protracted people's war.
Now and in the future, the Philippine revolution serves not only to realize the national and social liberation of the Filipino people but also to make its contributions to the advance of the world proletarian revolution and the broad anti-imperialist struggle of the people of the world.
Long live the New People's Army!
Carry forward the new-democratic revolution through protracted people's war!
Fight until complete victory!
Long live the Communist Party of the Philippines!
Long live the Filipino people!