The Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) condemns Benigno Aquino III, president of the reactionary state and commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), for refusing to acknowledge the increasing number of human rights violations by its military and police forces and dismissing these as “Leftist propaganda” which “people do not buy.”
To further disparage the complaints against his regime, Aquino even risked making himself look ridiculous when he denounced the oppressed people in urban poor communities for “violating the human rights of the military and police” when they hurled stones and resisted the destruction of their homes by government demolition crews escorted by state agents armed with guns, teargas and truncheons.
In making such dismissive statements, Aquino has shown utter insensitivity and contempt for the victims of human rights violations, as well as their families, friends and supporters. Aquino’s denials remind us of how Ferdinand Marcos lied through his teeth when he claimed that there were no political prisoners, when at least 70,000 people were imprisoned under his martial law rule.
Aquino’s sweeping dismissals of denunciations against military and police abuses is made worse by the fact that he made them just a few days after armed troops of the 27th IB massacred the Cafeon family last October 18 in Davao del Sur, killing the pregnant mother, Jovy, and her two young children. The Cafeons belong to the B’laan tribe, which has been actively opposing the operation of mining giant SMI-Xstrata within their ancestral domain. The massacre has roused widespread national and international condemnation, yet Aquino chooses to turn a deaf ear and spit out lies in a vain attempt at a coverup.
Like Marcos, Aquino denies the existence of political prisoners under his regime, when more than a hundred have been incarcerated under his rule, bringing the current total to around 400. A campaign of extrajudicial killings continues to be carried out by state agents under Aquino, with more than 100 victims in a little more than two years. In the countryside, hundreds of communities are subjected to militarization, resulting in a reign of terror and abuse against the peasants, especially women and children. The Aquino regime has increasingly employed force in tearing down urban poor dwellings to give way to foreign-funded infrastructure projects.
Aquino is stoking the culture of impunity among the fascist military and police. He emboldens state armed agents to intensify brutalities by dismissing complaints against human rights abuses as “propaganda” and refusing to undertake decisive measures to charge, prosecute and punish perpetrators of human rights violations.
Aquino wants the military and police to further intensify his Oplan Bayanihan war to suppress peasants, workers, urban poor, students and other exploited and oppressed sectors who stand up and raise their voices against the reactionary regime’s antipeople, antinational and anti-democratic policies.
The Filipino people are increasingly infuriated at how Aquino harps on being a victim of the abuses of martial law while he himself is now imitating Marcos in employing the Hitlerite propaganda technique of dishing out neverending lies and half-truths in the hope that the people will believe this to be the truth.
Aquino has poured hundreds of millions of pesos of public funds to oil his publicity campaigns. He and his yellow army of spinmeisters come up with manipulated economic statistics and self-serving surveys to project a pseudo-reality to downplay the pervasive socio-economic problems of poverty, unemployment, rising prices, low wages, hunger, homelessness and landlessness. He publicly bashes the media and public opinion makers who refuse to ride the Aquino fantasy bandwagon.
Aquino enjoys the full support of his imperialist masters in carrying out his campaign of deception and suppression.
Falling for his own pseudo-reality, Aquino has become increasingly arrogant and high-handed in dealing with criticism and disenchantment. He is displaying intolerance and a penchant for silencing dissent.
The CPP calls on the broad masses of the people to expose and firmly oppose the human rights abuses and the antipeople and antinational policies of the Aquino regime and urges them to continue asserting their national and democratic interests.