Freedom Road Socialist Organization condemns in the strongest possible terms the U.S. State Department decision to keep the Communist Party of the Philippines and the New People’s Army on its list of designated “Foreign Terrorist Organizations.” This is an example of confounding facts with fiction, and it is an attempt to criminalize international solidarity.
The real terrorists in the Philippines are to be found in the U.S.-backed regime of President Marcos. Jails in the Philippines are filled with political prisoners. Trade union federations, like the May First Workers Movement, face constant government repression. In the countryside, the military is carrying out a savage campaign of murder. The Philippine air force, flying in U.S.-supplied planes, drops American-made bombs of rural villages.
For its part, the Communist Party of the Philippines, and the New People’s Army, which fights under it leadership, have done nothing wrong. They have been waging a people’s war for more than half a century to free the Philippines from U.S. imperialism, feudalism and bureaucrat capitalism. These revolutionaries represent the hopes and aspirations of the Filipino people for a just society and a better way of life.
The State Department list of designated “Foreign Terrorist Organizations” should be scrapped, as should the laws dealing with “material support for terrorism.” What the laws do is to put the terrorism label on movements that are fighting for national liberation. For example, almost every organization that is working for the liberation of Palestine is on the list. The material support laws then serve to criminalize people in this country who express solidarity with these movements.
This legal architecture was developed during the Clinton presidency and has been used to launch tens of thousands of federal investigations into Arab and Muslims. Material support of terrorism laws were also used to carry out a wave of FBI raids and grand jury investigations of anti-war and international solidarity activists – including a number of FRSO members.
The Communist Party of the Philippines and its New People’s Army are standing up to the U.S.-backed terrorism of the Marcos regime. Their cause is just one. We are against any and all laws that try to make proletarian internationalism a crime. Specifically, the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996 should be repealed or overturned, as it treats solidarity a crime.
It’s past time for the U.S. to get out of the Philippines. U.S. troops need to come home. Military and other aid to the Marco regime should cease. Fighting for freedom and national liberation is not a crime, no matter what the U.S. government says – it’s the right thing to do. And the people of the Philippines are sure to win.