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By Ramon Farolan
Two occurrences that took place during my high school days come to mind as one follows recent developments on the national security front.
The vacuum of leadership in the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army
(CPP-NPA) will be very evident in the coming days, following the capture of Benito and Wilma Tiamzon last March 22.
A week before a joint police-military operation captured Benito Tiamzon, chair of the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army, together with his wife Wilma and five others in Carcar, Cebu, unknown gunmen killed Romeo Capalla, an anti-Marcos rebel turned fair trade campaigner, in Oton, Iloilo.
I felt dismayed seeing the picture of Jorge Madlos in the Inquirer (Across the Nation, 12/31/13), more so after I read the accompanying article on the celebration by the underground Communist Party of the Philippines of its 45th anniversary. Madlos claimed many “victories” of his revolutionary struggle in Mindanao: zero or minimal criminal cases in the area under his control, like rape and theft, gambling and even the use of illegal drugs.
By John Nery
There are various shades of red in the political spectrum, but for the sake of argument I will adopt the convention in use in many newsrooms and identify the Philippine Left as those associated with the National Democratic Front (NDF). These political forces include some of the most successful party-list groups in our history, such as Bayan Muna.
Six soldiers and three Cafgu (Citizen Armed Forces Geographical Unit) volunteers were killed in Tulunan, North Cotabato, on Oct. 21, 2013, in an ambush and landmine explosion.
By Ramon Farolan
Perhaps it is a measure of how easily we forget, how readily we get totally absorbed by current events, that with the exception of the Ramon Magsaysay Awards, not much was written about the man after whom the award was named. By remembering the past, we would be able to get a better handle on some of the problems that we now face.
I used to live in Cotabato. I left the place last year to work in Manila, but all my relatives are still there.
I write this in reaction to the letter titled “Casiño a leftist but not a genuine nationalist” (Inquirer, 5/25/13).
It’s something every military family dreads, and for the Lorin family of Zamboanga City, the devastating news came last weekend: 2nd Lt. Alfredo Lorin VI, “Limboy” to kith and kin and the sixth of eight children, was dead. Along with six other young Marines, he was killed in a clash with Abu Sayyaf bandits in Patikul, Sulu, on May 25.
This is in reaction to the news item titled “Rebs seize rice meant for voters” (Across the Nation, 5/7/13).
In the past election season, the New People’s Army collected P26 million through extortion—a much lower amount than it expected (“NPA raised only P26M in poll campaign fees,” Page A10, 5/23/13). The military said the money came from candidates, groups and individuals in Metro Manila, Isabela, Masbate, Negros, Camarines Sur and Catanduanes.