Insurrection if in the US, ‘people power,’ democracy movement if elsewhere

AMERICANS were stunned on January 6. What they witnessed and applauded in 1986 here, followed by the so-called color revolutions in Eastern European and Middle Eastern nations, in Tiananmen Square in  China in 1989, and most recently in Hong Kong, they were witnessing in Capitol Hill –the United States Congress being taken over by angry protesters.

A witty, well-informed Brooklyn writer tweeted: “This is not who we are! We do this abroad not at home.” That got over 200,000 “likes.”  One response to that in jest: “Due to Covid travel restrictions, this year the US had to organize the coup at home.”

The American masses, even military veterans who had risked their lives in wars in countries they never heard of before, stormed the Congress building, shouting that the presidential elections were rigged, and Congress should not certify Joe Biden’s victory. The following days, the Americans who were not hoi polloi, its political, ideological and even movie-industry elite were wailing: Insurrection!

Insurrection 2021, left; People Power 1986, right. (Left photo: crediting Reuters)

Continue Reading Insurrection if in the US, ‘people power,’ democracy movement if elsewhere

How communists gained control of UP Student Council, Philippine Collegian, and most campus organizations

THIS is the second of a three-part series on how the Maoists, starting in the early martial law years, succeeded in making our premier state educational institution, the University of the Philippines (UP), the Communist Party of the Philippines’ (CPP) intellectual and cultural base.

These narratives were published in a blog by Roberto “Beto” Reyes, who seems to have been a ranking CPP cadre in the late 1970s and 1980s and an eyewitness and participant in the communist conquest of UP.

We owe this account, certainly a testament to the adage “news are the first drafts of history,” to Mr. Reyes who took the effort and time to write down what could very well have been lost in people’s frangible memories. I also applaud The Manila Times’ editors, who agreed to publish such rather unusual content of an opinion column, making these narratives a solid resource material for future historians — as opposed to an internet blog that could be deleted permanently.

As I have narrated in previous columns, since the years described here the CPP has consolidated and expanded its control of the UP, which has continued to be its recruitment grounds, its de facto party school, and one of its most powerful propaganda machines. The UP’s bigger non-communist academic and student community have just looked away. There has been no ideological and cultural counter-force to the communists’ hegemony over the UP.

A usual UP happening: Not about tuition fees and the like but ‘various issues’ vs Duterte. ANC SCREENGRAB

Continue Reading How communists gained control of UP Student Council, Philippine Collegian, and most campus organizations

How the Maoist CPP conquered UP

AS big a challenge for the government to wipe out the Communist Party and its terrorist New People’s Army militarily is the dismantling of its ideological support, with the University of the Philippines — where the party’s founder Jose Ma. Sison started his Maoist movement — being its biggest ideological base, and recruitment grounds since the 1970s. It is not an exaggeration to say that the CPP since the late 1970s has conquered UP, with its academic community a testament to the adage, “the only thing necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing.”

To understand the seriousness of this problem, imagine what kind of politics would be in the US if Harvard and Yale were dominated intellectually by the Communist Party of the US, or Indonesia if the University of Indonesia by an underground revived Partai Komunis Indonesia, or if the Thais had not totally cleansed Chulalongkorn University of its radical students and professors?

I chanced on a blog titled “Beto Reyes Blog: Memoirs of an Anti-Martial Law Activist.” I don’t know him, and I hadn’t met him in my activist years. But from the information he discloses in his blog, he seems to be among the generation of activists that emerged right after martial law and rose to become a ranking Communist Party cadre in the late 1970s and 1980s. My sources confirmed this.

This photo was in an Aug. 20, 2019 article in the official website of UP Diliman, entitled ‘UP Diliman Stages Walkout.’

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‘Trillanes malversed funds to pay me; Fr. Alejo swindled me’ – Sabio’

THAT’s according to lawyer Jude Sabio, who filed in 2017 the “mass murder” allegations in the International Criminal Court against President Duterte and a dozen other officials, including his purported allies Sen. Richard Gordon, then Sen.Alan Peter Cayetano and then House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez.*

However, Sabio in January 2020 informed the ICC prosecutor in a sworn affidavit that he was withdrawing his complaint, and asked her to “expunge it from the record.”

One reason for Sabio’s turnaround was his realization, he said in his affidavit, that Sen. Antonio Trillanes 4th in conspiracy with the Jesuit Fr. Albert Alejo, Sen. Leila de Lima and the rest of the Liberal Party-led opposition were just out to advance their “their political agenda which is to undermine and topple President  Duterte so that Vice  President Lenny [Robredo] would become president.”

ICC filer’ denounces his clients. (PNP, ANC screen grab)
‘ICC filer’ denounces his clients. (PNP, ANC screen grab)

Continue Reading ‘Trillanes malversed funds to pay me; Fr. Alejo swindled me’ – Sabio’

ICC case: Trillanes’ and Yellows’ machinations, with Reds scrambling to join

THE case filed at the International Criminal Court (ICC) accusing President Rodrigo Duterte and his administration of “crimes against humanity” is nothing but the maneuvering for the political goals of former senator Antonio Trillanes 4th and the Liberal Party (LP), with the communists scrambling later to join the plot.

This is not my analysis, not my conjecture.

It is the lawyer himself, Jude Sabio, who filed the case at the ICC in April 2017; who revealed the scheme in his Jan. 12, 2020 letter to the ICC Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda, that he submitted as a sworn affidavit, attested to by a local notary public. He informed Bensouda that he was withdrawing the case he had filed against Duterte for reasons he elaborated on in his 28-page letter.

The ICC filer and the men behind him The Manila Times,, Philippine National Police

That the Reds scrambled to bolster the case with its own lies was revealed in a tweet last week by former leftist party-list representative Teodoro Casiño, reporting that the National Union of People’s Lawyers — led by Edre Olalia, communist leader Jose Ma. Sison’s personal counsel — and Communist Party-led organizations disguised as human rights groups “sent communications to the ICC.”


Continue Reading ICC case: Trillanes’ and Yellows’ machinations, with Reds scrambling to join

What Trump did wrong/What Duterte did right

WHILE we certainly haven’t yet totally defeated the pandemic and there is still the possibility of another surge as occurred in the past weeks in Europe, I’m convinced at this point that beating this plague will be viewed by historians as one of President Duterte’s remarkable achievements during his term.

Scholars on governance and public administration will be studying this historic episode to find out how Duterte did it to draw lessons from it.


However, rather than theorizing how he accomplished that feat, I will contrast what Duterte and his government did and what US President Donald Trump did not do.

After all, the US is the country with the largest number of Covid-19 cases and deaths because of that virus and has the most advanced government apparatus and biggest finances to fight the pandemic.


Continue Reading What Trump did wrong/What Duterte did right