A pioneer in modern terrorism
First of 2 parts
THAT 30,000 figure is based on the Armed Forces of the Philippines’ official list of soldiers killed by the New People’s Army totaling 12,861 from 1975 to 2015; my estimate is that the number of police casualties is the same, and half that the number of village militia and “uncooperative” civilians executed by the communists.
(The killing continues, but we have no data on the number of killed from 2016 to yesterday.)
Note that 30,000 is 10 times the 3,000 allegedly killed by martial law forces according to the Human Rights Victims Compensation Board (and given P2 million each in “compensation” by a law pushed by President Aquino 3rd in 2015).
Thirty thousand killed by the NPA, which the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) directs and it still has the gall to deny that it is not a terrorist organization?
There is another reason why the CPP is undeniably a terrorist organization. It was a world pioneer in terrorism.
And this was in its worst form, only in the past decades given a name: false-flag operation. This is the killing of civilians — usually through the bombing of a public event — by a terrorist group which then blames it on the government, to rouse public anger against the latter.
I am referring to the bombing on Aug. 21, 1971 of the miting de avance of the anti-Marcos Liberal Party by communist operatives ordered by CPP chairman Jose Ma. Sison and the five-man executive committee of the party politburo. The four grenades that exploded killed several (the exact number sadly unascertained to this day) and injured the opposition leaders to adversely affect their political careers.
The top Liberal Party leader, Benigno Aquino Jr., whose speech was to have been the highlight of the event — who would be revealed years later as having aided the CPP and the NPA in its fledgling years — missed the bombing by 10 minutes. That of course raised suspicion that the CPP founder himself, Sison — through an NPA commander known to both of them — warned Aquino to delay his arrival at Plaza Miranda to escape the bombing.
Sison ordered the bombing as he calculated Marcos would in response declare martial law and that suspension of democracy, as well as the ruthlessness of the attack blamed on the president would rouse Filipinos against him, enough for them to join the NPA. Sison in August 1971 had convinced the Communist Party of China to furnish him thousands of M-14 rifles to arm what he saw in his delusion as thousands of Filipinos rushing to his Red Revolution after the bombing and the imposition of martial law
While many in the Liberal Party, such as then Sen. Eddie Ilarde, publicly expressed doubts that Marcos was responsible (Was he so stupid as to order such a bombing for which he would be blamed?), it was so politically opportunistic it fanned the blaming on Marcos so that by portraying themselves victims of that dastardly deed, the LP candidates won six of the eight Senate seats in the November 1971 elections.
Sison’s dry run
Sison himself patted himself on the back for his Plaza Miranda plot. In the CPP’s very first statement which he wrote after the declaration of martial law, he claimed: “The dry run for the big trick that is the current ‘state of national emergency’ was the Plaza Miranda massacre on Aug. 21, 1971.”
The CPP and the Liberal Party managed to keep the Plaza Miranda bombing secret for more than two decades. The truth though started to trickle out after Marcos fell in 1986.
First, Victor Corpus who was one of the top NPA leaders after he defected in 1970 when he was a lieutenant from the AFP, claimed in a 1987 press conference that the bombing was a CPP operation.
Unfortunately, the credibility of his revelation suffered from accusations that Corpus made the allegations as part of the rebel group RAM’s propaganda to discredit the Cory Aquino regime. A second revelation was made by former NPA commander Ariel Almendral who gave the same narrative to former senator Jovito Salonga — a highly respected Liberal Party leader who lost an eye in the bombing. He wrote in his biography that he believed Amendral’s claim.
One shortcoming of Corpus and Almendral’s claim was that their knowledge of the Plaza Miranda bombing was from the trial and execution of an NPA leader Danny Cordero. A firebrand that I had recruited to the party in 1970, Cordero was tried by a “military tribunal” of the CPP Northern Luzon regional committee for questioning its leadership. Cordero thought the NPA platoons, one of which he was in command of, were evading combat with army troopers, and going around in circles near Digoyo Bay in Isabela. Unfortunately, he wasn’t informed of the need-to-know operation of the NPA to retrieve arms smuggled by China which was to set anchor at Digoyo.
Things became worse for Danny. When he realized that the “military court” was unsympathetic to him and even implied that he could be a deep-penetration agent, and therefore probably order his execution, he claimed that he was so loyal to the party that he was entrusted to lead one of the two-man teams that bombed Plaza Miranda, and that he had never revealed it to anyone. Since it was party dogma then — promulgated by Sison himself — that Marcos had ordered the bombing, the NPA kangaroo court dismissed Cordero’s claim and ordered him executed — reportedly by a female NPA who was the only one to have voted him innocent.
With the Yellows’ hold on media — the truth of Plaza Miranda was damaging to their narrative of an Evil Dictator – the reality of the CPP’s crime faded into the background, with party members choosing to ignore and forget it.
However, in 1989, American journalist Gregg Jones published a book Red Revolution, which incontrovertibly shows that it was the CPP that undertook this crime, the vilest false-flag operation ever undertaken in this country. Even as Jones was largely sympathetic to the communist insurgency, seeing it as a legitimate revolutionary movement against the dictatorship, his book had a chapter titled “Ghosts of Plaza Miranda.” There he provided details on how the Plaza Miranda was planned and executed, the personalities behind it as well as the Cordero tragedy.
What appears to have enabled Jones to unearth the truth of Plaza Miranda was that by intent or sheer luck, he got to rent with his Filipino wife Aleli, a small bungalow inside the Malay family compound where lived then National Democratic Front leader Satur Ocampo, his wife Bobbie Malay and his brother-in-law Ricardo Malay.
These longtime CPP cadres most probably became Jones’ close friends, trusting him so much to reveal what they knew about the bombing. They also most probably opened the doors for Jones to interview otherwise secretive CPP leaders — current at that time or retired — to divulge what they knew about the bombing.
Ricardo Malay was with the party delegation that went to China in 1970. Malay wrote in Manila Chronicle articles that his group was told beforehand — days before — about the bombing by Ibarra Tubianosa, the delegation’s head who was one of Sison’s five-man executive committee. (Another member of the delegation, Mario Miclat confirmed Malay’s narrative, although thinly disguised as a novel Secrets of the 18 Mansions about which I wrote in a previous column.)
On Wednesday, September 28: Secrets Red Revolution revealed
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