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Charge of Multiple Murder in Leyte is a Patent Lie

By Prof. Jose Maria Sison
Chief Political Consultant
National Democratic Front of the Philippines
9 March 2007

Time and again I have denied the repeated false charge by the military that I am responsible for murders in Leyte from 1984 to 1986.

The charge is a patent lie, for the following reasons:

1. I was in the maximum security detention center of the Armed Forces of the Philippines in Fort Bonifacio from 1977 onwards. I was in solitary confinement up to 1985. I was never in any position from 1984 to 1986 or at any other time to sign any kind of order to kill people in Leyte or anywhere else in the Philippines . After my release from military detention in March 1986, I concentrated on writing and speaking on national issues, organizing the People's Party (Partido ng Bayan) and teaching in the University of the Philippines . I left for abroad in August 1986 to make a lecture tour in the Asia-Pacific region and then Europe .

2. My position as Chairman of the Communist Party of the Philippines ended upon my capture by the military in 1977. The military is lying by claiming that I exercised authority and signed an order to kill people while I was in solitary confinement. It is also a big lie the claim of the military that Satur Ocampo and Luis Jalandoni co-signed the aforesaid order and that the false witness of the military was able to read it in a few seconds. Like me, Satur Ocampo was in maximum security detention. Louie Jalandoni was abroad as a political refugee.

3. Through Fr. Santiago Salas as spokesperson, the NDFP-Eastern Visayas has exposed the fact it was the Philippines Army that controlled the area in question as a killing field and committed extrajudicial killings here from 1984 onwards. The people in the same area also aver that the Philippine Army dug up and desecrated the graves in an old cemetery in order to produce many skeletal remains for propaganda use. The Alston mission criticized as a hoax the claim of the military that these remains had come from "mass graves" of the New People's Army (NPA).

The military, the prosecution and the judge are shameless in misrepresenting a killing field of the Philippine Army as that of the New People's Army and are culpable for serving as the Arroyo regime's tools of persecution. The regional trial court judge is irresponsible for dignifying the patent lie of the military and the prosecutor and issuing the warrants for the arrest of Bayan Muna Rep. Satur Ocampo, NDFP Negotiating Panel chairperson Luis Jalandoni, myself and other people.

The judge proves himself either as a helpless tool of the Arroyo regime and the military or practically an ignoramus in Philippine law by conveniently forgetting that the prescription period for cases of murder is twenty years and by disregarding the Hernandez doctrine that the charge of rebellion absorbs all other charges. The repeated false charge of multiple murder in Leyte was already specified in a previous charge of rebellion last year.

The false charge of multiple murder is now wrenched out of the previous rebellion charge and is being drummed up in order to deflect attention from the findings and conclusions of the Alston mission and the Melo commission that military special teams or death squads are responsible for the extrajudicial killing of more than 820 unarmed legal activists and critics of the regime, including the leaders of progressive party list groups and mass organizations, journalists, religious people, human rights lawyers and others.

The false charge is also being used to derail and destroy the electoral campaign of the progressive party list groups. Thus, Rep. Satur Ocampo of Bayan Muna is one of the principal accused. The Arroyo regime is trying to arrest him and detain him indefinitely like Anakpawis Congressman Crispin Beltran on a nonbailable charge.

The false charge is a harbinger of worse times to come when the Anti-Terror Law is implemented by the Arroyo regime and state terrorism is further escalated through the proscription of organizations and the consequent punitive sanctions. It shall become so much easier for the Anti-Terrorism Council to proscribe and punish organizations and individuals on the basis of intelligence dossiers and through ex parte rulings from judges of regional trial courts.

As during the Marcos fascist regime, the victims of extrajudicial killings, abductions and torture by the military will not obtain justice against any of the culpable military and police officers. The 99 special courts created by the Supreme Court are useless for the victims and their families because the de facto president Arroyo encourages her military and police minions to commit extrajudicial killings and protects them from investigation, prosecution and trial.

Before any victim of extrajudicial killing can obtain justice, progressive parties and individuals will be proscribed and punished just by being listed as "terrorist". At the same time, the military, police and their assets will continue to commit with impunity extrajudicial killings and other human rights violations.

The dirty tactics of the Arroyo regime and the military, which involve accusing unarmed legal activists as "communists" and "enemies of the state", murdering them with the use of death squads and then falsely claiming that the killers are communists, is now a deeply entrenched state policy. The Arroyo regime itself is relentlessly pushing the revolutionary forces to defend their integrity by concentrating their fire at the oppressors and bloody intriguers in power.

The dirty tactics of the Arroyo regime and its military are patterned after the Phoenix Program during the US war of aggression in Vietnam in the 1960s. Such crimes of bloody intrigue are currently inspired by the Bush global war of terror. The US and Arroyo regime are unwittingly driving the Filipino people and the revolutionary forces to take advantage of the crisis and contradictions within the ruling system and to intensify the people's war against the entire ruling system. ###


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