Ang Bahay ni Lola: Haunted House Fundraiser

Peoples Halloween Flyer

More details coming soon.

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Jersey City Fil-Am Cultural Festival

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“Know History. Know Self.
No History. No Self.”

Join Anakbayan NJ on Saturday, October 17th, 2015 for a jam-packed day of films, performances, presentations, and exhibitions by Filipino youth, students, and our allies, featuring a centerpiece screening of The Guerilla is a Poet.

You’ll also hear stories from the International People’s Tribunal in Washington, DC, and Kapit Bisig Kabataan Relief Mission in the Philippines this past summer.

Saturday, October 17th
12-6pm: Filipino Film Festival
7-9pm: Upsurge Cultural Show and Open Mic
$5-$20 sliding scale
(no one turned away for lack of funds)

***Full program and location TBA***

Calling all Filipino Youth and Allies:

Anakbayan NJ aims to highlight the often forgotten, but historic, role of Filipinos in the US. Let us celebrate our contributions as migrant workers, artists, activists, and young people who are bearers of change for a more sustainable and just society!

We call on Filipino youth and allies to lend their talents and voices to the cause of uplifting our revolutionary history and tradition.

To contribute a film for consideration, please email Devyn at devynmanibo@gmail.com.

To share a song, dance, or spoken word performance at Upsurge, please email Bea at bmb.sabino@gmail.com.

Please consider donating to Anakbayan NJ to support our organizational operations and campaigns! More infomation can be found here.

Anakbayan New Jersey Condemns Martial Law and Its Legacy

ABNJ CONDEMNS MARTIAL LAW AND ITS LEGACY

For Immediate Release

Press Statement

September 23, 2015

Reference:

Gian Parel, Anakbayan New Jersey

(470) 309-2265, anakbayannj@gmail.com

It has now been forty-three years since Ferdinand Marcos imposed martial law to breed and reign terror on the Philippines for more than eight years. Martial law is lauded as a time of progress in Philippine history, but what is too often forgotten—or outright silenced and erased—are the victims of human rights and their realities of political imprisonment, disappearances, torture, and even execution during this time. We, the youth and students of Anakbayan New Jersey (ABNJ), condemn martial law and uplift those who have struggled against it, in the past as well as today.

On September 21, 1972, Marcos declared martial law under Proclamation No. 1081 under claims of “lawless violence” and “armed insurrection and rebellion” by suspected communists, thereby seizing absolute power as dictator until the declaration was lifted on January 17, 1981. Peace and order were fiction during this time, and in fact the opposite was happening: there were over 70,000 individuals arrested; 34,000 tortured; 3,240 salvaged or executed; and 1,000 disappeared under Marcos’s fascist state, according to Amnesty International.

Another red scare has been bred by the current president, Benigno Aquino III, and the counterinsurgency program Oplan Bayanihan terrorizing Lumad (indigenous) communities in Mindanao. It should be no surprise that the United States has supported martial law and Oplan Bayanihan.

As dictator, Marcos also abused his power to accept billions of dollars in aid from the United States and the U.S.-backed World Bank and International Monetary Fund. In October 1983, however, the Philippine government announced that it was unable to pay back its foreign debt of $24 billion.1 Filipinos are still paying off this debt, including those abroad whose remittances are worth USD 184 million, 10% of the Philippines’ gross domestic product (GDP).2

Marcos was also praised for increasing the economic growth during martial law: from 1965 to 1971 the average growth rate was 4.9%, while it leaped to a 5.7% average from 1972 to 1981.3 In 1983 and 1984 after the Marcos regime defaulted on its debt, GDP actually fell to a devastating negative 7.3%. One of the effects of this economic decline was a sharp widening of the gap between the poorest and richest. The poor got poorer, while the rich got even richer. This economic gap lives on to today.

Martial law set a legitimized a pattern of impunity that is still the order of the day as Lumads are killed by the Armed Forces of the Philippines and paramilitary groups. Funny, however, that the current Aquino regime recently echoed the popular call of “never again” to martial law, patting themselves on the back.

In continuing the fight against impunity in the Philippines, ABNJ screened Dekada ‘70 last week and participated in an action to commemorate the survivors of martial law on September 21st. “Unfortunately, there are many people, including children of the Filipino diaspora, that are unaware of the human rights violations that have taken place and of Martial Law itself,” reflects ABNJ member Laura Emily Endaya Austria. “The screening of Dekada ‘70 is one of many ways we can make the conversation and history of Martial Law salient in society’s minds as we strive to prevent Martial Law from taking place again.”

The September 21st martial law action called for all people to stand up for Lumads and to stop the killings in Mindanao. Among other speakers, ABNJ member Jonathan Zirkle stated, “Our people risk death every day of their lives whilst they live beneath the heel of bureaucrat capitalists.”

We call on everyone to sign the Unity Statement to condemn escalating human rights violations. Condemn Oplan Bayanihan and the killings of lumads in Mindanao as legacies of martial law. We as ABNJ acknowledge the long-lasting impacts of martial law under Marcos’s dictatorship and call for all people to stand up for human rights in the Philippines.

NEVER AGAIN TO MARTIAL LAW!

###

Notes

  1. Boyce, James K. 1993. The Philippines: The Political Economy of Growth and Impoverishment in the Marcos Era. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press.
  2. World Bank estimates based on IMF balance of payments data.
  3. World Bank national accounts data and OECD National Accounts data files.

Redefining Relief: Anakbayan New Jersey’s Dan and Nina go on Kapit Bisig Kabataan Network’s Mission Trip

KBKN participants visit with a fisherfolk community and learn about their struggles against large-scale mining in Central Luzon. (Source: KBKN Facebook,https://goo.gl/vI7EXd)

KBKN participants visit with a fisherfolk community and learn about their struggles against large-scale mining in Central Luzon. (Source: KBKN Facebook,https://goo.gl/vI7EXd)

This summer Anakbayan New Jersey (ABNJ) members Nina Macapinlac and Dan Santiago had the opportunity to integrate and serve with different communities in the Philippines as part of the Kapit Bisig Kabataan Network (KBKN) relief and rebuild mission. Along with 25 other Filipino American youth, Nina and Dan travelled through Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao to gain exposure and contribute to the different struggles and organizing in peasant, fisherfolk, worker, and youth and student communities. They also had a chance to participate in the State of the Peasants Address in Angeles City and the State of the Nation Address in Manila. The ABNJ newsletter team got the chance to learn about these two rockstars’ experiences for the newsletter’s first ever Special Feature!

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First off, why would someone (like you!) want to go on a KBKN relief and rebuild mission trip to the Philippines? “I wanted to inform my activism here,” said Nina. She also wanted to see the countryside to challenge what she was taught about it growing up. Nina and Dan both expressed that the mission trip was important for them on a personal level as Filipino of the diaspora. “I just wanted to reconnect with my roots, go back to the homeland,” shared Dan. Continue reading

No BASIS To U.S. BASES. U.S. Out of the Philippines! 24 years since the lifting of the military bases agreement

24 yrs MBA.001

For Immediate Release

Press Statement

September 16, 2015

Reference:

Joelle Eliza Lingat, Chairperson, Anakbayan New Jersey

(470) 309-2265, anakbayannj@gmail.com

No Basis to U.S. Bases: U.S. out of the Philippines! 24 Years since the Lifting of the Military Bases Agreement

On September 16, 1991, the Philippine people rejected a new treaty for the Subic Bay National Station, which was to mark the end of U.S. military presence in the country. However, 24 years later, the U.S. military has been the root cause of national tragedies such as the Mamasapano massacre and the murder of Jennifer Laude in the past year alone. Anakbayan New Jersey commemorates the efforts of our predecessors and calls upon the Filipino people today to continue the struggle against U.S. imperialism and all forms of foreign intervention.

Although the Philippine Senate was lauded for rejecting the Treaty of Friendship, Cooperation, and Security in a 12-11 vote, a mere eight years later, they ratified the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA), which enabled the Balikatan exercises. The  VFA allows the U.S. government to retain jurisdiction over U.S. military personnel, meaning that the foreign invaders not only conduct military exercises on Philippine land, yet are protected upon violations Philippine law. The Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) was also signed on April 28, 2014, which ten-year agreement to station U.S. troops and operations on Philippine territory. The historic lifting of military bases was not at the hands of the Senate that essentially overturned the decision, but due to the uproar of the people. The VFA and EDCA illustrate the duplicitous nature of Senate as puppets of the U.S. government.

“U.S. Military presence in the Philippines only means the protection of the neoliberal interests of foreign monopoly capitalists,” said Ian Jerome Conde, Deputy Secretary General of Anakbayan New Jersey, “The rhetoric of the ‘U.S. Protecting the Philippines from China’ propagates the pro-colonial relationship that has existed since the Philippine American War.”

The Philippines has been the battleground of foreign war machines for far too long. As Filipino youth and students, our tomorrow is a path laden with the bullets of imperialism. We cannot merely be inheritors of the future, but rather fight for it to be one free from foreign intervention and replaced with a new society built upon agrarian reform and national industrialization.

JUNK EDCA!

JUNK VFA!

U.S. OUT of the Asia-Pacific!
####

Anakbayan New Jersey Demands Justice for Abdul Kamal, Kashad Ashford, Jerame Reid, and Radazz Hearns! End State Violence on Black Lives!

For Immediate Release

Press Statement

September 16, 2015

Reference:

Brian Flores, Co-Solidarity Officer, Anakbayan New Jersey

Dan Santiago, Co-Solidarity Officer, Anakbayan New Jersey

Ana Robelo, Anakbayan New Jersey

(714) 271-2830, anakbayannj@gmail.com

POP call to action

New Jersey — On September 9th, 2015, as members of Anakbayan and residents of New Jersey, we stand in solidarity with the Rally To Demand Justice For Abdul Kamal, Kashad Ashford, and Jerame Reid organized by the People’s Organization for Progress at the U.S. Attorney’s office in Newark. People’s Organization for Progress held a Million People’s March Against Police Brutality, Racial Injustice, and Economic Inequality this July, in Newark garnering the support of hundreds this July in Newark, including speeches from the families of Abdul Kamal, Kashad Ashford, and Jerame Reid. Less than a month later, 14 year-old Radazz Hearns was chased by two police officers and a state trooper in Trenton, NJ as he walked down the street with friends; he was then shot seven times. Radazz was hospitalized and suffered major injuries to the backs of his legs and pelvis. He is now being charged with second-degree unlawful possession of a handgun, third-degree aggravated assault, and fourth-degree possession of a defaced firearm. The gun that Radazz is accused of reaching for was found on the scene twelve hours after the shooting and the Mercer County police department unlawfully released his juvenile record this week. We continue to denounce the killing and criminalization of Black youth under the U.S. Imperialist machine and white supremacist legal system.

While we understand that the law cannot be the only vehicle for justice, we join People’s Organization for Progress and the families of Kamal, Ashford, Reid, and Hearns in the call to demand that the U.S. Attorney’s Office charge and convict the officers responsible for their murders and open civil rights investigations. “The stories of Kamal, Ashford, and Reid are nothing new,” said Anakbayan New Jersey member Laura Emily Endaya Austria. “They are symptoms of the disease that is police brutality and racism. As members of the political mass organization Anakbayan NJ, we cannot stand for this. We support People’s Organization for Progress in their efforts to make the cases of Kamal, Ashford, Reid, and others more visible and to catalyze change in the criminal justice system that favors whites over people of color.”

Feeling safe is important, but that feeling is hard in the Jersey City community. The growing gentrification in Jersey City, along with police violence and harassment of Black folks and Black queer and trans people, has made our communities unsafe. As expressed by Shayla Cook, member of the Undoing Racism Committee and alumni of Peers Educating Peers at NJCU, this is a constant threat. “My people are continuously being exterminated,” she says. “My people have been forced to leave this country by being sentenced to prison, shot by law enforcement, or lynched. A genocide is taking place. Blood on the leaves and blood on the hands of those who claim to serve and protect. I am not asking you to leave, I am telling you. LEAVE THE SACRED SPACE THAT WE CALL OUR BODIES. In the name of Spirit, those of the shadow, LEAVE. Spirit, I asked that you bend their souls to the light. In the name of Kashad Ashford, Abdul Kamal, Jamal Reid; I BIND ALL ACTS OF VIOLENCE. I BIND ALL BULLETS.” We need space to heal because the intergenerational trauma is stuck in our bodies. Challenge anti-blackness in people of color communities.

We know that our struggles are not only connected in the United States, where the police hold the power to use lethal force and execute without reprieve. They have reportedly taken 821 lives just this year. It is important to us as Filipino-Americans because we see parallels between the state violence and terrorism we both face. Like the FBI’s Counterintelligence Program, COINTELPRO, developed to monitor and ultimately destroy the Black Panthers, Oplan Bayanihan was initiated by the US-Aquino regime in 2011 to further harassment, targeting, and extrajudicial killings of human rights defenders and other perceived threats under the guise of peace and national security. The truth is that Oplan Bayanihan was modeled with the same purpose to try to destroy the movement we have built because it has power, just like Black freedom fighters in the U.S. had and continue to have power.

Oplan Bayanihan is responsible for the forced disappearances, torture, and murder of the leaders of organizations and groups that only work to see our communities and nation to thrive. Last week three Lumad leaders, Emerito Samarca, Dionel Campos, and Bello Sinzo were murdered by paramilitary forces in Mindanao as the Philippine army and special forces terrorized civilians in Sitio Han-ayan. The attacks on Lumad schools, displacement from their ancestral, and mass killings in their communities continue to escalate. We see our communities under attack, whether it be peasants and indigenous peoples in the Philippines or Black people in the United States. We are disillusioned and brought up to see military and police officers as those that protect and serve. As we grow up, we see that the interests that they protect and serve are not of the people but of corporate and wealthy elite. We see that “doing your job” is processed through flawed lenses of a broken justice system and criminalizes progress when it means real change for our people. In the case of Radazz, we hear of trumped-up charges against folks that have done nothing wrong and, in the same breath, are found guilty of charges with irrelevant and unrelated materials.

We are not free until we are all free! Join the call! Put pressure on the US Attorney’s office by calling (973) 645-2704 and sending letters to  

Hon. Paul J. Fishman

U.S. Attorney for New Jersey

U.S. Attorney’s Office

970 Broad Street Suite 700

Newark, New Jersey 07102

END IMPUNITY!

JUSTICE FOR ABDUL KAMAL, KASHAD ASHFORD, JERAME REID, AND RADAZZ HEARNS! JUSTICE FOR ALL BLACK LIVES!

STOP KILLING LUMADS!

###

Delano @ 50: Continue to Tell the History Erased from our Books

delano @ 50 statement.001

For Immediate Release

Press Statement

September 7, 2015

Reference: Ian Jerome Conde, Deputy Secretary-General, Anakbayan New Jersey 

Laura Emily Austria, Anakbayan New Jersey

(470) 309-2265

Delano @ 50: Continue to Tell the History Erased from our Books

New Jersey — On the United States’s pseudo-”Labor Day,” Anakbayan New Jersey acknowledges that the workers’ fight against capitalism still continues. September 8 tomorrow will be 50 years of celebrating the farm workers movement that has been engraved in History. But long before the United Farm Workers (UFW) formed, there existed Filipino Americans that came together to combat the mistreatment of workers in California’s Central Valley. These valiant Filipino compatriots created the Agricultural Workers Organizing Committee (AWOC) under the AFL-CIO merger. This was the beginning of the burgeoning Farm Workers Labor Movement. This led to the Non-Union Grape Boycott, which lasted from 1965-1970. Prior to the Delano Grape Strike, many Filipino farmworkers were already organizing and building collective power. Filipinos in America have had a long history of resistance. When Filipinos first settled in Hawaii, labor organizers like Pablo Manlapit waged strikes against their employers for better working conditions. These organizers have continued the legacy of the Filipinos that preceded themselves in the Philippines; the Delano Manongs are extensions of people like Andres Bonifacio, members of the Katipunan, and other Filipinos that have resisted domination and oppression.

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From left to right (Larry Itliong, Philip Vera Cruz, Pete Velasco)

As members of Anakbayan New Jersey, we connect the struggles of the past to the present day. Just like the workers today that are sent into the diaspora or trafficked due to the Labor Export Policy, the Delano Manongs are early examples of the Overseas Filipino Worker (OFW) phenomenon since Martial Law. Many Filipinos leave the Philippines every day for economic opportunity. Those of which were contracted to work in the fields of California and the canneries of Alaska. These migrant workers worked season to season. TODAY, the current government of the Philippines coins modern day OFWs today, as the “Bagong Bayanis” or “New Heroes.” Filipinos leave at an average of 6000 per day. We must ask ourselves why the Delano Manongs worked without contract protections and harsh working conditions and why our fellow kababayans need to find work outside of the Philippines. The Three Basic Problems of U.S. Imperialism, Feudalism, and Bureaucrat Capitalism are the root causes for why people like Larry Itliong, Philip Vera-Cruz, and Pete Velasco had to migrate to the Belly of the Beast, the United States of America.  

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The United Farm Workers, Delano California

Anakbayan New Jersey celebrates 50 years of Filipinos who have fought for social justice and have challenged the superstructure of capitalism. As a comprehensive mass organization of the National Democratic movement, we the youth are aligned and joined at the hip with the workers. In Jersey City, we have a workers organization, FIWOP (Filipino Immigrant Workers Organizing Project), spearheading the issues of wage theft, minimum wage, and human trafficking. As AWOC has gallantly confronted Schenley Industries and the DiGiorgio Corporation, they worked with the the Mexican-American farm workers to unite against the unfair treatment of farm workers in Delano. AWOC, led by Larry Itliong, worked side by side with César Chávez-led NFWA (National Farm Workers Association). AWOC & NFWA’s commitment to solidarity is a shining example of how we today shall be conducting in building the united front. 

We honor the organizing done by our predecessors by continuing to tell the story that has been erased from our history books. We acknowledge the contribution of Filipinos in Delano to not just be “Filipino American” history but a contribution to U.S. history! To our fellow sibling organizations, members of the Anakbayan/League of Filipino Students chapters, and MIGRANTE International and National Alliance for Filipino Concerns (NAFCON) in the West Coast who attended BOLD STEP: A Celebration of the 50th Anniversary of the Delano Grape Strike, we are with you in spirit. The legacy of the leaders of the Filipino Farm Workers such as Larry Itliong, Philip Vera-Cruz, Pete Velasco, and others remains today. As the youth, we must continue to follow their example. As the youth, we will one day be members of the working population and will always continue to fight the ills that plague the masses and the most oppressed in society.

Itliong

Larry Itliong, Assistant Director of the UFW with Cesar Chavez and the AFL-CIO

WE MUST NEVER FORGET the contributions of the Delano Manongs! U.S. History textbooks remove our stories and replace it with bourgeois mainstream curriculum.  While legislation exists to ensure the learning of the Filipino Farm Workers such as California’s Assembly Bill 123, we must not rest until it is institutionalized nationwide and carried in practice. As Anakbayan New Jersey, we will ensure the propagation of the Filipino Farm Workers in Delano as part of continuing the radical tradition of resistance against oppression. While Larry Itliong, Philip Vera-Cruz, Pete Velasco, and others are no longer with us, WE are them. NEW Larry Itliongs will emerge; NEW organizers will rise and will continue to arouse, organize, and mobilize for the new society youth will one day inherit.

CELEBRATE OUR ROOTS AND HISTORY

CONTINUE TO STAND UP FOR MIGRANTS AND WORKERS RIGHTS

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BAYAN USA Northeast Protests Extrajudicial Killings of Lumad Leaders at the Philippine Consulate

ne statement.002

For Immediate Release

Press Statement

September 4, 2015

Reference: Joelle Eliza Lingat, Chairperson, Anakbayan New Jersey

anakbayannj@gmail.com, 201.675.8278

Lean Deleon, Cultural Officer, New York Committee for Human Rights in the Philippines

nychrp@gmail.com, 510.586.8799

BAYAN USA Northeast Protests Extrajudicial Killings of Lumad Leaders at the Philippine Consulate

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BAYAN NE in front of the Philippine Consulate (PC: Julie Jamora, http://www.juliejamora.com/)

NEW YORK – On September 4, 2015, Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (BAYAN) USA Northeast, alongside the New York Committee for Human Rights in the Philippines (NYCHRP), GABRIELA New York, Anakbayan New York (ABNY), Anakbayan New Jersey (ABNJ), and solidarity allies protested inside and in front of the Philippine Consulate in condemnation of the extrajudicial killing of Lumad leaders Emerito Samarca, Dionel Campos, and Bello Sinzo. The mobilization was a part of a larger International Day of Action by BAYAN USA, Anakbayan USA, and the Save Our Schools Network in cities such as Toronto, Los Angeles, and Seattle.

On September 1, 2015 around 4:00 AM, elements of the 36th Infantry Battalion of the Philippine Army under Colonel Aaron Akas; elements of the 75th Special Forces; and elements of the paramilitary bandit group of Marcos Bocales forced Sitio Han-ayan civilians out of their homes, confiscated their cell phones and cameras and were told to evacuate the area. Around the same time, Loloy and Bobby Tejero of the paramilitary bandit group shot and killed Dionel Campos and Bello Sinzo. Emirto Samaracas, who was seen forced into a classroom with his neck, hands and feet tied the day before, was also discovered dead with a stab wound.  

In response to such killings and terrorization in the community, fifty activists gathered in front of the Philippine Consulate with a tableau of tied up victims and blindfolds with the names of killed indigenous leaders. Additionally, a group of Filipinos and solidarity allies entered the Consulate and created a people’s mic check to call attention to the lack of justice and state accountability for the latest extrajudicial killings and mass displacements. After the peaceful protest, as the activists were exiting, the Consulate would not open their doors and held the activists against their will.   

“We exercised our right to free speech and told the truth about the killings and forced evacuation. We were met with hostility [and] intimidation and [were then] detained by the Consulate staff who would not give a valid reason [for] why we were being detained,” said Berna Ellorin, chairperson of BAYAN USA. “We are seeking justice and accountability for the killings of Emerito Samarca, director of the Lumad school ALCADEV and Lumad leaders Dionel Campos and Bello Sinzo. Ultimately, it was the power of protest, both outside and inside the Consulate that forced them to release us even after the NYPD arrived. We will not be silenced. We will continue to demand justice and accountability from the Aquino government until both are attained.”       

President Aquino’s counterinsurgency program, Oplan Bayanihan, continues to quell resistance. As an extension of the United States’ War on Terror, Oplan Bayanihan has committed 238 extrajudicial killings, 27 enforced disappearances, and 59,612 forced evacuations. Despite the Indigenous Peoples’ Rights Act of 1997, which aims to protect indigenous people’s rights to their ancestral domain, Oplan Bayanihan has criminalized people. This is especially true with that of indigenous people, having resisted land encroachments by multinational mining corporations. Furthermore, whole communities are criminalized and schools built for indigenous children are disrupted, such as that in Han-ayan, where 3,000 children are denied their right to an education and 500 families are denied safety and permanency of their homes.

Indigenous people in Han-ayan, Caraga, Mindanao, and the rest of the Philippines are fighting for their right to self-determination; education; safe homes; basic rights; and a land that indigenous people have depended on for centuries. Fifty percent of the Armed Forces of the Philippines are stationed in Mindanao and strategically placed where mining corporations are extracting resources. The bureaucrat capitalist government has shown up in full force to protect the interests of imperialists. It is in this twisted reality governed by the avarice of imperialist powers and their bureaucratic colluders that the military justifies its human rights violations in killing three innocent people. Manoy Emok, Dionel Campos, and Bello Sinzo were people who fought for justice for the indigenous people. Because of this, they  were silenced by the Philippine military at the auspices of their U.S. puppet masters.

“Araw-araw na pinapatay, pinagmamalupitan, o ginagahasa ng mga paramilitary ang mga katutubong Lumad sa Mindanao,” said Ruthie Arroyo, Interim Vice Chairperson of Anakbayan New Jersey, “Sa kasamaang palad, ang walang awang pagpatay kay Tatay Emok, Dionel Campos at Bello Sinzo ay hindi lamang ang nagiisang kaso nang paglalabag sa karapatang panatao ng Lumad. Ang counterinsurgency program ng rehimeng Aquino o Oplan Bayanihan ay nagbibigay daan para hindi managot ang mga militar sa pagsusupil at pagsasakop ng lupain na pag-aari ng mga katutubo. Ilan pa bang kababayan natin ang kailangan pahirapan at patayin bago tayo magkaisa? Let us link arms and express our deep opposition to the numerous killings and occupation in Mindanao brought upon by Oplan Bayanihan! As Filipino-Americans, let us demand to put a stop to the $50 million U.S. military aid sent to the Philippines annually.”

In March 2014, the Quadrennial Defense Review outlined “three mutually supporting pillars that shape our defense priorities: protect the homeland; build security globally; and project power and win decisively.” The review claims humanitarian assistance and disaster relief and to defeat aggression, disrupt, and destroy terrorist networks. However, in execution, disaster relief assistance was subpar and superficial during Super Typhoon Haiyan. Are to we to say that destroying terrorist networks means carrying out extrajudicial killing of educators and community leaders in ALCADEV, MAPASU, and countless other indigenous people’s communities across the Philippines? Are we expected to believe that these are isolated incidents when days after the attack in Surigao Del Sur, military harassment persisted in Bukidnon following a fact finding mission of the Pangantucan 5?

As Filipinos and allies in the U.S., it is our democratic right and duty to halt the spending of federal tax dollars towards overseas military spending. Instead, we should redirect money towards domestic social services. The Office of the Under Secretary of Defense’s United States Department of Defense Fiscal Year 2016 Budget Request of February 2015 allotted $50.9 billion in Overseas Contingency Operations to conduct operations in the Middle East, the Horn of Africa, and, specifically, the Philippines. According to the Congressional Research Service, between 2002 and 2013, the U.S. provided the Philippines $312 million in military assistance. We galvanize the masses of the U.S. to exercise their electoral strength and use Congress’ power of the purse to reject U.S. imperialism.

While we recognize the limits of electoral politics, the undeniable flow of resources from the fascist state to its neo-colony must be cut off at its source. We strengthen our mass movement by wounding the imperialist beast through multilateral weapons of struggle. As we continue to agitate, organize, and mobilize our communities, we also demand that the U.S. Congress eliminate foreign military expenditure. With the intensification of the conditions of the indigenous peoples and toiling masses of Filipinos in our home country, our people are entering a decisive moment of struggling for liberation or the death of our country. To honor Emerito Samarca, Dionel Campos, and Bello Sinzo, BAYAN USA Northeast calls upon our communities to fight for the rights of our children so that they can study our history of struggle and for our people to execute it for genuine peace and national democracy.

JUSTICE FOR EMERITO SAMARCA, DIONEL CAMPOS, BELLO SINZO, CRISANTO AND SINZO TABUGOL BROTHERS!

STOP EXTRAJUDICIAL KILLINGS!

END THE MILITARIZATION OF LUMAD SCHOOLS!

END OPLAN BAYANIHAN & STATE SPONSORED VIOLENCE!

NO TO U.S. MILITARY AID FOR STATE-SPONSORED TERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES!

###

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Anakbayan New Jersey Member, Jon Zirkle in front of the Philippine Consulate. (PC: Julie Jamora)

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“END IMPUNITY” (PC: Julie Jamora)

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Concerned Community calls for Stop the Killings in Mindanao (PC: Julie Jamora)

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ALCADEV Mobe (PC: Julie Jamora)

STATEMENT: Filipino American Youth Condemn Extrajudicial Killings of Lumad Leaders in Surigao Del Sur

abnj statement.001

For Immediate Release

Press Statement

September 1, 2015

Reference: Nina Mariella Macapinlac, Vice Chairperson, Anakbayan New Jersey

nmacapinlac@gmail.com, 973-641-9735

Daniel Santiago, Solidarity Officer, Anakbayan New Jersey

das101191@gmail.com  

Filipino American Youth Condemn Extrajudicial Killings of Lumad Leaders in Surigao Del Sur

Anakbayan New Jersey condemns in the strongest terms the extrajudicial killings, harassment, illegal occupation, and forcible evacuation of Lumad indigenous communities surrounding the Alternative Learning Center for Agricultural and Livelihood Development (ALCADEV), an alternative indigenous school in Sitio Han-Ayan and Km. 16 of Surigao del Sur, Mindanao. These atrocities were committed by military and paramilitary groups that are organized and armed by the Armed Forces of the Philippines to attack their fellow Lumads as part of the Philippine government’s counterinsurgency program, Oplan Bayanihan.

After ALCADEV’s three-day Foundation Day celebration, three indigenous leaders and community educators were violently killed on school grounds and in surrounding communities by paramilitary forces on September 1. The Executive Director of ALCADEV Emerito “Tatay Emok” Samarca was restrained, tortured, and stabbed in one of the classrooms. Malahutayong Pakigbisog Alang sa Sumusunod (MAPASU) Chairperson Dionel Campos and his cousin Aurelio Sinzo were shot by paramilitary in the midst of other community members. The school and the Han-Ayan community continue to be occupied by armed elements of the paramilitary Magahat/Bagani Forces, who are pressuring the community to evacuate within two days lest they be massacred.

On Thursday, August 27 two brothers in Surigao del Sur were also killed by alleged members of the tribal forces locally known as Bagani Force. On August 30, about thirty armed elements of the military and paramilitary occupied ALCADEV, threatening the staff, faculty, and community members. The next day, the community cooperative of MAPASU was burned down and paramilitary forces fired into the community indiscriminately. The Han-Ayan residents are currently in Km. 16, awaiting assistance from the local government unit.

ALCADEV and Tribal Filipino Program of Surigao Sur (TriFPSS), the primary school counterpart of ALCADEV, provide culturally relevant and mass oriented education to indigenous communities, a service that is otherwise not provided to the people by the current Philippine government. The schools equip the indigenous with crucial skills like literacy, agricultural education, and an understanding of their political and human rights. They have been vocal in their support of MAPASU’s community campaign against development aggressions like large-scale mining and plantation, rightfully fighting for their ancestral lands.

Because of the Lumad struggle for their ancestral domain, these alternative indigenous schools have been maliciously tagged as “NPA schools” and have been subject to disruption, occupation, and military violence. This recent spate of human rights violations is one example in a long list of state-sponsored terrorism under President Benigno Aquino III’s premier counterinsurgency program “Oplan Bayanihan.” In it, Aquino’s centerpiece “peace and development” program aims to crush the armed revolutionary movement by the end of presidential term in 2016.

Instead of peace,  the US-backed Oplan Bayanihan has brought death, displacement and more suffering to Philippine communities, especially to indigenous communities like the Lumads of Surigao del Sur. The Lumad communities of Caraga region have been experiencing intensifying counterinsurgency, holding mass evacuations from the hillsides to the barrios almost every year since 1987.  Instead of development, Oplan Bayanihan has paved the way for more environmental destruction by facilitating the encroachment of foreign mining companies and plantations into indigenous lands, as well as the displacement of entire communities.

As Filipino Americans, we must be aware of the US government’s complicity in the militarization, displacement, and murder of indigenous peoples and activists in the Philippines. The American government allocates 50 million dollars of our tax money every year towards foreign military financing which aids in human rights violations and strengthens counterinsurgency against community leaders. The disruption of learning, military occupation of schools, the traumatizing killings of community leaders, and the hardships that accompany evacuations cannot be ignored by the international community. As Filipino Americans, we must stand with and alongside the Lumads of Surigao del Sur who have long struggled and continue to struggle for land, rights, and education!

JUSTICE FOR EMERITO SAMARCA, DIONEL CAMPOS, AURELIO SINZO, CRISANTO AND SINZO TABUGOL BROTHERS!

STOP EXTRAJUDICIAL KILLINGS!

END THE MILITARIZATION OF LUMAD SCHOOLS!

END OPLAN BAYANIHAN & STATE SPONSORED VIOLENCE!

NO TO U.S. MILITARY AID FOR STATE-SPONSORED TERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES!

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Members of Anakbayan New Jersey & New York in Han-Ayan for the Kapit Bisig Kabataan Network Relief and Rebuilding Mission – International Solidarity Mission last August 3 to 9, 2015.