The government looks like it might be confused when it comes to dealing with the threat of the New People’s Army (NPA).
From National Task Force to Eliminate Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) spokesperson Lt. General Antonio Parlade’s allegations versus certain cause-oriented groups, we now have this from actor and Army communication panel chief Robin Padilla:
In his Instagram post, he showed off his visit to Cuba, once known for being a hotbed of communism close to the United States of America.
The video shows him having fun in Cuba—which is okay—but the message he attached to the video makes it seem that Cuba has it good despite accusations of human rights violations committed by the Cuban government.
Padilla’s caption made it look like people were afraid of being labeled as “leftists”—a term reserved for those who support socialist ideologies—and tells people there is nothing bad about it.
“The Republic of the Philippines was born because of leftist heroes like Bonifacio and Rizal,” Padilla said in Tagalog, saying being a “leftist” should be a non-issue.
He would go on to say leftists are “pro-poor, pro-equality, pro-farmers, (and) pro-workers,” while seemingly calling out those who voice out their opinions as “joining the bandwagon.”
He also said Parlade only gave “fatherly advice”, referring to the NTF-ELCAC spokesperson’s “warning” for actress Liza Soberano and Miss Universe 2018 Catriona Gray.
Soberano and Gray have appeared on platforms run by Gabriela Youth, which Parlade has labeled as a front for the Communist Party of the Philippines'(CPP) political arm, the National Democratic Front (NDF), and a recruiter for the New People’s Army (NPA).
Padilla seems unaware that anyone branded by the NTF-ELCAC as a “leftist” is automatically associated with the CPP-NPA-NDF, and is thus labeled a terrorist.
Another case of “Hijo, I am older and better”?
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Bakit kaya napakaraming umuusok ang mga tumbong at bibig sa kakapindot sa keyboard sa pagtanggi na silay mga leftist? Ano ba ang masama sa pagiging leftist? Ang mismong republika ng Pilipinas ay ipinanganak dahil sa pagiging leftist ng ating mga bayani katulad nila Bonifacio at Rizal. Ang Leftist ay Pro poor Pro equality Pro farmers Pro workers Ano po ba ang masama sa mga ito at kailangan maging isyu ang pagiging leftist ng isang pilipino. Kaya hindi umaasenso ang Pilipinas kasi karamihan ay mahilig sumakay sa isyu para mapag usapan at sumikat. Ang Payo ni Heneral Antonio Parlade ng Philippine Army ay fatherly advice.. Mga kababayan May kalayaan tayong mga Pilipino kung ano ang ating nais na ipaglaban na karapatan maging sa sarili mo man o para sa pangkalahatan, Tumindig ka at magsisigaw ka hanggat kaya ng taas ng boses mo pero hindi dahilan ito para makapanakit ka ng kapwa mo na hindi kaparehas ng iyong paniniwala. Hanggat hindi ka lumalabag sa batas na sinangayunan ng mas nakararaming Pilipino ay makibaka ka at wag Kailanman maurungan. Isang paalala ko rin po ito sa ating mga kabataan mula sa isang katulad ko na leftist. Kung makinig sa akin Alhamdulillah Maraming salamat kung hindi naman Alhamdulillah Maraming salamat pa rin. Napakaraming bagay dito sa mundo ang inaakala natin na Alam na natin dahil nabasa mo na sa google o sa libro but remember our dearest youth Knowing something from someone/ books and the net is not knowledge. Knowledge is experiencing what you know. Malayong malayo sa “Alam ko na yan Mali kayo kasi nabasa ko na yan” kesa sa “Alam ko na yan at Mali kayo kasi pinagdaanan at naranasan ko na yan” Ecclesiastes 11:9 ► You who are young, be happy while you are young, and let your heart give you joy in the days of your youth. Follow the ways of your heart and whatever your eyes see, but know that for all these things God will bring you into judgment. Ang ugat ng hindi natin pag unlad ay ang mga madugong pakikibaka sa ibat ibang parte ng bansa. Nakalimutan natin na ang mismong republika ay rebolusyonaryo at ang kailangan lamang natin gawin ay tulungan ito para maramdaman sa mga malalayong lugar- Supremo Luis Taruc HUKBALAHAP
What looks baffling, apart from his flip-flopping statements on being a leftist versus being an activist is his proclamation that older people are still better than the youth.
“There are a lot of things we think we know just because we’ve read them in books or looked it up on Google. But knowing something from books, the internet, or even someone else is not knowledge.”
He would try to prove his point by saying there’s a difference between knowing from what one has read versus knowing from experience.
He dismissed the fact that most knowledge comes from people who have experienced them and have chosen to write them down for the benefit of those who cannot experience them.
He would go on to add a bible verse, Ecclesiastes 11:9, to his post, which in summary, says “do as you please but know that you will be judged by God once you die.”
He would later sabotage his own argument that armed conflict is the source of our troubles, despite activists pointing out that armed conflict only arises because of the government’s inaction.
Internal problems or lack of knowledge
Both Padilla’s and Parlade’s statements have emphasized how little the military knows of the causes for one of the world’s longstanding insurgencies.
They assume that people go against the government just because they believe in an ideology—in this case, socialism.
They never once looked at the reason people subscribed to said ideology.
From unfair treatment of blue-collar workers, especially those in agriculture, to the uneven distribution of wealth across the country—with some amassing millions they will not be able to spend in their lifetime, activists have continued to fight the good fight.
The government has yet to address issues raised by activists to this day, and have instead opted to order the military to simply erase them from existence.
This leads to the many deaths and supposed surrenderees, as well as the smear on being an informed citizen, which often is the source of activism.
Let’s hope that Padilla and Parlade actually listen to protesters and their cries so they can suggest ways to address their issues—and not kill them off one by one.