Beyond remembering: Continue the footsteps of Rachelle Mae Palang and other revolutionary martyrs!

On the 14th anniversary of the martyrdom of Rachelle Mae Palang, the Rachelle Mae Palang Command of the New People’s Army Southeast Negros Front (RMPC-NPA) calls on the youth to honor her along with other martyrs and heroes of the revolution by pursuing and carrying on Ka Rachelle’s legacy. Emulate her through joining the armed revolution to topple the rotten ruling system and establish a society based on just and lasting peace.

Mae-mae, as her close friends and comrades fondly call her, was the former editor-in-chief of Velez College’s student publication, Vital Signs, and Vice President for the Visayas of the College Editor’s Guild of the Philippines (CEGP). She finished her BS Nursing degree and passed the Nursing Board Exam before giving her full commitment to revolutionary armed struggle and joined the NPA. She was unfettered by narrow interests or personal welfare and loved being with the peasant masses.

She was Ka Hannah to the peasant masses she cherished in Southeast Negros. Being in the NPA, she used her medical training to educate her comrades and the masses to uplift the conditions of the people . With their interests at heart, Ka Rachelle quickly gained the trust of her comrades and the people. She was martyred during an armed encounter with the fascist 79th IB in Zamboanguita, Negros Oriental on September 18, 2008.

Ka Rachelle could have chosen a comfortable life indifferent to realities of the world and detached from the basic masses, instead she lived by the revolutionary principle of simple living and hard struggle up to her last breath and she was not just a doctor or nurse, but also a teacher, lawyer, soldier, student, and one of the best daughters of the masses as well.

If she were alive today, Ka Rachelle would be a revolutionary cadre of the genuine army of the people. She would scowl on how the Duterte regime handled the Covid-19 pandemic and advocate for the welfare of medical frontliners. She would be at the forefront of medical missions in the countryside to give the masses access to health care services denied by the regime. She would continue to inspire her fellow youth to join her in revolutionary struggle.

Thus, commemorating her dauntless sacrifice poses a challenge to the youth: honoring revolutionary martyrs and heroes comes not only through poetry or prose, but in actually picking up where Ka Rachelle and the other revolutionary martyrs left off.

Urban intellectuals should follow her daring leap towards wholeheartedly serving the people and the revolution. The progressive youth can only bring genuine change by integrating with the broad masses of peasants and workers and joining the NPA.

With this, the RMPC-NPA calls on the youth in Negros Island and the entire country to militantly resist the fascist US-Marcos II regime. As the democratic space of the people becomes more limited by the day through sheer brutality of the MAD alliance and their goons in the AFP and PNP, we quote Chairman Mao Zedong: “Political power grows out from the barrel of a gun.”

Only armed revolution can bring about substantial change in this moribund system. Only armed revolution fully embraced by the democratic sectors can defeat the tyrants and instate the will of the majority through the leadership of the Communist Party. The masses are waiting for you to join them in waging the national democratic revolution through the protracted people’s war. ###

Beyond remembering: Continue the footsteps of Rachelle Mae Palang and other revolutionary martyrs!