Resist and frustrate a Martial Law revival!

This article is available in Hiligaynon

“Makibaka! Huwag matakot! Mag-isa, mag-alsa, aton sila lutuson!” said the loud voices of millions of Filipino people all over the country that fought and ousted the dictator Ferdinand Marcos Sr. and his family from power 50 years ago. The intensified armed struggle and building of villages under popular control led by the Communist Party of the Philippines and its New People’s Army in the countryside effectively weakened the fascist dictatorship. The parallel movements of political actions in urban centers and armed struggle in the countryside shattered the rule of landlords, compradors, and monopoly capitalist represented by the dictator Marcos Sr. Indeed, the Filipino masses made history against their oppressors.

The reinstallation of the Marcoses in power is indeed a disgrace but nonetheless an expectation to favor the preservation of the reign of landlords, big bourgeois compradors, and foreign monopoly capitalists in the country. The rigged elections yielded the illegitimate Ferdinand Marcos Jr. through the facilitation of US imperialism. We anticipate an effort for the full swing perversion of history for the denial of Martial Law and to cosmeticize the ostracized Marcos family. His vice president, Sara Duterte, ensures the continuation of her father’s fascistic, tyrannical, anti-people and counter-revolutionary policies.

Marcos Jr. cannot conceal the economic and political crisis of the country he has inherited from Duterte’s failures. Marcos Jr. has repeatedly presented the rhetoric of ‘recovery’ to this crisis but his policies remain a continuation of Duterte’s programs. He is capitalizing on the big lie of ‘golden years’ of Ferdinand Marcos Sr. to forge a so-called social ‘unity’ for the country.

Like his father, Ferdinand Marcos Jr has illusory hopes of patching up the system. His self-appointment as agriculture secretary is only a pretense of concern for Filipino peasants. In fact, his primary ‘support’ for farmers are in forms of loans, high technology and infrastructure that are not free and way beyond the capacity of the peasant masses. Land reform and even unconditional ayuda are ignored. The dictator’s son has many promises of infrastructures that are designed to facilitate plunder of natural resources and extraction of agricultural products and raw materials for foreign corporations and local compradors. Farm-to-market roads, highways, ports, bridges and airports are for the interests of the greedy exploiters.

Today, we are experiencing the worst aggravation of the crisis of semi-feudalism and semi-colonialism in our country. The poverty of millions of Filipinos, rising unemployment among the youth, soaring price increases, gross violations of political and socio-cultural rights are most disturbing.

The national government’s debt rose by 96.09 billion pesos to 12.79 trillion pesos by August 2022 equivalent to more than 62% of the country’s gross domestic product. The peso has weakened and depreciated more than 10% since last year. Today, the Philippine peso is the third worst performing currency in Asia. The most compelling of all is the unprecedented inflation and soaring of prices of basic commodities and fuel. Inflation has reached 6.4% in July, highest since October 2018 and have pushed food prices up by 10% and even higher. From the poorest to the middle classes, the Filipino people have endured the soaring of prices of commodities. The price of food items like instant noodles and sardines have doubled and some farmers buy rice at 140 pesos per ganta. The bitter sugar prices are felt by every Filipino every time they sip their coffee. In Panay and Negros, sugar producers have protested against unjustified sugar importation that has jeopardized the local sugar industry. Amid the unreachable prices, millions are unemployed if not working part-time or informally. This is the reality of the country today, not far from what happened before.

In order to vindicate themselves, the Marcoses are outrightly manipulating historical facts using the entire state machinery and its cultural institutions. Ferdinand Marcos Jr. is set to intensify the denial of the dictatorship, and erase the wrongs and atrocities of Martial Law through the employment of misinformation, banning of the circulation and publication of books presenting historical truth, producing historically distorted films, and propagating disinformation in the internet. The Marcoses are in an effort to deny the people, especially the youth of the true narratives of our history.

Today, a resemblance is apparent: the broad Filipino people discontented and frustrated by the empty promises of the dictator’s son may soon erupt into widespread dissent. Martial Law has been a nightmare of our society but will be quenched by the struggle of the oppressed and exploited classes- a grave warning for the reactionary state and the ruling classes.

Resist and frustrate a Martial Law revival!