The US-Duterte regime wastes public funds for weapons of mass destruction
A hundred and fifty million sacks of rice or approximately 60 million families who could have received ayuda worth P5,000 or even 13,520 workers who could have been given their monthly salaries – these are just some of more worthwhile places the P300 billion funds allocated for the Horizon 2 – AFP Modernization Program could have gone to. But true to his fascist form, instead of prioritizing the common good, Duterte chose to buy and modernize his paid army’s weapons of mass destructions.
Under Duterte, aerial strikes have visibly multiplied. These attacks have killed hundreds of civilians, devastated the homes and sources of living in communities of the poor, peasantry and national minorities from Luzon to Mindanao. The regime throws the masses’ hard-earned taxes away for the sake of indiscriminate and massive aerial bombings and strafing.
In Bikol, there are four recorded cases of aerial bombing from 2016 to 2022. Two of these occurred in Camarines Sur while the other two happened in Masbate. Not less than 1,250 civilians were forced to evacuate because of these aerial strikes. Most recent of these was the incident in Brgy. Igang, Masbate City last February 21 at four in the morning, when units of A-29B Super Tucano attack aircraft dropped six bombs in the said community.
Although the military and police cajoles the public to believe that these aerial strikes occur during the course of encounters between them and a particular unit of the NPA, it is starkly clear for Bikolanos that what these attacks really target are the civilian population and their communities. Firstly, there was not one NPA member who was killed in any of the mentioned aerial strikes as there was never any Red Army unit present in those locations during the attacks. Secondly, these attacks destroy very wide expanses of area. These types of bombings cannot discern its target – anyone and anything in its route would surely be struck no matter how ‘precise’ they claim their operations to be. In fact, nine elements of the 9th IDPA were killed in a series of their own aerial bombing operations between the boundaries of Brgy. Bayombon and Biyong, Masbate City last August 23, 2021.
Worse, if not to attack the masses, these birds of destruction are brazenly used for the caprice of top military and police officials. It is a grave insult to the public, especially the families of those killed and wounded policemen during the recent crash of an Airbus helicopter, for Police Gen. Dionardo Carlos to say that he asked his men to fetch him after a mere personal business last February 22 at a resort in Real, Quezon.
In the end, if the state’s weapons only serve a ruling few and are aimed at the people, the masses can only rely on their own strength and armed struggle. The Romulo Jallores Command BPA-Bikol encourages all those who are of legal age, who have had enough of the persistent oppression and wastage of their lives and future, to join the New People’s Army.