Tag Archives: Washington D.C

Washington is eyeing Noynoy as new puppet to replace GMA, militants say

By Gerry Albert Corpuz in Manila
and Jayjay Jaiho in Tarlac City

MANILA, Philippines -The 28 national council leaders of the activist fisherfolk alliance Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (Pamalakaya) currently here in Manila for their annual meeting on Tuesday concluded that White House officials who recently contacted Liberal Party (LP) standard bearer Sen. Benigno Simeon “Noynoy’ Aquino are eyeing the son of former President Corazon Aquino to replace President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo as “future US puppet”.

“It appears to us that the administration of US President Barack Obama and the ruling national doctrine syndicate in Washington D.C are in favor of Senator Noynoy Aquino to take over the place to be vacated by outgoing President Arroyo. For White House officials, Noynoy is a willing puppet and submissive political slave compared to Nacionalista Party presidential candidate Manuel Villar and 7 other presidential wannabes,” said Pamalakaya national chair Fernando Hicap in a press statement.

The Pamalakaya leader theorized that Senator Aquino is highly acceptable to US economic and military decision makers and the American officials were convinced that Noynoy will continue to impose the anti-people economic pills like the 12 percent Expanded Value Added Tax (EVAT) as suggested by the presence of former economic managers of GMA in his camp.

Hicap also noted that the Washington sees no problem with Aquino as far as the implementation of brutal counter-insurgency campaign like Oplan Bantay Laya 1 and 2 that resulted to the death of more than 900 political activists and enforced disappearances of more than 200 other activists critical of US interventionist policy in the Philippines.

“The US officials believed Noynoy will carry the same brand of puppetry, brutality and neo-liberal obsession of Arroyo and that makes him the most preferred political animal among the present line of presidential hopefuls in the May 2010 elections,” the Pamalakaya chair added.

Time Magazine

Aquino over the weekend revealed that the US has opened communication lines with his camp. He admitted his party mates had talked to some American officials, including former US Ambassador to the Philippines Kristie Kenny before she was recalled. The LP presidential bet said it was the US officials who initiated the meetings and he had the go-signal for his party mates.

Pamalakaya believed the latest edition of the US owned Time Magazine showing him as its cover boy for the month was part of the build up for the Aquino presidency. “It is Time Magazine and it is part of the mind conditioning and propaganda arm of Washington bigwigs who have sinister agenda and cruel intentions in the Philippines,” the group added.

Rejection becomes Noynoy

The 28 leaders of Pamalakaya today signed an organizational memorandum calling its 43 regional and provincial chapters all over the country to reject the presidential bid of Aquino. Describing Aquino as female version of Arroyo, they said the LP presidential bet is a ruthless person passing himself off as liberal politician and anti-graft crusader.

Pamalakaya stressed Sen. Aquino has a strong tendency to become a full-blown political monster and dictator. The fisherfolk group, a staunch ally of striking farmworkers of Hacienda Luisita said the bloody crimes of LP presidential bet and his landed family in connection with the continuing denial of land rights and injustice committed against Hacienda Luisita agricultural workers are non-negotiable and unpardonable.

The militant group agreed with the observation raised by Jose Maria Sison, founding chair of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) that if Aquino becomes the President, he and the Cojuangco-Aquino clan will use state power to frustrate and suppress the rights of farmworkers in Hacienda Luisita to keep the 6,453-hectare sugar estate under the continuing control of his family.

“As far as we are concerned, Noynoy decided to run for President not to fight corruption in the government but to engage in bigger crimes of corruption, and one these crimes is to maintain their unlawful and immoral claim on Hacienda Luisita,” the militant group said.

Long march

Meanwhile, some 500 farm workers of Hacienda Luisita yesterday kicked off their 5-day long march from Tarlac to Manila to demand the immediate and unconditional free distribution of 6,453 hectare sugar estate to 10,000 farm worker beneficiaries.

Dubbed Lakbayan ng Anakpawis Para sa Lupa at Katarungan (March of the Toiling Masses for Land and Justice) the long march will be spearheaded by Unyon ng Mga Manggagawa sa Agrikultura (UMA), the Luisita based United Luisita Workers Union (ULWU) and Alyansa ng Mga Manggagawang Bukid ng Luisita (Ambala), Alyansa ng Mga Magbubukid ng Gitnang Luzon (AMGL), Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP) and Anakpawis party list.

Anakpawis party list secretary general Cherry Clemente said Luisita farmworkers will also demand the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) and the Presidential Agrarian Reform Council (PARC) to immediately ask the Supreme Court to cite the Luisita management in contempt of court following what she called established machinations of the Cojuangco-Aquino family in Hacienda Luisita despite a standing order from the high court effectively stopping the management from pursuing any kind of development inside Luisita while the temporary restraining order is still in effect and the land dispute is still being resolved by the high tribunal.

Reports reaching Anakpawis headquarters in Quezon City said the Cojuangco-Aquino clan are allowing private groups to put fences inside the hacienda and were convincing the farm workers to stop planting rice and vegetables and resume sugar production. #

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RP president using trips to show she’s not lameduck

By Gerry Albert Corpuz and Pepsi La Loma

MANILA, Philippines-President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo is exploiting her 7-day foreign trip to the United States, Spain and Vietnam to create a national and international image that she’s not a lameduck president and still in effective control of the government.

“This 7-day trip to US, Spain and Vietnam is another super roadshow presentation that seeks to promote and project President Arroyo before the eyes of the international community as a working president and that she’s still the head of the state and not a lameduck, has-been, aging and detested President of this country,” the activist fisherfolk alliance Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (Pamalakaya) said in a press statement.

Pamalakaya national chair Fernando Hicap asserted that Malacanang is exploiting these foreign trips also to convince the public that Mrs. Arroyo remains a high esteemed official in Southeast Asia and enjoys a high level of respect in the international community despite her government’s unbridled crimes of corruption and long-running grave violations of basic human rights in the country.

“These foreign trips scheduled by Malacanang for President Arroyo appear like a publicity stunt rather than official state functions for diplomatic purposes. The taxpayers will again shell millions of taxpayers money for Arroyo’s propaganda offensive before the international community,” the Pamalakaya official added.

Based on the itinerary released by Malacanang last Monday, President Arroyo is set to visit Madrid, Spain’s capital city on April 15 and 16 to receive the Premio Internacional Don Quijote de la Mancha Award for promoting the Spanish language and culture in the Philippines. The Palace said Mrs. Arroyo will have a chance to meet with King Juan Carlos I and Queen Sofia.

“Imagine, millions of people’s money will be spent for this not so important event. Que barbaridad,” said Pamalakaya.

President Arroyo is scheduled to be in Hanoi, Vietnam, on April 8 and 9 for the 16th Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Summit. The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said the summit would have for its theme “Toward the ASEAN Community: From Vision into Action,” and would focus on the grouping’s concrete actions to realize its goal of one community by 2015.

Between the Vietnam and Spain trips, Malacanang said President will fly to Washington in the United States for the Nuclear Security Summit. The prepared itinerary for President Arroyo said the Chief Executive and her entourage Ms Arroyo would return to Manila after the ASEAN summit to prepare for the Washington affair on April 12 and 13.

Pamalakaya advised President Arroyo to recall her scheduled trips to Vietnam, US and Spain and take a definite leave of absence so that she could attend to the need of her husband- First Gentleman Atty. Jose Miguel Arroyo who is set to be discharged anytime on Wednesday from St. Luke’s Hospital in Taguig City afer suffering serious back pain due to new tear in his aorta, the heart’s main artery.

“Why not take an indefinite leave of absence? Why go on foreign trips? The First Gentleman is the only people in this country that needs her,” the group said.

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Washington Times editorial jolted Manila top officials

Washington Times editorial jolted Manila top officials

Manila’s top Cabinet officials were jolted by the hard-hitting editorial of Washington Times on July 26 criticizing US President Barack Obama for arranging a meeting with Philippine President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo on July 30 in the United States.

Philippine Press Secretary Cerge Remonde said President Arroyo was not surprised on the scathing editorial of Washington Times entitled Obama: The Sanitizer which accused the embattled Arroyo of using the President Obama as a political tool to clear her troubles at home.

The editorial which came a day ahead of President Arroyo’s 9th and supposedly last State of the Nation Address said Obama committed a mistake when it invited the Philippine President to the White House on the premise that the Philippine top elected official is using Obama to give political cover for her troubles back home.

The Washington Times said Ms Arroyo’s domestic political position was precarious citing the Philippine President’s low approval rating and the growing anti-administration street protests in response to a dubious mandate following the fraud-rigged presidential elections in 2004 and scores of allegations of corruption against her husband First Gentleman Atty Jose Miguel Arroyo and members of her family and close political associates in and out of Malacañang Palace.

The editorial also scored Manila’s poor performance in upholding human rights in the Philippines. Quoting several reports and studies, Washington Times took note of the Arroyo administration’s failures to address and stop the killings of journalists and political activists in the country over the last 9 years.

The Washington Times also took a swipe on President Arroyo’s gameplan to perpetuate herself to power either through revision of the 1987 Constitution to allow her to extend her term or through the declaration of Martial Law.

According to Manila’s offensive against the publisher and editors of Washington Times, the conservative and right-leaning newspaper has existing ties with former House Speaker Jose de Venecia, a former Arroyo ally turned ardent critic of the Arroyo administration.

The Arroyo official also said Washington Times editorial director Brent Decker is the biographer of de Venecia and was biased in favor of Philippine opposition. Ms Arroyo’s press secretary said Washington Times is known for being critical with any US President, and the newspaper has it origin with The Moonies, an informal and derogative term for members of the Unification Church, a conservative Christian group led by Korean Sun Myeng Moon.

But critics of the Philippine President in Manila said President Arroyo and her close political associates were extremely rattled by the editorial of the Washington Times, asserting that the Manila government’s irresponsible reaction to the editorial further confirmed that the Manila government is always in the state of denial and state of political panic.

Pamalakaya fisherfolk alliance national chairperson Fernando Hicap said shockwaves sent by the Washington Times editorial caused irreparable damage to the Arroyo administration as shown by President Arroyo response which is dismissed by critics as plain rumor mongering and patently name calling to down play the political impact of the editorial criticizing Obama for entertaining President Arroyo at the White House.

The Pamalakaya leader said Washington Times merely reiterated the objective political condition in Manila and the crimes of President Arroyo ranging from grand scale corruption to election fraud to killings of political opponents and critics are all known to the international community and the Filipino public.

“The Washington Times editorial is a friendly reminder and a good political advice to President Obama. It just cautioned Obama and the American people on the serious implications of hosting a Southeast Asian leader notorious for denying the Filipino people of their electoral mandate and hated by the 90 million Filipinos for high crimes of corruption and extreme brutality,” said Hicap during a sideline interview on the occasion of Arroyo’s 9th State of the Nation Address.

This columnist in his own political capacity endorsed the Washington Times editorial and strongly urges US President Obama to call off the visit of Philippine President on July 30. The visit of President Arroyo will be politically damaging to and only a waste of time for the Obama administration. President Obama should attend to more important concerns rather than spending 30 minutes of his time to an undesirable Asian leader like President Arroyo.

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Bicol fishers start seeing US military personnel ahead of Balikatan exercises

Bicol fishers start seeing US military personnel ahead of Balikatan exercises

The left-leaning fisherfolk alliance Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (Pamalakaya) on Saturday said small fishermen in the Bicol region started seeing an unidentified number of US military personnel as early as first to second week of January conducting ocular inspection in various parts of the Bicol.

In an initial report forwarded by Lakas ng Mangingisda ng Bicol (Lambat-Bicol), the regional chapter of Pamalakaya, it revealed that US military personnel were seen conducting initial surveillance operations in Barangay Mayngaran in Masbate City, Barangay Bagacay, Marintuk, Lalaguna and Balatukan in Mobo town, barangays Marcilla, Dapdap, Panisihan, Buenvista, Armenia, Sawang, Buenasuerte and Magsaysay in Uson town, and in the municipality of Cataingan proper all in Masbate.

Pamalakaya national chair Fernando Hicap also said Lambat-Bicol also noted the early presence of US troops in Oas town, Albay, particularly in the farming villages of San Pascual, San Miguel and Talisay, where the 5th engineering battalion of the Philippine Army is currently detailed.

The Pamalakaya leader said a number of US troops were also seen in Barangay Liyang, municipality of Irosin in Sorsogon province

“They are coming by batches and appeared to be gearing for an active stunt as if the entire Bicol region is the new Iraq or Afghanistan for Washington D.C in 2009. The US military troops are seemed gearing for an all-out military intervention that could develop into a US war of aggression in the region. This senseless Balikatan exercises must be stopped at all cost,” added Hicap.

Pamalakaya also assailed the looming imposition of six month to one year fish ban in the entire Bicol region once the RP-US joint military exercises go full blast this April. The group said in anticipation to the US war ships expected to carry some 3,000 regular US troops and personnel who will participate in the six-month joint military training, the government would resort to ban fishing in Ragay Gulf, Albay Gulf and Sorsogon Bay, three of the major fishing areas in Bicol and home to more than 100,000 small fisherfolk.

Pamalakaya said BFAR-Region V will ban fishing in the coastal municipalities and cities of Tiwi, Malilipot, Malinaw, Bacacay, Sto. Domingo, Manito, Rapu-Rapu, Legaspi City and Tobaco City in Albay province, and Prieto Diaz, Bacon, Gubat, Barcelona, Bulusan, Matnog, Casiguran, Bulan, Joban, Donsol, Pilar Magallanes, Castilla and Sorsogon City in Sorsogon province, and nearby coastal municipalities in Masbate province.

“We saw it coming. There’s no recourse for us but to face and fight this anti-fisherfolk Balikatan exercises in the sea, in the parliament of the street and in the court of public opinion. Over a hundred thousand fishermen will lose their livelihood to this crazy and shameful military stint known as Balikatan exercises. We will not allow this puppet government to sacrifice our rights and livelihood to please their Washington-based military puppeteer,” the group said.

“The Armed Forces of the Philippines is expected to mobilize thousands of government troops and impose its intimidating presence in fishing communities to provide blanket security to US troops participating in the joint military exercises,” added Pamalakaya.

Pamalakaya said the RP-US Balikatan exercises were not only meant to gain future access to guerilla fronts maintained by the CPP and the NPA. He said the joint military training exercises will also cover intelligence and military operations against militant groups in the region which the AFP and the US State Department labeled as front organizations of the CPP in the Bicol region.

“The sinister agenda of Balikatan exercises include intelligence work on various people’s organizations, their leaders and mass members highly critical of US military and economic interests in the Philippines, and very vocal against the reactionary troops and ruling puppet regime in Malacañang. This is Vietnam War in the making,” it said. #

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