100 days of suffering and state terrorism under the US-Marcos II regime

Communist Party of the Philippines

October 08, 2022

emember that Ferdinand Marcos Jr stole the May 9 presidential elections through electronic rigging of the automated counting system to conjure the illusion of a “landslide victory.” The plan of the Marcoses is to secure and further grow the vast wealth they accumulated during the 1972-1986 dictatorship and perpetuate their political dynasty.

The country’s situation under Marcos Jr continues to worsen. His programs and plans are merely a rehash of old programs and plans, especially in terms of economic policy. During the first 100 days, the Filipino people experienced no betterment in their conditions, contrary to Marcos promises. They face more economic difficulties, as they struggle daily to earn enough to put food on their tables.

One hundred days of hardships and terror

From the perspective of the Filipino people, the first 100 days of Marcos Jr is marked by the following:

(a) Gross disinterest in addressing the economic hardships of the people amid rising prices, low wages, widespread unemployment and lack of public services. In his first day, Marcos Jr declared, “inflation is not that high” contradicting information released by his own statistics agency showing that inflation in June rose to 6.1%.

Over the past few months, Marcos practically did nothing to address the people’s widespread demand to bring down prices of fuel, food, medicine, health care and other basic commodities and services. Three months later, inflation has shot up to 6.9%, pushed by high costs of imported oil, resulting in the rapid deterioration in the people’s standards of living.

The broad masses of the people are in increasingly desperate straits. Marcos, his policy makers and minions in congress have ignored the clamor for urgent economic aid, wage increases and measures to lower prices. They have cut the budget for social spending, and instead prioritized grandiose foreign-funded infrastructure projects that benefit foreign contractors, their local bourgeois comprador partners and corrupt big bureaucrats.

(b) Continuing the past regime’s push to further open the country’s economy, dependence on foreign capitalists, and subservience to neoliberal economic impositions of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank to the detriment of local manufacturing and agricultural production.

Before the United Nations and American businessmen, Marcos declared his plan to push the doors wide open for foreign capitalists as his central plan for the economy. He has no plan to address the destruction of the country’s productive forces, especially agriculture which have crumbled over the past few decades under the weight of relentless import liberalization.

Marcos has in his neoliberal arsenal the three laws signed by Duterte: the Retail Trade Liberalization Act, the Public Service Act, amendments to the Foreign Investments Act. These laws, which were demanded by the US government and American businessmen, further entrench imperialist economic dominance in the country. While Filipinos are continually fleeced with burdensome taxes, Marcos plans to reward multinational corporations with tax breaks for taking advantage of the country’s cheap labor and natural resources.

In the face of continuing slowdown of global capitalist centers and rising threats of recession, Marcos’ economic plan will only succeed in further pulling the country down to economic crisis and bankruptcy, and deepening its backward, agrarian and non-industrial state.

The efforts of the US to prop up its dollar amid fears of stagflation have resulted in the rapid fall in the value of the peso versus the dollar, pushing up the country’s trade deficit. The country is now precariously floating on dollar remittances from overseas Filipinos, even as the international capitalist system stand on the precipice of another global recession.

(c) Under Marcos’ orders, armed agents of the state continue to heighten state terrorism and attacks against the people and their patriotic and democratic forces. In just 100 days, no less than 80 incidents of human rights abuses and violations of international humanitarian law were recorded.

Since Marcos assumed power, his armed state agents have committed at least two massacres and other unlawful killings. All in all, at least 16 people were extrajudicially killed by state agents, including three minors, in the course of its war of suppression. This also includes the case of the killing while in custody of spouses Vincent Madlos and Glorivic Belandres, members of the New People’s Army, who were unarmed or hors de combat when captured. More than 41 were arrested, three were abducted, two of whom, remain missing up to this day. More than 840 political prisoners remain in jail.

The brutal “war on drugs” also continue unabated, even as Marcos’ officials exert efforts to stop the International Criminal Court from investigating charges of crimes against humanity against former president Duterte and his police officers.

Rural communities remain under military hamlet in the guise of thousands of soldiers conducting “community service,” where the rights of peasants residents are wantonly violated. Combat battalions of the AFP continue to use indiscriminate aerial bombing and artillery shelling to instill fear and trauma among the people. Just yesterday, thousands of local residents in Negros Occidental were forced to flee their homes after the military repeatedly shelled areas near their communities. Last month, the same case happened to a barrio in Banaybanay, Davao Oriental.

The AFP and PNP continue to red-tag legal democratic forces which blurs the distinction between civilians and armed combatants in violation of international humanitarian law. Union organizers and members of people’s organizations are being subjected to endless harassment by armed state agents. Attacks on press freedom and the people’s freedom of expression continue unabated. Recently, the NTF-Elcac even praised its former spokesperson who redtagged and threatened the judge who junked the Department of Justice terrorist proscription case against the CPP and NPA.

(d) Marcos Jr is a puppet of US imperialism and is subservient to Chinese imperialism. He recently allowed more than 2,550 American soldiers to use the country and the armed forces for US war exercises (Kamandag), which are geared towards heightening military tensions in the South China Sea. Marcos has no plans of heeding the long-standing patriotic demand of the Filipino people for the abrogation of the Mutual Defense Treaty, the Visiting Forces Agreement and other unequal military treaties with the US.

At the same time, Marcos is spineless in the face of continuing Chinese incursions and maintenance of military facilities in the South China Sea. Before the United Nations, Marcos made no demand for China to respect the July 2016 ruling of the International Arbitral Tribunal favoring the country’s territorial claims under the United Nations Convention on the Laws of the Seas (UNCLOS).

Amid heightening interimperialist armed conflict and the growing threat of war erupting in Asia, Marcos is making no move push for an independent foreign policy, and is instead allowing the US to use the Philippines as a launching pad for its war games and forward positioning base. He is putting the country in grave danger of getting caught between the US and China.

(e) High-living at the cost of the Filipino people. Marcos Jr and his extended family has demonstrated utter callousness to the sufferings of the broad masses of toiling people with his ostentatious lifestyle. Like his mother Imelda, he quickly became known for throwing and attending lavish parties, punctuated only by his robotic speeches. In New York, Marcos, his wife and children, spent millions of pesos to stay in luxury hotels and shop at ritzy malls. They chartered an entire commercial plane to travel to the US and back.

A few days later, Marcos with family in tow, used the Gulfstream jet of the Philippine Air Force, to fly to Singapore. The Gulfstream jet, which purportedly serves as “command center” of the AFP, was purchased by Rodrigo Duterte as president to satiate his thirst for jet-setting. Marcos refuses to divulge how much government money was spent for his junket or how much private money he received to pay for the trip.

Marcos Jr is proving to the Filipino people that he is the typical ruling class elite that have very little regard for the plight of the Filipino people and regard his position as a privilege to spend money for his whims.

Fight for the people’s rights and well-being, advance the revolutionary cause

Marcos Jr is the current chief of the neocolonial state. He serves the interests of imperialism and the ruling classes of maintaining the status quo. Marcos is using his power to perpetuate the moribund and crisis-ridden semicolonial and semifeudal system.

Amid worsening sufferings and state neglect, the Filipino people have no other choice but to step forward and raise their voices to assert and defend their rights and welfare. They must continue to band together in their unions and other forms of organizations in order to more effectively fight for their interests.

They must intensify their militant struggle to fight for wage and salary increases amid skyrocketing cost of living. In the rural areas, the peasant masses must firmly advance their struggles to lower land rent, lower the costs of farm inputs, eliminate usury and raise the farmgate prices of their produce. The broad masses of the people must firmly raise the demand for lower prices of fuel, food and other basic commodities. At the same time, they must oppose all anti-people policies and programs, including those that destroy or take away their livelihood (import liberalization, anti-people infrastructure projects, expansion of plantations, entry and expansion of mining companies and others).

The people must act urgently to defend their rights and welfare amid threats of a sharp economic crisis that can bring about poverty and hunger. At the same time, they must link up their struggles to their national and democratic aspirations, including their demand for genuine land reform and national industrialization.

The worsening crisis of the ruling system under Marcos Jr underscores the urgency and justness of waging revolutionary struggle to put an end to imperialism, feudalism and bureaucrat capitalism that bring endless suffering to the Filipino people. Under the leadership of the Party, the Filipino people are determined to carrying forward the people’s democratic revolution to greater heights.