‘Red October’ claims by Duterte, AFP incredulous, says CPP

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/ 02 Oct) – The Communist Party of the Philippines on Tuesday denied claims by President Rodrigo Duterte and the Armed Forces of the Philippines that the group will mount a “Red October” ouster plot against the president to force him to declare martial law nationwide.

AFP Chief-of-Staff Gen. Carlito Galvez said during the Senate budget hearings Tuesday the CPP will “create chaos” akin to the Plaza Miranda bombing on 21 August 1971 to force Duterte’s hand.

Galvez made the statement after implicating 10 Metro Manila universities in the supposed plot.

“Again, there is no Red October plot orchestrated by the CPP. The more Duterte and the AFP are trying to prove this so-called plot, the more they sound incredulous. To now claim that the CPP will ‘create chaos,’ supposedly ‘like in Plaza Miranda’ to ‘force’ Duterte to fulfill his most ardent wish, is at best, lazy and clumsy,” the CPP said in a statement.

“The claim simply defies logic. Why should the CPP ‘push’ for martial law nationwide when it has repeatedly condemned and called for the lifting of martial law in Mindanao? Why should it ‘push’ for something which has relentlessly inflicted atrocious crimes on the people? At worst, the claim demonstrates the AFP’s willingness to perpetuate and even repeat the myth of the Plaza Miranda bombing which Marcos used to justify imposing martial law nationwide in 1972,” it added.

The CPP said linking people’s protests to the so-called plot “is a threat against legitimate people’s organizations mounting these democratic mass actions.”

“It is no secret that the CPP is calling on the people to unite and struggle to overthrow the Duterte regime. Statements issued by the CPP to this effect are publicly available in its website (philippinerevolution.info) and in social media,” it said.

Sometime during the Cory Aquino administration, self-confessed former members of the underground movement pointed to the CPP and its founding chair, Jose Maria Sison, and the late Senator Benigno Aquino Jr. as having masterminded the Plaza Miranda bombing, which killed nine people and wounded scores of others. Among the injured victims were some leaders of the Liberal Party, which was holding a miting de avance for its senatorial candidates.

Sison, however, has denied any involvement of the CPP and Aquino Jr. in the bombing. The CPP founder had called the late senator an asset of the Central Intelligence Agency.

In 1994, charges filed against Sison in connection with the bombing were dismissed for being based on hearsay and speculations.

Aquino Jr., Sison and New People’s Army founder Bernabe Buscayno were arrested during martial law and tried by a military tribunal. Aquino Jr. and Buscayno were sentenced to die by musketry for charges not related to the Plaza Miranda incident.

Then President Ferdinand E. Marcos pointed to the communists as the brains behind the Plaza Miranda carnage.

The CPP, in the October 1, 1972 issue of its official organ Ang Bayan which can be accessed online, said that “in a complete turnabout from its previous propaganda of anticommunist lies, the US-Marcos clique charged in court for the Plaza Miranda massacre not some communists but some living-out prisoners of the national penitentiary, which is run by a trusted agent of the US-Marcos clique.” (MindaNews)