Our Maoists and their awkward ties to China
AS I WRECK THIS CHAIR By William M. Esposo
The Philippine Star 2012-09-18
The Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) sent media a September 4 news release denouncing the US attempt to promote an anti-China ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) united front in the raging multi-country dispute in the South China Sea. The CPP position echoed the official Chinese position. 

“The US government is using the South China Sea conflict as justification for its policy of intervention in the Asia-Pacific, making overarching ultra-nationalist claims of interest in the crucial sea route,” said the CPP. “Over the past year, the US government continues to stoke the South China Sea conflict, provoking Vietnam, the Philippines and other countries to issue anti-China statements and seek US military assistance.” The CPP statement asserted.

The CPP statement added: “The US government wants to build an anti-China, US-supported multi-country consensus over the issue of the South China Sea conflict and use this to pressure China to open up its economy and allow full liberalization of trade and investment policies.” 

Furthermore, the CPP said: “The US imperialist government is heightening its intervention in the Asia-Pacific region in a desperate effort to ride over the prolonged economic recession in the US and the world capitalist system.” They added: “China remains the biggest US economic partner. However, the US needs to build up its military strength and political clout in the region in order to gain more access to the economy of China.”

On the surface, many Filipinos could easily accept the CPP statement as something natural for a so-called Maoist Philippine Communist Movement to adopt. Who else would Maoists support but fellow Maoists? Who else would spook the Maoists but the Americans?

However, there are two things very wrong in the CPP posture. One is that there’s a real clamor from some ASEAN nations like the Philippines and Vietnam for more US military presence in the conflict areas of the South China Sea, in order to keep the Chinese dragon on good behavior. Take the case of Vietnam, a former US enemy up to the early 1970s. Vietnam repelled Chinese aggression in 1979. Compared to us, the Vietnamese would have less fear of being overrun by China.

Vietnam may have the military capability to resist Chinese aggression if the assault is on land. The conflict in the South China Sea will basically involve the navies of the claimants and Vietnam doesn’t have the naval capability to match China on the blue water. In our case, we cannot repel Chinese aggression whether it is on land or the sea. By ourselves, we can offer at best token resistance.

In the present scheme of things, in the disputed areas of the South China Sea, US presence is most welcomed by ASEAN claimants so it’s not true as the CPP puts it that the US is manipulating ASEAN against China. The reaction of ASEAN claimants like the Philippines and Vietnam is the only viable antidote to further Chinese aggression.

The second most glaring falsehood in the CPP posture is that they talk like they were genuine Maoists. They’re not. If we’re to believe the words of a China official who met with a Philippine delegation during the Joseph Estrada presidency, the CPP Maoists are not their Maoists.
COPA Secretary-General Pastor “Boy” Saycon accompanied to Beijing a delegation that sought to forge agriculture technology transfer and improved cropping methods from Chinese experts. On their first evening, a dinner was hosted and a top Chinese official attended.

Saycon mentioned to the Chinese official that we still have an active Maoist insurgency in the Philippines. The Chinese official expressed genuine surprise that we have an active Maoist insurgency and asked Saycon to provide him with the names of the leaders of the CPP. Saycon wrote and gave these to him.

On the last evening of their Beijing visit, the same Chinese official attended the farewell banquet. He sought out Saycon and told him: “Mr. Saycon, your Maoists, they’re not our Maoists.” Then with a wink of an eye, the Chinese official added: “Maybe they’re somebody else’s Maoists.”

It was the late eminent Professor Emmanuel Q. Yap who placed that in its proper historical context during several meetings that we had with him. Yap explained to us that the CPP was created by the US for two purposes. One was to upstage the real communists — the Luis Taruc-led Huk Movement. The second objective was to provide the mayhem — the specter of a communist takeover — that would justify the imposition of martial law, as what happened in September 21, 1972.

Within this context, it’s easier to appreciate how we Filipinos have been fooled, misled and exploited because we do not know our real friends from our real enemies. We insist in seeing the foreigners as men of goodwill, out to help us improve our lives. Even when we were already being raped, we would delude ourselves that we were engaged in consensual sex.

Filipinos should learn their real history or lose their country in a bewildered state of mind.

* * *

Shakespeare: “Madness in great ones must not unwatched go.” 

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