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Press Statement
December 21, 2002
Patricio Ramirez
Partido ng Manggagawang Pilipino

Tokenism bereft of substance

GMA’s 96-hour Christmas ceasefire is much like her administration’s anti-poverty program, it is tokenism bereft of substance. The president has backtracked from her earlier no-truce, all-out war declaration only as a nominal gesture to so-called civil society elements in her administration.

GMA is of the deluded belief that only an all-out war not a negotiated political settlement is the solution to the armed struggle in the countryside. In fact, she has been so gung-ho that the AFP Chief of Staff recommends a ceasefire just after she announced a no-truce policy for the Christmas season. More so, she is so into her surrogate role in the “war against terror” that she could not conceive of a ceasefire with a US-certified terrorist group.

Here’s an unsolicited advice to the CPP-NPA, from one revolutionary group to another—Declare a ceasefire for the whole duration of the Christmas season if only to observe a tradition of the revolutionary movement and to wrest the moral high ground from the puppet and reactionary GMA regime.

  While we do not subscribe to the strategy of protracted war, as revolutionaries we believe that given the present circumstances, the most apt tactic against the all-out war policy of the GMA regime is not to escalate the armed struggle but rather to intensify the campaign for a negotiated settlement. Launching tactical offensives left and right will not expose the militarism of the GMA regime but on the contrary play into the anti-terrorist hysteria of the reactionary state. ###