On the Extra-Judicial Killings PDF Print E-mail
Written by Partido Lakas ng Masa   
Saturday, 17 September 2016 21:08

The Matobato confessions confirm the failure of the entire trapo system

By Sonny Melencio


The statements of operative Edgar Matobato during the Senate hearings on extra-judicial killings have confirmed the existence of the Davao Death Squad (DDS) which we know have existed for a long time now. According to Matobato, the killings have been going on since 1988 starting with the Cory administration through to FVR's, Erap's, GMA's, Noynoy's, up until now.


This means that all these administrations must be held accountable. They all have blood on their hands.


The statements also expose the connivance of the police and government forces in perpetrating the killings. We also know that this connivance has been established in the operation of the illegal drug trade itself.


As to how the killings could remain unabated all through the years has to be explained not only by the Duterte government but also by the previous ones. The previous administrations have known what was happening in Davao all along, but they chose to ignore it. Some administrations even consorted with the drug lords and syndicates, until the drug issue became so significant that it catapulted Rodrigo Duterte to power.


The killings have become almost nationwide. Now its becoming clearer that these mass killings are in fact systemic. It's part and parcel of the system of trapo politics and elite rule in the country.


Davao is not the only case. There have been similar killings in Negros (Escalante), Isabela, Maguindanao and elsewhere. It might not have the same intensity and publicity as in Davao, but it points to the capacity of the ruling individuals in power to form their own death squads, bodyguards and goons to do their bidding. We have a term to describe this localized phenomenon, that is warlordism, reminiscent of an era when the landowning class in their fiefdom ruled through terror and violence.


We have to assess and therefore question the direction of the Senate hearings in this context. The hearings have degenerated into a jockeying of opposing factions within the ruling class in order to score points and advance their own agenda. This makes the Senate hearings an exercise in futility, as they are not meant to resolve the problem of the killings, but to lay the blame solely with the present administration. The motive is therefore suspect. The question is posed: Why didn't the elite factions which were previously in government, not so long ago, use their power to stop the killings?


Let's not fool ourselves. There has been an increasing polarization of forces within the ruling class. Even if the Liberal Party is in disarray, with a majority of its members having joined the Duterte faction, they are still powerful enough to destabilize the Duterte regime. Yes, there is a Plan B, as there is a Plan A, or even a Plan C that are a part of this faction's maneouvers to control power.


But where are the masses and the poor in all these designs? Our interests are not represented in any of these maneouvers. While they quarrel in the halls of the Congress, we continue to be the casualties of their system -- oppressed, exploited and even killed in the streets.


The solution is not to replace Duterte with another trapo via plans engineered by any of the elite factions. We must not be trapped into aligning ourselves with any of the factions. The masses must organize and mobilize for their own agenda and interests. This is the only way that we can protect our communities and win genuine peace and security. The unity of the Left and progressive forces is crucial to achieving this.#





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