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Support the just and urgent people’s war in the Philippines! Long live the martyrs!

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Robert Reid | Chairperson FFPS

On June 26th, ten red fighters of the New People’s Army (NPA) were martyred in Pantabangan, Central Luzon. They were attacked by the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), and all bravely held their ground to their last breath. Three days before that, on the 23rd, three young red fighters were martyred in combat with the reactionary armed forces. 

The martyrdom of heroes that served the people is always tragic, especially for their close comrades, friends and family. However, the stories of the martyrs serve as both inspiration to their comrades and the masses they died serving, and is a testament to the strength of the revolutionary movement. As the semi-colonial and semi-feudal conditions that haunt the Filipino people worsen, the Filipino people remain determined and steadfast in their resistance.

Ka Mabel, revolutionary pseudonym for Azase Galang, was born in 2000. She grew up in a progressive household, with both her parents being peasant organizers in Hacienda Luisita. Through this she was exposed to the conditions of the toiling masses and fascist state repression. When she was young, her father was forcibly disappeared and her family was forced to leave the Hacienda. It was in this context that she became organized in 2016. As ka Mabel selflessly dedicated herself to the masses, she gave up on her individualistic dream of becoming a lawyer. She left university and became a full-time organizer. 

Mabel heroically joined the NPA in July 2023. Throughout her life, she was faced with both the suffering of the exploited masses and the fascist repression of the puppet state. These experiences taught her that the only real way to change her country would be by joining the armed revolution. For almost a year she successfully faced the difficulties and sacrifices of being part of the NPA. In the end she was martyred while bravely resisting an AFP offensive. 

Another recent martyr was Jian Markus Tayco, also known as Ka Reb. Ka Reb was born in 2003 and became active during the COVID-19 pandemic. With the militaristic response of the US-Duterte regime to the pandemic, Reb became aware of the suffering of the masses. This led him to leave his petty-bourgeois background and become a cultural worker and a youth organizer. As he immersed himself with the masses, he made the decision to join the NPA. There he served the people until his martyrdom on June 23rd. 

The stories of both Ka Mabel and Ka Reb are inspiring stories of youths who shed their old selfish dreams. Instead, they chose to fight for something greater than themselves: genuine democracy and liberation for the Filipino people. They and many others  from all different backgrounds and generations continue to take up the call to go to the countryside to serve the Filipino revolution and the Filipino people. This clearly shows that as long as the semi-colonial and semi-feudal conditions remain the same, the revolution is undefeatable. 

We in the Friends of the Filipino People in Struggle commend this bravery, and recognize that we can best honor the memories of the martyrs by tirelessly building strong and all-rounded solidarity for the Philippine revolution. Let us match the bravery of Ka Mabel, Ka Reb, all other martyrs, and all the fighting Filipino masses and stir up and spread the flames of solidarity with the Philippine revolution all around the world!