No end in sight as Philippines communist revolt marks 50th year

In this file photo taken on July 30, 2017, guerrillas of the New People’s Army (NPA) stand in formation in the Sierra Madre mountain range, located east of Manila. – In a nation plagued by armed groups ranging from kidnap-for-ransom outfits to Islamist secessionist movements, the communist New People’s Army (NPA) is among the deadliest. (Photo by Noel CELIS / AFP)

via rappler.com – Philippine policewoman Ruby Buena’s introduction to one of the oldest communist insurgencies in the world was a roadside bomb blast followed seconds later by an eruption of gunfire.

“I thought it was my time to die,” said 25-year-old Buena, who instead woke up in a hospital with a cracked pelvis to learn three of her colleagues were dead in the 2018 attack in the central Philippines.

In a nation plagued by armed groups ranging from kidnap-for-ransom outfits to Islamist secessionist movements, the communist New People’s Army (NPA) is among the deadliest.

Yet after decades of failed peace efforts there is no end to the killing in sight as the campaign marks its 50th year.

The NPA launched its rebellion to create a Maoist state on March 29, 1969 – months before the first human landed on the moon.

It grew out of the global communist movement, finding fertile soil in the Philippines’ stark rich-poor divide.

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