Volume III, Number 12. 30 June 2021.
On 12 June 1898, right after the Filipino people led by the revolutionary movement Katipunan defeated the Spanish colonialists through armed resistance, the traitor Emilio Aguinaldo declared Philippine freedom under the sovereign power of the United States. The US subsequently launched a brutal war to suppress the Filipino people's patriotic resistance where more than a million Filipinos died.
The US replaced Spain as the exploiting colonial power in the country, even making worse the feudal exploitation of the peasantry by the big landlords, plundered the country's human and natural wealth and resources, prevented industrialization and made the life of the vast majority of the people more miserable.
On 4 July 1946, at the end of WWII and after regaining control of the Philippines from Japan, the US granted nominal independence and established the client-state under its military protection. Since then, the US has retained its neocolonial rule in collaboration with the local ruling classes of big comprador-bourgeoisie and landlords.
Not as well known as the declarations of sham independence of 12 June and 4 July is the establishment of the Sovereign Tagalog Nation by the Katipunan in the last days of August 1896. It was a revolutionary republic with a charter, a set of officials led by President Andres Bonifacio and encompassed the whole archipelago. The Katipunan had asserted since its inception in 1892 that the word Tagalog denoted all the inhabitants in the islands with their ethnic and linguistic diversities.
In more than 500 years, peoples of the Philippines have risen up in arms to fight for freedom against foreign oppressors. Patriots like Bonifacio, Sakay, Dagohoy and countless others sacrificed for the nation, while traitors like Aguinaldo, Quezon, Marcos and others, betrayed the people and collaborated with their imperialist masters to serve their class and personal interests.
Rodrigo Duterte, the current chief administrator of the local ruling classes, falsely claims an “independent foreign policy” while blatantly sucking up to both Chinese and US imperialists. He allows China to violate the territorial and maritime sovereignty of the country in the West Philippine Sea. At the same time, he continues to allow the US to use Philippine military camps in exchange for bigger military aid to buy aircraft, bombs and other war materials to use against Filipinos desiring and fighting for national freedom.
To end this half-millenium of foreign domination, the revolutionary and the democratic forces of the Philippine society have no option but to continue and expand the scope of their present struggle for national liberation and wrest political power from the local ruling classes and establish a true people's democratic republic.
Only then can we celebrate a genuine independence day.