Sison’s death may not result to “lasting peace”

December 19, 2022 Paul M. Gutierrez 91 views

PaulON Saturday, December 17, 2022 and after so many false reports over his demise, the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) confirmed that its founding chairman, Jose Maria Sison, has died the day before at the age of 83 “after two weeks confinement in a hospital in Utrecht, The Netherlands.”

Let us give it to Sison who, without a doubt, has been the moving force behind the country’s backwardness, maldevelopment and deep social strife and division back when he ‘re-established’ the Communist Party back on December 26, 1968, with the help of another not-so-great Filipino, Sen, Benigno ‘Ninoy’ Aquino Jr., in Tarlac province.

And just like Ninoy, to describe Sison as the “greatest Filipino of the past century” that the CPP wants him to be remembered is an atrocity and an injustice to the thousands upon thousands of Filipinos who fell victims to the guns and the violence perpetrated by the CPP since its reestablishment.

How should we best describe Sison? Was he really a “revolutionary” who found his inspiration and guiding light from the works and lives of great Marxists like Lenin and Chairman Mao? Was his “vision” for a truly “independent and sovereign Philippines” free to chart its own path of development, pure and sincere?

Or was he a bloody tyrant and user and charlatan who used his charisma and ways with words and arguments to ensnare the innocent, the idealists, and the patriots among us in embracing a “cause” that he himself knows can never be achieved?

But maybe the best word to describe Sison is that he was a cold-blooded “opportunist” and an amoral person who used the magical spell of Marxism for his own ends, for his self-glorification and that of his CPP.

Indeed, from the very start of his political career as a demagogue, opportunism and lack of morality has been the hallmark of all CPP efforts, from its “alliance-building” with local and national political bosses, its “peace talks” with the government and the indiscriminate acts of violence like the bombing of Plaza Miranda in 1971, massacre of villagers in the rural areas and the kangaroo-style justice the NPA meted to thousands of its victims.

If sincerity is to be attributed to Sison, it is that his opportunism has always been sincere.

But such hypocrisy by Sison and the CPP is also grounded on a stark political reality—ours is very rotten and corrupt socio-political system that would either need a really serious effort towards the institutionalization of reforms or, in dire need of a social revolution if the marginalized are to truly benefit from “democracy.”

With Sison gone, it is the hope of most people that, finally, there would be peace in the country as the main stumbling block towards our national unity is now dead.

Well, Sison is gone but our corrupt socio-political system remains. In other words, the causes of social discontent that Sison and the CPP have managed to exploit over the past 5 decades are still with us; they continue to ruin the lives and hopes for a better future for our people as the poor continues to be exploited and our democracy remains a farce.

The challenge to government, therefore, is proving that the violent and deceptive path that Sison chose to pursue in creating a more “just, democratic and benevolent” Philippine society is wrong.

Unless government lives up to the challenge of proving Sison and the CPP wrong and meet the expectations of our people of what it is really like to live in a genuine democracy, it would not be too far into the future that another violent, more radical movement would surface.

And having learned from past CPP mistakes, the one coming would be more difficult to defeat.

In other words, Sison’s passing may not actually lead to lasting peace.