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League of Filipino Students-SFSU says “Stop the Killings!” Money for education not assassinations!

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Contact: Princess Bustos
Chair, League of Filipino Students (LFS)
San Francisco State University (SFSU)

San Francisco, CA, USA–On Thursday, September 21, 2006 the League of Filipino Students San Francisco State University chapter (LFS-SFSU) will launch its Stop the Killings!/Oust GMA campaign. On this date 34 years ago, then-president of the Philippines Ferdinand Marcos issued Presidential Proclaimation1081 effectively declaring Martial Law. In order to support its own corporate interests US imperialism propped up the Marcos dictatorship by providing monetary support and military aid to its Philippine puppet regime. For nearly two decades, the fascist dictatorship of Marcos plundered government coffers and prostituted the wealth and beauty of our homeland to multinational corporations, all the while terrorizing the Filipino people through military and police brutality.

Thirty-four years later we read the bloodstained pages of our homeland’s history and honor the lives of the 1,500 activists killed and the 769 more who were abducted. We remember the sacrifices they made not only to uphold the basic human rights of the Filipino people, but also their aspirations to bring true democracy and prosperity to the Philippines. And now, exactly thirty-four years later, LFS-SFSU, along with Filipino women’s organization babae, BAYAN-USA, and all concerned, peace-loving allies all over the world will take this day to condemn the murderous regime of “president” Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo (GMA) as she has done her best to surpass the brutality committed by the Marcos dictatorship.

Like her fascist dictator predecessor, GMA’s rap sheet is long with acts of corruption, cruelty, and disregard for the well-being of the Filipino people. GMA’s electoral fraud was exposed through the “Hello Garci” scandal. GMA has demonstrated her loyalty to US Imperialism as she continues to illegally allow US troops onto Philippine soil. GMA encourages the continued export of Filipinos as cheap labor (an economic “strategy” that was initially devised by Marcos). GMA’s declaration of a State of Emergency through Proclamation 1017 resulted in illegal arrest and detention of progressive leaders and politicians as well as a harsh curbing of civil rights. Worst of all, however, has been GMA’s tyrannical pursuit to stamp-out any and all opposition to her regime through the use of her attack dogs, the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the Philippine National Police.

Since GMA took power in the year 2001 the Philippines has seen 755 political killings and 184 kidnappings in the Philippines. These human rights violations have been carried out not only with the approval of, but also with the participation of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Philippine National Police (PNP), both of which GMA is ultimate commander-in-chief of. Amongst these injustices are the murders of two well-respected leaders of the League of Filipino Students, Cris Hugo and Rie Mon “Ka Ambo” Guran and the abduction of LFS member Karen Empeno. Both Hugo and Guran were mercilessly gunned down at close range by well-trained assassins. Empeno, who was kidnapped on June 30th, is still missing.

One of the worst ironies of the political situation in the Philippines, however, is the inadvertent monetary support from Filipino Americans to the fascist GMA regime through our US tax dollars. Our tax money which should be used to fund social services, such as education, here in the United States is instead going to support the “war against terror” in the Philippines. We as Filipino Americans refuse to allow for our tax dollars to pay for the murder and abduction of our people in the Philippines and call upon the US government to instead use our money to pay for desperately needed medical care and education for its people here.

As Filipino youth and students in the United States and members of the League of Filipino Students, we call on GMA to step down and take responsibility as thief of those 755 stolen lives and the culprit of184 forced disappearances. From the belly of the beast, LFS-SFSU shouts “STOP THE KILLINGS! “MONEY FOR EDUCATION NOT ASSASSINATIONS!

Never Again to Martial Law!
Fight US-Arroyo’s Fascist Repression!
Stop the Killings and Involuntary Disappearances!
Frustrate the Charter Change of the US-Arroyo Regime!
Justice for the Victims of Human Rights Violations!

League of Filipino Students at San Francisco State University is an Anti-Imperialist, Pro-People, Pro-National Democracy organization representing the Youth/Students sector. LFS-SFSU is an international chapter of LFS Philippines and is a member organization of BAYAN-USA and the International League of Peoples’ Struggle.