The following is a significant statement from Ang Bayan, the organ of the Communist Party of the Philippines. This message from the CPP to the New People’s Army is an important development of their line of advancing the People’s War in the Philippines from the stage of strategic defensive to strategic stalemate. See also their previous statements on this question, Strive to make a great advance in the People’s War for New Democracy and Raise the Level of People’s War in the New Decade:
On the occasion of the 41st founding anniversary of the New People’s Army (NPA), we salute the Red commanders and fighters and pay our highest respects to our revolutionary martyrs and heroes. We congratulate the rank and file for the victories won in the past year and urge them on to garner further victories in the revolutionary struggle for national liberation and democracy.
Since we announced our strategic plan to advance from the stage of strategic defensive to that of strategic stalemate in the protracted people’s war, our Party cadres and members, Red commanders and fighters, mass activists, allies and the broad masses of the people have been enthusiastically discussing the basis, political requirements and strategy and tactics for the advance. Why and how shall we succeed?
First, the chronic crisis conditions of the world capitalist system and those of the domestic ruling system serve as the basis for our strategic plan and its implementation in the next five years. They continue to worsen and are increasingly favorable conditions for advancing the people’s war.
Second, the CPP has maintained the correct ideological, political and organizational line and effectively leads the people and the revolutionary forces. It has rich revolutionary experience and all-round strength gained from more than 40 years of people’s war for fulfilling the political requirements for people’s war.
Third, the people’s army under the leadership of the CPP has the correct strategy and tactics set forth by the Party for advancing the people’s war. The Red commanders and fighters have high morale and are determined to inflict blows on the enemy and carry out the strategic plan.
I. Crisis conditions in the world capitalist system
The world capitalist system has been shaken from base to rafters by one serious economic and financial crisis after another since the mid-1970s. The policy shift from Keynesianism to neoliberalism has merely deepened and aggravated the recurrent crisis.
The full restoration of capitalism in several revisionist-ruled countries has been touted by the monopoly bourgeoisie as proof that the socialist cause is hopeless and that the world capitalist system is stronger than ever before. But in fact, the increase of industrial capitalist countries has made the world more cramped for capitalism and has aggravated the crisis of the world capitalist system.
The economic and financial crisis has become extremely destructive in the imperialist countries and more so in the less developed and underdeveloped countries. It is pushing the imperialist powers to become more plunderous, more repressive and more aggressive than ever before. The crisis is generating conditions similar to those that brought about the two world wars of the 20th century, with the difference that there is far higher potential for peoples to wage revolution, nations to fight for liberation and non-imperialist countries to assert independence.
The class struggle between the monopoly bourgeoisie and the proletariat is surfacing in the imperialist countries. The imperialist powers have become frenzied in their competition for economic territory and for spheres of influence. The interimperialist contradictions are becoming more intense and more violent.
However, the imperialist powers are still avoiding direct violent clashes among themselves and are directing their violence towards oppressed peoples in the neocolonial and underdeveloped countries. Even as China has become the main US global partner in carrying out the US policy of “neoliberal globalization,” the bankruptcy of this policy is pressing China to secure its own markets; sources of fuel and other raw materials; and fields of investments. This tends to upset the balance of forces among the imperialist powers.
The ongoing economic and financial crisis of the US and the world capitalist system is not being solved as the imperialist powers stick to their neoliberal dogma. The bailout money from public coffers is being used merely to improve the balance sheets of the big banks and corporations in the military-industrial complex instead of reviving production and employment. Thus, the crisis of global capitalism is protracting and deepening.
Having become a big debtor, the US is vulnerable to efforts of China to adopt economic, trade and finance policies serving its national interest. Of long term importance to the Philippines are ASEAN-China economic relations as a departure from the sole dominance of US imperialism in East Asia. The Shanghai Cooperation Organization can be a counterweight to US hegemonism in the whole of Asia.
The US continues to be sucked in by the quagmires made by its wars of aggression in Iraq and Afghanistan. Its military interventions in the Middle East, Africa, Central Asia and South Asia are adversely affecting its overall dominance. Certain countries have been asserting their national independence in East Asia, Latin America and Africa.
The people continue to wage armed resistance against the US and its puppets. In other countries like India, the Philippines, Peru, Turkey and Colombia, the people persevere in armed struggle for national liberation and democracy. Revolutionary parties of the proletariat are waging or preparing to wage people’s war in a growing number of countries in Asia, Africa and Latin America.
The social and political turmoil and the rise of revolutionary armed struggles in the world capitalist system will favor the advance of the new democratic revolution in the Philippines. The high propensity of the US and other imperialist powers to unleash wars of aggression and state terrorism against the people drive the people to engage in revolutionary war.
II. Crisis conditions in the domestic ruling system
The Arroyo regime has been extremely reactionary and obscurantist in misrepresenting the character of the ruling system in the Philippines. It has brought upon the people the crushing weight of foreign monopoly capitalism, domestic feudalism and bureaucrat capitalism under such US-dictated policies as “neoliberal globalization” and “global war on terror.”
And yet the regime has harped on turning the Philippines into a “first world country” and perversely puts the blame on the people’s resistance to oppression and exploitation as the cause of underdevelopment and poverty. And it is using such a big lie as the rationale for seeking to destroy or reduce the revolutionary movement to inconsequentiality through brutal campaigns of military suppression since 2001.
Oplan Bantay Laya (OBL) has utterly failed in all its counterrevolutionary objectives. The New People’s Army has successfully launched tactical offensives nationwide, thus belying the regime’s psywar claims and demonstrating the growing strength of the armed revolutionary movement.
The people dismiss the psywar claims of the reactionary military about so many “NPA camps overrun,” “NPA mass surrenders,” “social integration of rebel returnees” and the like. Abductions, torture and extrajudicial killings of social activists and ordinary people are passed off as legitimate actions against the “enemies of the state” and the perpetrators rewarded and cited as “heroes.”
The chronic crisis of the semicolonial and semifeudal ruling system in the Philippines will persist and continue to worsen. Nothing in sight indicates that a new administration would arise from the current presidential elections to make the Philippines truly independent and take the path of industrial development through land reform and national industrialization. Those in power at the highest level tend to monopolize bureaucrat looting and increase their take by further exploiting and oppressing the people, especially the toiling masses.
The abject semicolonial agrarian character of the Philippines provides the conditions for the development of people’s war. The absence of genuine thoroughgoing land reform guarantees that the peasant masses follow the leadership of the Communist Party of the Philippines in carrying out agrarian revolution and participating in the people’s war.
The chronic socioeconomic crisis of the ruling system will generate an unprecedentedly worse political crisis enough to render the ruling classes of big compradors and landlords incapable of ruling in the old way. Factions of the ruling classes have become more violent against each other as spoils of political power are reduced as a result of the worsening crisis.
As exposed by the Ampatuan massacre, the reactionary factions can use parts of the military, police and paramilitary forces as their private armed groups and build their own undisguised private armies by taking military supplies from the armories of the state. The rampancy of private armies has been generated by the US-Arroyo policy of state terrorism against the people.
The current presidential elections will not muffle but will intensify the contradictions among the reactionaries. The periodic elections for officials of the reactionary government have served to ensure the dominance of the politicians who are pro-imperialist and are representatives of the big compradors and landlords and have been a process for excluding the representatives of the working people and for redistributing and rotating power among the political dynasties and factions.
But the current presidential elections are becoming the gateway to further crisis of the system and further violence among the reactionaries. The competing political factions are spending more heavily than ever before on the electoral campaign. The winners will try to recoup and profit from their government positions. The losers will become bitter with disappointment.
Whichever reactionary faction captures the presidency in May will continue the US-dictated policy of state terrorism against the people and the revolutionary forces. Not one among the four major presidential candidates is expressing a determination to carry out peace negotiations to address the roots of the armed conflict through social, economic and political reforms.
The resistance of the reactionaries, especially the pro-imperialist militarists and clerico-fascists, to serious peace negotiations is a good thing. It serves to cast away false illusions about peace negotiations and to drive the revolutionary forces further on to the great task of waging people’s war.
The worst among the reactionaries and their pseudo-progressive followers, including the renegades exposed by the Second Great Rectification Movement, have long claimed that the people and forces in the new democratic revolution have been undercut and debilitated by the unarmed people’s uprisings in 1986 and 2001 and the succession of pseudo-democratic post-Marcos regimes.
The detractors of the new democratic revolution through protracted people’s war obscure the fact that the revolutionary forces have contributed greatly to the success of the unarmed people’s uprisings and that the NPA has not only preserved but has also expanded its revolutionary armed strength to stand out in Philippine history as the largest ever revolutionary army of the people.
Oplan Bantay Laya I and II have failed to suppress the armed revolutionary movement. The reactionaries unwittingly admit the significant strength of the people’s army every time they declare that it remains the biggest threat to the ruling system. They merely make fools of themselves by endlessly repeating the lie that the NPA had 25,000 fighters in the mid-1980s and is now reduced to a few thousands.
From week to week, from month to month and from year to year, the NPA has demonstrated its capability to wipe out enemy units and will continue to do so under the policy and strategic plan of advancing from the stage of strategic defensive to that of the strategic stalemate. The NPA is bound to grow in strength ever more rapidly by continuing to apply the specific line of extensive and intensive guerrilla warfare on the basis of an ever expanding and deepening mass base.
III. Political requirements of people’s war
The No. 1 political requirement for the new democratic revolution in the Philippines and for the advance from the strategic defensive to the strategic stalemate in the protracted people’s war is the revolutionary political leadership of the Communist Party of the Philippines. The Party has laid out the general line of new democratic revolution against the semicolonial and semifeudal ruling system.
Under the guidance of Marxism-Leninism-Maoism, the Party has accumulated experience and achievements in leading the new democratic revolution. By carrying out the Second Great Rectification Movement from 1992 to 1998, it has recovered the mass base it previously lost through grave errors of “Left” and Right opportunism in the 1980s and has revitalized the armed revolutionary movement since the 1990s.
The key task of the Party in the next five years is to recruit at least 200,000 Party members in order to strengthen the revolutionary leadership and core of the revolutionary mass movement. The Party membership is an adequate base for reaching this goal within two years under the policy of expanding the Party membership boldly without letting in a single undesirable. The Party must recruit and swear in as Party candidate-members the activists in the mass organizations who accept the Constitution and Program of the Party.
Candidate-members of worker and peasant origin become full members within six months and those of petty-bourgeois origin, within one year. During the period of candidature, the concerned Party organ or unit must verify the good character and militancy of the candidate members in the mass movement and must provide to them the basic Party education. All leading Party organs and units must work fast to elevate to full membership both the backlog and the new crop of Party candidate-members.
There should be no unnecessary delays for Party candidate-members to become full members. The delays in elevating someone from candidature to full membership are often caused by negligence and lack of concern for the desire of candidate members to become full members. It suffices that the candidate-member gets the basic Party education and proves serious in carrying out his/her assigned tasks in the Party unit and mass organization.
To be able to build the Party rapidly, we must accelerate the building of the mass organizations for peasants, workers, youth, women, children, cultural activists and other sectors. It suffices at the start for the applicants/recruits to become members by accepting the program and constitution of the mass organization. Without a growing mass movement from which it can recruit candidate-members, the Party cannot expand and perform the task of arousing, organizing and mobilizing a still greater number of people. Relative to the strategic task of advancing from the strategic defensive to the strategic stalemate, both our Party organization and organized mass base are small. But they are more than adequate for us to aim for the level of strength necessary for reaching the threshold of the strategic stalemate in less than five years if we sum up well the causes of the slow growth of the Party and the organized mass base and if we set the tasks for maximizing our strength and overcoming errors and weaknesses.
The expansion of the Party organization and organized mass base in both urban and rural areas can run ahead of the expansion of the people’s army. The Party and the organized mass base can grow in all congressional districts of the reactionary state. Wherever they exist, their membership must be increased. Subsequently, some of the Party members and mass activists can be redeployed from time to time in order to cover areas where the Party and mass organizations do not yet exist and are too small.
In the next five years, Party branches must be built in at least 20,000 villages and Party cadres must be developed at the regional, subregional, provincial, district or guerrilla front and section levels through various levels of Party education and through work in the mass movement. The Party cadres and members in the localities must be able to lead the work of the mass organizations, organs of political power, people’s militia, barrio self-defense corps, and self-defense units of mass organizations. The people’s militia assume the role of serving as the principal forces in launching local guerrilla warfare and standing as centers of gravity of the barrio self-defense corps and the self-defense units of the local mass organizations.
They must enable the units of the NPA to carry out tactical offensives. Thus, new fighting units can be created with the firearms seized from the enemy. We must depart from the old practice of overloading units of the people’s army with tasks that can be performed by the local Party branches, the mass organizations and the local organs of political power that take charge of public education, economic affairs, health, self-defense, cultural activities and arbitration.
Under the leadership of the Party, the organs of political power can form and administer the people’s militia and barrio self-defense corps for the purpose of internal security and police work. The mass organizations can also form and administer their own self-defense units. The members of the people’s militia and barrio self-defense corps should run into tens of thousands, with every village having a militia platoon and a self-defense corps platoon. The self-defense units should run into hundreds of thousands, with every mass organization in every village having a self-defense platoon.
The NPA must put its units through distinct periods of politico-military training, combat, mass work and production. It must provide politico-military training to its combat units as well as to instructors for the people’s militia and the self-defense units. NPA units may be rotated and deployed for battles for three to six months, depending on the situation. The point is to accelerate the seizure of weapons from the enemy forces. NPA units must also be rotated in mass work and production so that they remain close to the people and produce part of what they consume.
It is necessary for the Party to sum up its experience and current situation and to draw up the guidelines and plans for the NPA in every regional, subregional, provincial and district or guerrilla front level with definite reasonable targets for the number of weapons to seize from the enemy forces. What is reasonable is based on previous experience and current capabilities of the NPA units. An NPA command, for instance, may recommend to the Party committee a 10% increase in the number of weapons every three months.
Soft targets for raids, ambushes and disarming operations abound. These include police stations, small army detachments, paramilitary units, private security agencies, private armed groups and armed individual reactionaries. There are even softer targets for attritive actions to sap the strength and morale of the enemy forces, force them to do guard duty and commit mistakes in deploying troops and resources. Operations can be easily launched on the basis of intelligence buildup and timely reconnaissance.
It is by entrusting mass work and the mass movement to local Party branches, local organs of political power and the mass organizations, that the NPA can be confident that the mass base is being maintained and developed while it is concentrated on fighting and destroying the power and apparatuses of the reactionary state on a wide scale in the localities. Thus, the NPA can inspire and enable the people in the localities to take revolutionary power.
The revolutionary organs of political power grow stronger and more secure when reactionary power is destroyed and the reactionaries flee or are deprived of their local power and authority. The organs of political power should be based mainly on the mass organizations of the working people and are augmented through united front relations at various levels against the worst reactionaries.
IV. Strategy and tactics
The Party has correctly set the politico-military strategic line of protracted people’s war. This means encircling the cities from the countryside and accumulating strength over a long period of time until enough strength and capability have been accumulated to seize the cities on a nationwide scale in the stage of strategic offensive.
This line is based on the reality of the Philippines where the majority of the people are peasants, and the countryside offers the social and physical terrain for building the people’s army and carrying out the people’s war in stages.
The correctness of the strategic line is well proven by the fact that the New People’s Army has been able to preserve itself and has grown from small to big and from weak to strong against brutal enemy attacks. Such attacks include campaigns of division-size task forces to nip the people’s army in the bud from 1969 to 1972, the 14-year fascist dictatorship of Marcos and the series of national counterrevolutionary military campaign plans launched by the successive pseudo-democratic regimes after Marcos.
In the long course of the Marcos fascist dictatorship, we were able to build the people’s army that started with only nine automatic rifles and 26 inferior firearms (single-shot rifles and handguns) in early 1969 and reached the national total of 5,600 automatic rifles in 1985. Since 1985, however, it had become obvious that the NPA was being debilitated by such “Left” opportunist lines as the “strategic counteroffensive” and the “Red area-white area” line.
These “Left” opportunist lines undermined the strength of the NPA and wrought havoc on the revolutionary mass base and caused the reduction of the mass base by more than 60% in the 1980s. They played into the hands of the enemy that carried out Oplan Lambat-Bitag (OLB) I, II and III designed to put the NPA units under strategic encirclement and “gradual constriction,” and hunted them down with “special operations teams.”
The Second Great Rectification Movement criticized and repudiated the “Left” opportunist lines as engaging in self-constriction and separation from the masses under the guise of strengthening the NPA through unwarranted verticalization and premature formation of larger units. In areas where the “Left” opportunist lines took hold, the need for the horizontal spread of NPA units was laid aside, thus undermining and destroying our close links with the masses. The organized mass base of the revolutionary movement shrank even as the prematurely formed companies had bigger logistical demands.
Under the direction of the Party in the rectification movement, the NPA had to go back to the basics of guerrilla warfare. It was reoriented, reorganized and redeployed to carry out intensive and extensive guerrilla warfare on the basis of an ever widening and deepening mass base. The enemy knew about the return to small units and was emboldened to deploy its scout ranger teams against these units. But the NPA was able to preserve itself and recover the mass base precisely by adhering to its correct line during the entire period of the Ramos and Estrada regimes.
The stress on the horizontal spread of small NPA units in order to counter the harmful results of the premature verticalization and to recover the mass base was not without any negative aspect. It engendered guerrilla-ism or the roving rebel mentality and conservatism, especially where there were no conscious and resolute efforts to develop the revolutionary forces in a balanced way and the necessary correlation of the center of gravity and dispersed units in the work of the people’s army. However, so long as the mass base was growing, it was much easier for the Party to rectify conservatism and guerrilla-ism.
The next big test of the NPA has been Oplan Bantay Laya (OBL) with its brutal campaign against legal social activists and forced displacement of peasants and indigenous people in the countryside. OBL far exceeded OLB in scope, duration, intensity and brutality. The US and the Arroyo regime (agitated by militarists and clerico-fascists who are US CIA assets) harped on the line that progressive social activists are NPA fighters in disguise and calculated that the military campaigns would be more effective in the countryside if such social activists were suppressed through abductions, torture and extrajudicial killings.
OBL has proven the inadequacy of the reactionary military, police and paramilitary forces to cover even only 10% of Philippine territory at every given time. The NPA can easily move about in 90% of the territory. Thus, it has been able to grow in strength and defeat the objectives of OBL. With OBL, the Arroyo regime has gained notoriety throughout the world for its gross and systematic violations of human rights.
But we must learn well the lessons from the various tactics the enemy has used in OBL, such as the “shock and awe” tactics of General Palparan in Oriental Mindoro, Eastern Visayas and Central Luzon, the “convergence” approach of General Gomez in Bohol, the “center of gravity” approach of Colonel Dagoy and the “sitio” approach of Colonel Bustillos.
From a strategic view, all these are paper tigers. But at the tactical level, where they pounced upon the guerrilla fronts and the masses, they were real brutal tigers inflicting a measure of damage, generating real problematic conditions for the revolution and causing errors and weaknesses on the part of the subjective forces of the revolution.
The Party has brought together and analyzed the reports from the regions concerned and has come up with plans to overcome the problems and to further strengthen the revolutionary forces. We have learned valuable lessons in overcoming the attacks of the enemy, preserving and upgrading our forces and mass base, launching full-scale guerrilla warfare and advancing the revolutionary struggle. Our difficult experiences have tempered us and we have emerged stronger, continue to inflict more widespread and heavy blows against the enemy, and are ever determined to advance and win our people’s war.
At present, the NPA stands as the largest people’s army that the Filipino working people have ever been able to put up, surpassing the number of riflemen in the revolutionary army of 1896 to 1902 and the old people’s army of 1942 to 1952. To claim false credit, the reactionary forces keep on repeating the lie that the NPA had 25,000 fighters in 1986 and that they have succeeded in cutting the number down to 5,000 or even less.
The NPA rifle strength in 1986 was only 6,100 (an increase of 500 over the 1985 figure of 5,600), with no accurate accounting of the consequence of the “Left” opportunist lines and anti-informer hysteria, particularly Kampanyang Ahos in Mindanao. From figures of the 1985 Central Committee plenum, Mindanao had accounted for about 50% of NPA armed strength.
The current strength of the NPA is of critical mass in terms of its thousands of fighters with high-powered firearms. With proper deployment and employment, it can rapidly grow and advance in waves and in well-defined phases (middle and advanced) of the strategic defensive and the threshold and early phase of the strategic stalemate. Wherever NPA units exist under any level of command: barrio, section, guerrilla front, interfront, provincial, subregional and regional, there must be a relatively concentrated force as center of gravity. The center of gravity must be situated on the best available terrain. As wide areas are saturated with adjoining company-strength guerrilla fronts and transformed into subregional military areas and later further on into fluid war fronts, their centers of gravity develop larger vertical forces.
At the same time, the further development of horizonal forces consisting of a full-time guerrilla platoon at the municipal level would be beefed up with the proliferation of platoon-size people’s militias, barrio self-defense corps and self-defense units of mass organizations at the barrio level, and the deployment of armed city partisans in urban centers within guerrilla fronts.
The current number of guerrilla fronts is more than adequate a base for aiming to cover almost all if not all the 179 rural congressional districts of the reactionary state with the Party, mass organizations, alliances and units of the people’s army within the next two or three years. The strength of the NPA must not be divided and dissipated just to cover said congressional districts in an absolutely equal and even way. The NPA must grow in strength where they are and advance wave upon wave or deploy advance or seed units in such districts on the best available terrain.
In the next five years, the NPA is bound to deliver more telling lethal blows on the reactionary military, police and paramilitary forces that would belie the false claims of reactionaries, pseudo-progressives and renegades that the NPA has been undermined and weakened by the post-Marcos antinational and antidemocratic regimes and by their military campaigns. Most importantly, the Party and the NPA are determined to increase the armed strength and political power of the working people.
The probable stages of development for the people’s war is from the strategic defensive to the strategic stalemate and from the latter to the strategic offensive. After being at the strategic defensive for four decades, we have developed the basis to aim at and reach the stage of strategic stalemate in the next five years and then strive to move onward to the final stage of strategic offensive.
We must sum up our fighting experience and current situation and develop guidelines and plans at the levels of the Central Committee, the Military Commission and NPA operational command; at the level of the regional Party committees and the regional operational commands; and at the subregional, provincial and district or guerrilla front levels for the purpose of launching tactical offensives and increasing the armed strength of the NPA to enable us to advance from the strategic defensive to the strategic stalemate.
It is feasible for us in the next five years to have a guerrilla front in each of the 179 rural congressional districts and to deploy armed city partisans in all urban congressional districts. The coverage of a rural congressional district by a guerrilla front is facilitated by the existence and growth of guerrilla fronts in adjoining districts. The emergence and growth of guerrilla fronts will be uneven but we must always strive to realize the standard requirements and raise the general level of development. The regional Party committee and NPA operational command must make sure that centers of gravity at the regional, subregional, provincial and guerrilla front levels are located on terrain favorable for maneuver.
The guerrilla fronts would have more breadth and depth and become relatively stable as they become better coordinated under the interfront, provincial, subregional or regional levels of the Party leadership and NPA command. The enemy forces would still have the capability to concentrate forces on the entirety or a part of a particular guerrilla front. But the interconnection and coordination of several adjoining guerrilla fronts under commands higher than that of the guerrilla front and the availability of strike forces for counterattacks by regional, subregional, provincial or interfront commands will be crucial for preserving, strengthening and expanding the guerrilla fronts and launching coordinated tactical operations in the areas covered. Adjoining guerrilla fronts would be more easily coordinated than before and have an echelon of commands, such as the regional, subregional and provincial.
The enemy will always try to put our forces on strategic encirclement and launch strategic offensives. But the NPA would have increased initiative and ability in launching tactical encirclements and tactical offensives as the levels of regional, subregional and provincial commands are developed. Our increased offensives will compel the enemy forces to increase personnel for the defense of camps, police stations and vital installations and reduce the number of enemy armed personnel for offensive operations. And yet the enemy lines of patrols and supplies will remain vulnerable to NPA tactical offensives.
Wherever the enemy forces choose to encircle our forces, we engage in tactical counterencirlements and fight on exterior lines. At the same time, we can take the initiative of launching tactical offensives elsewhere. We maintain a war of fluid movement. We continue to master and apply the tactics of concentration, shifting and dispersal in order to achieve our objectives according to concrete circumstances.
Whenever necessary, we trade space for time. We do not engage in any hard-headed defense of territory and allow ourselves to be forced into battles that put at risk any main unit of the NPA in any guerrilla front, province, subregion or region. At all times, our small units that are dispersed for mass work must be vigilant against being caught by surprise and forced to fight purely defensive battles or chance encounters.
We wage only those battles of quick decision that we can win. We give priority to delivering blows on the weakest points of the enemy forces. The enemy is blind and deaf because it is hated by the people. They cannot tell when and where our forces are poised to strike. We take the full initiative in waging battles of annihilation, which would yield weapons for further strengthening the people’s army and would inflict casualties that reduce the strength and weaken the morale of the enemy forces.
We have a wide array of tactics, which are more complex and more unpredictable to the enemy than a single-occasion ambush, raid and arrest operation, which may have its own complexity in the deployment of blocking, containing and close-in units. The complex tactics we refer to include the following: luring the enemy in deep and leading it to our zone of fire; ambushing or raiding one enemy force and as prelude to a bigger strike against the reinforcements; feigning to attack the east in order to attack the west; inducing an enemy force to go out of its base and destroying the base; tiring the enemy force by letting it march deep into our territory and ambushing it when it tries to return to base; and so forth.
Our principal objective is to wage and win battles of annihilation against the enemy forces. We must also wage attritive actions that serve to weaken and demoralize the forces of the enemy. These include sniping at enemy personnel by sniper teams or sparrow units, use of explosives against enemy vehicles, burning enemy fuel and motor depots and so on. We can make the monster bleed to death from battles of annihilation and attritive actions.
The advance of our people’s war in stages and phases will mean the advance of our military tactics and technique. We learn our tactics from the summing up and analysis of our positive and negative experiences. We capture weapons, communications equipment and other forms of logistics from the enemy.
Even now we have access to sophisticated electronic equipment for communications and storing and retrieval of information. We must be strict in using these properly in our communications, work and offensives. Used irresponsibly, the same equipment can facilitate the infliction of harm on us by the enemy. We must never neglect the use and development of primitive but more reliable forms of communication such as the courier system on the basis of organized mass base and alliances.
We must conduct political work to recruit medical personnel and other professionals and technicians for various departments of the people’s army and to develop alliances to enable us to have access to various types of professional and technical services. We must promote production by the people’s army for its own needs and by the people to support the people’s army and families of our Red fighters. We must gather the contributions of the working people who have benefited or stand to benefit from the policies of the revolutionary government and movement.
The people’s government has the power of taxation in order to control and regulate enterprises and assets that earn rent and profit and in order to collect the resources for the delivery of social services much needed by the masses, including the administration and support for the programs of production, education, health, defense and cultural development. When certain political groups and individuals make donations to the people’s government, these are used for social purposes and are not payment for the right to campaign or win a position in reactionary elections.
Aside from combat operations to wipe out units of the military, police and paramilitary forces and private armed groups, we must carry out operations to arrest for trial and punishment the exploiters and oppressors who have incurred blood debts, violators of human rights, the plunderers, landgrabbers, destroyers of the environment and the top purveyors of prohibited drugs. We must dismantle the reactionary organs of political power and antipeople enterprises that grab land and destroy the environment.
We must remove the incorrigible oppressors and exploiters from our guerrilla fronts. We expand and consolidate Red political power by eliminating or driving them away from the guerrilla fronts. We must prepare ourselves against the further increase of US military intervention forces as we succeed in advancing from the strategic defensive to the strategic stalemate. We must be prepared against all-out US military aggression.