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Luisita farm workers recount Palparan’s terror campaign inside hacienda

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Luisita farm workers recount Palparan’s terror campaign inside hacienda


Retired Maj. Gen. Jovito Palparan served former Pres. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo well as chief implementer of Oplan Bantay Laya, and the Cojuangcos as ‘protector’ of their landholdings. Is it any wonder why, despite being subject to manhunt, he is still at large?
By RONALYN V. OLEA
Bulatlat.com

HACIENDA LUISITA, Tarlac City– It took seven years before Eliza Baldiviano, a resident of barangay Balete in this city, could retell the horror she went through at the height of the implementation of Oplan Bantay Laya (OBL), the counterinsurgency program of the Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo administration.

Facing members of a fact-finding mission, March 10, Baldiviano related: “Sometime in 2005, Rizal Hilario went to our house. He told me that he could arrest me for being a member of the NPA [New People’s Army]. He said, ‘You were in the mountains for years, you are an NPA.’ I said to him I did nothing wrong,” Baldiviano said, her eyes welled up in tears. “Then he asked me what Rene Galang, Satur Ocampo and Liza Maza had been telling me.”

At that time, Galang was the chairman of United Luisita Workers Union (Ulwu) that led the strike of farm workers in November 2004 while Ocampo and Maza were representatives of Bayan Muna who supported the strike.

Hilario repeatedly went to Baldiviano’s house, causing her anxiety. Hilario is known by human rights groups as the right hand of retired Maj. Gen. Jovito Palparan Jr., who, at that time, was commanding general of the 7th Infantry Division. The 7th ID covers the seven provinces of the region, including Tarlac. In December 2011, Palparan and Hilario, along with two others, have been charged with serious illegal detention and kidnapping in relation to the enforced disappearance of University of the Philippines (UP) students Karen Empeño and Sherlyn Cadapan. Both remain at large to this day.

Eliza Baldiviano recounts the incidents of harassment she experienced during Palparan’s terror campaign inside the hacienda .(Photo by Ronalyn V. Olea / bulatlat.com)
“There were many victims of human rights violations at the time of Hilario and Palparan but they were afraid to speak back then,” Florida Sabangan, leader of Alyansa ng Manggagawang Bukid sa Asyenda Luisita (Ambala) said.

A former member of Citizens Armed Force Geographical Unit (Cafgu), Orlando Martinez also recalled his experience in the hands of Palparan’s men. “On December 22, 2005, Palparan’s men were having a drinking spree. They saw me and invited me to join them.

After taking a shot, Col. Lobosta asked me to go inside the house they were renting. He suddenly pushed me to the wall. ‘Why, sir?’ I asked. He accused me of providing information on their activities to the leaders of people’s organizations.”

“I denied doing such. He put a silencer on his 45 caliber pistol and pointed it to my mouth. I told him ‘I was not doing anything wrong against you.’ He did not pull the trigger,” Martinez said. He somehow managed to escape from the situation. He went straight to the house of then barangay chairman Rodel Galang to seek refuge..... MORE

SourceBulatlat.com

URL: http://bulatlat.com/main/2012/03/14/luisita-farm-workers-recount-palparan%E2%80%99s-terror-campaign-inside-the-hacienda/

NYPD marks OWS anniversary with violent crackdown and arrests (VIDEO, PHOTOS)




NYPD marks OWS anniversary with violent crackdown and arrests (VIDEO, PHOTOS)

A number of OWS protesters have reportedly been arrested and several injured at Zuccotti Park in Manhattan during celebrations of the movement’s six-month anniversary. Police broke up the peaceful rally that had gathered almost 600 people to OWS’ founding.

There have been no confirmed reports on the number of arrests, but eye witnesses report more than a twenty. Police drafted in public buses to carry away the detained..... MORE
SourceRT.com

URL: http://rt.com/news/protesters-liberty-square-reports-837/

Gunboat diplomacy: America launches Persian Gulf surge

Gunboat diplomacy: America launches Persian Gulf surge

Washington is planning to deploy even more ships, subs and choppers to the Persian Gulf despite the fact that it already stations aircraft carriers in the region. This was confirmed by Chief of Naval Operations Jonathan W. Greenert.

­Speaking during a Friday breakfast in Washington, Greenert told reporters about the bold plans to deploy more patrol boats, minesweepers, Sea Stallion helicopters and drone subs – all keeping an eye on Iran, which is clearly uncomfortable with being surrounded by the warships of a hostile country..... MORE
SourceRT.com

URL: http://rt.com/news/america-persian-gulf-surge-831/

Unfriendly fire: US hush-up over Afghan allies killing American troops?

Unfriendly fire: US hush-up over Afghan allies killing American troops?


Another instance of an Afghan soldier shooting his American partner has leaked to the media. As US troops grow wary of their Afghan trainees, the Pentagon only says that Lance Cpl. Edward Dycus died “while conducting combat operations.”

­The US is racing against the clock to train Afghan troops to secure the country after Washington finally withdraws in 2014. But as time goes on, the trainees seem to be turning into the most-feared enemies..... MORE
SourceRT.com

URL: http://rt.com/news/afghan-allies-kill-american-troops-827/

How to spot a terrorist? He yawns, stands still, perspires unusually (w/ Photos)

How to spot a terrorist? He yawns, stands still, perspires unusually

So you go on a date and your boy or girlfriend notices that you yawn too much. The air conditioner goes off, you start shivering and get goose bumps. “Terrorist!” your date shouts and runs off. Why? They've read DHS’s new pamphlet.

The New Jersey Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness has released a new document entitled “Terrorism Awareness and Prevention”.   The paper is aimed at raising awareness on how New Jersey residents can help combat terrorism, including tips on how to spot signs of suspicious activities and behaviors..... MORE

SourceRT.com

URL: http://rt.com/news/terrorist-security-behavior-yawn-835/

Vilification of activists continues with Oplan Bayanihan

Vilification of activists continues with Oplan Bayanihan

After investigating extrajudicial killings here in 2007, Philip Alston, then UN Special Rapporteur for extrajudicial executions, tagged the vilification of activists as one of the practices that gave rise to these killings. But vilification has continued.
By RONALYN V. OLEA
Bulatlat.com

MANILA — Twenty-year-old Mildred Salang-ey was shocked to receive a subpoena on March 5, 2011. She was charged with murder, frustrated murder and attempted murder by the 86th Infantry Battalion of the Philippine Army.


The military accused Salang-ey, a member of Mt. Province Youth Association and Anakbayan, as one of the New People’s Army guerrillas who launched an offensive against the Philippine Army on February 26, 2011 in Asipulo, Ifugao.

“My family was in disbelief. It [filing of charges against me] had dire effects on my studies and on my family. They were so worried. My sibling suffered a psychological problem because of this,” Salang-ey said in Filipino during a hearing of the House Committee on Human Rights, March 13. Salang-ey was a student of the Mountain Province State Polytechnic College in Bontoc.

Salang-ey was one of the witnesses who testified before members of the committee regarding the continuing vilification campaign of the military against development workers and activists.

Through the help of Cordillera Human Rights Alliance, a local chapter of Karapatan, Salang-ey was able to file her counter-affidavit. On December 22, 2011, the case has been dismissed due to lack of merit.


Mildred Salang-ey, 20, testifies before the House Committee on Human Rights, March 14, on the harassment she experienced in the hands of the military (Photo by Macky Macaspac)
“The accusations by the military have no basis at all,” Salang-ey said. “We have our rights as humans. We have the right to do what we think is right,” she said.

Meanwhile, Milagros Aowat, 58, a staff of the Community Health Education, Services and Training in the Cordillera Region (Chestcore), could not accept that her more than 30 years of service to the poor communities in the region as a health worker would be the very reason why she experienced several forms of harassment.
..... MORE
SourceBulatlat.com

URL: http://bulatlat.com/main/2012/03/16/vilification-of-activists-continues-with-oplan-bayanihan/

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