Washington DC/ San Francisco–Calls for Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s ouster from the Presidential office in Malacanang joined anti-war chants across the United States as the national Filipino alliance BAYAN USA
led Filipino-Americans across the country in the September 24th National March Against War. BAYAN USA led Filipino-American contingents in Washington DC, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Seattle.
“There is no other US puppet who has been more subservient to the dictates of Bush’s war and pushed for its total expansion abroad than Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo,” stated BAYAN USA chair Kawal Ulanday.
“Disguised as a war on terror, Arroyo has vacuumed in $80 billion yearly in US military aid to reinstate martial law in the Philippines. This is the unseen face of war that Americans need to know about,” Ulanday continued. “Ousting Gloria is part of the comprehensive call to stop the US war machine.”
In the nation’s capitol, red and blue Bayan flags, along with flags of Filipinos Against the War, Anakbayan, Migrante, and NY Committee for Human Rights in the Philippines blazed across the front of the White House as these organizations led Fil-Ams and allies in lambasting the Bush administration mastermind involvement in supplanting the funds and blueprint for state terror in the Philippines under its puppet Arroyo.
Present in the 150+ BAYAN USA-led formation were allies such as the Troops Out Now Coalition, International Action Center, Katrina Solidarity Contingent, Fight Imperialism Stand Together (FIST), and many others.
In San Francisco and Los Angeles, BAYAN USA flags marched in hundreds-strong formations with the International League of People’s Struggle (ILPS) and alongside allies such as the Asian Pacific Islander Coalition Against the War, Malcolm X Grassroots Movement, and La Raza. BAYAN USA organizations Committee for Human Rights in the Philippines (CHRP), League of Filipino Students (LFS), Pilipinos Organizing Workers for Empowerment and Respect (POWER), Anakbayan Los Angeles, and Habi Arts led chants calling for Arroyo’s removal and the removal of US troops from the Philippines.
In Seattle, BAYAN USA member organization Anakbayan, Philippine US-Solidarity Organization (PUSO) and delegates to the International Solidarity Mission (ISM) in the Philippines alerted marchers to the heinous human rights atrocities committed under Arroyo’s command of the military.
In a cry of indignation, ISM delegate Donnalyn Denina, chair of Gabriela Network Seattle, recalled the horrors she witness as she participated in a fact-finding mission to investigate human rights violations in Surigao, Northern Mindanao, last month. BAYAN USA fielded over 40 US delegates to the ISM.
“There are over 4200 documented cases of human rights violations under Arroyo’s four-year term, including extrajudicial killings, executions, and torture, a rate that skyrockets over Marcos’ track record. And the Bush-Arroyo blood compact has US taxpayers footing the bill for this bloodshed, ” Denina stated in front of marchers.
In a speech delivered in front of the Washington Monument, amongst a crowd of half a million, BAYAN USA representative Berna Ellorin honored the martyrdom of “those who gave their lives in struggle against the
horrors of US-sponsored state terror, including Nestle strike union leader Ding Fortuna, human rights worker Eden Marcellana, and many others. Their spirits are with us and their struggle will carry on. The US-Arroyo’s Martial Law is a system that believes that by killing our leaders, they can kill our movement. But they are dead wrong. We gain momentum from the example of those who did not flinch from the terror of the state. Gloria has secured her own imminent demise from office.”