Please come to a Night of Celebration and Tribute for Behn Cervantes on August 21, 5:00 pm, Church of the Risen Lord, University of the Philippines, Diliman.
Posted on 20 August 2013 by admin
Please come to a Night of Celebration and Tribute for Behn Cervantes on August 21, 5:00 pm, Church of the Risen Lord, University of the Philippines, Diliman.
Posted on 05 September 2011 by admin
Posted on 05 September 2011 by admin
Posted on 05 September 2011 by admin
Posted on 05 September 2011 by admin
Posted on 03 September 2011 by admin
For the dedication of the Alexander Martin Remollino Library
Those who had the honor of sharing the life journey of Alexander Martin Remollino can witness with me that Alex had an exceptional ability to remember information. When Alex and I first started our relationship, I remember commenting as to how impressed I was with all of the statistics and details that Alex had ready for use in his mind. He smiled proudly and, with a hand propped on his leg, informed me that he takes seriously the task of being intellectually prepared. Alex went on to reveal that he scheduled time for reading each week. In his perspective, a good activist was one who is not only capable in political theory and current events, but who also has developed a grasp of science, literature, culture, and communication.
As a journalist, Alex covered his news beat diligently—he stored away information on congressmen and senators, he studied the various actors in Peacetalks, he spent a day riding with a jeepney driver and innumerable hours absorbing the people’s protests, and Alex listened sincerely during interviews. It was with genuine interest and quiet confidence that Alex sought to bring the truth to the Filipino people through his writing. I will never forget the unmatched joy of accomplishment that Alex expressed when he uncovered the government distortion in defining unpaid household help as employment. He exuded satisfaction for he had exposed the truth to the people while also demonstrating competence with statistics. Likewise, when Alex returned from his Fact-Finding Missions to Mindanao, he animatedly compared his first-hand experience to that of his previous research and interviews on the Bangsamoro reality. Alex beamed with honor at being included in scholarly works from CenPEG and IBON as well as seeing his work in various poetry collections. Alex enjoyed engaging new disciplines and applying them as an activist; his happiness was clear when he could serve the people through skills in research, interviewing, analysis and especially creative and news writing.
As many of us experienced, Alex was a particularly serious person. He often expressed disdain for nonsensical behavior, irrelevant small talk, and illogical reasoning. Alex had high standards. When many were engaged in the distractions of pop culture, personal mini-dramas, and the latest telenovela or talkshow, Alex observed the world, read, and thought. For Alex, an evening dissecting a CHR hearing on the Morong 43 to develop with clarity “Who is Mario Condes?” as a method to expose the military’s lies was filled with laughter and revelry—this service to political prisoners was a passion worth his evening hours, but still pure delight. Similarly, Alex always made time to accept invitations for poetry workshops and speaking engagements (especially those coming from the youth), to plan and participate in KM64 events and to have social time with his friends. These were all worthy and enjoyable, though equally venues to nurture critical and creative thought and commitment to the people’s agenda. Alex’s ideas often took shape in poems urging us to become more, to rise to the challenge of struggle, and to reflect deeply on the needs of the masses. Some comment on how quickly Alex wrote—in my observation, this was merely an expression of how deeply Alex thought and how much information he had already internalized.
Keeping up with Alex sometimes felt daunting. Initially he expected me to remember information after the first telling, but as time passed he grew to accept that for certain information, I would turn to him. He would patiently reply to my fifth text in as many months asking for the current statistics on Extra-Judicial Killings or what were the best issues and examples to lift up on the government’s latest scandals. I knew his information was always reliable and his perspectives sensible. In the same way, as I focused on my own tasks in educating Church members and visitors on the cultural and social context of the Philippines, I noticed that I began to depend on Alex to explain certain parts of the political situation. Alex’s eyes always lit up as he explained Philippine politics and realities to interested visitors, so much so that even I was energized as Alex excitedly delivered details and anecdotes. I grew accustomed to the ease with which I could answer difficult questions. I would merely smile and respond, “Ask Alex.”
Ask Alex… something that we can no longer physically do, but a powerful metaphor by which we can engage our world. We must be like Alex, reveling in deep thoughts and striving to master new disciplines in service to the people. This library is a tangible reminder that we can passionately and methodically rise to the challenge of struggle and dig deep to develop our abilities and analysis as activists and workers of the movement. We can dare to be like Alex–search engines of knowledge and wisdom hard-earned through diligent reading, research, study, and interaction with the masses. With unwavering principles and focus impermeable to pop culture’s numbing distractions, we are the ones who can bring, with the urgency needed today, the answers of Alex and all great kasama gone before. We do not start empty-handed as we have with us the resources, writings and commitment of people like Alex wise beyond their years. Alex was a gentle wind and a raging storm–he would rage for us to raise our level of capability, while assuring us that we have potential within us to be better than the best, as long as we are in service to the people.
We thank the community of friends and comrades that have shared their hands and hearts in making this library possible. The Bayan National, Bulatlat.com and Ibon Foundation staffs, members of Artists Arrest, Concerned Artists of the Philippines, Promotion of Church People’s Response, and especially KM64 have all played significant roles. We also want to thank Ms. Mennie Ruth Viray, who has graciously volunteered as Librarian Consultant. And we give thanks to the entire Cosmos and all who shaped Alex’s life for the opportunity to celebrate Alex’s legacy through this library project.
May we not tire in our service to the people’s struggle, but may we also listen to our need for health and rest—in mind, body and spirit. Alex will continue to be with us in our struggle for freedom and democracy. The Alexander Remollino Library is for all of us–a place to reflect and remember, a place to dream and strategize, a place to create and be inspired, and a place where we can become more prepared for and committed to liberating the struggling masses from oppression and foreign domination. May we not forget to share the search engine of Alex Remollino—in us, Alex will go on to infinity, and together, we will taste victory!
Posted on 24 March 2011 by admin
BAGONG ALYANSANG MAKABAYAN
Message on the 110th Birth Anniversary of Lorenzo Tañada:
BAYAN Founding Chair,
Grand Old Man of Philippine Politics
August 10, 2008
Bantayog ng mga Bayani, Quezon City
The Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (BAYAN) joins the Tañada family and freedom-fighters nationwide in celebrating Ka Tanny’s 110th birth anniversary.
We celebrate Ka Tanny’s life by sharing with the Filipino people, especially the youth, the legacy of Bayan’s founding chair, and our Grand Old Man of Philippine Politics.
Ka Tanny earned the distinction of being the longest-serving senator in Philippine history. From 1947, he served as a member of the Senate for 24 years. But more importantly, it was outside the halls of the Senate that he gained distinction as one of the greatest leading and uniting figures in the Parliament of the Streets.
Ka Tanny’s name became synonymous with freedom, justice and democracy as he stood at the forefront of the struggle against widespread poverty and inequality, corruption and tyranny, from the time when he founded the Movement for the Advancement of Nationalism (MAN) in 1966, up to the height of the anti-dictatorship struggle and even after the downfall of Marcos. Ka Tanny became one of the greatest enemies of the US-backed Marcos dictatorship. He also organized the Anti-Bases Coalition and other groups that rallied public opposition to the presence of US troops in the Philippines.
In 1983, after Senator Ninoy Aquino’s assassination, Ka Tanny became a leading personality of JAJA (Justice for Aquino, Justice for All). Earlier, he was also a leading figure in the formation of the People’s Movement for Independence, Nationalism and Democracy and the National Coalition for the Protection of Workers’ Rights.
When Ka Bert Olalia, Ka Crispin Beltran and other militant labor leaders were arrested, Ka Tanny was most vocal in condemning the brutal attacks on trade unions. He was the first ever politician allowed to speak before a big demonstration of the Kilusang Mayo Uno (KMU).
A year before the founding assembly of Bayan, he also led the formation of NAJFD (Nationalist Alliance for Justice, Freedom and Democracy). In 1985, Ka Tanny became Bayan’s founding Chairperson.
Ka Tanny attended meetings and preparations of Bayan for the huge rallies that were often met with fascist force. As he arrived in a wheelchair pushed by Bayan secretary general Lean Alejandro, he would always be welcomed with warm smiles and applause. Ka Tanny would listen intently to the planning sessions and then he would lean forward and comment on the formations and conduct of the mobilizations. With Ka Tanny at the front line, there was always a feeling of assurance among the rallyists that even though the rally could be dispersed, there would be a Ka Tanny who would raise his mighty voice against such state violence.
In spite of his advanced years, Ka Tanny is best remembered by Bayan as the distinguished parliamentarian who was at home in the streets.
Ka Tanny led Bayan Cental Luzon (CL) and Bayan national leaders and forces in the renowned Welgang Bayan against Marcos’ plan to build a nuclear plant in Bataan. Bayan and its allied organizations conducted several waves of campaigns to enlighten and rally the public against the nuclear plant. When Bayan CL decided to call for a welgang bayan, Ka Tanny went to Pampanga and there, despite being in his wheel chair, together with all the Bayan forces, positioned himself in the middle of the street to protest. That day, no vehicles could be seen plying the busy streets of Pampanga because everybody heeded the call for a massive strike.
Due to differences with other Bayan leaders regarding the 1986 snap presidential elections, Ka Tanny took a leave of absence from the alliance as he opted to participate in the elections. When Gen. Fidel Ramos and company made their move against the Marcos dictatorship, Ka Tanny immediately resumed his leadership in Bayan and started mobilizing forces for the EDSA 1 People Power uprising.
Ka Tanny, who had been undergoing kidney dialysis, finally rested in 1992 at the age of 93. It is well known that on the day of his dialysis, Ka Tanny chose to attend the September 16, 1991 Senate deliberations on the extension of the US-RP Military Bases Treaty. After the historic vote against the rejection of the treaty, Ka Tanny, stood up and shouted with all his might, “Mabuhay.”
Just a few years later, the Senate ratification of the US-RP Visiting Forces Agreement betrayed one of Ka Tanny’s greatest victories against US military interventionism in the Philippines. He certainly would have been at the forefront in opposing the VFA and all other unjust policies of whoever was the current US puppet.
Present-day politicians should emulate the brilliant example of Ka Tanny and his brand of nationalism and tireless engagement in the people’s anti-fascist and anti-imperialist struggle.
Under present conditions of ever worsening poverty and inequality brought about by a corrupt government that is subservient to US economic and geo-political interests, we celebrate Ka Tanny’s life by rallying Bayan and the Filipino people to continue his battles. Present-day activists, especially the youth, can gain inspiration from Ka Tanny who loved and served the people to his very last breath.
Today, we also remember another birthday celebrant, Ma. Luisa ‘Luing’ Posa Dominado, a human rights activist who shared the passion of Ka Tanny in standing up for freedom, justice and democracy. Ka Luing was imprisoned four times under the Marcos dictatorship. It has been one year and four months since the abduction of Ka Luing and peasant activist Ka Nilo Arado by three armed men in Iloilo on April 12, 2007.
Surely, Ka Tanny would have been with us in the Bayan-led rallies to demand justice for the hundreds of victims of extra-judicial killings, enforced disappearances and all forms of human rights abuse under the Arroyo watch.
Ka Tanny is sorely missed. But his spirit remains alive, strong and unbending, in the multitude of patriotic and freedom-loving Filipinos today who continue to fight for genuine democracy, freedom and social justice.
Mabuhay ang dakilang alaala ni Ka Tanny!
Isulong ang pakikibaka para sa tunay na kalayaan, katarungan at pambansang demokrasya!
LONG LIVE THE GREAT LEGACY OF SENATOR LORENZO M.TAÑADA
By Prof. Jose Maria Sison
Chairperson, International Coordinating Committee
International League of Peoples’ Struggle
August 10, 2008
I am deeply pleased and highly honored to join the Tañada clan, friends, the various organizations and institutions and the broad masses of the people in celebrating the 110th birth anniversary of the great Filipino patriot Senator Lorenzo M. Tañada, champion of national independence and democracy, principled statesman, brilliant legislator, civil libertarian and fearless militant against oppression, be it by the Japanese fascist invaders or the homegrown fascist dictator Marcos.
I am proud to have personally known Senator Tañada since he delivered the keynote speech at the founding of Kabataang Makabayan on November 30, 1964. He exhorted us to emulate Andres Bonifacio and the Katipunan and to continue the unfinished Philippine revolution. I worked closely with him under his chairmanship of the committee that prepared the founding of the Movement for the Advancement of Nationalism (MAN) in 1966 and even more closely after the founding congress elected him as MAN chairman and myself as general secretary on February 8, 1967.
I am thankful for the inspiration, knowledge and experience that I gained from working with Senator Tañada in MAN under his leadership. He was a man of high intellect and deep conviction. He was always serious and meticulous in examining drafts and possible courses of action. I remember fondly the council meetings and the informal meetings where we would exchange views and he would often arrive ahead of everyone else at the effectively exact phrase in meaning and nuance to persuade people within the nationalist or anti‐imperialist context. He was always supportive of the mass actions to express protest and make demands against US imperialism and the servile government.
Senator Tañada’s resolute and militant struggle against the Marcos fascist dictatorship encouraged and strengthened me when I was underground and then when I was under military detention. Despite his advanced age, he engaged in street activism and braved the bullying and assaults of the armed personnel of the state.
Like everyone else in the national democratic movement, I admired his leadership in a series of alliances (especially BAYAN of which he was the founding chairman) and his active participation in indoor and outdoor rallies and other forms of activities for the purpose of seeking the end of the Marcos dictatorship. He delivered powerful messages to denounce the criminal acts of the regime and to inspire the people to resist.
It is of high and urgent importance to celebrate and seek guidance from the great legacy that Senator Tañada has bequeathed to us all. We need to refresh and revitalize ourselves with the principles that he enunciated so lucidly and so vigorously and with the actions that he undertook and made him an exemplary fighter for the national and democratic rights and interests of the people.
To this day the Tañada legacy is of vital significance and relevance to the struggle of the Filipino people for complete national independence, democracy, good governance, social justice, development and durable peace. We are confronted by a government that is shamelessly servile to US imperialism, extremely corrupt and exploitative and unrestrained in repressing the people and committing human rights violations.
Senator Tañada had a high standard of morality for both private life and public service. He espoused and practised the clean and honest service to the people which he required of all government officials. As senator, he first became well known as a crusader against graft and corruption. We are obliged by his teachings and example to fight uncompromisingly against a regime that has prolonged itself through electoral fraud and whose corruption knows no limits. The Arroyo regime has no moral and legitimate basis whatsoever.
Senator Tañada stood for the economic sovereignty of the people, the conservation of our national patrimony and the development of the country through national industrialization and land reform. We are required by his teachings and example to fight relentlessly against the US‐imposed policy of “free market” globalization. This is a tricky phrase for obscuring the reality of monopoly capitalism and favoring the US and other multinational firms and banks through the denationalization of our economy, liberalization, privatization and deregulation.
We must denounce the policy of keeping the Philippine economy, agrarian, semi‐feudal and preindustrial, producing only raw materials and semi‐manufactures for export and always borrowing heavily from abroad to cover trade deficits, to finance outward capital and profit remittances and to conjure the false illusion of economic growth. The dumping of surplus manufactures and agricultural products from abroad has ruined local production and has made the country a victim of manipulated shortages and price gouging by foreign monopolies.
The people are suffering terribly from the rising debt and tax burden, the rapid increase of unemployment, the plunging level of income, the soaring prices of fuel, food and other basic commodities and the rising fees for deteriorating basic social services. The Arroyo regime does not offer any kind of solution or even mere alleviation to the suffering people. It is now floundering due to the international credit crunch and lower orders for the kind of exports that the Philippine makes. It is obsessed with raising the tax burden in an economy that is already bankrupt and depressed.
Senator Tañada consistently and vigorously upheld, defended and promoted the national sovereignty of the Filipino people and the territorial integrity of the Philippines. He devoted himself to the struggle for the dismantling the US military bases in the Philippines. He was pleased when the 1987 constitution prohibited the basing of foreign military forces and the introduction of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons of mass destruction. He was elated when in September 1991 the Philippine Senate passed the resolution terminating the US‐RP Military Bases Agreement.
But the regimes succeeding the Aquino regime have sought to circumvent and reverse these victories of the people and patriotic leaders like Senator Tañada with a series of agreements allowing US military forces to enter and occupy any or all parts of the Philippines under various pretexts and to operate as they please even in violation of Philippine sovereignty and territorial integrity. The Arroyo regime has been the worst in treasonously increasing the pretexts for US military intervention and for actually allowing the continuous and increasing presence of US military forces in the Philippines.
Under the guise of combating terrorism, the US policy of “global war on terror” has whipped up war hysteria and war production in the US, wars of aggression against Iraq and Afghanistan, repressive laws and state terrorism on a global scale. The Arroyo regime has followed the policy not only in abject subservience to its imperialist master but also in pursuit of its selfish interest in getting US blessings and some amount of military assistance and in using the military and police forces to keep it in power, to suppress the patriotic and progressive forces and intimidate the broad array of opposition forces and the broad masses of the people.
The gross and systematic violations of human rights have outraged the Filipino people and the people of the world and have fanned up the flames of the armed revolution for national liberation and democracy. All the vicious attempts of the US and Arroyo regime to destroy the revolutionary movement with the so‐called military solution, Oplan Bantay Laya I and II, have failed but have only succeeded in rousing revolutionary resistance and paralyzing the GRP‐NDFP peace negotiations.
We must overcome the impediments to the resumption of the peace negotiations. If we cannot resume the negotiations during the Arroyo regime, we must prepare for doing so after this regime. We must strive to achieve a just and lasting peace by addressing the roots of the armed conflict and agreeing on the social, economic and political reforms that must be undertaken.
It is possible to make comprehensive agreements on such reforms if both the GRP and the NDFP avail of and draw from the rich legacy of Senator Tañada those general principles that he enunciated and those concrete basic reforms that he proposed for making the Philippines truly independent, democratic, socially just, prosperous and peaceful.
May the wisdom of Senator Tañada continue to enlighten and inspire us. His teachings and his deeds are relevant to the understanding of our problems and to the solutions that we can undertake as a nation. Let us summon the memory of the great patriot Senator Tañada clenching his fist to defy the reign of greed and terror and signal the people to rise up and exercise their power against their adversary. Long live the great legacy of Senator Lorenzo M. Tañada! ###
Apat na dekada sa buhay ni Ka Tanny
Public Information Department BAYAN
Ika-10 ng Agosto 1985
Click Here for photos
Posted on 22 March 2011 by admin
RETIRED NAVY CAPTAIN DANILO “KA DAN” VIZMANOS:
A MUCH BETTER HUMAN BEING THAN TODAY’S GENERALS
By Dr. Dante C. Simbulan, PMA Class 1952
(This is Retired Colonel Dante C. Simbulan’s eulogy during the Huling Parangal Para kay Ret. Navy Captain Danilo , Makati, 8PM, June 27, 2008. Dr. Simbulan served with the original units of the Philippine Scout Rangers organized by then Capt.Rafael Ileto during the anti‐Huk campaign. He served with the Corps of Professors and taught at the Philippine Military Academy in Baguio City till his retirement in 1967. He has a Doctorate in Political Science at the Australian National University, and is the author of the book, THE MODERN PRINCIPALIA, THE HISTORICAL EVOLUTION OF THE PHILIPPINE RULING OLIGARCHY published in 2005 by the U.P. Press)
During my last visit to Ka Dan three weeks ago, he was in intense pain, but I could see that he was very glad to see me. When I and my son, Roland bade goodbye, he handed me a CD of the “Parangal” recently held in Makati and a copy of his latest book, ” A Matter of Conviction”. On the first page he wrote: “To Ka Dante, my ‘classmate’ in Camp Crame (CSU‐Constabulary Security Unit), Fort Bonifacio and Bicutan.
Indeed, Ka Dan and I were both political prisoners, “classmates” in the prisons of the Marcos dictatorship. Like Ka Dan, I was arrested at about the same time and jailed for 2 1/2 years without charges.
I would have been honored to be his real classmate, to be his ‘mistah’ or my ‘cavalier’, but he went to Kings Point in New York (U.S. Merchant Marine Academy‐USMMA) and I went to PMA in Baguio, he graduating in 1950 (same year as Pres. Fidel V. Ramos graduated at West Point), and I, two years later in 1952 in Fort Del Pilar, Baguio.
Unlike many generals of the AFP and PNP today (who are mostly graduates of PMA), Ka Dan has observed the Code of Honor inculcated in us Peemayers for four years: that we must not cheat, lie , nor steal nor tolerate those who do among us. Though not a PMA graduate, he also lived the PMA ideals of “Courage, Integrity, and Loyalty”, the so‐called CIL embossed in our class rings. Indeed, he could have been one of the few among us who still believe AND PRACTICE these. He could have been, and I believe he will be, an excellent role model of both cadets and young officers of the AFP and PNP.
Many generals today have not only abandoned the honor system and the ideals of CIL, but have also flaunted their ill‐gotten wealth, living in mansions in Ayala‐Alabang, Corinthian Gardens, Valle Verde, Green Meadows and such high‐class and gated communities of the wealthy few, rubbing elbows with the high and mighty in our society. They have lied and cheated for their superiors – including their fake Commander‐in‐Chief ‐‐ in order to be promoted or to get coveted assignments. On the other hand, they have jailed and court‐martialed those PMA graduates who still follow the straight path, who still want to tell the truth no matter what is the consequence. In short, these generals today have become part of the problem ‐‐part and parcel of the corrupt ruling oligarchy!
In contast, Ka Dan Vizmanos refused to follow this pattern. He did not serve the dictator Marcos nor did he benefit from such service. Instead, he fought the dictatorship which trampled on the constitutional rights of citizens. He protested against the violation of human rights by the military and the police minions of Marcos.
But Ka Dan did not only protest but also showed enormous COURAGE in defying the dictator and his minions during Martial Law resulting in his incarceration; he demonstrated a strength of character, the HONESTY AND INTEGRITY to live within his means (even though, like the others, he had the opportunity to enrich himself while holding responsible positions in the AFP). Today, like Rep. Crispin ‘Ka Bel’ Beltran, he lived and died in the same old house with just the bare necessities that his meager income could afford. Ka Dan, like Ka Bel died a poor man. What a contrast to the lifestyle of the generals of the present dispensation!
Most important of all, Ka Dan Vizmanos showed his LOYALTY, not to the ruling elites and the corrupt system they represent, but he gave it wholeheartedly to the Filipino people, especially to the suffering and oppressed masses of our unjust society.
He was against the mendicant and beggarly attitude of both our civilian and militlary leaders to our erstwhile colonial master, the United States. He criticized the long‐standing dependency of the government and the military on the Americans. He ridiculed the junk, the ‘surplus’ equipment that the U.S. is giving us, to ‘modernize’ our armed forces. He caricatured the expressions of gratitude of our so-called leaders to the ‘generosity’ of the Americans for giving us 40‐year old helicopters!
He wanted our country and our armed forces to be self‐reliant and not be a tail of the U.S. kite. He wanted to see the Philippines attain real independence and exercise our sovereign rights as a respected member of the world community of nations. Last but not least, Ka Dan’s vision is to see our empowered people participate in government and not just the few political dynasties who lord it over us all in determining our future and in shaping our destiny.
I salute you, Ka Dan, and am truly proud to have known you.
Kami’y iyong iniwan, ngunit ang iyong diwa, adhikain at paninindigan ay hindi namin kakalimutan at aming ipagpapatuloy ang ating layunin hanggang hindi makamtan ang paglaya ng ating bayang minamahal.
Paalam, kaibigan at kasama. Tinitiyak kong darami sa ating mga kasundaluhan at opisyal ng military ang makakakita sa iyong maningning na halimbawa at darating ang araw na ang AFP ay magbabagong anyo. When that time comes, it will no longer be the protector and defender of a corrupt ruling system, but will be transformed into a true armed forces of the people, the protector of our people’s interest, a defender of our national independence and sovereignty, and the reliable guardian of a true and authentic democracy.
Before Trillanes was Vizmanos, the ‘original rebel soldier’
By DJ Yap, Philippine Daily Inquirer
Taas‐kamaong pagpupugay kay Ka Dan Vizmanos
Ni Carol P. Araullo
Tagapangulo, Bagong ALyansang Makabayan
5 Mayo 2008, University of Makati
Sa ngalan ng lahat ng mga kaalyadong organisasyon ng Bagong Alyansang Makabayan sampu ng mga pang‐rehiyon/pamprobinsyang balangay nito at ng balangay sa Estados Unidos, sa ngalan ng lahat ng mga miyembro ng Pambansang Konseho at mga kagawad ng Pambansang Tanggapan, isang taaskamaong pagbati sa ating lubos na pinagpipitagan at minamahal na Captain “Ka Dan” Vizmanos, dating tagapangulo ng Bayan, isang matatag na tagapagtanggol ng karapatang pantao at matalas na manunulat at tagapagsalita tungkol sa mga pundamental at mga nagbabagang isyung pambansa at pangmundo.
Nagpapasalamat kami kay Ka Dan at sa kaniyang pamilya sa mahigit na tatlong dekada ng mahusay, taus‐puso at walang patid na paglilingkod niya sa sambayanang Pilipino at sa kilusang pambansa demokratiko, sapul nang manindigan siya sa panig ng masang pinagsasamantalhan at inaapi at sumama sa pakikibaka para sa pambansang kalayaan at demokrasya.
Si Ka Dan ay ginawaran ng parangal ng Bayan kasama ng iba pang mga huwarang mga indibidwal na malaki ang naiambag sa progresibong kilusan, partikular sa Bayan bilang alyansa, noong nakaraang dalawang taon. Subalit, kasama ng Kodao at Selda, minabuti naming magtanghal ng isang payak ngunit makabuluhang pagpupugay para lamang sa kanya dahil nakita namin kung gaano kayaman sa mahahalagang karanasan at aral ang kanyang tinahak na landas mula Navy Captain sa Sandatahang Lakas ng Pilipinas tungo sa pagiging makabayang manunulat at natatanging progresibong lider.
Umaasa kami na ang mga kabataan at iba pang mga kababayan natin, na ngayon lang siya makikilala, kasama na ang mga sundalo’t opisyal sa AFP at PNP na kasalukuyang disgustado o di mapakali sa nangyayaring lansakang katiwalian, paglabag sa karapatang pantao at pagiging sunod‐sunuran ng mga heneral sa mga iligal at kontra‐mamamayang mga utos ng ilehitimong gubyernong US‐Arroyo, ay makakapulot ng ilang ideya at aral sa ating pagpupugay. Hinihikayat namin ang lahat na bumili o
humiram at magbasa ng mga librong isinulat ni Ka Dan. Sinisiguro namin sa inyo na ang kanyang mga isinulat ay madaling maintindihan at magaan basahin bagamat hitik sa kaalaman, kasaysayan at malalim na pagsusuri.
Totoong kakaiba at kapuri‐puri na ang isang tulad niya na nanggaling sa tipikal na middle class family, may angking talino at nagkaroon ng pagkakataon na makapag‐aral sa labas ng bansa, maging opisyal ng AFP at patungo na sa higit na pag‐asenso hanggang sa umabot sa pamunuan nito, ay namulat – sa sarili niyang pagkukusang mag‐aral at sa kanyang pagiging matuwid na tao – sa totoong kalagayan ng lipunang Pilipino at kung ano ang ugat na mga problema nito.
Nang makita niya ang kontradiskyon sa pagitan ng mamamayan at ng AFP, at ng mga lokal na reaksyonaryo hanggang sa mga dayuhang interes na kumakatawan sa imperyalismo, nanindigan siya sa panig ng sambayanan.
At mula nang pumanig na siya, naging matatag siya. Ito’y sa kabila ng matinding presyur mula sa mga nakatataas na opisyal ng AFP at maagang pagka‐unsyami ng kanyang military career, pagkatortyur at pagkakulong ng mahigit dalawang taon, patuloy na panggigipit sa panahon ng pasistang Diktadurang Marcos, mga kalituhan at malulubhang pagkakamali ng kilusan matapos mapabagsak ang diktadura at palitan ito ng mga rehimeng may posturang demokratiko at sa harap nang patuloy na mga hamon sa mahaba at mahirap na landas tungo sa ganap na pambansa at panlipunang pagpapalaya.
Tatag ng paninindigan at husay sa pagkilos. Kahit tumanda na, si Ka Dan ay di nagsabing magreretiro siya. Humingi lamang siya ng dispensa na bumaba na bilang miyembro ng Bayan National Council nang nagkasakit ang kanyang may‐bahay at kailangan niyang bigyan nang higit na oras at atensyon. Subalit nagpatuloy siya sa liderato ng SELDA at sa pagdalo sa mga pulong pag‐aaral at mga kilos protesta. Sa totoo, hanggang noong nakaraang taon, siya ay nagbigay ng napakahalagang testimonya tungkol sa Oplan Bantay Laya at buong programa mapanupil ng rehimeng US‐Arroyo para sa Permanent People’s
Tribunal, Second Session on the Philippines na ginanap sa The Hague, The Netherlands. Higit na panahon din ang ginugol niya sa pagsusulat at ang kanyang mga libro ay pamana na niya sa ating lahat, sa mga susunod na henerasyon ng mga makabayan at progresibong Pilipino.
Kaya samahan niyo po ako na magbigay ng standing ovation kay Ka Dan Vizmanos, dakilang lider ng Bayan at sambayanang Pilipino.
Mabuhay si Ka Dan Vizmanos!
by: Bagong Alyangsang Makabayan
by: Aya Santos