< refer to previous entry w/c was actually made yesterday >
I'm not "The Man" (in many senses) when it comes to Communism, but allow me to wear my jester's hat: what exactly does it mean to put Jose Ma. Sison on trial?
Like I said before, this is not just Joma being tried for a murder charge: this is the trial of the longest-running Communist insurgency in the history of modern civilization (give or take a full half-century). Say what you will about a "politically-motivated arrest by a fascist regime," but in my view, this is the game where a Communist has to play by the rules of capitalist justice.
I've been in so many educational discussions over the years to acknowledge the fact that Communism is a strong force in Philippine politics, even if it is a movement working on the very fringes of Filipino society. By "fringes," I mean everything from waging guerilla warfare on the countrysides and spray-painting slogans on visible walls.
One of the reasons why I think that this is the trial of Joma's idea of revolution is that because the rules of the game have changed. The bases for revolution in countries like Cuba, China, and the former Soviet Union are very different from the bases of revolution we have now, if our country has to revolt. But for the past half-century, the "peoples' war" here in the Philippines has operated on the assumption that if you can make it there, you'll make it anywhere.
I'm not necessarily a believer of geopolitics, but it makes perfect sense at this point: Mao's doctrine of "encircling the cities from the countryside" couldn't possibly work here. The reason why Havana has a thriving economy in black markets and why Shanghai and Hong Kong are so "capitalist" is because they're built on coasts: you can't "encircle" them. The same is true with the Philippines: we're archipelagic, and waging war here requires a bit more ingenuity. As you can see, my "theory of geopolitics" is based on the Civilization games, but it makes perfect sense.
The rules of the game have definitely changed, since we're not talking about Lenin's definition of "imperialism" anymore. We're not even talking about Marx's definition of "capitalism" anymore. We're talking about the adaptation and metamorphosis of these factors into things that can no longer be addressed (I'm going out on a limb: not addressed) by the theory and practice of Communism today. The "progression" of Communism, to me, should not be that usual shallow interpretation of constant upward evolution in Marxist theory, but should also be interpreted as something seriatim: that as history evolves, things change, and that the theory should change with these changes to remain relevant and truly "progressive." This is the whole point behind the "Theses on Feuerbach."
Anyone with an opinion on Joma - positive or negative - can derive so many conclusions on what implications there are with his arrest and trial as there are opinions on him. To me, though, this is not a mere issue of whether or not Joma is guilty of purges or double-murder for the assassinations of Romulo Kintanar or Arturo Tabara. This is actually the trial of Communism: can it stand the rigors of what its enemy has become? Can Joma explain the justice behind the longest war in the history of modern civilization? Can Jose Ma. Sison rise up to the ocassion?
This is what's at stake.
Posted at Saturday, September 01, 2007 by marocharim