Photo: Jose Maria Sison. Credit — @prwc_info3
The Party for Socialism and Liberation sends it condolences to his family and comrades on the death of comrade Jose Maria Sison on December 16 in the Netherlands. Sison, affectionately known as Joma, was the key founder of the Communist Party of the Philippines in December 1968, and of its armed wing shortly thereafter. Joma was a renowned leader in the Filipino people’s long struggle for true independence, and against a government that has long been subordinate to U.S. imperialism.
The U.S. bloody occupation in 1898, its war against the heroic liberation movement of the Filipino peoples, and later its neo-colonial domination of the Philippines, shaped the consciousness of the popular movement that rose up in response to horrific oppression in the years after the U.S. replacement of Spain as colonial overlord. The people’s movements of the masses understood that true liberation could only come by breaking the oppressive chains of U.S. imperialism and defeating the comprador bourgeoisie.
Jose Maria Sison played an indispensable role in the Philippines’ struggle for independence and socialism that emerged in the late 1960s. He courageously took on the U.S.-backed, extremely brutal regime of Ferdinand Marcos — forming the CPP in 1968, and only three months later the New People’s Army. Imprisoned, tortured and held in solitary confinement by the Marcos regime for nine years, the people’s movement and uprising that overthrew Marcos in 1986 also freed Joma.
Although forced into exile in the Netherlands when his return home was denied by then-president Corazon Aquino, whom he also exposed and opposed, Sison continued to provide essential leadership to the Filipino liberation movement until his death. He was also the key organizer of the International League of People’s Struggle.
Jose Maria Sison was a brilliant and dedicated revolutionary who fought tirelessly for the liberation of the Filipino people. His legacy will live on in the people’s struggle in the Philippines and internationally.
Jose Maria Sison Presente!
Long live international solidarity!