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The AJLPP-USA Year End Report, 2006

by AJLPP Monday, Jan. 15, 2007 at 11:45 PM
ajlpp_socal@yahoo.com 213-241-0906 337 Glendale Ave. Los Angeles CA 9006

The SolCom was able to gather more than 5,000 petitions, sent more than 2,000 signed postcards to the Europe, sold more than 500 books, issued thousands of postcards, hundreds of posters and buttons in its three years of action until AJLPP came into existence. It is worthwhile to look back and retrace the steps the AJLPP has taken during the last year 2006 so it can look forward in this current year 2007. It is but fitting to move forward with greater zeal and determination to serve the Filipino people and the Filipino American community in the United States.

The AJLPP-USA Year End Report, 2006

The Alliance for Just and Lasting Peace (AJLPP) or Alliance Philippines-USA was formally formed in June 2006 in San Francisco, California after more than a year of consultations, work meetings and consensus by it founding member organizations.

The AJLPP started as the Solidarity Committee for A Just and Lasting Peace in the Philippines ( SolCom) that was formed by BAYAN International-USA with the International League of Peoples Struggle in the US in September 2002.

This solidarity committee composed of different groups like ANSWER, CISPES, CDM, BAYAN International-USA and others, was formed to advocate for the continued negotiations between the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) and the Philippine Government, which were stalled around July 2002 when the Arroyo government suspended the negotiations, and when the US government branded and labeled Prof. Jose Ma. Sison as a terrorist and the CPP/NPA as “terrorist organizations” in August 2002 after the enactment of the PATRIOT Act.

Brief History

The SolCom also undertook the campaign to get Prof. Sison off the US terrorist list because it was a stumbling block to the stalled negotiations between the NDFP and the GRP. It gathered signatures and petitions, conducted forums and discussions, radio interviews, book launchings, book-signing and solidarity mass actions on the peace talks and against the PATRIOT Act and to defend patriotic exiled and persecuted Filipinos being targeted by the US and the European Union for harassment and persecution.

The SolCom was able to gather more than 5,000 petitions, sent more than 2,000 signed postcards to the Europe, sold more than 500 books, issued thousands of postcards, hundreds of posters and buttons in its three years of action until AJLPP came into existence.

It is worthwhile to look back and retrace the steps the AJLPP has taken during the last year 2006 so it can look forward in this current year 2007. It is but fitting to move forward with greater zeal and determination to serve the Filipino people and the Filipino American community in the United States.

2006 Year End Review of Activities

January 2006—The year opened with AJLPP sponsoring an Arts Exhibit in Los Angeles entitled “The Beautiful Struggle: The Progressive Art from the Land of Promise-Mindanao.” The art exhibit that featured more than 20 paintings of Parts Bagani, Bai Pigas and Ruben De Vera was sponsored by Pesante-USA, Mindanao Caucus and the First Quarter Storm Network (FQSN). The exhibit lasted from February 3 to March 14, 2006. At least five painting were sold and all the proceeds were remitted to the progressive painters from Mindanao.

February 22, 2006 was a turbulent day for all Filipinos. That day, on the 20th anniversary of the EDSA people’s uprising against the US-Marcos dictatorship, the US-Arroyo regime declared the “state of emergency” with the Presidential proclamation 1017 that placed the whole country under martial rule.

AJLPP and its allies sprung into action. On that same day, mass actions were launched in the different consulates around the United States. Early morning, Filipino American activists and their allied picketed the Los Angeles Consulate and held a vigil until late evening.

Hundreds were instantly mobilized and organizations took turns in the ensuing mass actions. Forums, press conferences, radio and TV interviews, petitions, email barrages and letter writing were conducted to oppose the martial rule. The US-Arroyo regime has to beat a retreat from the international outrage that was generated by the continuous mass actions.

March 18-25, 2006 was a month of mass upsurge in the United States. The 3rd anniversary of the US invasion of Iraq was marked in the big mass actions from Los Angeles to New York and Washington DC. Led by the ANSWER coalition, AJLPP was ever present in all these events.

Earlier, in March 10 more than half a million people mobilized in Chicago for an immigrant rights mass action that signaled the movement that electrified the whole nation into action. Thus, on March 25, all over the nation led by Los Angeles, millions of immigrants and their advocates marched and rallied to demand genuine legalization, Amnesty Now, Full Rights for All Immigrants!

April was another show of force for the immigrant rights movement viewed by many as the “new civil rights movement.” AJLPP forces from Los Angeles to New York were ever present in all rallies and demonstration building links with different multi-ethnic alliances while projecting the issue of “family reunification” for the Filipino American community.

May 1 was the culmination of the immigrant rights movement upsurge. The national day of boycott was an astounding success. All over the United States, more than 3,000 Filipino Americans immigrants and their advocates marched with the millions in two separate marches that converged in West L.A. The day without immigrants, showed the power of the people.

By June 2006, the AJLPP was able to collect around 85 signatures of organizations and prominent individuals to demand the release of Ka. Crispin Beltran from detention.

August and September was marked with commemorative activities from San Francisco, Los Angeles, Seattle to New York. The 34th year of martial law and the escalation of political killings in the Philippines became the focus of these commemorative events.

October was the month of the ANSWER anti-war rallies in almost all the major cities of the United States. AJLPP’s red and blue flags were ever present in the militant actions in Seattle, Los Angeles and New York.

Quoting from the Summary Report of the Week-long Campaign: Stop Political Killings and Release labor leader Rep. Crispin Beltran in Seattle: “Oct 28- Anti-War rally at Federal Building with a thousand protesters demanded an end to war. Seattle labor leader Celso Tolman in his speech, criticized Pres. Gloria-Macapagal Arroyo for unabated killings and demanded release of Rep. Crispin Beltran.”



Rev. Wilson de Ocera, chairperson of the legislative committee of the United Methodist Church California-Nevada Conference arrived in Seattle on Oct 31 for a four-day speaking tour.”

November was an election month and the American people voted against the war and against the Bush mal-administration. In Los Angeles, KmB marked its 7th year anniversary. UGNAYAN held their PASULONG Conference and consolidated their ranks.



Nov. 2- Forum at the Wykcoff Auditorium at the Seattle University, sponsored by the International Studies Department.15 students mostly Asians and two faculty teachers were present. Student willing to bring issue in campus groups and in inter-collegiate meetings



Nov. 2- Meeting at the University Baptist Church. 20 attended including Rev. Tim, Rev. Elizabeth, Rev. Peter, UBC members and Asian Baptist Caucus. Baptist Caucus extended ‘moral’ support to efforts of sending inter-faith delegation



Nov. 3- Prayer Service at Highline United Methodist in Burien. Rev. Wilson discussed the current trends and vision of the UMC and how possibly the inter-faith delegation to the Philippines can fit-in to the over-all priorities of the church.



Nov. 3- Consultation with the youth at Beacon United Methodist Church



Nov. 4- Solidarity with the anti-war activists forum for Latin America and North Korea.

Referral with the ANSWER group in San Francisco that supports peace and justice work in the Philippines



Nov. 5- Inter-faith Prayer and Protest Service at the University Baptist Church, All Saints Day Service. Around 100 in attendance including pastors from the UMC in downtown Seattle and Yakima. Candle lighting for Bishop Alberto Ramento and other martyrs. Some members gave initial support for fact-finding mission to the Philippines.



December 2006 was decisive in the sense that the US-arroyo regime again beat a retreat to its scheme to change the constitution.

2006 year ended with the AJLPP led and supported Pagsambang –Bayan on December 10, 2006 at Daly City’s UCCP led by Rev. Wilson De Ocera. Several hundred people from all sectors and different organizations attended the tribute to victims of political killings in the Philippines.

AJLPP was also able to collect more than 30 signatures from prominent women activist all over the United States to protest the rape and the US intervention on the Nicole rape case. Later organizations took a break, take a stock of what it has done to prepare for another year of struggle ahead.

For the AJLPP, from its formal founding in June 2006, the past year was full of surprises and a frenzy of mass actions and victories. We look for more victories and struggles this year.

January 15, 2007

************

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