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Message of Solidarity on the Commemoration of the Disappearance of Carlos B. Del Rosario

By Jose Maria Sison
Honorary Chair
First Quarter Storm Movement
March 11, 2005

Like all the close comrades and friends of Carlos "Charlie" del Rosario, I am deeply pleased that the Desaparecidos, an organization of relatives of victims of enforced disappearances, is commemorating his disappearance in 1971 and honoring him for his heroic revolutionary record and martyrdom in the service of the Filipino people.

I hope that the week-long exhibit of mementos from March 7-11 and today's forum can refresh us with the recollections of his noble commitment and deeds and further inspire us all to continue the struggle of the Filipino people for national liberation and democracy, to which he contributed his best and for which he made the supreme sacrifice while in the prime of life.

I am proud of having been the teacher of Charlie in several subjects at the Lyceum of the Philippines from 1964 to 1967 and of having recruited him as a charter member of Kabataang Makabayan in 1964. He was so dedicated, intelligent, militant and resourceful that he became a member of the leading core of the KM and a cadre of the Communist Party of the Philippines. He was responsible for the recruitment of the initial KM members in the Visayas and for the organization of KM chapters there.

We worked together closely not only in the comprehensive youth movement but also in the working class and peasant movement. We carried out political and organizational work in various schools as well as in factories and farms. From the mass movement, we trained and recruited members for the revolutionary party of the proletariat.

We were together from 1964 to 1968 in the youth and the research and education departments of the Workers' Party (Lapiang Manggagawa) that later became the Socialist Party of the Philippines. We were also together in the secretariat of the united front organization, Movement for the Advancement of Nationalism, when I was the general secretary from 1966 to 1968.

Comrade Charlie was one of the staunchest proletarian fighters in the reestablishment of the Communist Party of the Philippines in 1968. He was a member of the Party Central Committee. He worked hard for the big peasant rally in Manila in late 1969. He was effective in reconciling the KM and Samahang Demokratiko ng Kabataan (SDK) in late 1969. He assumed various leading positions in Kabataang Makabayan and became one of the founders of the Movement for a Democratic Philippines in 1970. He was one of the key leaders in bringing about the First Quarter Storm of 1970.

At the same time, he was teaching political science at the Philippine College of Commerce, now the Polytechnic University of the Philippines. He was the organizer of the CPP branch of faculty members and students in this school. Despite all his work in the urban underground, he found the time to meet with his comrades in Political Bureau meetings in the countryside. As special logistics officer, he assisted the CPP leadership in directing the New People's Army team that successfully raided the armory of the Philippine Military Academy in 1970.

Charlie was so active that he came under close enemy surveillance at least in some weeks before his disappearance. To snatch and make him disappear, the fascist military of Marcos staged a commotion that looked like a "student rumble" in the premises of the PCC. He was the first desaparecido in the urban-based democratic movement. There are indications that certain revisionist renegades collaborated with the military agents of the fascist regime in conducting surveillance and carrying out the operation to kidnap and murder him.

Comrade Charlie spent the last seven years (1964 to 1971) of his life in revolutionary work. This was exceedingly fruitful pioneering work. Because of resolute communist fighters and patriots like Charlie, a strong foundation was laid for the development of the revolutionary party of the proletariat and the mass movement of the people for national liberation and democracy against US imperialism and the local exploiting classes of big compradors and landlords.

We owe an immeasurable debt of gratitude to Comrade Charlie. The best way for us to express gratitude to him is to honor him and draw inspiration from him. We must perpetuate his memory in our hearts and minds through the continuity and advances of the new democratic revolution. We joyously celebrate today his revolutionary contributions and are confident that the Filipino people will continue the struggle until they win complete victory. ###

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