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HomeDNX DefenseStrictly Insurgency | Kayab Uli? Why the 79th IB is on the...

Strictly Insurgency | Kayab Uli? Why the 79th IB is on the brink of making history and total victory over Communist terrorists and why public support is needed all the more

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BRGY. BATO, Sagay City, Negros Occidental – “S7, sabay na lang tayo dito mag lunch (S7, let’s have lunch here together),” Arnel Calaoagan, commander of the 79th Infantry Battalion tells his civil military officer, the young, jovial first lieutenant Dan Carlo Samoza.

It was nearing kunchtime in the 79th’s official receiving area where what some jokingly call as “the most well-maintained” comfort room

Soon, another officer came in, broad-shouldered, young.

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It was the battalion intelligence officer.

Like Calaoagan, the two spoke Tagalog – dead giveaways that ranking officers of this maneuver unit of the 303rd Infantry Brigade are not natives of Negros,pangayaw in the native language, fighting the war for Negrenses who had been enduring the Communist scourge for more than half a century.

Since February, this year, Calaoagan’s 79th has led the way in the more critical phase of what the Army calls “sustaining the gains” or the sustainment phase of the revitalized internal security operations.

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It is too important to take note that the series of focused military operations of the 79th IB in the far northern areas of the ESTOCA area or Escalante City, Toboso and Calatrava towns was preceded by at least three years of murder of civilians by remnants of the dismantled Northern Negros Front.

DNX Research looked at these murders and found out that the killing spree started on 29 November 2021, only five months after the Army officially classified the NNF as “dismantled.”

Since then, these dregs of the once vaunted NNF that extorted and killed its way to notoriety, have been responsible for the murder of 24 civilians, one a village chief and the other a police officer.

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The first murdered civilian was Rolando Villa Bustillo who was killed on 29 November 2021 the mountain village of Bug-ang in Toboso town followed by three other cases – Mariel Banson Encarquez, Ponciano Carbajosa, and Ocil Hoyo-a in close successions in 2021 December on the 13th, 14th and 18th in the village of Bandila.

DNX will publish the full list of the murder victims in a separate article.

Those killed based on the data appear to be concentrated in Bug-ang, Bandila villages in Toboso and in the villages of Mina-utok, Marcelo, Lalong, and Minapasok in neighboring Calatrava town.

These villages are adjacent to Pinapugasan in Escalante City, forming a seeming movement corridor and logistical base for the Communist terrorist remnants with Pinapugasan as the most consolidated area with the most consolidated mass base, according to Army data and analyses of former CPP cadres.

“It used to be a Lubos Asosasyon Masa or LAM,” Ka Glenn, a former CPP cadre who is now an Army trooper told DNX.

LAM simply means that an area has been heavily organized into underground mass organizations or UGMO according to sectors. where they belong to.

Former cadres known to this writer explained UGMOs are actually ploys of tge Communists to make ordinary folk empowered and to make it appear that they are part of the supposed revolution.

To put it simply, however, this is to make the masses do the dirty work while the NPA continues to extort.

The series of murders, however, and the recovery of documents from the Pinapugasan combat sites appear to indicate one thing, former cadres pointed out.

Even Ka Eric Almendras or Jeffrey Celiz said the CPP is attempting to launch its so called Third Rectification Movement in the north.

Ka Lubay, on the other hand, a former member of the CPP’s pool of instructors based in Bacolod City, told this reporter that the recovery of bssic Party documents like the Basic Party Course and the Art of People’s War with selected writings by Vo Nguyen Giap point to an attempt to start the so-called ideological consolidation process as called for in the CPP’s Third Rectification Movement.

This analysis seems to dovetail with the previous statement of Calaoagan that remnants from other dismantled guerrilla fronts seem to have converged in Pinapugasan based on initial information they have received.

He said it could be possible there wasxan attempt to launch the Rectification Movement in Negros.

Ka Tol, meanwhile, said the choice of Pinapugasan as a take off for the Third Rectification Movement is classic CPP doctrine.

“The area is elevated, secluded, and is over rugged terrain,” that makes the remnants feel and think they are like inside a guerrilla base of Mao Tse Tung in Hunan province in China.

The rebel, however, forgot one thing: the upgraded technology and training of the Philippine Army.

Perhaps they forgot, too, that Arnel Calaoagan is a Scout Ranger.

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Julius D. Mariveles
Julius D. Mariveles
An amateur cook who has a mean version of humba, the author has recently tried to make mole negra, the Mexican sauce he learned by watching shows of master chef Rick Bayless. A journalist since 19, he has worked in the newsrooms of radio, local papers, and Manila-based news organizations. A stroke survivor, he now serves as executive editor of DNX.
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