INSIDE THE PHILIPPINE REVOLUTION: The New People's Army and Its Struggle for Power by William Chapman

INSIDE THE PHILIPPINE REVOLUTION: The New People's Army and Its Struggle for Power

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A firsthand account of the communist insurgency in the Philippines, by a former Washington Post Tokyo bureau chief. With Corazon Aquino's accession to power last year, many observers predicted salad years for the Philippines. But Aquino quickly discovered that she inherited Marcos' problem of domestic unrest. The author, who spent much time in the hills and rural hamlets of the Philippines, has brought back the gripping story of the New People's Army (NPA). which for 19 years has built up its base until it now controls vast areas of the countryside. ""By the time. . .Marcos was deposed. . .it was known that the NPA was active in sixty-two of the country's seventy-three provinces and that it controlled or influenced at least twenty percent of the barangays, the basic local political units of the Philippines."" What Chapman gives us is a classic recounting of 20th-century Third World upheaval: ""intellectuals and middle-class radicals provide the revolutionary spark, the organizing skills and the dogma. The poor provide the armed mass."" Chapman ends his reporting in the midst of the Philippine cease-fire, but he trumpets only uncertainty for the future. The danger he sees centers on the Aquino establishment's inability to take the NPA seriously, an echo of Marcos' own macho blindness. First-rate reporting, in the tradition of Red Star Over China.

Pub Date: Sept. 28th, 1987
Publisher: Norton