Marxist rebels go bananas, attack fruit companyAugust 25, 2013
Left-wing militants have attacked Sumitomo Fruits Corp. (Sumifru) site in the southern Philippines after the business refused to pay the extortion money demanded by the insurgents. Twenty communist gunmen of the New People’s Army burned six Sumifru trucks and seized equipment from the site.
Financing themselves with revolutionary taxes imposed against corporations and wealthy businessmen is a common tactic of leftist guerrillas including the Kurdish PKK and, until recently, the Basque ETA. Terrorist groups such as the Taliban and al-Shabaab have employed similar tactics by demanding Islamic taxes from businessmen and shopkeepers within their territory.
A special report from United Press International:
Filipino NPA guerrillas attack Japanese business site
Filipino Communist New Peoples Army guerrillas attacked a Japanese Sumitumo Fruits Co. site in Mindanao.
DAVAO CITY, Philippines, Aug. 14 (UPI) — Filipino communist New Peoples Army guerrillas attacked a Japanese Sumitumo Fruits Co. site in Mindanao, authorities said.
The Sumitumo facility in Bangbang, a village in Mindanao’s North Cotabato province, has been targeted repeatedly.
The Bernama news agency reported Wednesday local authorities believe the attack could have been instigated by the firm’s refusal to pay the NPA’s “revolutionary” tax, exacted from businesses and politicians as the price for doing business.
The NPA, estimated by the Filipino government to have 4,000 members, is the armed wing of the Communist Party of the Philippines and has been battling authorities in Manila and 60 Philippine provinces since 1969.
The geography of the Philippines, which consists of more than 7,000 islands, with the 11 largest making up more than 95 percent of the country’s area, adds to the difficulties of imposing central government control.
Not only do the Philippines suffer from an NPA Communist insurgency, but Muslims militants in Mindanao have been a problem for decades.
Insurgency has a long history in the Philippines.
Islam infiltrated Southeast Asia through traders and Sufis beginning in the 13th century. Unlike its spread in the Middle East, it was a largely peaceful process. This process left the Philippines with approximately 5 percent of its population Muslim, concentrated largely in the southern part of the country.
The NPA’s militancy is not limited to Mindanao…