They were “insurrectos” during the late Spanish period, “insurgents” during formal US occupation, and “insurgents” still today.
Echoing the country’s former and current colonizers, the Philippine government calls what the guerillas of the New People’s Army (NPA) are waging an “insurgency.” But more accurately can it be described as a war–and a war that has been going on for over a century.
Most Filipinos think that, as the expression from US political lore goes, Mrs. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo is so unpopular she couldn’t win an election as a dog-catcher. Her numbers validate that view, the most recent being a whopping 46 percent disapproval grade and a 48 percent mistrust rating, according to Pulse Asia. If her numbers were any lower she could shake hands with the devil. As ratings go these numbers favorably compare only with those of the late Idi Amin when he was president of Uganda; not even the much-despised George W. Bush was as mistrusted.
No matter. Apparently Mrs. Arroyo thinks she can win an election – but not as president, which in 2004 she amply demonstrated she couldn’t, but as a congresswoman in the Second District of Pampanga, of which the Macapagal hometown, Lubao, is a part.