Revolution in South Asia

An Internationalist Info Project

NPA uses indigenous weapons effectively against AFP

Posted by n3wday on February 10, 2009

Communist Party Philippines Demonstration for LiberationThis article was posted on

NPA in Mindanao effectively uses indigenous weapons in waging people’s war

The use of indigenous weapons in combination with modern firearms is one of the prominent characteristics of waging people’s war. This way, the armed revolutionary movement is able to inflict maximum damage on the enemy by maximizing the masses’ wealth of knowledge, limited resources and readily available materials.

Red fighters from Front 6 of the North Central Mindanao Region (NCMR) demonstrated this quality when they annihilated a column of fascist soldiers on May 30, 2008 using automatic rifles, explosives and suyak or punji sticks—sharpened wooden or bamboo stakes laid down as booby traps along their targets’ possible path or areas of maneuver.

The soldiers were part of more than 200 elements of the 29th IB that descended on a cluster of barrios in San Fernando, Bukidnon. They had come from Pangantucan town where they had been conducting military operations for two weeks. After keenly observing the movements of the reactionary troops, the NPA command identified which advancing column to ambush.

The NPA command positioned a platoon along the trail that the enemy was to take. The two enemy columns were expected to pass through Kilometer 5, one from the east and another column from the west. Whichever column arrived first would be ambushed.

The Red fighters prepared 3,000 punji sticks which they planted along all possible areas where the enemy soldiers were expected to run for cover or jump after they had been fired upon. To camouflage the booby traps, the guerrillas covered the punji sticks with layers of stripped abaca fiber.

The different squads were strategically positioned in the front, middle and rear part of possible enemy routes. Squad Three’s task was to pin down the enemy in its possible areas of maneuver after Squad Two, which was positioned in a foxhole, had fired at the soldiers. Simultaneously, Squad One was to position itself along a cliff on the side of the road, estimated to be about 100 feet deep.

The enemy’s movements turned out to be exactly as the NPA command had projected. The first column of government troops to arrive came from Barangay Iglugsad, from the east, and ran smack into the explosives, punji sticks and the guerrillas who were waiting in position.

The enemy at first hesitated to proceed because the area was a vast clearing. The troopers proceeded, however, when one of the soldiers assured them that the area was cleared of vegetation because it was where the locals stripped abaca fiber. They again stopped upon reaching a curve, and planned to send a scout to monitor the top of the hill, where Squad Two was positioned.

The Red fighters wasted no time. They immediately fired and lobbed explosives at the enemy. The stunned fascist military elements ran to seek cover. Some jumped over the cliff where the sharp and pointed bamboo sticks had been planted.

The firefight lasted for two hours, with almost all of the enemy soldiers downed. The military sent reinforcements who were too terrified to proceed to the ambush area and instead headed for another village.

Of the 16 enemy soldiers in the column, 15 were neutralized—12 were killed in the firefight while three others were wounded, leaving only one soldier who was able to run away because he happened to be at the end of the column.

Seized from the soldiers were two M203 grenade launchers, an M16 rifle, an M14, 560 rounds of ammunition for an M60 machine gun, 200 rounds of ammunition for an M16, cellphones, a communication radio and military equipment.. The other firearms could no longer be taken as the place had been overcome by darkness.


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