Fil-Ams in solidarity with CUNY City College students and demand end to militarization of CUNY

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Fil-Ams in solidarity with City College students and Harlem community and demand end to militarization of CUNY

New York, NY – Many years ago, a revolutionary once said, “The young people are the most active and vital force in society. They are the most eager to learn and the least conservative in their thinking.”  This characteristic of the youth remains true among youth all over the world today, from the youth and students who militantly stand against the recent upsurge in fascism in Greece to the masses of young workers and peasants who courageously rise up against United States imperialist domination over the Philippines.

In New York City, the economic center of the world, the revolutionary character of the youth and student masses has recently come under attack at the City University of New York. On September 17th of this year, six student organizers were arrested for protesting CUNY’s hiring of former CIA director and retired general David Petraeus. The students—members of the Ad-Hoc Committee Against the Militarization of CUNY and other youth and student organizations—were legally and peacefully protesting to assert their indignation at the hiring of the high-ranking warmonger who stands as a symbol of the increasing militarization of our school system.

“As part of the militarization of CUNY, brave youth and student organizers and activists of CUNY’s City College have been hit with the most serious repression of the current semester thus far,” said Michael Brian of Anakbayan New York.  “The repressive measures taken by the CUNY administration against the students include the October 20th shutting down of the Morales-Shakur Community Center and the suspension of two students and the arrest of two others who protested against the administration’s seizure of the community center,” he continued.  The center, which was named after the revolutionaries Guillermo Morales and Assata Shakur, was won by the revolutionary struggles of the students and the community in 1989.  Since then, it served as the center for community organizing against issues like the militarization of CUNY.

“On the front lines at many of these protests and actions to win back the MSCC have been comrades from different youth and community organizations that have joined the fight against the militarization of CUNY that is inextricably tied to the fight for the rights of the working and oppressed masses of New York City,” said Michael.  These organizations included Revolutionary Student Coordinating Committee, Sister Circle Collective, and several others.

Indeed, the youth and student organizers involved in the current CUNY struggle and their allies represent the fight for the rights of all the working and oppressed masses all over the world. From Queens to Palestine, from Brooklyn to Bangladesh, from Staten Island to Mexico, from Harlem and Washington Heights to South Africa, and from the Bronx to Philippines, the international struggle against oppression has consistently been led by and upheld by the working and oppressed youth and the most oppressed sectors of society including people of color, women, and LGBTIQ youth.

As a mass-based youth organization that is dedicated to arousing the Filipino youth to join the struggle for genuine freedom and national democracy in the Philippines, Anakbayan New York applauds the youth and students’ for their militancy in the struggle to free CUNY from the chains of militarization.  We understand that the key to this struggle against the repressive system of CUNY is to continue to hold mass actions that are led by the youth and students together with the community and that are in the interests of the people.

The youth and students of CUNY have certainly cemented their place among those engaged in the worldwide struggle against oppression that is oriented towards serving the people. In upholding the revolutionary tradition of the Filipino youth, Anakbayan New York stands with the courageous CUNY organizers who remind us over and over again that under the current oppressive conditions, to rebel is justified.

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