Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Monico Atienza

May natanggap akong email kanina tungkol kay Monico Atienza. Uhm.. Ang totoo, tiyuhin ko pa sya pero hindi ko pa sya nakikita at nakakausap ng personal. Sa TV ko lang sya napapanood at madalas ay sa mga video documentaries tungkol sa Martial Law. Pinsan sya ni Erpat sa side ng aking Lola na Atienza din ang apelyido.

Prof. Monico Atienza is still confined at the Central ICU of the Philippine General Hospital. He needs all the support he can get. For those who want to visit, look after him or donate their financial support, please coordinate with TASK FORCE MONICO. Contact Ka Boni (09189225162) or Ka Albert (09185082338) of FQSM.

UPDATE (Jan 17, 2006)

A Tribute from a High School Classmate

Nick, as he is known fondly by countless friends, was my classmate in the Far Eastern University Boys High School (FEU-BHS) up to 1964. He was our class president, valedictorian and student council president. With those distinguished achievements at a very young age, our teachers predicted he would have a very distinguished career in whatever profession he would soon choose.

Indeed, he did build a very distinguished "career" but in a field most people who knew him then least expected he would devote his life to. He joined and eventually became a leader of the national democratic movement that spearheaded the broader movement that toppled the Marcos regime. To this day this movement continues to shake the foundations of an old society ruled by corrupt and oppressive regimes.

As a freshman at FEU taking business and financial courses in 1965, he was introduced to Kabataang Makabayan (KM), the fiercely nationalistic student youth group that invoked the revolutionary tradition of Andres Bonifacio and other Filipino heroes and called for a genuinely independent Philippines free from the clutches of U.S. political, economic and cultural interests.

Attracted by the intellectual and activist ferment in the University of the Philippines then, Nick enrolled at the UP in Diliman and immersed himself with literature in ideology and politics and enthusiastically joined student protest actions like the anti-Vietnam war rallies and teach-ins and the demonstrations that opposed the U.S. military bases and the over-all U.S. control in the Philippines.

His energy, dedication and leadership qualities led him to become the president of the Student Cultural Association of the University of the Philippines (SCAUP), then the core of the leadership of the UP student activism. He later became the Secretary General of Kabataang Makabayan (Patriotic Youth), the militant organization that spearheaded what is now known as the First Quarter Storm, the massive demonstrations and grassroots organizing and mobilizations in the first quarter of 1970 that aroused a nation from decades of stupor.

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