PERU: Old Reactionary State Demolishes Monument to Revolutionary Martyrs amidst Mass Protest

By Ed Dalton

The decrepit old state in Peru demolished a mausoleum dedicated to the heroic guerrillas of El Fronton. In 1986 the Alan Garcia government carried out the genocide of revolutionary political prisoners on the island prison of El Fronton.

The mausoleum was home to 8 bodies of the beloved revolutionary prisoners of war.

Mausoleum for the 8 prisoners of war

All over Peru the prisoners had become a righteous symbol of resistance and the prison itself a shining trench of combat.

The reactionary state could not bear to allow the prisoners to live and had to exterminate them on June 19, 1986. In 2019, the same reactionary state in its desperation is seeking to eradicate any memory of the Heroic Guerrilla.

Demolition is the continuation of genocide

The masses themselves will never forget the martyrs of El Fronton and rose in combative protest against the state’s demolition of the mausoleum. The masses did everything in their power to physically prevent the demolition of the mausoleum, which was constructed as a monument by families of the martyrs. Slogans on banners read: “Demolition is the continuation of genocide.”

Prison rebellion  at El Fronton 1986

El Fronton was one of several prisons housing members of the People’s Liberation Army and the Communist Party of Peru, against which the genocide was carried out by the hand of the old reactionary state. Genocide was also carried out in the prisons of Lurigancho and Callao.

The Navy, Army, and Airforce were mobilized by the state to massacre the prisoners, who had converted the prisons from pits of despair into shining trenches of combat.

The heroic martyrs would carry their lives on their fingertips and challenge death; they did not face genocide peacefully but with glorious class combat. They improvised weapons like crossbows and explosives, homemade knives, and captured weapons, which were used to combat the reactionary armed forces in service of the old state.

The prisoners, instead of surrendering, fought to the finish, in chorus singing the Internationale. Those who were too wounded to fight were brutally executed by the state.

The Communist Party of Peru declared June 19 as the day of the Heroic Guerrilla, which is observed by Maoists all over the world.

The Heroic Guerrilla, on the frontlines of El Fronton will never be forgotten, try as the old state might to destroy the monuments of the people.

In the words of Chairman Gonzalo of the Communist Party of Peru: “The 19th is a day that shows our people and the world what steadfast Communists and consistent revolutionaries are capable of, because it was not only Communists who died. The majority were revolutionaries. It has emerged as a symbol because there is a specific date, while the general genocide lasted for two years and involved many scattered events. The 19th was a single event, an example whose enormous impact shook Peru and the world. For this reason we honor June 19 as the ‘Day of Heroism.’”

Prisoner artwork commemorating the Day of Heroes