The Philippines: Partido Lakas ng Masa (PLM) condemns US military anti-vaccine and anti-Chinese covert operations

PLM anti-vaccine covert operation

[Editor’s note: Aaron Pedrosa, from the Partido Lakas ng Masa (Party of the Labouring Masses, PLM), will be speaking at Ecosocialism 2024, June 28–30, Boorloo/Perth, Australia. For more information on the conference visit]

On June 14, Reuters News Agency released a comprehensive report detailing covert operations the US military launched during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2021 to discourage unvaccinated Filipinos from availing of the earlier China-donated Sinovac vaccines via a social media campaign of disinformation and black propaganda under the hashtag #ChinaAngVirus.

To quote a senior military officer from the Pentagon who was involved in this secret operation: “We weren’t looking at this from a public health perspective. We were looking at how we could drag China through the mud.”

The shamelessness of the US military is astonishing given that during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Trump regime, in collaboration with the US pharmaceutical industry, was more interested in pursuing an “America First” policy and ensuring maximum profits from the Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines, than providing vaccines as a public good for the world’s peoples. This resulted in delayed shipments, high prices, and logistical hurdles for Filipino people and other Global South nations that could not themselves avail of these vaccines.

Partido Lakas ng Masa (Party of the Labouring Masses, PLM) condemns in the strongest possible terms the deadly covert operations conducted by US imperialism against the Filipino people during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. Due to the US-led Western imperialist bloc’s geopolitical maneuvering against China — a rising rival economic power — tens of thousands of ordinary Filipino men, women, and children were led to their untimely deaths wrought by the enduring atmosphere of anti-Chinese hysteria and widespread vaccine hesitancy that continues to haunt us to this day.

PLM joins the calls of progressive groups on the US ambassador to the Philippines to explain its abhorrent and deadly anti-vaccine covert operations, as well as for an immediate investigation by the House of Representatives and the Senate into the current extent of US psyops and disinformation campaigns in the country.

Amid increasing tensions in the West Philippine Sea/South China Sea (WPS/SCS), it is highly likely that US covert operations are already being conducted to drum up, hype and manufacture public consent among Filipinos for a future imperialist proxy war against China.

PLM reiterates its calls to the Marcos Jr regime to cease acting as a puppet of US imperialism’s agenda in the Asia-Pacific region and to resume diplomatic talks on  WPS/SCS territorial disputes through multilateral engagements with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and the People’s Republic of China (PRC). 

A policy of active non-alignment with neither the US nor the PRC is the only correct strategic posture to ensure our long-term national and regional interests for peaceful coexistence and development.

While efforts at resuming diplomacy are yet to be made, the PRC must respect our sovereign rights in the WPS/SCS and the Philippine Exclusive Economic Zone (PEEZ). It must also immediately cease actions such as the use of water cannons and the blocking of fishing vessels, so as not to play into the trap of US imperialism and trigger a proxy war in the region.

PLM reiterates its call to end all unequal military treaties with the US that render the Philippines as a mere proxy state, such as the Mutual Defense Treaty (MDT), the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA), and the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA). It also reiterates its call to end the US military presence in the Philippines, from regularly-held joint-military exercises right up to the remaining US military bases still actively operating in the country.

Finally, PLM asserts the need for a long-term solution in the form of establishing a Shared Regional Area of Essential Commons (SRAEC) in the Southeast Asian Sea to ensure peaceful coexistence founded on mutual respect of territorial sovereignty of the ASEAN countries. 

Only by pursuing such a policy can our respective peoples’ long-term national interests for peace and development in the region be ensured, and any future attempts by Western imperialist warmongers to stoke up the flames of war in our region be frustrated.


Reuters News Agency. (2024, June 14). Pentagon ran secret anti-vax campaign to undermine China during pandemic. Reuters.

Valmonte, K. (2024, June 17). Probe into Pentagon’s alleged anti-vax campaign sought. Rappler. 

Party of the Laboring Masses, Socialist Party of Malaysia & Working People's Association. Joint statement of Southeast Asian Left: Condemn and resist US imperialism’s latest belligerent moves in the Asia-Pacific region. LINKS