The Huk Rebellion in the Philippines

An Econometric Study

by Edward John Mitchell

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An analysis of the regional pattern of Huk control in the Philippines in terms of certain cultural, economic, and geographic variables. The Huk movement, which began as a Socialist-Communist anti-Japanese guerrilla army in 1942, posed a serious military threat to the Philippine Republic after the war. The Huks declined sharply after 1950 but have risen again and control a large number of barrios in Central Luzon, especially in the province of Pampanga. In this study, an econometric model is constructed to examine the regional variation of Huk control in terms of economic, cultural, demographic, and geographic variables. The results indicate that the key factors are (1) language: a barrio is more likely to be Huk-controlled if most of its residents speak the Kampampangan dialect; (2) sectionalism: the movement takes advantage of ethnic divisions; (3) location: barrios are susceptible to Huk control if they lie near those already under control or near areas conducive to guerrilla operations; (4) proportion of tenant farmers: the Huk movement fails in areas where there are few farmers or where few farmers are tenants. The fact that the Communist movement began among the Pampangos is probably historical coincidence and is not an indication that this group is inherently more revolutionary than others. (See also RM-5181 Abridged.)

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