NICA chief red-tags publishing house selling martial law books for kids

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, May 13) — The head of the National Intelligence Coordinating Agency (NICA) tagged the efforts of a local publishing house to make martial law information more accessible to children as a communist plot.

NICA Director-General Alex Paul Monteagudo red-tagged Adarna House on Thursday, saying its efforts to sell book bundles about Ferdinand Marcos' brutal dictatorship is part of its plan to "subtly radicalize" Filipino children against the government.

The publishing house offered the #NeverAgain bundle at a discounted price a day after Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. became the apparent winner in the recently concluded automated elections.

It expressed hope that the books can teach children the truth about the crimes committed during the two-decades long military rule.

The bundle includes titles "Ito ang Diktadura," "EDSA," "Isang Harding Papel," "The Magic Arrow," and "Si Jhun-Jhun Noong Bago Ideklara ang Batas Militar."

Augie Rivera, the author of "Si Jhun-Jhun Noong Bago Ideklara ang Batas Militar," denied ties to the Communist Party of the Philippines and denounced Monteagudo's accusations.

Established author Neil Gaiman raised the alarm over red-tagging. "Not good," he said.

Earlier this year, two independent bookstores in Metro Manila were defaced, with the signages of both shops stained with red graffiti bearing the anti-communist messages “NPA” and “Terorista.”