Greenans (Philippines)

Country: Philippines
Details of Formation: The Greenans formed in 1986, but there is no information who founded them. Their first activities were reported in 1988.
Details of Termination: The Greenans were last mentioned in 1993. However, as the PGM was connected to the military and not to a specific government, and had previously “survived” a government change (Aquino-Ramos), we did not code the subsequent government change as date of termination.
Purpose: Like other vigilante groups, the Greenans were formed to protect civilians from the NPA rebels. By 1989, a source reports that engaging in combat was not their main function, but instead their purpose was to intimidate communities known to support the NPA’s mass base.
Organisation: The Greenans rely on donations from local residents, local government and the military. They enjoy immunity from persecution and official condemnation. They are deployed by the armed forces and engage in joint actions with the military.
Weapons and Training: The Greenans do not bear firearms but traditional machetes (bolos).
Size: --
Reason for Membership: Recruits were drawn in parts of former NPAs and civilians from the rebels’ mass base. Those recruits reported that they had no choice as they could either join the Greenans or be branded as an NPA. It is reported that in at least one case a civilian was killed with some family members when he refused to join the Greenans.
Treatment of Civilians: While they were formed to protect civilians from the NPA, the Greenans soon engaged in violence against civilians themselves. There are reports of the Greenans torturing and beheading their victims. They used brutal methods such as disemboweling and mutilations in order to terrify the larger community. They were often deployed by the military and sometimes conducted the violence alongside regular soldiers.
Other Information: The Greenans were a fanatic religious cult.
References: Information was taken from news sources listed in the PGMD