PH Army short film on courage under fire in 1990s raid on NPA camp wins New York awards
MANILA, Philippines—A short documentary on the heroism of a Filipino soldier and Medal of Valor recipient won two awards at the International Film Festival (IFFM) in New York.
“Kagitingan: A True Story of Valor” is about the heroism of Cpt. Arturo Ortiz, a young Special Forces officer who led a raid on a New People’s Army (NPA) training camp in Murcia town, Negros Occidental province in the 1990s, the Philippine Army said.
The operation was a success and Ortiz would receive the Medal of Valor, the highest award for combat.
Part of the citation for Ortiz said the gunfight lasted two hours with 84 casualties on the NPA side. At least 22 bodies had been counted, 17 of them on site, the citation read. Eight guerrillas were captured and several others were wounded and missing, the citation said, quoting NPA’s Negros regional party committee.
As a result of the operation, the Philippine military seized dozens of firearms, grenades and other equipment, the Army said.
Ortiz would eventually become a commanding general of the Philippine Army in 2010.
The 26-minute film was written, directed and edited by 1Lt. Balaram Tamayo, a Special Forces officer who is also behind some of the Philippine Army’s promotional videos. The work won best screenplay and IFFM’s most popular awards. Independent filmmakers from other countries had also taken part in the annual film festival.
This year’s event was held online due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
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