• Reading time:6 mins read

‘Dissecting Duterte’

ONCE in a while I chance upon a Facebook post that I feel should be read by more people. One such post is by a certain Jun Abines, whose ordinariness is highlighted by the fact that he was in his youth a “billiard boy” in a pool hall, who obviously struggled to obtain enough education in schools in Cebu and get an accountant’s degree.

I think his piece with the above title, which I edited a bit for misspellings and grammatical errors, reflects what most ordinary Filipinos feel about President Duterte, which explains his record-breaking satisfaction ratings. The latest poll conducted in December by the Social Weather Stations shows that 82 percent of respondents are satisfied with him. His average net satisfaction rating for 2019 is 68 percent, beating the 63 percent of Cory Aquino in 1986, which was at the height of the Yellow Cult’s hold on the nation’s consciousness with its propaganda weapons as ABS-CBN extolling her virtues daily and the supposed glory of the People Power Revolt.

Following is Abines’ post:
“When President Rodrigo Duterte speaks in public, his English is at most barely average. His accent distinctively Filipino, or Visayan to be specific. His choice of words far from being polite, refined or respectful. At first, many belittled and ridiculed him. A ‘low-class’ politician no billionaire oligarch is willing to bet on.

Despite all these, Duterte speeches are noticed, felt and triggered reactions in all corners of the world. No other leader in the world has polarized world opinion in recent political history than him. Why? Because in every dirty and foul word that he utters, with it are unmistakable grains of sincerity, candidness, wisdom and most of all, truth!

Isn’t this nobody Duterte from that chaotic island of Mindanao in southern Philippines? Isn’t he the mayor who is known for extrajudicial killings for several decades? The answer to all of these is ‘yes.’ But these are the wrong questions that most people ask about him.

The right question
The right questions should have been: Why did the Filipino people elect him? Why do the oligarchs, the Catholic church, the mainstream media, the US government, the rebels, the CIA (Central Intelligence Agency), the drug lords and criminals hate him? Why do many countries around the world admire and respect him?

The answers are simple. He understands the problem of his country. He knows the true enemy of the Filipino be it inside or outside the country. And lastly, he has the balls to stand against the true bullies of the world and he respect other nations which are labeled by the West as evil countries.

‘I am not answerable to anyone, except to the Filipino people,’ he angrily utters to his critics. And the Filipino people gave him record- breaking approval as the President. Yet his enemies are bent on putting him down at all costs. ‘If I survive the CIA, I can serve or finish my term 5 more years,” he said in an interview with a female foreign reporter in 2017. Duterte knew he opened a can of worms and stirred the hornet’s nest in his first year as president. He knows who he is up against.

His enemies are masters of deception. His enemies control most of the business, the politicians and mainstream media. His enemies are within and outside of the Philippines. His enemies will not let Duterte stop them from milking this country dry endlessly as they always did.

Yet Duterte kept on marching forward. Not backing out nor showing signs of fear. But the man is old at 74. His enemies have all the ammunition to put him down. They can kill him anytime. Or they can wait for his term to end and wait for the next President who can be bullied, blackmailed or tamed.

Only a few can truly decipher the leadership and political genius of Duterte. His courage, wit and deep strategic approach is beyond the comprehension of most political analysts. If he was playing chess, Duterte appears to be making a series of “bad moves” yet he keeps gaining materials and getting advantageous and winning positions.

Beyond logic
Where did he learn those strategies? How did he overcome the relentless and simultaneous attacks from his enemies? Why is he so fearless and tireless?

The answer is beyond logic. Duterte loves his country more than money. He loves his country more than fame. He loves his country more than his own life. He ran for president out of love. Not by greed. Not for power. And definitely not for fame.

Many politicians will claim they too love their country. But their actions speak of the opposite. We will be lucky if we have one active politician today who is willing to lay down and sacrifice his or her life for the country like Duterte.”

Email: tiglao.manilatimes@gmail.com
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