Dispatch from Crame No. 376: Sen. Leila M. de Lima’s Statement on Duterte’s Hypocrisy and Mockery


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Leave it to Duterte, the master showman, to outperform himself once again in his Israel roadshow. Duterte capped his Israel antics with a dramatic visit to the Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum to offer a wreath purportedly to honor the 6 million Jews murdered upon Hitler’s orders to the Nazis to carry out the Final Solution.

Duterte, who said that he was going to emulate Hitler by killing 3 million drug addicts, did not even flinch when he laid down the wreath to Hitler’s victims. This is probably one of the greatest acts of hypocrisy in modern history.

Meanwhile, his promise of killing 3 million Filipino drug addicts continues to be carried out back home in the Philippines, as 17-year old Joshua Laxamana is murdered by Duterte’s police assassins in Rosales, Pangasinan. Israeli President Reuven Rivlin might as well have been sarcastically referring to Duterte himself when, during their meeting, Rivlin exclaimed to Duterte’s face that Hitler was the devil on earth.

But the wreath-laying was not the end of it. Duterte topped this hypocritical gesture with an equally sardonic speech of how he could not imagine a country obeying an insane leader, and how he could not fathom the spectacle of a human being going into a killing spree.

Duterte, of course, was having a laugh. He knows he was referring to no one else but himself, an insane leader on a killing spree, first in Davao City, now in the whole Philippines. He even mockingly asks why an insane despot who murders men, women, and children is not disposed of by his people at the first instance. Duterte orders the murder of thousands, then mocks us as we have not yet disposed of him even after he has ordered the murder of thousands.

Is this the insanely macabre lesson from a madman choosing the Holy Land as the place for his revelations: that the killing of thousands of human beings speaks less about the mass-murdering madman who ordered the killings, and more about the kind of people that we are, for allowing a rampaging murderer to take over the helm of our government, instead of disposing of him at the first instance?

Duterte is clearly mocking us, and he is right to do so. He has shown us how an insane murderer can easily be elected President, captivate a nation, kill thousands, and go on doing so while being supported by its national leaders from all branches of government. Indeed, there is something wrong with a government and a society that were not only incapable of stopping an insane leader, but which were actually instrumental in producing one.

Maybe it is no coincidence that Duterte has chosen the Holy Land from where to mock us and our spirituality as a Christian nation. It is in the Judaean desert where the Devil mocked and tempted Christ to test not only his humanity, but more importantly his divinity. In the Garden of Gethsemane, Christ again struggled with the Devil’s temptation, not of doing evil, but of not doing good.

By allowing Duterte to lay down the foundation of an imagined salvation on top of the mound of a costly human sacrifice, and by not stopping him from doing so – not because we chose to do evil, but because we chose not to do good – we as a nation failed our own test of the temptations. ###

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