Duterte, the Philippines and a Psychopathic Reign of Terror

It is time for the Philippines to face up to the fact that its president, Rodrigo Duterte, is a psychopath drunk on killing. The reign of terror he has initiated and promoted has in just one year claimed more v...

The Duterte Mirage

How long will it be before Filipinos wake up to the sheer lack of achievement in President Duterte’s year in office? He still stands high in the polls because of his uncouth, action-man image. From far right to...

Philippines’ Duterte Claims a Crusading Newspaper’s Scalp

The July 7 announcement by Manila’s Prieto family that it would rid itself of the Philippine Daily Inquirer, arguably the country’s most important newspaper, has raised new consternation over the increasingly authoritarian posture of President Rodrigo Duterte,...

Duterte’s Year One: Chaos Under the Surface

With his first year in office completed, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte doesn’t know the difference between policy and bragging to drinking partners. He has simply not grown up. He remains a hambugerong b...

Duterte’s War on Drugs: What Has He Achieved?

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte promised a savage drug war, the capstone of the campaign that made him the head of the government. With a year now under his belt, indeed change has come but not the kinds o...

Unpacking Dutertism

The ‘best’ way to assess President Rodrigo Duterte’s year in office is to look at him and his presidency on his own terms—to understand and unpack Dutertism itself. Is this a homegrown ‘ideology’ shaped by the experience in governance of a local leader-turned-...

The Tragedy of Marawi for a Chastened Duterte

The destruction of the Islamic city of Marawi has tragically confounded the aspirations of President Rodrigo Duterte, the small-town mayor who became the Philippine President and has discovered that his ambitio...

The Philippines’ Marawi: Next Islamic State Nucleus

Foreign nationals from Yemen, Pakistan, Malaysia and Indonesia have been killed in the month-long struggle for the Mindanao island city of Marawi, an unsettling signal that IS, thwarted by overwhelming military...

Luster Starts to Wear off Philippines’ Duterte

The declaration of martial law on May 23 by Filipino President Rodrigo R. Duterte, while only for 60 days and on the southernmost island of Mindanao, has begun to crystalize growing doubts about Duterte’s commitment to democracy and started to remind his const...

The Challenge of Abu Sayyaf in the Philippines

The Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG), which has for over two decades terrorized a wide section of the island of Mindanao and beyond from its island bases in Sulu and Basilan, has once again been in the news.  Desp...