“STAY alive, fight cool.”This was President Rodrigo Duterte‘s advise to government troops fighting Islamic State-inspired Maute terrorists in Marawi City during his visit to the war-torn city on Friday, the second time since the clashes broke out in May.
“Ang problema diyan `yung mabilis ang gusto. Tandaan niyo giyera ‘to, bala ang kalaban mo dito. Relax. One rule is that huwag kang pumasok sa giyera na may galit ka.
Pasok mo doon sa war zone, isipin mo may papatayin ka. But do not`yung may hate ka. Kasi kung may galit ka, susubsob ka eh [The problem is some want to end it quickly. Remember, this is a war, and the bullet is the enemy here. Relax. One rule is do not enter a war with hate. When you enter the war zone, think about killing, but do not (enter) with hate. Because if you have hate, you’ll fall down],” Duterte said in his speech.
“Stay alive, fight cool, do not be in a hurry, do not go into a rage kasi ‘pag galit ka, idadamay mo sarili mo [because if you have hate, you will only put yourself at risk]. Take time tutal patapos na [since the fighting is almost over],” he added.
The Commander-in-Chief’s second visit to the besieged city, just like the first, was unannounced. Officials only confirmed the visit when the President already left the area.
The President, who believes that one of the root causes of the war in Marawi was illegal drugs, criticized former President Benigno Aquino 3rd.
Aquino, who after being called stupid by Duterte, said the administration’s drug war had not resulted in anything significant.
“Sabi kasi ni Noynoy… Tinanong siya about the drug operation at ang sinabi niya wala namang nangyari e, isang taon na… I answered back, napakagunggong mo naman. Napakasakit naman niyan… Marami akong sundalong namatay, wounded sa police… Nakakainsulto `yan. [According to Noynoy . . . He was asked about the drug operation and he said that nothing was happening and it’s been a year . . . I answered back and said that he was stupid. What he said hurt . . .A lot of my soldiers died, police were wounded . . . I find that remark insulting],” Duterte said.
“I am very sensitive sa ganitong issue kasi marami ng mga pulis at sundalo na nangamatay, so kung careless magsabi ka na walang nangyari talagang mag-init ang ulo ko [I am very sensitive on this issue because a lot of police and soldiers have died, so if you’re careless enough to say that nothing happened, I will really get angry],” he stressed.
During his visit, President Duterte inspected the improvised medical station for the soldiers on the ground.
The President was accompanied by National Security Adviser Hermogenes Esperon Jr., Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana, Armed Forces Chief General Eduardo Año, and Special Assistant to the President Christopher “Bong” Go.
‘My mouth is not for your mouth’
Duterte also hit back at Sen. Grace Poe after the latter reminded him to be careful with his language after he cursed at former president Aquino for criticizing the war on drugs.
“Sabihin pa ni Grace na [Grace said], ‘watch your mouth.’ You take care of your mouth, and I will take care of mine, because my mouth is not for your mouth. Tahimik ka lang diyan kasi hindi mo naintindihan [Just shut up because you don’t understand] from whereof I stand,” Duterte said.
Poe told reporters on Thursday she understood that cursing was part of the President’s “style,” but warned that this could influence children to do the same.
“Style niya `yan pero siyempre ‘pag ikaw ay pinapakinggan ng mga bata e gagayahin. Sang-ayon ba tayo dun [That has been his style. But of course, as a public figure being heard by children, you might be emulated. Do we agree with that]?” the senator said.