The NYT’s hatchet job on Duterte: We should all be outraged



Proposes economic sanctions as those vs Iran, North Korea, Russia, Syria
IF, after reading with a critical eye, the New York Times’ editorial last Friday entitled “Accountability for Duterte,” and you aren’t outraged and even cheer it—as Vice President Robredo and the news website Rappler seem to have—you have lost all sense of being Filipino.

Because of the stupidity and temerity of that NYT piece, by-lined by the paper’s “Editorial Board*”, I am convinced that it is part of a Yellow plot to oust President Duterte.

What the NYT piece asked the US government and the world to do is an outrage: “The EU has proposed hitting his government where it may hurt the most — by imposing tariffs on Philippine goods. Other democratic trading partners should do the same,” the editorial proposed. This sentence alone indicates how rushed or ignorant the NYT piece is, that it is simply a cheap black propaganda.

The NYT—whose biggest stockholder is the world’s second richest man, the Mexican businessman Carlos Slim—is disseminating fake news: that European nations have condemned Duterte and are in the process of imposing sanctions against us. Or perhaps the NYT editors are ignorant of what the EU is and its institutions.

It is not the EU—the union of 28 nations in Europe of 510 million citizens—that has proposed reducing our access to European markets to punish us.

Rather it was only a resolution—and not even a bill—of the European Parliament (EP), which is just one of the three institutions of the EU, the other being the more powerful Council of the European Union (which passes laws with the EP) and the “executive” body, the European Commission. Members of the Council and the Commission are appointed by the governments of the EU nations; the EP by direct vote of each EU nation, in special elections.

Parliament resolution
A resolution of the EP has as much chance of being implemented by the EU as the thousands of resolutions by members of our Congress which are approved only for the sake of camaraderie but which everyone there knows won’t be implemented, since a law – an entirely different thing – would be required for that. House Resolution CR 0004 “granting consent to Senator Drilon to accept the Grand Cordon of Order of the Rising Sun from Japan” by any stretch of the imagination can’t be interpreted as the wish of the entire nation.

NO LONGER IN AMERICAN HANDS? NYT’s biggest stockholder, the Mexican Carlos Slim, who vies with Bill Gates for the title of the world’s richest man.

More importantly, though, how can the NYT so cavalierly – or ignorantly – ask that our country’s “democratic trading partners,” which includes the US, renege on their multilateral commitments to the World Trade Organization and bilaterally to the Philippine state and impose economic sanctions that will hurt not just our businessmen but the poor, especially destitute farmers? When China slowed down their exports of bananas because of President Aquino’s belligerent stance against it, was it Davao’s banana magnates who cried, or was it rather the thousands of minimum-wage banana plantation workers?

The short 400-word (a third of the length of this column) NYT proposal is so idiotic as it is appalling that it could have been drafted not by a professional journalist concerned with facts or logic or even human rights, but by a Filipino political partisan launching a black propaganda drive against Duterte. Was it something a rich New Yorker Filipina handed over to a NYT editorial writer after dinner at her posh Manhattan apartment, telling him: “Just my draft, do whatever you want with it.”

How many countries in the world have the US and the EU imposed trade and other economic sanctions against in the postwar period?

Seven, four of which are troublesome—or “hate-America”—Middle East countries: 1) Iran, as a means to force it to stop its nuclear-bomb program; 2) Iraq, when it invaded Kuwait in 1990; 3) North Korea, also over its nuclear-bomb and missile delivery system; 4) Russia, for its invasion of the Ukraine’s Crimea territory; 5) Burma (Myanmar), in order to force it to free the renowned democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi and undertake free elections; 6) Libya to stop alleged killing of anti-government protesters; and 7) Syria, ostensibly to stop its President Bashar al-Assad from killing the opposition, but in reality to force him out of office.

Burma case
The Burma case is informative, as the NYT or the New York-based Yellow leader, wants the world to confuse what happened to that sorry country with us, or wish would happen. But it was not the European Parliament which ordered the sanctions against Burma, but the Council of the European Union, which means that all of the EU states approved the move.

The NYT thinks we’ve done something as “bad’ as what Iran, Iraq, Russia, North Korea, Libya, Syria did that we deserve to be punished by trade sanctions?

That’s why I’ve said we should all be outraged. Our government must issue a formal protest against the NYT editorial, and our Embassy there request the millions of Fil-Ams in the US to boycott it for their insult to our nation.

I cannot fathom how the NYT concluded that Senator Leila de Lima’s jailing for her alleged involvement in illegal drugs and the deaths due to police operations against suspected drug dealers are as threatening to the world as Iran and North Korea’s nuclear-arms programs, and Russia’s invasion of Crimea. Is our system of republican democracy and rule of law on the same level as Burma? Does the NYT think we’re a failed state like those in Africa that it thinks the US can bully us to comply with its notions of human rights, that actually do not correspond with Philippine reality?

As atrocious as NYT’s putting us in the league of Iran, North Korea, Russia and Burma deserving trade sanctions, are its arguments for proposing to do so.

The NYT claimed: “More than 7,000 suspected drug users and dealers, witnesses and bystanders — including children — have been killed by the police or vigilantes in the Philippines since last July.” The NYT piece came out March 24, and I’ve written two articles, March 20 and March 22, debunking that lie the news website Rappler spread around the world, which was fabricated by adding the 2,555 deaths the police claimed were killed in its anti-drug operations to the 4,525 of murders and deaths due to any reason. That Rappler made a mistake is incontrovertible, yet NYT uses that false number?

To argue that Duterte is so bad that trade sanctions are needed to force him out of office, the NYT claimed: ‘The Philippine lawmaker Gary Alejano filed an impeachment complaint against Mr. Duterte, accusing him of corruption, murder and crimes against humanity in connection with his bloody antidrug campaign. ‘We are of the firm belief that he is unfit to hold the highest office of the land,’ Mr. Alejano said.” Are the NYT writers so ignorant that they didn’t know that Alejano isn’t your ordinary “lawmaker” but the lackey of coup leader Antonio Trillanes IV, who has lied so much against Duterte few people believe him?

Jude Jose Sabio
To claim that Duterte is so bad he will be tried by The Hague-based International Criminal Court, the NYT said: “Jude Josue Sabio, a lawyer for two men who say they belonged to a death squad that operated under Mr. Duterte… says he intends to bring a case against Mr. Duterte in The Hague.” Didn’t the NYT bother to do a background check on this mediocre lawyer Sabio, who got to be mentioned in jurisprudence because the Integrated Bar of the Philippines reprimanded him in 2007 for violating the lawyer’s Code of Professional Responsibility, which the Supreme Court in 2007 upheld and even fined him? What was his violation? For filing a groundless suit against a judge, who ruled against his client. Is that a habit of Sabio’s?

To claim that we have no rule of law, the NYT said: “Last month, Mr. Duterte’s Justice Department ordered Senator Leila de Lima, one of Mr. Duterte’s most vocal opponents, arrested on spurious charges that she took bribes from drug traffickers.” Spurious charges? Didn’t NYT’s fact checkers check that six former drug lords testified that they gave bribes to De Lima, which her own former lover and an assistant had confirmed? If NYT bothered to do some quick research, they would have discovered that De Lima asked the Supreme Court to be released. Does the NYT think it is just a tool of Duterte, when its chief justice and four other justices were appointed by former President Aquino?

The Yellow pieces all fall into place, into a plot: the 7,000 false figure fabricated and disseminated by Rappler’s yellow editors, the impeachment complaint by Trillanes’ minion, the suit purportedly to be filed at the International Court of Justice by a mediocre lawyer, and then De Lima’s portrayal of herself as a human rights victim. All to make up the narrative that Duterte must be taken out, with Filipinos threatened to be hurt through trade sanctions if they don’t move against him.

What a worn-out script.

* Unlike the set-up in most Philippine newspapers, the NYT’s editorial board that writes its editorials consists of 16 full-time journalists. They take turns writing the editorial for the day, edited and approved by the editorial page editor, currently James Bennet. Although the NYT claims that the editorials represent the voice of its board, its editor and publisher, the paper’s deadline constraints do not require each editorial to be approved by the board. None of the current editorial board member are described as having covered Southeast Asia, or the Philippines.

Facebook: Rigoberto Tiglao
Twitter: @bobitiglao


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  1. victor arches on

    The parallelisms between Donald Trump and Pareng Digong are just UNCANNY.
    Over in the U.S., Trump is fighting against the fake news being disseminated by the New York Times, Washington Post, CNN and MSNBC. Here in the Philippines, Digong is fighting the slanted news and opinions being pandered by the Inquirer, ABS-CBN, Rappler, CNN Philippines. Trump has Fox News on his side, while Digong has PTV4. Both Trump and Digong admire and respect Vladimir Putin. While both have had several wives, both are also strangely accused of being misogynists! Trump has lost Mike Flynn as his National Security Adviser for “misrepresentation”; Digong lost Yasay for practically the same “crime”. Astonishing similarities…

    In the case of Pareng Digong’s 30-year timeline on the “relevance” of the Catholic Church here in the Philippines, one more generation and we should see EMPTY churches devoid of local attendance similar to churches in Spain, Italy, France and other Christian countries in Europe. No less than the Vatican has read the writing on the wall: its seminaries have experienced lack of fresh recruits, its pretentious oaths of poverty, chastity and obedience and the promise of Heaven have all become irrelevant, its own bishops and priests have blurred the imagined separation of church and state, to the point where the Roman hierarchy is now considering accepting MARRIED PRIESTS, no different from Protestantism. Martin Luther was right, after all.

    • Juanito Esguerra on

      The Roman hierarchy is considering accepting widowed men, not married priests. The Roman Catholic Church founded by Jesus Christ has survived more than 2,000 years despite problems because it is the Body of Christ. We will be long gone, but the Church will live forever. The truth hurts about Digong and Trump. Both madmen supported by equally mad men.

  2. Soon these yellow dogs will be worn out ….and the only memory they will leave are drugs, criminality, corruption and poverty to our country. We will not be scam no more by these yellow dogs.
    Thanks, Mr Tiglao for exposing the truth about our country….

  3. Thank you for being one of the few voices of reason and logic in the crazy world called mainstream media.

  4. If ..”you aren’t outraged and even cheer it—as Vice President Robredo and the news website Rappler seem to have—you have lost all sense of being Filipino”.

    If you’re a Filipino and aren’t outraged by all the killings , you’ve lost all sense of right and and wrong.

  5. Since I resided here, I resent any outsider to destroy my Homeland. How stupid can they be? Yes Duterte is foul mouth and unstatesmanly but he is our president. I did not vote for him but he is really trying hard for this nation. Believe it or not.

    • Juanito Esguerra on

      No, I do not believe it. Some day you will believe that Duterte is a mad man supported by equally mad people. He is wicked!!!

  6. All these bad moves against Duterte in the international scene, I think is the result of a rogue president foul mouthing the decent personalities/institutions such as the Vatican/Pope, USA/Obama, UN/Ban Ki Moon the EU and some others due to his Hubris and inexplicable thinking that he is the most intelligent person in the world and all others are “Stupid”.

  7. miguel angeles on

    Aral na aral ang local media sa NYT tactics. Little wonder as the big networks are themselves owned by greedy oligarchs with their own business interests to protect.

  8. the NYT article which was published by PDI is a mere tal ltale NOt even a news article or an editorial.

    it is a judgment based on gossip and not on hard facts.

    it is in law VOID and has no effect.

    the national press club should sanction PDI for publishing a tall tale.


  9. What we now need is a revolution and round up all these yellow leaders and charged them with treason and sentenced them by hanging!!! Thank you Mr. Tiglao for being vigilant.

  10. Albert Martines on

    TO THE NYT = Where were you when your US President invaded Iraq and killed thousands and thousands of innocent civilians , including children – on mere SUSPICION !!!!!. Now, you try to lecture us on what is right or wrong? YOU HYPOCRITES !!!!! US President Bush should still be made accountable. Why make DU30 accountable to his war on drugs and not make US President Bush accountable for invading Iraq. THE ARROGANCE OF AMERICA IS WHAT THE ARTICLE OF NYT IS ALL ABOUT !!!!!

    • Juanito Esguerra on

      Then Duterte should cut off ties with America. Stop saying that he is in good terms with Trump – he is looking like a lap dog trying to earn his good side. That is pathetic.

  11. Antonio villanueva on

    I am puzzled by Mr. Tiglao’s assestment that the Yellow group is so powerful that it can influence NYT to write a hatchet piece against President Duterte, when they failed to elect Mar Roxas, when they elect Robredo with a very narrow margin, when they failed to maintain enough members in the senate and congress, when they failed to prevent senator De Lima from getting jailed and many more signs of weakness.
    Then, why call the piece a hatchet job?President Duterte was elected by a landslide vote of 16 million. He remains popular to this day. But he is a runaway train that may anytime run off the tracks. This is probably what Mr. Tiglao is so nervous wreck about.
    Well sir, if there is nothing wrong with what the president is saying or doing, he will be impervious to any destabilization
    article or move. But at this point the president’s most dangerous enemy is himself.

  12. Great article as always from Mr. Tiglao. Thank you for articulating the sentiments of patriotic Filipinos.

  13. Rudi Miranda on

    Bobi Tiglao maraming salamat! Malinao na malinao tulad sa sikat ng araw ‘to destabilize’ the government and ‘oust’ Pres. Duterte, pieces of the picture here and there completes the picture whole. Suddenly, NYT editorial is about the PH, Am not certain what went through, but am sure, money talks right in New York. When was it that the NYT had a editorial such as this about the PH?

  14. YELLOWISH SALOT NG LIPUNAN will do everything as they usually and expertly do even to the point of causing sufferings to the ordinary Filipino people just to maintain their selfish interest and their existence…their specie is now in the verge of extinction in the Philippines that’s why they go international coz only a few brainwashed citizen believe them here…

  15. Vagoneto Rieles on

    This is to neither pan nor rave, (like all the comments here), about Mr. Tiglao’s piece. It’s just that the article is quite rich in slamming the NYT’, and, in sniping at the ‘yellows’ (the Aquino-Cojuangco Axis I’m sure); but, lean in defense of the President’s signature program of fighting ‘drugs’ which has resulted in some…as Mr. Tiglao puts it…2,555 ‘drug-related’ kills. In fact, except for the downward revision of the casualty figure, Mr. Tiglao offered neither praise nor justification, for the ‘program’s’ rising body count…leaving one to wonder, whether the NYT could have commended it if, indeed, there was some virtue in it.
    The article resembles an offensive move against the NYT, in defense of President Duterte…nothing more.

  16. Nice one thank you for your column,i hope many will read and understand whats really happening in our own country

  17. You gotta give it to NYT for trying.

    But seriously, when I read even just the gist of the “article” I threw my hands in the air because if anyone should be imposed any stiff tariff on because of “EJKs,” the USA need not look so far or strain their neck and see SAUDI.

    Yes, the same Saudi whose citizens actually were the culprits of 9/11, whose king has their women beaten at the supermarket for not being escorted by a male, whose kind of religion gave rise to ISIS, whose king is now bombing Yemen, whose king has public executions for anyone who disagrees with his rule.

    But why indeed would NYT even DARE insult Saudi by plying them the same kind of critique they’re giving the Philippine president now when they get big bucks from selling Saudi weapons and getting the oil and trade they need?

    It’s always about the money…

  18. pablo sanchez on

    With huge numbers of Filipino in the United States, the NEW YORK TIMES is creating a fakenews that will surely sell in the market and to gain profit since they are losing some readerds from their own country.

  19. Each time this New York Times write a piece against the Philippines it loses it’s integrity every time.

    But hey, the heck with integrity when it isn’t even owned by an american. XD

    This piece is well written by the way.. ManilaTimes all day everyday.

  20. with all the hatchet jobs against du30,
    he must be doing the right thing;
    doesn’t give a dam n about
    political correctness.


  21. Ambassador Tiglao, you hit the nail in the head again. The yellow turds and their minions must hate you. No doubt about you Sir. I use to read Tatads column too, not anymore, you sir make more sense. Can’t wait for your next column. God be with you always, may he guide you as you write your column.

  22. “We journalists are a bit like vultures, feasting on war, scandal and disaster. Turn on the news, and you see Syrian refugees, Volkswagen corruption, dysfunctional government. Yet that reflects a selection bias in how we report the news: We cover planes that crash, not planes that take off.”
    Nicholas Kristof

    “Journalists do not live by words alone, although sometimes they have to eat them.”
    Adlai E. Stevenson

    “Here in the United States, our profession is much maligned, people simply don’t trust or like journalists anymore and that’s sad.”
    Christiane Amanpour

  23. Leodegardo M. Pruna on

    We, the Filipino people, should condemn and protest the editorial of the NYT because of the lies and disinformation it is disseminating to the world and whose possibly only source is the Yellow very rich Filipina who claims to be all knowing and probably behind Rappler. I believe in the sincerity of the President to rid the Philippines of drugs, corruption and criminality which were at their peak during the previous administration. Even those who were unadulterated and perceived to be cleaned became horrible with their corrupt practices. Observe their looks now, the spokespersons, and you will see how deteriorated they have become. And, these are the people most likely behind wanting to get back but the Filipino people are not stupid to let them. God bless the Philippines.

  24. I do not read NYT even if it is free (on a table or rack in business establishments’ customer lounge or lobby area here in the US). It is garbage.

  25. WE (filipinos) better plant CAMOTE to survive and STOP using Global Elite BANKING system,,which is own by EU, (who owns the IMF, World Bank,,Asian Development Bank, business CARTELS, Illegal Drugs, WAR machines) that has also kills millions filipinos through government debt/credit cards/bank credit,,Their economic agenda/Banking system make the Philippines people modern SLAVES in the 20th century,,,FILIPINOS must be contented with what we have,,we should not use BANKs that make this BANKSTERS rule the world,,and make them rich/powerful through other people BLOOD, SWEAT & TEARS,,Philippines wake UP…

  26. Better DU30 declare martial law or a revolutionary govt so all yellow remnants be replaced because they are just termites that slowly destroy the administration just for self serving objectives. Why not DU30 ask advise from Erdogan of Turkey on how to manage troublesome critics?

  27. I am Filipino, I love my country…and I did not bother to read or share NYT propaganda. Thanks for taking the cudgels for us ordinary folks.

  28. A thousand salute to you Mr. Tiglao! What an enlightening piece of work! And Viva Manila Times for your kind of journalism. Now, it’s so clear…what the yellows are plotting. Deny pa sila ng deny? Filipinos abroad…boycott NYT!
    Again, thank you Mr. Tiglao.

  29. Again, Mr. Tiglao helps us see events with a clear perspective. Thank you for your fine articles of high importance in our country.

    • I wish manilatimes had a tag function so I can tag Mr. Tatad. Try to get some sense to his chain of thought.

    • rene evidente, tatad hits du30 because du30 always hit the priests and the bishops of the catholic church. he hates du30 because du30 issued an executive order to implement the law advocating the use of contraceptives which the sc has stopped via tro which the sc has not acted upon up to now. he also hits du30 because of the drug war. tatad misunderstood du30 when tatad claimed that he was correct to say that du30 went to china for cancer treatment for which du30 called him an idiot and told him that he went to china to be circumcized anew. tatad is a member of the opus dei.

  30. Perhaps no other leader of a third world country in recent memory has been the subject of the New York Times’ (NYT) relentless attack that it now borders on obsessive harassment, and possibly as other cynical minds are wont to suggest, a sinister plot to help overthrow a government. President Duterte is still the duly elected president of a sovereign country who commands the respect and affection of majority of its citizens, whose opinions matter the most over a foreign publication like the NYT. Filipinos are known to be quiet and mellow people, but what has riled them this time is the unfairness with which the country’s leadership is being portrayed in the international arena. Before the NYT writes even one more word, much less another hack article about the Philippines, they can prove that their writers are real journalists, and not tabloid reporters borrowed from the National Enquirer (a U.S. tabloid), by going to the country, doing due diligence research on the ground, and interviewing people about their favorite subject, Duterte. After focusing all their efforts on depicting Duterte as the worst leader and that the country is in such dire straits, NYT may discover the real story and answer to the puzzle of why President Duterte enjoys unprecedented popularity amongst the Filipino people both in the country and abroad.

  31. Here we are again, the U.S. of A believing it’s self-appointment as the international police meddling in the internal affairs of a sovereign country. And the NYT allowing itself to be tool of the world’s biggest bully.

  32. It just shows the extent of the hatchet job they are doing to oust Pres. Duterte from office. Since the yellow gang knows that they can’t win due to Duterte’s immense popularity here in the Phils, they are bringing their psy war to the international media. Unfortunately, there is the NYT that is willing to cater to their agenda.

    With all the coordinated effort to bring down Pres. Duterte, it would be naive to think that there is no grand plan by some of the rich and powerful groups in our country to try to claim what they’ve lost. And so we as a people must not let that happen because we are fed up with a government that is only for the few and privileged and these forces want to bring that back.

    Pres. Duterte may be crude and crass and “un-Presidentiable”, but his sincerity to lead us out of years of quagmire is evident by his actions. I would rather have a cursing and uncouth President but delivers on his promises, than a refined and statesmanlike leader who steals and protects only the interests of oligarchs and corrupt officials.

  33. Impeccable journalism! One thing though — it’s International Criminal Court (ICC), not International Court of Justice (ICJ). At any rate, it’s a small hiccup in a thunderous roar against NYT’s (and Rappler’s) fake news! I couldn’t agree more. Thank you Mr Tiglao!

  34. what are the chances that a legit independent state obey what new york times suggest?

  35. “None of the current editorial board member are described as having covered Southeast Asia or the Philippines.”
    I paste copied it to be exact …wow of all the things mentioned here and i mean they were all making sense…this was the catch. Mr Tigalao maybe we asked them to come and visit the Philipines. and they take it from there.

  36. Danny Gardon on

    Atty. Tiglao, President Duterte should appoint you as US Ambassador or UN ambassador instead of teddy locsin. O kaya EU ambassador, you can defend the country and the president better. May ALUHIM barack you!

    • Mark Joseph Alcantara on

      You probably don’t even understand the term hatchet job. The fact that you’re either a supporter of the president or not is irrelevant since the piece written contained details which were just false and erroneous. Mr. Tiglao even wrote clear and concise and rebuttals against every piece of information used in the NYT hatchet job. You want to sound credible? Then I suggest you do the same and debunk Mr. Tiglao’s rebuttals point by point.

    • You are wrong MJA.! Mr. Tiglao only believes that the NYT editorial is a hatchet job, yet he is enjoinng all Filipinos, even the Fil-Ams to be outraged! Why don’t you just convince the Chinese government to patrol the South China Sea as a retribution against the US? Puro kayo dakdak, puro salita, walang gawa!

  37. that “rich New York Filipina” should adopt and live with drug addicts in her house if she really wants to help them. she should not get involved in plotting the ouster of Pres. Duterte.

    Two Cojuangco-Aquinos were given opportunity and already became president but they FAILED us. That “rich New York Filipina” should stop playing king maker and just accept that her bet did not win the last presidential election.

    that “rich New York Filipina” should listen to the many Filipinos who supported and voted for Duterte in their belief that he could clean the bureaucracy and make us feel safer inside and outside our house.

    Only when Duterte became president did i encounter going to Land Transportation Office, that no fixer (with fake LTO ID) approached me while I was going to the LTO.

    Now, I see LTO employees as straight and clean, and they are sincere and really want to help you when you ask some information.

    • is that so? someone i know got a fake drivers license just last week at LTO he paid p1,500

    • Talaga? The “rich New York Filipina” was only suspected by Mr. Tiglao to be the brain behind the editorial in cohorts with the so-called yellow army. Now you believed him even without evidence?

      And the LTO? Straight and Clean, and awfully sincere? Kung hindi ka man corrupt na taga LTO, may magulang kang nagpakain sayo mula sa lagayan sa LTO. PNP nga hindi maayos-ayos, LTO pa? Umayos ka nga!

    • If you’re a responsible citizen, barks, then you would report that to 8888. Unless it’s just hearsay