Philippines death squads, paid by United States tax payers

This video about the Philippines says about itself:

Amnesty International Concerned Over Duterte‘s Human Rights Record

8 December 2015

The human rights watchdog raised alarm over the presidential candidate [meanwhile: president]’s alleged links to the Davao Death Squad.

From daily The Morning Star in Britain:

Philippines: Activists demand to end police killings

Thursday 4th August 2016

OVER 300 human rights groups have written to condemn what they see as trigger-happy attitudes by Philippine police towards drug gang suspects.

Their joint letter to the International Narcotics Control Board and United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, which was published yesterday, urges them to condemn police killings and to demand that they end.

“International drug control agencies need to make clear to Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte that the surge in killings of suspected drug dealers and users is not acceptable ‘crime control’ but instead a government failure to protect people’s most fundamental human rights,” said Human Rights Watch deputy Asia director Phelim Kine.

A clash yesterday between commandos and armed bodyguards of a town mayor linked to illegal drugs killed six suspects and brought the running total of suspected drug criminals shot dead since Mr Duterte took office on June 30 to 402.

Senator Leila M De Lima decried on Tuesday what she called the “do-it-yourself justice” system under the Duterte presidency.

“We must call for the accountability of state actors responsible for this terrifying trend in law enforcement and the investigation of killings perpetrated by the vigilante assassins,” she said.

Regional police chief Elmer Beltejar said that police had been patrolling near the house of Mayor Rolando Espinosa in the town of Albuera when they were fired upon by his bodyguards.Police fired back, killing six of their attackers.

Mr Espinosa surrendered to national police chief Ronald de la Rosa on Tuesday after being warned to do so or risk being shot on sight.

This video says about itself:

Death toll rises as Philippines intensifies war on drugs

31 July 2016

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has promised to rid his country of crime and corruption within his first six months in office.

But a harsh crackdown has seen more than 400 suspected drug criminals killed in less than two months.

Al Jazeera’s Jamela Alindogan reports from Manila.

By Joseph Santolan in the Philippines:

Kerry backs Duterte’s murderous anti-drug campaign: “Placing a cheapness on the lives of Orientals”

4 August 2016

US Secretary of State John Kerry met with Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte July 30 in Manila and pledged $32 million to fund Duterte’s anti-drug campaign, an operation that involves death squads, police murders and concentration camps. Since Duterte took office at the end of June, more than 500 alleged criminals have been killed by police and vigilante groups.

Kerry has come a long way since he testified before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in 1971 and denounced the conduct of the US military in Vietnam in terms of moral outrage. He told the committee that “we watched while America placed a cheapness on the lives of Orientals.”

Kerry has long since overcome any such moral compunctions, integrating himself into the Democratic party apparatus, running unsuccessfully as the party’s presidential candidate, and finally becoming the top diplomatic face of US imperialism. He is now the one who hangs Washington’s price tag on the cheapness of human lives.

The $32 million he dispensed to fund the murder of impoverished Filipinos is meant to secure Manila’s support for Washington’s anti-Chinese “pivot to Asia.”

For US imperialism, “the lives of Orientals” have always been cheap. William McKinley bought the colony of the Philippines from Spain for $20 million in 1898. The bill of sale was written in the blood of over a million Filipinos who were killed in the war of conquest that marked the entry of the United States onto the world stage as an imperialist power.

From the installation to the presidency of Ramon Magsaysay, hand-picked in 1953 by the “quiet American” CIA operative Edward Lansdale, to the full support it gave the martial law regime of Ferdinand Marcos, Washington has ruled its former colony with near total control, preserving it as a foothold in the Asia Pacific region.

The United States is seeking to maintain its global hegemonic dominance through military means, encircling Russia and China and escalating tensions to the threshold of a new world war. Under the previous Philippine administration, headed by Benigno Aquino, Manila played a key role in spearheading the US pivot in the South China Sea, filing a legal claim against China before the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) in The Hague and signing a deal to allow the unlimited basing of US forces in the country.

The newly installed Duterte administration has been more hesitant in provoking China, hoping to forge expanded economic ties with Beijing.

Duterte is a fascistic figure, openly contemptuous of human life. He has granted impunity to the police and military and called upon them to exterminate “criminals.” He declared in a speech that he would leave office as the Idi Amin of the Philippines, a reference to the Ugandan dictator and mass murderer.

The Obama administration has established a pattern of funding and support for far-right and fascistic forces around the world in pursuit of US imperialist interests. In 2013, it backed the military coup by the Egyptian butcher General Abdel Fattah el-Sisi. In 2014, it supported a fascist-led coup in Ukraine as part of its campaign against Moscow. It armed the al-Nusra Front, the Al Qaeda affiliate in Syria, as a proxy in its campaign to oust President Bashar al-Assad.

The Obama administration has no qualms about funding the murderous Duterte government if it will facilitate the economic, political and military isolation and destabilization of China.

Duterte is putting Washington’s funds to good use. The number reported killed by police and vigilantes ranges from fifteen to twenty a day. Those murdered come from the most impoverished layers of the population, the shantytown dwellers and the informally employed, who dwell, in their millions, on the margins and in the interstices of Philippine cities, particularly Manila.

According to the New York Times, over 114,000 people, fearful of being killed in the anti-drug drive, have surrendered to the police. They have been crammed into the country’s barbaric prison system.

The British Independent published a photo essay on July 31 revealing the conditions in these jails. The fetid cells, as well as the open courts and stairwells of the prisons, are so densely packed that there is no room to breathe. Industrial livestock have far better conditions than these human beings.

Duterte proposes to relieve the overcrowding by constructing concentration camps. He is calling for the building of high-wire-enclosed facilities in the center of military bases throughout the country to house those he claims are “no longer of service to humanity.” The initial funding Duterte will use for these concentration camps was supplied by John Kerry.

The New York Times on August 2 claimed that Duterte’s crackdown was “hugely popular” with Filipinos. As evidence, it cited an opinion poll on the new president’s trustworthiness conducted before he even took office, as well as his “overwhelming victory” at the polls. In truth, Duterte won the presidency by a plurality, receiving a mere 38 percent of the vote. The base of support for Duterte comes overwhelmingly from the petty-bourgeoisie and big business.

The new president has announced that he supports the basing of US forces in the country, and since Kerry’s visit, he has begun to escalate his rhetoric against China. Washington will happily continue funding Duterte’s death squads and concentration camps as long as he toes its line against China.

In the 2016 US elections, the Democratic Party is presenting itself as the premiere party of US imperialism, in the interests of which it will continue to promote far-right governments and political forces internationally. The danger represented by the fascistic Donald Trump cannot be opposed through support for the party that is funding the death squads of Rodrigo Duterte. Only the independent struggle of the working class in the United States, the Philippines and around the world in the fight for socialism can put an end to war and the growing threat of fascism.

Ronald de la Rosa, chief of the Philippine National Police (PNP) testified Monday before a Senate investigation into the extra-judicial killings since President Rodrigo Duterte took office on June 1. He said the official police count of those who were killed by either police or vigilantes for the first six weeks of the Duterte administration was 1,789: here.

White House praises Duterte’s drug crackdown: here.

14 thoughts on “Philippines death squads, paid by United States tax payers

  1. Philippines: Duterte vows to keep shoot to kill policy

    Saturday 6th August 2016

    posted by Morning Star in World

    He admits extrajudicial killings have occurred

    PHILIPPINE President Rodrigo Duterte has admitted that police have carried out extrajudicial killings in his war on illegal drugs, but he refuses to cancel a shoot-to-kill order for drug gang suspects.

    He claimed late on Thursday that most of the 400 people shot dead by police in the past month have been drug dealers and addicts exchanging fire with police.

    The president added, however, that he was sure that some of them had been “salvaged,” which is local slang for extrajudicial killings.

    Mr Duterte said the government would investigate any allegations of illegal killings.

    “They really fight back, I know that. I’m sure there are some who were salvaged, I am also sure of that,” he said in a speech in Davao City, where he built a reputation for an uncompromising approach to crime before winning the presidency on June 30.

    Mr Duterte repeated yesterday morning that he had given shoot-to-kill orders against drug dealers, including politicians involved in the illicit trade.

    “I’ll really have you killed. Look at what you’re doing to the Philippines and I’ll forgive you?” he asked rhetorically after visiting a police chief shot in the chest by a suspected drug dealer and rushed to hospital.

    “My order is shoot to kill you. I don’t care about human rights, you better believe me,” said the president.

    The centrepiece of Mr Duterte’s anti-crime drive is an ambitious campaign promise to end the widespread drugs problem in six months.

    It has left more than 400 drug suspects dead, many either in shoot-outs with police or under suspicious circumstances.

    More than 4,400 have been arrested.

    The unprecedented killings have scared more than half a million drug users and dealers into giving themselves up to police, officials said.

    Mr Duterte has said he is considering setting aside some areas in military camps across the country to build rehabilitation centres for those who surrender.

    The government’s commission on human rights might seek to stop the anti-crime drive through a court petition, said Free Legal Assistance Group head Jose Manuel Diokno.

    He added that the latest shoot-to-kill order was, at the least, legally questionable.


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  5. Saturday 16th September 2017

    posted by Morning Star in World

    PHILIPPINES Defence Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said yesterday there was a “very remote” possibility that President Rodrigo Duterte might impose martial law on the entire country.

    The drastic suggestion was made in response to a call by left-wing organisations for mass demonstrations to be held next Thursday.

    The protests will mark the anniversary of martial law being declared by late dictator Ferdinand Marcos — and draw attention to the genocide unleashed on poor communities by the current president, whose “war on drugs” has seen thousands of people extra-judicially killed.

    The defence secretary said Mr Duterte had warned that if the left hold “disruptive” protests he “might” extend the martial law from the south of the country, where the army is battling Islamist militants, to the rest, Mr Lorenzana said.

    But one of the protest’s organisers, the revolutionary group Bayan, said people should attend the protests anyway.


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