Too much to ask for


    ‘One would think that a tragedy such as the Jolo bombing would shock Duterte and his comms people into some semblance of sanity, but I suppose that is simply too far beyond them.’

    FOR the first time in months, President Duterte delivered a speech in front of an audience aside from the IATF, PCOO, and his ever-present manservant. That’s right folks – Duterte finally saw daylight.

    The occasion of his speech was to address an audience in Jolo, Sulu, where nearly a week before, two suicide bombers took the lives of 14 people – seven soldiers, one police officer, and six civilians. Duterte was there to provide reassurance, to show that his administration was still firmly in control of the situation, that the perpetrators would be brought to justice.

    Or at least, in an ideal world, that’s what Duterte would have done.

    But not before virtually attending an online concert held in his honor. Priorities, people. Come on.

    The visit itself was nothing short of breathtakingly trapo. Scenes of Duterte kissing the ground in honor of those who died, conveniently supplied by his manservant, naturally made all the news and troll farms. Barely any mention that they had to do the scene twice, because the first time he forgot to remove his cap, making his first take devoid of respect and reverence. An offering of flowers and a prayer – as if either constituted justice for the dead.

    Duterte’s speech wasn’t half-bad. It was over 60% bad, as less than half of his speech was dedicated to rallying our troops, and that 60% was dedicated to his usual rambling aimless nonsense.

    A crucial detail Duterte left out of his speech: the suicide bombers responsible for the recent Jolo bombings were the same bombers being tracked by the four AFP intelligence agents gunned down by the police last June. Maybe he thought it was too soon to bring back “his” police’s utter and complete failure?

    Once we peel back at Duterte’s speech all the way to its core, especially the parts that weren’t prepared beforehand, Duterte’s message is simple: “I can’t do a damn thing about any of this, just keep fighting, we’ll have peace someday, maybe.”

    So inspiring.

    One would think that, given the scarcity of Duterte’s’ public appearances, they would try to maximize his presence in a way that is actually meaningful to the victims of the Jolo bombing, and to the public at large that is beset by death and decay from all sides – an ongoing pandemic with no end in sight, a crashing and burning economy, growing unemployment, government scandal after government scandal. And that is what he offers the people? “Sorry, wala akong magawa?”

    I mean, I get it. The optics, the spontaneous speech that was largely drivel. It’s the lifeblood of the Duterte Death Squad troll. I truly understand that. But Duterte isn’t the President of the DDS. One would think that a tragedy such as the Jolo bombing would shock Duterte and his comms people into some semblance of sanity, but I suppose that is simply too far beyond them.

    Meanwhile, if reports are accurate, Abu Sayyaf member and Jolo bombing suspect Mundi Sawadjaan and two of his associates have escaped Jolo and remain at large. Imagine that: three wanted bombing experts escaped an island where they just perpetrated a heinous bombing. It boggles the mind how Sawadjaan and his cohorts could evade capture when every soldier and law enforcement officer is on the hunt for them.

    Then again, as Duterte himself said, wala siyang magawa diyan.

    Apparently, asking the President to be Presidential at a time when he needs most to be that is too much to ask for.