Political strategist on Duterte: 'A record never before seen in presidential history in the Philippines'

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A political strategist named Ma. Lourdes Tiquia of Manila Times wrote an article about her takes on President Rodrigo Duterte's accomplishments on the world stage.

Read her full article below:

"Who would have thought that a mayor could pull out a homer in dealing with Asian behemoths like China and Japan? Lacking national exposure, he brandished his sword and laid claim to a record never before seen in presidential history in the Philippines: 6th Asian nations in 117 days in office.
Derisively called mad man by his critics, there is serious thinking in his “madness.” Visiting Laos, Indonesia, Vietnam, Brunei, China and Japan, PRRD has set the stage for a peaceful region, lights on for Asia and ASEAN and a face-to-face diplomacy that has never been seen from a David like the Philippines. There is rhyme and reason where he went and the key messages he called out in those visits. The Duterte Initiative has made the Philippines top of mind. Apart from Manny Pacquiao, foreigners meeting Filipinos have been asking about Duterte. Seriously, the “mad man” is a rockstar.

The call outs have been consistent: economic, illegal drugs, security in bilateral talks. Laos was Bud Dajo and getting the attention of the US (and Duterte got it big time). Indonesia (biggest Muslim country in ASEAN) was about illegal drugs trade, Mary Jane Veloso, AEC and comparing leadership notes (Widodo was Jakarta mayor before becoming president). Vietnam was “economic bilateral cooperation, including stronger partnership in economic, agriculture, defense and maritime cooperation, and war against illegal drugs.” Brunei was “trade and investments and developing our halal sector and micro, small and medium enterprises, support for the government’s anti-narcotics campaign” and the re-engineering of BIMP-EAGA. China is trade and security as well as exploring peace within the framework of the decision of the International Court. Japan is rebalancing in the region, among others.
There are four essential elements of a state: population, territory, government and sovereignty. The first two constitute the physical and material basis of a state and the last two, its political and spiritual basis. Of late, international recognition has been added. This is the recognition of the sovereign status of a new state by other states. Recognition has political dimensions in the community of nations. Recognition becomes the magnet that can attract investors and foreign direct investments. Recognition is also a reward for pursuing domestic policies that reform age old issues such as crime, corruption and inefficiencies in the system.
It is interesting to note that what appeared to be a faux pas on schedules of presidential foreign trips turned out to be a defining moment for the country as she grapples reframing foreign policy and rebalancing powers and influences in the region. PRRD was after all supposed to go first to Japan then to China. Critics were up in arms in the sudden change saying “a president does not mess up foreign schedules, just like that.” The sudden change can now be understood in the light of the declaration by PRRD, “Japan is and will always be a true friend.” A rare display from the bad mouth leader.
In the arrival speech by the president, he now tells the public why and what transpired said visit. This arrival speech was far different in tone and delivery. The words were carefully chosen for the important rebalancing strategy. Characterized as a “defining moment” in our ties, the president talked about common paths and shared objectives. He mentioned “maritime security and maritime domain awareness” as key priorities. Duterte explained that Japan will play an important role in maritime interests that need to be protected against “piracy, criminality at sea, terrorism and responding to disasters.” He likewise talked of shared objectives: democracy, adherence to the rule of law and peaceful settlement of disputes.”
Clearly, the Philippines is not pivoting to anyone. It is rebalancing the region in what appears to be Japan being the fulcrum. With Duterte’s deft move, Japan is now the countervailing force to China in the region. It has been 44 years since 29 September 1972 that China and Japan normalized diplomatic relations, two countries that spent much of the 20th century in mutual enmity if not at outright war. The anniversary comes at a low point in Sino-Japanese relations amid a dispute over an island chain in the East China Sea known as the Senkaku Islands in Japan and Diaoyu Islands in China. This was the other backdrop in play during the visit of PRRD to Japan. The Philippines, with its arbitral award, teaches Japan how to flex its muscles without wringing necks and that is the audacity of Digong, the trump card was never played and we got win-win in China and Japan.
From the China visit where we had the red carpet rolled out and a welcome ceremony unparalleled to none, “China has committed a total of USD 24billion to the Philippines. USD 15billion are in economic deals and USD 9billion in soft loans. To Japan who has committed to the Philippines USD 2billionin economic deals and USD 48million in soft loans.
Duterte finally made it known to all that an independent foreign policy should be “consistent with the Constitution, protective of national interests and beneficial to the people.” Clearly, Duterte has chosen to articulate in the visit to Japan what to his view is good for the country. PH-Japan relationship is “best viewed as exemplary partnership that can only gain strength in the years to come.” Notice the contrast with the US.
The Duterte Initiative will close out in the remaining days of the year with visits to Malaysia and Russia. And after these visits, one can put together clearly the Duterte Initiative. Clearly, that is purely Asia in orientation.
Interestingly, in a 1951 commencement speech at the University of the Philippines, then Senator Claro M. Recto said: “sentimentalism and emotionalism should not play a part in international relations. It is folly to expect any nation to ever sacrifice its welfare and security to pure idealism or to sentimental attachments. As Filipinos, we must look out for ourselves, because no one else will. That is the essence of our independence.”
Recto further pointed out, “but as long as we are an independent Republic, we can and should act as a free people and as Filipinos. As Filipinos we must profess and declare that the security of our nation is paramount, and as a free people we must profess and declare that, while the liberties of other peoples are important to us in this world of interdependence, our first duty is to our own.”
The Duterte Initiative has echoed this historical line: “the first objective of our government must be peace, for, as a small and weak nation, it is to our prime interest to explore with patience and sincerity every avenue of honorable and enduring settlement by negotiation and mutual concessions. If war must come, it must not be of our own making, either directly or indirectly.”
And the Duterte Initiative has rang the bells, as Recto did in 1951, “let us awake from the daydreams of adolescence, and cease to imagine ourselves as saviors of a world in distress, riding on our fanciful adventures for which we have neither heart nor strength, while we neglect the care of our own concerns. We have no manifest destiny to fulfill, no historical missions to carry out in the age of superpowers. Our aims are simple and well defined: to preserve the integrity of our national territory, to safeguard the independence and liberties of our people, and to promote their welfare by the enforcement of our rights and the fulfillment of our obligations. It is on this irreducible basis of national interest that we should build our foreign relations.”
In fine, I shall return has never been truly laden with good intentions."

Source: Manila Times
Political strategist on Duterte: 'A record never before seen in presidential history in the Philippines' Political strategist on Duterte: 'A record never before seen in presidential history in the Philippines' Reviewed by Newsinfo Learn on November 03, 2016 Rating: 5


  1. I doffed my hat to the author of this article, Ma. Lourdes Tiquia of Manila Times whose brilliance to have written this accurate, "no-holds-bar,"

    1. Sa mga nakaraang admin. Umaasa na lang nag popular na presidente sa mga adviser niya kaya imbes na maganda ay inuuna ng mga adviser ang greedy kaya yung tinopak na Media popular na abnormal ay ginawang tanga. Dapat na iuupo as leader ay may alam sa politika, hindi dahil sa mukha at pa awa

  2. I doffed my hat to the author of this article, Ma. Lourdes Tiquia of Manila times whose brilliance to have written such kind of accurate, "no-holds-bar," analytical assessment of President Digong's first 117 days in office where no other author has so far come to be at par with her diligence in making painstaking and conscientious research about the true story of how a mere Mayor of Davao City, who lacks the exposure in the national media prior to his election as the 16th President of our Philippine Republic last May 9 could be able to accomplish such daring and remarkable achievements in the field of foreign diplomacy where his in-born talent in deft diplomacy could be very visible to our naked eye, except to a few from our mainstream media who continue to throw stones of baseless accusations to President Digong like the EJK (Extra Judicial Killings) and in most cases spreading lies and disinformation against the remarkable achievements that Digobg has smoothly accomplished.

  3. Ma. Lourdes Tiquia belongs to the an almost extinct breed of journalists who diligently observe, study, analyse and report facts and situations fairly and without bias. May analysts-journalists like her beat the lazy, irresponsible, unreliable, deceitful mainstream media journalists.

  4. sa wakas nakabasa naman matino-tinong balita tungkol sa ating bansa at kay president duterter!

  5. China is so interested in the Philippines in so many ways. The control of the South China Sea islands and shoals is among them. And when the man who cursed the Pope want to cut ties with the US militarily and economically (mainly because of inquiries about his EJK issues), the Chinese clapped their hands for him. The Chinese heard the greatest music so unexpected from a Philippine president. They won much more than a great war against the US without firing a single shot. With the US out, China will become the military and economic master of Asia, at the envy of Japan. So Japan, of course, have no choice but to play diplomacy to the foul-mouthed president.

  6. I have been observing many comments and opinions from both sides of the fence; the critics and the supporters. There are points to be taken and drawn from both quarters but my opinion has always been this..."that through some rights and some wrongs, we must always try to read between the lines of the actions and words of a person. There are many things that are commonly known by all and there are always just as many reasons behind the scenes which is not privy to all of us. What I know is that the Philippines is now in the hands of a long term strategist and tactician; and put there through votes of the common people themselves; so we should not act or judge as if we ourselves are fit to be the President. He has his flaws but his fire is his drive and his style. I would rather have a President who speaks his mind than one who has a "plastic exterior". If we really want to understand his moves in the international scene, you have to first equip yourselves with the full knowledge of what is happening within the closed political doors of power of other nations. National secrets cannot be revealed just as national security protocols cannot be announced to the world.
    One thing that is common ground to both the academicians and the soothsayers (something that is rarely agreed upon by these two), which is that the economic powerhouses of the near future is Asia.
    Have we ever thought that the catalyst that could change the world for the betterment of the future might have been from the Philippines? It's very possible.
    So I say, do what you have to do Mr President, I know that juggling so many pins all at the same time is not easy and it may result in a few pins dropping off once in a while. People, on the other hand, let's not judge by the number of dropped pins but also on the number of pins that are continuously flying high in the air.

    1. Your opinion and unbiased analysis showed and opened my minds what really is the magic behind PRRD's leadership.Now, I see why he is so popular.

  7. Thank you for a very knowledgeable, fair and well thought article about our dear President Rodrigo Duterte.

  8. during our visit to Singapore, the taxi drivers asked us from where we are...when we told them that we are from the Philippines, they laugh and said,"wow, duterte"...they really appreciate and adore our president, and they say that to always remember duterte, they call him 2:30....jejeje...

  9. I wish all journalists shared your point of view. Sad to say, they do not or they refuse to do so even if the truth were staring right in front of their eyes.

  10. Political correctness is not anymore the name of the political game. It is the conviction, passion and will to change a society that has been longing for "True Change" compared with the mediocre and cosmetic changes devoid of the true desires and aspirations of the Filipino people. Mayor Duterte does not only have the guts to effect change. He has the will, passion and courage to make real and True Changes, drastic to a few faint-hearted, but needed by the challlenges of our time.

  11. He is a "rock star" only to his fans. The world see him for what he is, a mass murderer.

    1. Most heroes around the Globe were MASS MURDERERs DURING THEIR EXISTENCE, my friend. Always remember that.


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