Tags: Vantage Point

What’s the DFA good for?

The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) is expected to promote international understanding and defend Philippine sovereignty. It is also tasked with protecting Filipinos abroad. In its dealings with other countries, it is of course assumed that the DFA will enhance and defend Philippine interests through diplomatic means. But equally important is its affirmation in word…

Blaming EDSA

His spokesperson Salvador Panelo insisted that it wasn’t because President Rodrigo Duterte thinks that the 1986 civilian-military mutiny at EDSA isn’t important; it’s just that he has a lot of things to do. Panelo announced Mr. Duterte’s non-attendance at the February 25 official commemoration of the 33rd anniversary of that event days earlier. That made…

Representing themselves

On July 23, 2016, President Rodrigo Duterte signed Executive Order No. 2 mandating public access to information held by the agencies and offices of the executive branch. The nongovernmental organizations that had been campaigning for a freedom of information (FOI) act for decades welcomed it with cautious optimism. The Executive Order (EO) encouraged the legislature…

That former TV broadcaster who’s running for senator under Sara Duterte’s Hugpong ng Pagbabago party isn’t alone in denying that the Duterte regime is a threat to press freedom. There are other former and still practicing broadcast, print and online media people who have never quite understood that the most fundamental values in journalism are…

THE US-based nongovernmental organization (NGO) Armed Conflict Location and Event Data Project (ACLED) is correct: the Philippines is indeed “a war zone in disguise,” and is among the world’s deadliest countries for civilians. But it is not only due to the Duterte regime’s murderous campaign against suspected drug users and small-time pushers that at the…