The Philippines

Tough guy wins in the Philippines, another tough guy waiting in the wings

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There may be more to the Philippines’ new president Rodrigo Duterte than his tough guy image indicates In the populist theatrics that are Filipino politics, the overwhelming election of Rodrigo Duterte should not have come as a surprise, even if comparisons with US ‘outsider’ Donald Trump have been as common as they are inaccurate. Unlike […]

The Philippines

Atoning for the sins of the father

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Bongbong Marcos’s bid for the vice-presidency could be a test for the maturity of Philippine democracy Around the period that the Philippines was under the authoritarian regime of Ferdinand Marcos (1965–86), South Korea was under the military dictatorship of Park Chung-hee (1963–79). The restoration of democracy in both countries was finally accomplished by popular revolt, […]

The Philippines

Bongbong makes a move

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The son of former Philippine dictator Ferdinand Marcos has set his sights on the country’s second-highest office in the coming elections It is perhaps a little unfair to say that only in the Philippines would the people consider electing a politician known by the otherwise clownish name of ‘Bongbong’. But equally, and arguably more fairly, […]