Gath­er­ing of hyp­ocrites

Sun.Star Cebu - - OPINION - Kara­p­atan

Once again, the world is wit­ness­ing an il­lu­sion of af­flu­ence in the 2017 Asean Sum­mit, with heads of state din­ing and talk­ing about plun­der­ing more re­sources from poor coun­tries, press­ing down al­ready low wages, pro­mot­ing glob­al­iza­tion and eco­nomic in­te­gra­tion at the ex­pense of lo­cal economies, and bomb­ing coun­tries for the ush­er­ing of “democ­racy” – all while Filipinos con­tinue to be mired in poverty as a di­rect re­sult of US ne­olib­eral poli­cies. The stench of hypocrisy is re­volt­ing.

The Asean has long been ren­dered sub­servient to un­equal eco­nomic and po­lit­i­cal agree­ments shoved down the mem­ber-coun­tries’ throats by im­pe­ri­al­ist na­tions. There is no part­ner­ship here, only the con­nivance of pow­er­ful coun­tries to sell, un­der­mine, and plun­der the rest of the world – with the per­mis­sion of our own lead­ers who have ben­e­fited from this wretched sys­tem.

Along with other heads of state in the Asean, US Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump is be­ing wel­comed by the Philip­pine gov­ern­ment with pomp and pageantry amount­ing to P15.5 bil­lion, when the only wel­come be­fit­ting of his visit is protest and con­dem­na­tion. We em­pha­size the role of the US gov­ern­ment in fund­ing hu­man rights vi­o­la­tions that it hyp­o­crit­i­cally de­nies and con­demns when­ever con­ve­nient.

The US en­gages in dou­bletalk when it throws crit­i­cisms on the Duterte’s hu­man rights record, when all this time it has been fund­ing Duterte’s drug war and the Philip­pine mil­i­tary’s all-out­war in the coun­try, re­sult­ing in the killings of the ur­ban and ru­ral poor, farm­ers, indige­nous peo­ples, and hu­man rights de­fend­ers, in­clud­ing those who have strug­gled against US mil­i­tarism and plun­der of the coun­try.

Thus, the 2017 Asean Sum­mit and Trump’s visit, and all the su­per­fi­cial glamor that comes with it, is a taste­less at­tempt to feign progress and de­vel­op­ment in a re­gion that is al­ready drained off of its la­bor, re­sources, rights, and dig­nity, when the Filipino peo­ple and the peo­ples of Asean have ex­pe­ri­enced the worst hu­man rights vi­o­la­tions, un­fair eco­nomic poli­cies, and the preser­va­tion of a world or­der that fa­vors a wealthy few.--

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