Alliance vulnerability cause that should no longer be overlooked

Until Digong has finally found the strength to defeat the raging inner tantrums of his ego every time it gets hurt, the integrity of our alliances with other countries (particularly with the U.S.A.) is always subject to his impulsive irrational knee-jerk outbursts. Every time he feels insulted or hurt, our country's welfare remains vulnerable to getting forcefully dragged into his highly-charged emotional whims and motives. The country gets mercilessly forced to rally around whatever unplanned and unconsulted hasty decision his hurt ego might have triggered at the moment of his heightened emotion.

This has to stop. Would somebody be kind and courageous enough to help the president fight his inner enemy? Can't we see that this evil is slowly defeating the president from the inside? If this inner enemy totally overpowers the president, so goes also the integrity of our country's alliances. If we want the president to succeed, then let us no longer remain blind to his inner struggle. Let us help him win his fight against his inner enemy.

This newly initiated Philippines-China reconciliation is also very much subject to the inner enemy of Digong. The Chinese are just human beings like all of us and they too have their human weaknesses and they too are not perfect. We have yet to experience and see how their leaders manage their own inner enemies. 

Let us all pray that this newly initiated reconciliation endures despite our current president's inner struggle.

The following article may help us understand an inner enemy that we also perhaps is struggling against.

By Oscar. V. Cruz, DD
Views and Points, CBCP News
October 24, 2016

Ego-centric, ego-centered, ego-maniac. Self-centered, self-absorbed, self-satisfied, self-contented. Conceited, smug, vain. All these are some key words in layman’s language for identifying and understanding a person who is “Narcissistic”. This personal liability is in the context and implication of “I” and “me” and “myself”. This is the trio that somehow point out the centerpiece of the above-said egocentric malady. Someone existing and living in his or her world, somebody who has himself or herself as the center-point of everybody and everything else—such can be considered as the external manifestations of constitutional individualism.

All the above descriptive egoism incarnate make the person concerned as the beginning and the end of everybody else as well as everything else. It is himself or herself what counts the most in all agenda—plans, designs, projects. Everything and everybody else are expected to have the said subject individual as the key and central reference point—or nobody and nothing ultimately matters for him or her. So it is that the common denominator of all those afflicted by such an egocentric personality liability is the strong, consistent and persistent sense of self in terms of superlative importance, significance and relevance. In other words, the same should be the center of attraction, the focus of attention, the object of adulation. Anybody and everybody else—what they think and say, what they do or not do—none of these really matter.

So is it that someone with the innate personality trait of “Ego-centricity” has some kind of a delusive perception of supra big self-importance such that he or she has and entertains the feeling of immense self-worth and wherefore entitled to pursuant focal attention of everybody else. The individual concerned has a grandiose personal self-perception such that this highly superior personal self-assessment becomes mandatory for all others to carefully relate with him and to unconditionally obey him. Otherwise, all of them would be big losers—not knowing what is good for them. The truth is that the subject-victim of the said ego-centric personality constitution can go as far as feeling omnipotent and wherefore singular, unique and indispensable.

Considering themselves wherefore as special persons, it is understandable that anyone saddled by “Ego-centricity” demand and expect special treatment precisely because they are special individuals—according to their special worth and dignity. So it is that they strongly dislike if not actually hate criticism—even feeling much offended by the indifference and disdain of others towards their own perceived distinct self-worth and consequent self-importance. And so it is that they are not merely upset but also angered—if not actually enraged—when others do not notice, much less acknowledge their own perceived self-worth, their own perceived and sustained uniqueness. They think as they please. They say what they want. They do as they like. Everybody and everything else do not matter!


Pildi-Gana: Winner loses; loser wins

"Pildi-gana" is a reverse game play mode in which in order to win you have to lose. In chess application, the player who checkmates his opponent's king is declared the loser.

In the chess puzzle picture shown, it is white's turn to make a move. Find white's only move that will prevent the black king from immediately getting checkmated.

With its relatively strange diplomatic and political maneuvering, the new leadership of the Philippines has dragged the country into engaging the U.S.A. in some sort of "pildi-gana" political chess game.

In recent developments on international diplomacy, Malacañang has made a move that has placed its black king in a position wherein it seems that every possible move by its opponent would result in a checkmate of its black king.

Now it is the Whitehouse's turn to make a move. And given the present international diplomatic and geopolitical situations the U.S.A. is preoccupied with and is currently facing -- to name a major few situations: its upcoming change of leadership, the proxy war it has against Russia in the country of Syria, and China's intensifying challenge for regional and world dominance -- it now seems that almost every possible move that it could make as a response to Malacañang's move would seem to result in a checkmate of its opponent's black king. Whitehouse should not forget that the game's play mode is in reverse -- Whitehouse loses if it fails to avoid checkmating its opponent's black king.

Would the Whitehouse grand master see a move that could avoid an immediate checkmating of its opponent's Malacañang king?

Tsin and Rosh, be aware and keep watch: A longtime "friend" of your major rivals who suddenly appears as though he is aggressively trying to befriend you may not really be seeking for genuine friendship. As you may have noticed, a lot of motives are involved here, some are obvious, while others are not so obvious.

He is your rivals' "friend" who is harboring hatred against his longtime "friends" because his ego cannot handle constructive criticism from them. He wrongly thinks they ganged up on criticizing him so he retaliates by hurling fierce insults and curses against them and he is trying to cut relations with them. Now he is trying to play his favorite dangerous and trickery-laden "Pildi-Gana" game by trying to befriend both of you so as to separate himself from them and to seemingly annoy them and to attempt hurting their international credibility. Potentially he could become a good friend to you or he could also turn out to be not a truly good friend in the long run. Understand all of his ways and maneuverings thoroughly.

Be careful how you treat him. While blessings may be upon those who understand his misery, curses shall come upon those who take advantage of him and his situation. You can show him though some degree of magnanimity to show and give him a taste of your respect. But withhold showing eagerness to accept all of his proposals and be careful not to rush taking every word he says simplistically at face value. He is a hurting soul and he is harboring a wounded ego and he could just be seeking for some company because of his self-inflicted misery.

Tsin and Rosh, exercise wisdom. He could be as if a tempting coy smile to you, but he could also turn out to be a self-manipulated ego-wounded seeker of alliance (for reasons of expediency) that your rivals could find ways to take advantage of and use as some kind of an unwitting decoy to your disadvantage.

Keep a keen watch on everything that is going on. Never forget that the name of the game is "Pildi-Gana": Winner loses; loser wins. Thus be as well very prudent and discerning with every move you may decide to make. After all, both of you have long been major players in this nasty old game anyway.


Parallel complementary approach in helping government's W.O.D.

The resolve "failure is not an option" is a blind motivation when the inadequate option is the one simplistically chosen at the outset.

For failure not to be an option, needless to say that it is crucial that the right holistic option should be the one adopted.

In this war on drugs, it is not yet far in the game to make right adjustments of the game plan and it can still very much be effected positively.

Though slow, but nevertheless, the Church, LGUs, academic sector and communities have finally started to respond to the challenge and they are now exerting serious efforts to help the government in its fight against the menace of illegal drugs.

How about the rest of us, how and when will we do our part?


Church, academe partner for drug crisis intervention
By John Frances C. Fuentes / CBCP News
October 3, 2016

In response to the widespread drug problem in the country, the Archdiocese of Davao and the University of Southeastern Philippines (USeP) have forged a partnership through the Sagop Kinabuhi Program (SKP) to help address the ongoing crisis .

SKP is the concrete response of the Church to the mass surrender of drug users and pushers, now known as Voluntary Submission for Reformation (VSR) persons, resulting from the government’s ongoing war on drugs.

The Church through its Archdiocesan Social Action Center (ASAC) and USeP have designed SKP to contribute to the multi-sectoral efforts of reconciling and reunifying VSRs with their respective families and communities.

Celebrating the Word

Using a framework advocated by the Department of Health, SKP wants to address drug dependency and carry out interventions to bring back VSRs’ lost self-confidence, self-respect, and self-worth and to enable them to become productive members of their families and communities once again.

The program also aims to create a functional working relationship with the barangays and parishes through its Gagmay’ng Kristohanong Katilingban (GKK) situated within the SKP program site. In the GKK, VSRs celebrate the liturgy of the word in different GKK chapels every week together with members of the community.

Previously identified as a strategic geographical location being a rural-urban area, the Talomo district is the chosen pilot site for the implementation of SKP.

It is worth mentioning that SKP is not intended for Catholics alone but for all drug dependents and drug pushers who want to participate in the program.

Responding to the crisis

Only mild and moderate cases of drug dependency, however, will be catered to by the program. Severe and mentally-ill dependents will be served by other agencies like rehabilitation centers and hospitals.

It can be recalled that before Davao Archbishop Romulo G. Valles’ efforts to revive the program, SKP had already begun in Davao City in 2003, running until 2011.

The clergy of Davao responded to the prelate’s challenge to respond to the ongoing drug crisis by deciding to continue SKP, which was once under the leadership of former ASAC director Fr. Emmanuel Gonzaga, current chaplain to the City Mayor’s Office.

Gonzaga then led the planning to revive SKP together with individuals who were part of the program and partner agencies which helped in financing and running the program.

9 activities

USeP, headed by Dr. Lourdes Generalao, then signified its support for the implementation of SKP in the different parishes in the Archdiocese of Davao.

Presently, there are nine intervention programs and activities slated for the VSRs in Davao City, namely:

- Social Services (psychosocial interventions, financial and material assistance)
- Home/Family (parenting seminars/trainings)
- Educational Services (formal or non-formal, scholarship support)
- Psychological/Psychiatric Assessment
- Productivity (skills training and job placement)
- Health Education (STD/HIV/Hepatitis, lung diseases, malnourishment)
- Religious/Spirituality (value formation)
- Dietetics (right food, detoxification, healthy lifestyle)
- Sports and recreational activities

The launching of SKP and MOA signing with partner agencies is set on Oct. 7, 3:00 p.m. at San Pablo Parish in Matina, Davao City. The group has invited President Rodrigo Duterte as guest of honor.


Bishop to Duterte: Declare drug war ‘peace zones’
By Minnie De Luna / CBCPNews
October 5, 2016

Expressing concern for the continued increase in summary executions due to the war against illegal drugs, Novaliches Bishop Antonio Tobias, D.D. appealed to President Rodrigo Duterte to declare dioceses or areas with ongoing drug rehabilitation programs as “peace zones”, during the National Launching of Mamamayang Ayaw Sa Anomalya, Mamamayang Ayaw Sa Ilegal Na Droga (MASA MASID) held at the SB Park, Batasan Hills last Sept. 28.

“Is it possible, Mr. President, that you declare as peace zones all dioceses or barangays with ongoing [drug] rehabilitation programs in collaboration with the police?” said the prelate in his alarm over the reported more than 1,300 who died since the administration’s declared all-out war on drugs. The bishop noted that the increasing number of casualties is nearing the recorded 4,000 who died during the 20 years of Martial Law.

“This refers to a peace zone like that in Mindanao–where no one should die in the area [related to the war on drugs]. If someone dies in the areas declared as peace zones by the President, the President and the police will call you out,” explained Tobias.

Healing, protection of life

The bishop said if this is not possible, another option would be for the police to be transparent about who is on their list of drug dependents and pushers so the Church can help verify its veracity as well. Tobias hopes such information could be passed among the parishes through the priests and the barangays engaged in the drug rehabilitation program.

More importantly, the prelate reiterated the diocese’s thrust of healing and protection under its Community-Based Drug Rehabilitation Program (CBDRP) dubbed “Abot Kamay Alang-alang sa Pagbabago” (AKAP). He explained that the Catholic Church, particularly in the Diocese of Novaliches, is helping the Duterte administration in its fight against illegal drugs but only in the aspect of healing and protection through the “Principle of Double Effect.”

According to Tobias, it is because of Jesus, who is a healer, that the Church will be involved in two aspects of the drug campaign: rehabilitation and healing, and protection of life.

‘Place of refuge’

“Because we are a Church, we are a place of refuge, this is the House of God and everyone in it must be kept safe.”

The Diocese of Novaliches was one the entities that expressed solidarity with MASA MASID during its national launching. The MASA MASID program will be implemented in the Diocese of Novaliches through its Basic Ecclesial Communities under its CBDRP’s Community Care Committee.


Haven For Anti-Drug Abuse To Open in Bohol
By Ven Rebo Arigo
September 25, 2016

Gov. Edgar Chatto has created an inter-agency, multi-sectoral body to spark up Bohol’s tasking rehabilitation program for drug dependents or users universally called as persons with substance use disorders (PSUDs).

Integral to the composition is a “specialized” team managing the first community-based Center for Drug Abuse Education and Counseling (CEDEC) to be run by the provincial government beginning October 7.

A three-day training from October 4 will be conducted to 48 teams—with each from Tagbilaran City and the 47 municipalities—who will handle the CEDECs that have also to be put up by the local government units (LGUs).

The series of trainings will be facilitated by the Department of Health in tie-up with the Dangerous Drugs Board (DDB) and the provincial government.

Chatto and DOH Sec. Paulyn Jean Rosell-Ubial arranged the necessary collaboration at their mini-conference during the National Health Summit in Pasay City the other week.

Dr. David Baron, head of the DOH Argao Rehabilitation Center, will spearhead and supervise the trainings and ensure that all LGUs can have built-in capacity two handle the drug surrenderers.

For brevity called the Inter-Agency Provincial Team (IAPT), it has been created by Chatto thru an executive order to implement a community-based intervention program for the PSUDs.

The PSUDs include the drug detainees who were arrested in police operations.

As a council, the IAPT can form bodies in support of its mandates and to carry out effectively its defined duties and responsibilities.

The IAPT is under the Provincial Anti-Drug Abuse Council (PADAC) chaired by the governor.

Its members include the agencies for law enforcement, health, justice, jail management, parole and probation, education, social welfare, interior and local government, labor and employment, technical and vocational skills, and local government leagues.

The IAPT also has the church and laity, social action centers, academe, business, legal and medical/health professionals, media, civic clubs, youth and student groups, and federations of the senior citizens, persons with disabilities, and parents-teachers.

Chatto enjoined to the program as many volunteers “who could express their experience.”

Provincial CEDEC

Using the Oak Brook building beside the St. Joseph Cathedral here, the provincial CEDEC will be managed by a trained team of three psychiatrists, one psychologist, an on-call medical doctor, two nurses, two social workers, four police officers, and some administrative staff.

The structure is owned by the Lions Club, which will provide additional two personnel, while its lot is a provincial government property.

The team already completed its three-day training, according to Dr. Cesar Tomas Lopez, who is the province’s focal person on drug rehabilitation and the governor’s consultant on hospital modernization and health services.

On for outpatients, the CEDEC determines its clients for counseling, appropriate interventions or, when necessary, referral to rehabilitation facilities like that in Argao, Cebu run by the DOH or in Baclayon managed privately.

The government is working on the planned construction of a drug rehabilitation center in Bohol while certain benefactors, like one beer giant, have offered to help build rehabilitation facilities in the country.

Lopez reported to the governor at the PADAC meeting that the CEDEC intends to start operational on October 7 with himself as chief.

Lopez said 1,500 kits for free drug tests to the walk-in clients are ready.

Depending on the circumstances that have indulged the clients in drugs, the CEDEC’s evaluation of their cases can lead to interventions like livelihood thru technical education and skills development.

But Lopez clarified that as an education and counseling facility, the CEDEC can work on cases of slight and moderate PSUDs.

Severe drug dependents end up at the rehabilitation centers, which can competently cater to the extent of their treatment and recovery needs.

Model to LGU CEDECs

The provincial CEDEC is to serve as a model to the community-based education and counseling centers to be established in the city and municipalities.

The DOH and DDB will collaborate with the province in the three-day training starting October 4 to each CEDEC team in the city and all towns.

Each team has seven trainees who are the police chief, mayor, health officer, social worker, local government operations officer, head of the Liga ng mga Barangay (LnB), and a religious group representative.

The CEDEC teams in the LGUs are to be taught of the different modalities of how to engage with the PSUDs.

Spiritual regeneration is crucial to the gradual positive transformation of the drug users and offenders from their possessive “evil” shade until they attain “cleansed, new” lives.

To optimize time and resources, the DOH will spread out teams to four cluster areas in the province and conduct simultaneous trainings.

The city and town CEDECs have to be established considering the number of drug surrenderers owing to the Oplan Tokhang by the Philippine National Police (PNP).

In addition to the surrenderers are the arrested drug elements pursuant to the intensified police operations.

Drug use levels

Dependency to substance abuse is classified into three levels–slight, moderate and severe, the latter’s dependency to require an in-patient enrolment at a rehabilitation center.

The moderately and slightly affected will be handled by the centers for drug education and counseling, or the slight users brought home but still placed under a community-based rehabilitation program.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), only between .6% and 1% of the PSUDs require full rehabilitation facility confinement.

The rest are for out-patient counseling and community-based rehabilitative approach.

Using the PNP Tokhang surrenderers’ number as baseline figure, only 311 PSUDs in Bohol thus need to be referred to the rehabilitation centers, Lopez said.

The term PSUD for a drug dependent or user is coined by the WHO for universal use and the provincial CEDEC evaluation system for its clients is also of WHO standard, according to Lopez.

The PSUD client undergoes what Lopez called the “ASSIST BI” assessment—Alcohol, Smoking, Substance Involvement Screening Test and Brief Intervention.

After two weeks of evaluation session, apt interventions are to be determined like referrals to technical vocational education, alternative learning system and medical treatment, among others.

Family therapy and spiritual reawakening are also critical interventions, Lopez said.

Serious education at all fronts

Led by the governor, the PADAC passed at its meeting Thursday a resolution urging all sectors to sustain the anti-drug education campaign in their respective confines.

The council also urged the strengthening of the Municipal and Barangay Anti-Drug Abuse Councils (MDAC/BADAC).

The twin calls have been a policy direction of the Provincial Peace and Order Council (PPOC), which Chatto also chairs.

Chatto and PNP Regional Director Noli Talino just launched here the Alyansa Laban sa Droga (ALSA DROGA) with Vice Gov. Dionisio Balite, City Mayor John Geesnell Yap II and Bohol mayors’ league president and Clarin Mayor Rey Allen Piezas witnessing in support.

The launching was attended, too, by DILG Provincial Director Ma. Loisella Lucino, PNP Provincial Director Felipe Natividad, AFP’s Col. Arnulfo Matanguihan and Lt. Col. Jose Dodgie Belloga, Jr., and many other LGU officials.

Chatto led Bohol officials to the launching—with workshops among officials from different regions—of the “Sulong Pilipinas: Local Governance Dialogue” spearh3eaded no less by Pres. Rodrigo Duterte and DILG Sec. Ismael Sueno in Davao City on Tuesday.

The life-consuming concern of ending drug evil highlighted the event which had Chatto, as the tasked spokesman for Central Visayas, presenting the summary output of the region’s workshop.


When malice blinds virtue...

When people of authority [ab]use power for spiteful intentions that tramples human dignity, virtue must rise up to trump malice.

#EveryWoman: Her vagina is made of steel
By Ana P. Santos, Rappler
October 2, 2016

This is what happens when you look between a woman’s legs. Only a fool would be surprised to find that she has a backbone.

I was the woman in the sex video.

You hoped a sex video would shame me. You thought it would humiliate me. You were certain it would silence me. (READ: Alvarez: OK to show De Lima's alleged sex tape in House probe).

You judged my performance and sneered at my imperfections. At my most exposed, you ridiculed me.

I could have been beautiful. I could have been voluptuous and sensual. I could have been young.

You would still have found a reason to vilify me. Others would have still heckled and jeered as you added more vile names to call me. You would still have found the same sadistic glee in harassing me.

Because what you really feel is fear.

It scares you that a woman can love and make love just as you do and like it just as much as you do.

You call for truth and justice when what you want is revenge. You want to punish a woman for her sexuality when what you really want to do is destroy her spirit, her spunk, and her sense of power over herself and her actions. (READ: Lady lawmakers oppose showing of 'De Lima' video in House probe)

Yes, I was the woman in the video.

By now, thousands of other women online have made the same claim.

We have all been that women in a sex video – put on display, our body used to debase us, our character dismissed, our intellect discredited.

Enough. Today we demand it stops. Today we say NO to slut-shaming of women every where. (READ: #EveryWoman: No to slut-shaming in Philippine Congress)

This is what happens when you try to slut shame a woman, she will stand up and fight. She will rise and others – compelled by their own decency and conscience – will rise with her.

This is what happens when you look between a woman’s legs. Only a fool would be surprised to find that she has a backbone.

This is what happens when you try to strip a woman of her dignity and reduce her to mere body parts. You will feel the full force of her mind and her body. You will discover that her vagina is made of steel. – Rappler.com


Effect of China's economic slowdown

There's a magic formula to becoming a millionaire in China - borrow big to earn big.  

For years, individuals, state-owned companies and municipalities have taken massive loans to chase the Chinese dream.

Now it's payback time, but a severe economic slowdown means many are struggling to pay their debts.

Entire neighborhoods have become "ghost towns", industrial companies sit idle and the unemployed are growing desperate.

Government economists claim China has enough in its coffers to cover the bad loans, but defaulting on it could send the world's economy into a tailspin.

101 East asks, is this the end of China Inc?

If this is true, then this is shocking and so sad.

If China is having this big financial trouble, then how can it be able to help the Philippines financially when it has its own enormous economic problem to solve first?

Dili ba balikwaot nga ang Pilipinas makig-negotiate o makig-sabotsabot sa China mahitungod sa mga butang nga may kalabotan sa pinansyal nga mga suporta sa China alang sa Pilipinas nga samtang ang ilang ekonomiya mismo anaa man diay taliwala sa labihan ka dakong suliran nga pinansyal? Di ba kaha ang China mao hinuo'y nanginahanglan sa atong tabang -- tingale laing matang sa tabang nga dili pinansyal apan makatabang sa ilang ekonomiya?


A broader perspective on the war on drugs

Dealing with the very difficult and complex challenges of the menace brought about by illegal drugs on a nationwide scale greatly necessitates an approach that has far higher and broader perspectives and comprehension of the multifaceted aspects of the problem rather than merely adapting a simplistic city-scale approach of killing drug-involved people.

In this so-called "war on drugs", if killing pushers and users is all there is that we have in our war chest, then our efforts on this war would only end up like a dog chasing its own tail -- only having much of the tiring efforts of perpetual law enforcement but achieving only minimal short periodic success that is very hardly sustainable and has no real and lasting impact on the eradication of the overall problem, just as what happened in other countries who had employed the same approach before.


By Camille Diola
September 19, 2016
PhilStar NewsLab

A global policy shift is underway after the war on drugs that dragged on for decades saw no success. In the Philippines, the same war is just beginning and despite popular support, may be doomed to the same fate.

Over the past months, a country of 100 million watches President Rodrigo Duterte try applying nationally a formula his supporters find to have worked in Davao City, long hailed a haven to honest citizens and a hell to crooks. There, as mayor for 22 years, his iron-fist approach restored security amid vigilante killings and set up social services unusual in the underdeveloped south.

On the campaign trail, Duterte vowed an end to crime and illegal drugs within his first year as president. To do this, he chose to suppress the drug trade through an aggressive, even violent, crackdown on the market. An all-out war.

John Collins, executive director of London School of Economics IDEAS International Drug Policy Project, said the Philippines has declared a war "identical" to those launched in the United States and parts of Latin America and Asia in the past decades. The campaigns led to arrests and deaths but did little to hold back the stream of substances.

"The policies pursued, in this case prohibition and repression, don't succeed in reducing the size of the market and in many cases inflame the violence and corruption associated with the market," Collins told Philstar.com in an email.

Deaths, violence and disease: A policy effect

In Duterte's early months as leader, installed by a record 16 million voters, about 3,500 people have died—almost half were killed in police operations. Duterte's team, however, tried washing its hands over killings outside police function. His top cop, Director General Ronald dela Rosa, said the deaths should not be blamed on the government.

What the world witnessed in countries with wars against cartels like Mexico, however, were deaths and "spiraling levels of violence" which many experts have attributed to an ill-conceived government policy.

"What we find is that aggressive enforcement often spikes violence by disrupting cartel structures, leading to fragmentation of operations whereby members of cartel go to war with each other for control of the organization or splinter into rival groups competing over turf," Collins said.

At least 1,000 leaders, including those whose countries have waged a war against drugs, admitted most recently in April that it was ineffective, misguided and only led to disaster.

"In Latin America, the 'unintended' consequences (of war) have been disastrous. Thousands of people have lost their lives in drug-associated violence. Drug lords have taken over entire communities. Misery has spread. Corruption is undermining fragile democracies," wrote Brazil's President Fernando Henrique Cardoso in 2009.

The drug war in Thailand in 2003 was backed by public support, but the country eventually pulled back from the policy marked by related killings and shunning of drug users as it did little to curb demand. Instead, addicts consumed illegal substances in hiding and diseases eventually spread. Treatment was neither available in prisons.

The United States, where President Richard Nixon called drugs "public enemy number one" in 1971, saw a ballooning number of poor, black people behind bars while drug supply and production were only temporarily disrupted.

"(The war in the US) has destroyed policy-community relations in many areas, and has not noticeably reduced the size of the drug market, merely displaced it in certain cases," Collins said. "The Philippines is witnessing the same dynamic."

What Duterte and his men are not saying, however, is that the Philippines' experience is not at all unique, and some devastating results could already be seen.

Vanda Felbab-Brown, an urban violence and internal conflict expert at the Washington-based Brookings Institution, shared Collins' view. Having tracked and studied drug wars around the world, she observed that while anti-narcotics policies seeking to minimize petty crime and violence naturally target drug supply, there is something striking about Duterte's strategy.

"Duterte's policy is counterproductive and doing the opposite: it is slaughtering people, it is making the retail (drug) market violent—as a result of state actions, extrajudicial killings and vigilante killings," she told Philstar.com in an email.

"Worse yet, it is hiding other forms of violence and murders as neighbors and neighborhood committee members put on the list of drug suspects their rivals and enemies and anyone can be killed and then labeled a pusher," she said.

In an open letter to Duterte, former President Cardoso and colleagues at the Global Commission on Drugs called the Philippines' war "unwinnable" with terrible costs.

"It is not a question of choosing between human rights and the safety of your people, as you have claimed, but the means employed to address crime must not result in further crimes against individuals whose conduct often causes very little harm," the open letter read.

The effects of belligerent, police-led campaigns suffered by other countries are contrary to Duterte's zero-crime and zero-drugs promises. One main reason for failure is how war could only disrupt the supply and demand cycle so far... [continued on the link provided].

Click the link to read the full article: How Duterte's drug war can fail


Philippines' war on drugs

The Stream
Al Jazeera English
Published on August 23, 2016



Salig sa Dios. Likayan ta ang pagpasigarbo

Ang pagpasigarbo mosampot sa pagka-ubos; Apan kadtong mapahiubsanon sa espiritu makabaton ug kadungganan. (Panultihon 29:23)

Alang sa tawo maayo ang tanan niyang pamaagi, apan ang Dios nagatimbang sa kasingkasing. (Panultihon 21:2)

Itugyan ngadto sa Dios ang imong mga buluhaton; ug ang imong mga panghuna-huna magmabaroganon. (Panultihon 16:3)

Salig sa Dios sa bug-os mong kasingkasing. Ayaw pagsalig sa kinaugalingon mo lamang nga panabot. Ilha ang Diyos sa tanan mong pamaagi. Ug pagatul-iron Niya ang imong mga paga-agian. (Panultihon 3:5-6)

Security of Those Who Trust in the Lord, and Insecurity of the Wicked

Psalms 37:1-15

Do not fret because of evildoers,
Be not envious toward wrongdoers.

For they will wither quickly like the grass
And fade like the green herb.

Trust in the Lord and do good;
Dwell in the land and cultivate faithfulness.

Delight yourself in the Lord;
And He will give you the desires of your heart.

Commit your way to the Lord,
Trust also in Him, and He will do it.

He will bring forth your righteousness as the light
And your judgment as the noonday.

Rest in the Lord and wait patiently for Him;
Do not fret because of him who prospers in his way,
Because of the man who carries out wicked schemes.

Cease from anger and forsake wrath;
Do not fret; it leads only to evildoing.

For evildoers will be cut off,
But those who wait for the Lord, they will inherit the land.

Yet a little while and the wicked man will be no more;
And you will look carefully for his place and he will not be there.

But the humble will inherit the land
And will delight themselves in abundant prosperity.

The wicked plots against the righteous
And gnashes at him with his teeth.

The Lord laughs at him,
For He sees his day is coming.

The wicked have drawn the sword and bent their bow
To cast down the afflicted and the needy,
To slay those who are upright in conduct.

Their sword will enter their own heart,
And their bows will be broken.


Father God, we plead for your protection and consolation

God Almighty, we plead for your protection over our land. For unless you Lord watches over our cities, our watchmen stand watch in vain against the plots of the evil ones. Forgive our nation for we have sinned against you.

Father God, in this dark moment of our nation, cause us your people, who are called by Your name, to humble ourselves and pray and seek Your face and turn from our wicked ways so that You will hear from heaven and You will forgive our sin and will heal our land.

Father God, we lift up to you our deep pain and sorrow... because at this moment, we are a nation at mourn.


Watch out against "Pegasus": A spyware in your mobile device

Sophisticated, persistent mobile attack against high-value targets on iOS
By Lookout and Citizen Lab
August 25, 2016

Persistent, enterprise-class spyware is an underestimated problem on mobile devices. However, targeted attack scenarios against high-value mobile users are a real threat.

Citizen Lab (Munk School of Global Affairs, University of Toronto) and Lookout have uncovered an active threat using three critical iOS zero-day vulnerabilities that, when exploited, form an attack chain that subverts even Apple’s strong security environment. We call these vulnerabilities “Trident.” Our two organizations have worked directly with Apple’s security team, which was very responsive and immediately fixed all three Trident iOS vulnerabilities in its 9.3.5 patch.

All individuals should update to the latest version of iOS immediately. If you’re unsure what version you’re running, you can check Settings > General > About > Version. Lookout will send an alert to a customer’s phone any time a new update is available. Lookout’s products also detect and alert customers to this threat.

Trident is used in a spyware product called Pegasus, which according to an investigation by Citizen Lab, is developed by an organization called NSO Group. NSO Group is an Israeli-based organization that was acquired by U.S. company Francisco Partners Management in 2010, and according to news reports specializes in “cyber war.” Pegasus is highly advanced in its use of zero-days, obfuscation, encryption, and kernel-level exploitation.

We have created two reports that discuss the use of this targeted attack against political dissidents and provide a detailed analysis of the malicious code itself. In its report, Citizen Lab details how attackers targeted a human rights defender with mobile spyware, providing evidence that governments digitally harass perceived enemies, including activists, journalists, and human rights workers. In its report, Lookout provides an in-depth technical look at the targeted espionage attack that is actively being used against iOS users throughout the world.

The overview

Ahmed Mansoor is an internationally recognized human rights defender and a Martin Ennals Award Laureate (sometimes referred to as a “Nobel prize for human rights”), based in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). On August 10th and 11th, he received text messages promising “secrets” about detainees tortured in UAE jails if he clicked on an included link. Instead of clicking, Mansoor sent the messages to Citizen Lab researchers. Recognizing the links as belonging to an exploit infrastructure connected to NSO group, Citizen Lab collaborated with Lookout to determine that the links led to a chain of zero-day exploits that would have jailbroken Mansoor’s iPhone and installed sophisticated malware.

This marks the third time Mansoor has been targeted with “lawful intercept” malware. Previous Citizen Lab research found that in 2011 he was targeted with FinFisher spyware, and in 2012 with Hacking Team spyware. The use of such expensive tools against Mansoor shows the lengths that governments are willing to go to target activists.

Citizen Lab also found evidence that state-sponsored actors used NSO’s exploit infrastructure against a Mexican journalist who reported on corruption by Mexico’s head of state, and an unknown target or targets in Kenya.

The NSO group used fake domains, impersonating sites such as the International Committee for the Red Cross, the U.K. government’s visa application processing website, and a wide range of news organizations and major technology companies. This nods toward the targeted nature of this software.

The Pegasus spyware

Pegasus is the most sophisticated attack we’ve seen on any endpoint because it takes advantage of how integrated mobile devices are in our lives and the combination of features only available on mobile — always connected (WiFi, 3G/4G), voice communications, camera, email, messaging, GPS, passwords, and contact lists. It is modular to allow for customization and uses strong encryption to evade detection. Lookout’s analysis determined that the malware exploits three zero-day vulnerabilities, or Trident, in Apple iOS:

1. CVE-2016-4655: Information leak in Kernel – A kernel base mapping vulnerability that leaks information to the attacker allowing him to calculate the kernel’s location in memory.

2. CVE-2016-4656: Kernel Memory corruption leads to Jailbreak – 32 and 64 bit iOS kernel-level vulnerabilities that allow the attacker to silently jailbreak the device and install surveillance software.

3. CVE-2016-4657: Memory Corruption in Webkit – A vulnerability in the Safari WebKit that allows the attacker to compromise the device when the user clicks on a link.

The attack sequence, boiled down, is a classic phishing scheme: send text message, open web browser, load page, exploit vulnerabilities, install persistent software to gather information. This, however, happens invisibly and silently, such that victims do not know they’ve been compromised.

In this case, the software is highly configurable: depending on the country of use and feature sets purchased by the user, the spyware capabilities include accessing messages, calls, emails, logs, and more from apps including Gmail, Facebook, Skype, WhatsApp, Viber, FaceTime, Calendar, Line, Mail.Ru, WeChat, SS, Tango, and others. The kit appears to persist even when the device software is updated and can update itself to easily replace exploits if they become obsolete.

We believe that this spyware has been in the wild for a significant amount of time based on some of the indicators within the code (e.g., a kernel mapping table that has values all the way back to iOS 7). It is also being used to attack high-value targets for multiple purposes, including high-level corporate espionage on iOS, Android, and Blackberry.   

To learn more

Our reports provide in-depth information about the threat actor as well as their software and the vulnerabilities exploited — Citizen Lab has tracked the actor’s political exploits around the world, while Lookout has focused on the technical details of the malware from the beginning of the exploit chain to its use. Our reports include detailed analysis of the Trident iOS vulnerabilities that are patched in the 9.3.5 release from Apple, as well as the various components of the espionage software.  

Lookout customers: Read this document on how to tell if you’re impacted by this attack.

Think you’ve encountered a suspicious link such as the ones described above? Email support@lookout.com.

Research teams:

Citizen Lab: Bill Marczak and John Scott-Railton, Senior Fellows 

Lookout: Max Bazaily, Andrew Blaich, Kristy Edwards, Michael Flossman, Seth Hardy, Staff Security Researchers, Mike Murray, VP of Security Research

Read more: Sophisticated, persistent mobile attack against high-value targets on iOS (https://blog.lookout.com/blog/2016/08/25/trident-pegasus/)


U.N., how are you? Where are you?

Watch this old video and try to observe the pattern of killings, the denial tactic, the use of hired vigilantes, the no investigations conducted, the public threats and naming mechanism, the fear it created on the citizens to speak out, the systematic cover-ups and suppression of investigations, etc. Aren't all of these things also are the exact same things that are happening today in this so-called war on drugs under the reign of this new leader?

But what are the people complaining about when in the first place they have voted for a bloody leader into office who promised them death by the thousands in the first few months of his reign? Now that members of their families are killed one by one, are their deep regrets too late for their remaining targeted loved ones?

U.N. how are you? Now that you have tasted the intimidation tactic of DU30, has your balls shrunk yet or has your tail curled between your legs already?


You were forewarned that you will be dealing with a leader who knows how to use his political stupidity to his personal foolish advantage. Look at the praises he is now fast gaining online as he lambasted you when you tried to dip your toe into the Philippine's EJK problem. In the hundreds of comments online from various global netizens, DU30 is protrayed as an emerging hero while you are portrayed as a tool and puppet of the founding superpower USA.

So what is it going to be now? Are you still interested in investigating the extrajudicial killings in the Philippines, or would you just sit down and lick your hurt balls while you watch the country gradually turning into yet another of the recent-decade killing fields?

But in all seriousness, if in case your balls recover, and your concern for the Philippines happens to still remain intact and genuine, just please don't wait too long before you act. Otherwise it might be too late. Lives.... lives of the innocent ones who are mistakenly marked and targeted, and lives of those victims of drugs who truly and honestly desire to live a new life are at stake.

Please help us if you are true to your mission... to protect and care for the rights of humanity  -- not just for the innocent, but also for the rights of those who have gone astray.

This new leader of our country only believes in the rights of the innocent. In his eyes, the criminals, particularly the drug-related criminals have lost all their rights under his own law. To him, a poor country like the Philippines cannot afford and has no capacity to incarcerate these criminals from the public and take care of them when they number by the hundreds of thousands or even a few millions. That is why, to this bloody leader's calculation, it is practical and merciful to send these criminals off to the next world (in the quickest way he prefer and love doing himself) ahead of their respective appointed times than to make them languish in inhumane jail conditions and still die of a painful and agonizing long-suffering death in incarceration. Thus justifying the need for "legal" NDS (National Death Squad) units in the National Police with special direct orders to shoot and kill the targeted criminals and in effect practically bypass the law's resource-wasting and rigorous due process. To him this policy that he is now implementing nationwide is practical, Davao-tested, and effective.

U.N., do you agree with the policy of our bloody leader? If not, then pack your balls and show your true strong concern and action. Perhaps your concern and action could warm the balls of our Supreme Court and our Senate. The lower house has been castrated already by DU30. So far the one that has balls in the Senate is a lawmaker who ironically is a lady senator. DU30 is finding it hard to castrate her because he has yet to find her balls. So instead, DU30 is now trying to squeeze the balls of the lady senator's former driver and lover to intimidate her since she is now trying to initiate a Senate investigation into the extrajudicial killings in our country. The lady senator was a former chairperson of the country's Commission on Human Rights and she was responsible for DU30's old anger towards her because she tried to investigate Davao's extrajudicial killings before.

U.N., when in case you come to help us, again I am reminding you that DU30 is a master of threats and intimidation. I hope you have your counter measures ready and you have your plans. We are waiting to thank you.