Why is Duterte soft on China? | Inquirer Opinion
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Why is Duterte soft on China?

/ 05:01 AM April 09, 2021

China is slowly eating up our territory, but President Duterte remains quiet. Many are confused as to why he is maintaining his position of quiet passivity.

I believe the problem stems from his life-long reputation of being a tough guy. He never runs away from a fight—backing down would mean loss of face. He can hurl tough words at the United States and he is sure he would not get challenged to a fight. But if he stands up to China, he would immediately be confronted, and he would have a fight that he realizes he cannot win. He would have to back down and lose face.

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Hence, it is easier to flaunt his friendship with China and assert that all differences with a friend can be resolved through silent diplomacy. We can only hope that Mr. Duterte and his group will be replaced after the 2022 elections.

Rene Torres, Makati City, [email protected]

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