Since the inception of the Marshall Plan it’s been U.S. policy to discourage or expel troublesome dictators who appear destined to grow in power and external threat capabilities. Political experience recognizes that leaders or governments who treat their own citizens badly tend to show the same ill will toward other sovereign governments and foreign nationals. The situation makes it difficult to ignore despots.
Recently, despot-in-chief and Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte expanded his operations from extrajudicial executions of illicit drug consumers and traffickers (the poor) to killing labor leaders, or what Duterte calls “communist rebels”:
…“Nothing could be more apt than calling this day a ‘Bloody Sunday,’” Ms. Palabay said in a statement. She said the killings were part of a “murderous campaign of state terror” by the government of President Rodrigo Duterte to stifle legitimate dissent, and she urged the country’s independent Commission on Human Rights to investigate the raids.
Three activists were arrested in the raids, including a paralegal who worked for Karapatan, Ms. Palabay said. […]
It’s not as if the U.S. hasn’t joined other nations or the ICC in the past in toppling leaders unfit for power, or who merely oppose U.S. interests. President Idi Amin of Uganda was removed from power after he admitted to being a cannibal. Manuel Noriega of Panama was deposed after refusing to cancel the Panama Canal Treaty with the U.S. that transferred control of the canal to Panama. To justify his removal, the George H. W. Bush administration indicted Noriega on charges of cocaine trafficking. The alleged cocaine discovered in Noriega’s residence turned out to be flour.
The present irony is that President Joe Biden is one of the architects of the drug war, beginning his career in the Nixon era as a naive 29-year-old U.S. senator representing Delaware. Drug Czar William J. Bennett filled Biden’s head with disinformation about drugs, falsehoods like marijuana gateways, the crack-cocaine sentencing disparity, and instant and absolute addiction to crack. Biden acted upon the lies, later being forced to apologize for the disinformation he was fed.
Duterte uses the methods and ideologies of Nixon, Bennett, and Biden as both an excuse and a tool to commit mass murder. Should Biden act to eliminate Duterte, he may find it within himself—after nearly 50 years of public service—to concede to wiping the slate clean of all drug wars and prohibition related U.S. drug policies that tyrants employ against their citizens or opponents. Who knows? The President might even agree to the full legalization of cannabis.