The war of words between the Donald and the Jong is getting more and more people nervous.
Over the week that passed, after delivering a speech before the UN General Assembly, Trump tweeted that Kim Jong Un is “obviously a madman who doesn’t mind starving or killing his people,” and warned that “he will be tested like never before.”
“Tested like never before” probably meant the UN Security Council’s tough economic sanctions against North Korea. But for a madman who doesn’t mind starving or killing his own people, would the Kim relent from his threats of nuking his neighbors with his newly-developed toys?
So the boy-king next blasts the Donald as a “mentally deranged US dotard” and claimed that the US (and the world) will “pay dearly” for Donald’s threats.
To which the Donald twitted the Jong, and called him “rocket man.” Weeks back, he threatened North Korea with “fire and fury like the world has never before seen.” That did not stop the Jong from sending another missile across Japan and into the Pacific.
For as long as they keep to their war of words, and wow everybody off the seat of their pants, we can all nervously twitch until the regularity becomes ho-hum.
But because one calls each other insane, one wonders if insanity can drive both to dangerously pull the trigger or push the button. And then the Northeastern Pacific, and all of the world, will get caught in a catastrophic maelstrom like it has “never before seen.”
Think particularly of the thousands of Filipino OFW’s in South Korea, who will have to be trucked or caboosed into every last “train to Busan” in the south, and then flown or shipped back to Manila. That would be a Herculean nightmare for our foreign service based in Seoul.
And that’s assuming they would have the luxury of some time, as the Jong’s rockets rain upon the South.
Given South Korea’s economic pre-eminence, that would discombobulate supply chains and spook the world’s finances, especially so since neighboring Japan would likewise be a target from the madman of Pyongyang.
So let’s all pray they keep the “war” at the level of “words.” They’ve kept us in tenterhooks for the last two months, but if it becomes tit-for-tat through a barrage of tweets and twits, we will get accustomed to it and just smile at the “new normal” in US-Nokor relations.
Except, we forget, they are “madmen,” right?
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Our Alan Peter Cayetano should also speak out on the plight of the hundreds of thousands of Rohingya being force-fired out of their Rakhine state in Myanmar, by the soldiers and their generals who have yet to understand that with the elected ascent of Aung San Suu Kyi, theirs has become a “democratic” state.
Footages seen on television and social media of the suffering inflicted upon the fleeing women, children and senior citizens among the Rohingya are too incomprehensively painful in this day and age.
What is happening to the Muslim Rohingya is becoming eerily similar to Bosnia-Herzegovina, except that while the latter had a real murderous leader in Slobodan Milocevik, the latter is led by a highly revered Nobel Prize laureate for peace.
Asean, of which our president is chairman for this year, must in unison decry the situation in Myanmar’s border with Bangladesh, along with the United Nations, and strengthen the hands of Suu Kyi in reining in her military.
Situations like these reinforce the twisted jeremiads of the IS, who will soon point out “persecution” on account of “religion” to gain more adherents to their side.
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Back home, it is a relief that the war in Marawi will soon be over. And martial law, which the rest of Mindanao never really felt since it was declared towards the end of May, will soon be lifted.
Out of fatherly concern, the President said that “we just don’t want these terrorists to hurt the hostages, as well as [having to] rid the area of hidden explosives.”
But out of sensitivity to our brother Muslims, Duterte admonished the military against “celebrating.”
“We will not have any celebration. We will go out quietly.”
“This is not a cause of celebration. Nobody won here. The soldiers cannot claim victory over Maute. Lives were lost, and there are those who were wounded,” the president intoned.
The father of the nation spoke as the leader of all Filipinos—Muslim, Christian, lumad, animist, whatever and wherever. That is as it should be always.