Davao, Philippines: Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte on Friday likened his deadly crime war to Hitler’s efforts to exterminate Jews, as he declared he was “happy to slaughter” millions of drug addicts.
Duterte also railed against Western critics of his unprecedented law-and-order crackdown, which has left more than 3,000 people dead in three months and raised concerns about a breakdown in the rule of law in one of Asia’s most chaotic democracies.
“Hitler massacred three million Jews. Now there are three million drug addicts (in the Philippines). I’d be happy to slaughter them,” Duterte told reporters in his home city of Davao shortly after returning from Vietnam.
“At least if Germany had Hitler, the Philippines would have,” he said, then paused. “But you know, my victims, I would like to be (sic) all criminals to finish the problem of my country and save the next generation from perdition.”
Duterte won elections in May in a landslide after a campaign dominated by his pledge to eradicate drugs in society by killing tens of thousands of people. Since Duterte came to power on June 30, police have killed more than 1,200 people and about 1,800 others have died in unexplained circumstances, according to official figures.
His analogy with Hitler, whose campaign to wipe out Jews in Europe led to about six million deaths by the end of WWII, triggered more condemnation. “Any comparison of the singular atrocities of the Holocaust with anything else is totally unacceptable,” German foreign ministry spokesman Martin Schaefer said....