NY Times blasts Trump for inviting Duterte: A despot embracing another despot

  • US newspaper blasted Trump for inviting PH counterpart to White House
  • It said invitation another example of Trump turning America’s moral compass on its head
  • It also said invite revealed US president’s own authoritarian tendencies, fondness for strongmen

UNITED STATES – In a scathing editorial, the New York Times blasted US President Donald Trump for inviting his Philippine counterpart President Rodrigo Duterte to the White House.

In “Donald Trump Embraces Another Despot”, the daily said the invitation was another blow to America’s moral compass “encouraging people to pursue their right to self-government and human dignity and rebuking foreign leaders who fall short.”

“Like so much else under President Trump, though, this idea has now been turned on its head and people are worried about the very survival of the values on which America built its reputation and helped construct an entire international system, including the United Nations. The latest example is Mr. Trump’s decision to invite Rodrigo Duterte, the president of the Philippines, to the White House,” the NY Times said.

Describing Duterte as neither a “democratic leader nor a worthy ally” and accusing him of encouraging extrajudicial killings, the newspaper said the invitation highlighted Trump’s fondness for like-minded authoritarian strongmen— including Turkey’s Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Egypt’s Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, China’s Xi Jinping, and Russia’s Vladimir Putin.

The NY Times added that Trump’s fascination with these kind of leaders would only hurt America’s reputation in the long run.

“American presidents must work with foreign leaders of all kinds to advance the national interest. But Mr. Trump erodes America’s reputation when he uncritically embraces those who show the least regard for human rights, rule of law and democracy,” it said.