The Chinese government, accustomed to ignoring, fearing or barracking the Hong Kong people, gets a rare opportunity to come to their loyal compatriots’ defence by angrily demanding that the Philippines investigate how eight Hong Kong tourists ended up dead after Monday’s bus hijacking. On-line nationalists join in the criticism of the authorities in Manila. Hong Kong people themselves flock to websites and the Philippine consulate to make their disgust known.
There is a subtext here that goes something like this…
The Philippine National Police and other law enforcement agencies in Manila in fact have a highly trained, superbly equipped, fearless, state-of-the-art special-operations squad. They can leap from helicopters, abseil down skyscrapers and burst through windows. They can insert hidden cameras and microphones anywhere. They have guns that shoot round corners, laser rifle sights, night vision equipment, robots, armed dogs, body armour, stun grenades and the latest, most sophisticated radio networks.
But these elite forces are called out to rescue only hostages who are Filipino, African, Eskimo, Western, Japanese, Korean, Arab, Turk or Pacific Islander. If they are Chinese, the senior commander says: “Nyaaa, don’t bother with the hi-tech SWAT Team, just send in a bunch of petrified idiots with ill-fitting helmets and a hammer, because the hostages are only Chinese, so what the hell hahahahahah!”
Just wait until we sort out the South China Sea issue and they find Rizal Park is PRC territory at high tide.
The rumour is that the Big Lychee’s overworked, double-income, middle-class families are firing their Filipino maids in protest at the tragedy in Manila. So in theory we should soon be seeing truckloads of tearful, dusky young women tied together by their thumbs trundling to the airport for deportation. Followed by the sight of certain people wiping their own baby’s backside, mopping their own floor, washing their own car at 5am, picking up their own Airedale’s excrement with newspaper, and telling their overweight teen to carry his own school bag. Or maybe not.
OK, it’s been over 36 hours now – time to get down to the really important details we are all bursting with curiosity to know about.
The standard once again raises the bar in journalism expertise to new lows.
Yes, the locals are asking “What if the hostages were Americans?” – but then seem to ignore the fact that the outcome would probably have been the same, given the extreme incompetence of the Manila police.
However they probably do have a point – the Philippine upper class/establishment probably still regards the Chinese as their inferiors – it’s not so long ago that most self-respecting households in Manila had Chinese maids from, er, Hong Kong………
Phillippino’s are lovely, loyal people, though the country and its organisational skills are a basket case.
HK’ers are pragmatic people. Anger yes, to the extent that one has to iron one’s own shirt? no.
While there is a compensation culture in HK, I don’t think its coming from the families at present.
A 14 year old girl died shielding her brother, a father died doing similar. Perhaps it’s things like this that gives us hope for HK, that unselfishness and bravery exist.
My wife is a Filipina, she said last night discussing all the incompetence and corruption, “why do you think we’re all trying to leave?”
Always stimulating to see the Chinese indulging in what they do best: xenophobia and racist hysteria.
The same number of innocent people were killed yesterday in Afghanistan but they were not Chinese so do not count.
And where are the Government cheques and collection boxes for the stricken of Pakistan? Only in civilised countries.
A question worth asking.
Why didn’t the authorities simply agree to give the disturbed man his job back? Perhaps on the usual paid leave while the investigation of the allegations of corruption and testicle torture continued.
Surely, a cop with an M-16 jumping aboard a bus and waving it around is
not such an unheard of event among the loyal serving members of the Philippines law enforcement establishment. Such a thing in itself might have been overlooked rather than grounds for a misguided response and the ensuing debacle and bloodshed of innocent people.
A friend today saw a worldwide list on the efficiency of police SWAT teams. I think UK came out No 1, USA 2 , HK about 6, China 10………..and Philippines about 200 +. All this talk about firing Philippine maids is total rubbish. HK is providing a decent and well governed place for the Filipinas to live and work, and if I had had the misfortune to have been born in the Philippines I would come to work in HK at the first possible opportunity to escape the corrupt and totally awful government there. I feel really sorry for the people of the Philippines, and although we give Donald and his “lame duck” govt a lot of stick about all the things that are wrong here in HK, it’s at times like that this that I appreciate all the things here that our govt does right.
Actually lamontcranston, I was amazed a policeman in the Phil’s was actually fired for corruption. He must have felt he was singled out. Not just the Phil’s, police on the mainland reportedly run hair salons as fronts for prostitution, the demand by police for ‘tea money’ as a shakedown of drivers is common practice in most other parts of Asia. yes, we need to be thankful of some things in HK.
lamontcranston makes a valid point – why didn’t the negotiators promise the hijacker anything he wanted, plus a slice of the moon as a sweetener? It’s not like he was asking for “one million dollars” and the release of political prisoners in ten different countries. All they had to say was, “Sure, just come to work as usual tomorrow, here’s a promotion and a bonus”, and then slap the irons on him when he was at a safe distance from civilians.
Did the negotiators seriously think they were supposed to be honest with him?
I’ve just fired my Filipino maid. She was a flipping disorganised, untrained nightmare. She took over an hour attempting to open a tin of beans using a screwdriver, her nail file, her nail clippers or indeed any object which didn’t look like a tin-opener. Also, after using a crowbar for 30 minutes just to open the fridge door, she would flee out of the kitchen, petrified of the fridge contents. Then she would spend the next 20 minutes cowering behind the sofa.
There were some pics of him standing on the steps at the bus door, maybe a foot or two away from the two “negotiators” standing outside. The three can be seen chatting with one another, in very close range. The hijacker also had his rifle slung around his arm, with two hands free… and he was not in any position to shoot.
Yes, I know we weren’t there and we can’t say for sure, but couldn’t the bozo cops just grab his arms and pull him out of the bus, and beat the crap out of him? How about pulling out a pistol and shooting the guy in the arms or legs?
I just couldn’t believe the “SWAT” team took that long to break the windows and storm the bus.
Funny how the Government freezes maids’ salaries today.
My helper knows of four maids who’ve been sacked in the last 2 days due to this incident. One of them simply because she shares the same name as the hostage taker.
Before castigating the irrationality of employers, I think back to the Falklands War and how we all gave hell to Ossie Ardiles & the bloke with the beard at Spurs. Pot, kettle, black I suppose.
Dr Dom – LOL. I’ll be chuckling all day thinking about your post.
… always stimulating to see the Chinese indulging in what they do best : xenophobia and racist hysteria.
Please give your reasons and cite some examples, sir.
By the way, Afghanistan is in the midst of guerilla warfare, but these tourists are in a supposedly tourist resort in capital Manila.
Tour companies should be more forthright in their disclaimers.
“Absence of invading US forces is not necessarily an indicator of a safe destination. Travellers are advised to exercise judgement.”
Still won’t get them off the hook if someone claims compensation, though. Especially if they’re on legal aid.