It’s A Two Way Street

I have just read two tragic stories involving Filipinas, knives and jealous partners. The first was of a 27 year old Aberdeen man who went to the Philippines to meet a chat room ‘penpal’. She lives with her boyfriend who was introduced to the Brit as her brother. When they returned home after a dinner out, the Brit said he was going to ask the Filipina to marry him. This set the jealous boyfriend off and he stabbed both of them, killing the man and wounding his girlfriend. He was ok with her scamming money from this man but when it came down to the wire, he couldn’t bear the thought of her marrying the foreigner.

However, are we getting the real story here as it appears the victim was also engaged to a Mexican woman. Was he playing round or is someone making this up to make him out to have ‘provoked’ the boyfriend? Filipinos do think of these things differently to us westerners and might even think the killer was justified based on the fact he is a Filipino and his pride was offended! My gut feeling is he was set up and instead of the pair mugging him, he was killed.

In the UK a Filipina married to a 66 year old Brit was stabbed in the back five times by him after she started salsa dance lessons. She nearly died but luckily he called an ambulance for her… after he called his sister! The point is that neither Filipinas or foreigners are the good guys or the bad guys, there is good and bad on both sides. If you have just met the person online and then visit them, take precautions and always make sure of who is in the party etc. If you have been married for some time there is still no guarantee your spouse won’t do something bizarre and deadly.

Adding Insult To Injury

The bus hostage crises ended in tragedy when the Manila police assaulted the bus after Mendoza killed two of the hostages. Fair enough, they were forced to act. But then they made every mistake in the book and a few new ones, took over an hour to get in and in the process another six hostages died along with the gunman.

To add insult to injury, there is a report today from Hong Kong that some of the bodies of the victims have been returned in wrongly labelled coffins from the Manila funeral home, causing grief and confusion. You have to feel sorry for the people involved, I’m sure none of them did anything wrong on purpose and are no doubt as upset as anyone but it doesn’t set the Philippines in the best of lights.

The reality is the Philippines is no more dangerous for tourists than any other country in the world and a heck of a lot safer than many major US cities. Mistakes happen everywhere, all the time. It will take a long time for the Philippines to recover from this, I fear.