I can understand why Duterte had reasons to be anti-American under Obama, who criticized him on human rights ground.

But from what I gather (my sources are mainly Asia centric geopolitics podcasts like The Diplomat), he's still anti-American, both in word and deed, even though (1) Obama has since long left the Presidency office; and Trump never criticized him; (2) The population of Philippines don't support that anti-Americanism at all (This Pew graph shows 80-90% support), so he's not playing it for the sake of domestic audience.


I'm not sure that all of your premises holds up. While the view on the American people is positive, the view on American leadership is less so. 94% had confidence in Obama regarding world affairs, but that percentage is reduced to 69% under Trump.

It still is - and was - a positive view though, so I agree that this is likely not for the benefit of the domestic audience.

It does seems that Duterte has a positive view on Trump and hoped for an improvement in US-Philippine relations:

I don’t want to quarrel anymore, because Trump has won

Looking at what Duterte says on the issue, it seems that his problem is at least partly because part of the US government still criticizes him on human rights violations:

I’ve seen America and it’s lousy... it would be good for the U.S. Congress to start with their own investigation of their own violations of the so many civilians killed in the prosecution of the wars in the Middle East

While this criticism doesn't come from Trump, it does come from other US law makers as well as the state department (see next link). The quote above for example is in response to James McGoverns concerns.

Duterte also seems to have a problem with what he sees as American values, for example its 'multi-racial character'.

While US critizism of the Philippines and US values may change under Trump in the long term, it is a gradual change, so I wouldn't expect any anti-americanism to change suddenly either, but gradually as well.

  • 5
    I think it's fair to say they like us a lot if confidence in our leaders is something like twice as common there as here.
    – user9389
    Sep 12 '17 at 21:24

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