Killing that number of drug users would "finish the problem of my country and save the next generation from perdition," he said.Duterte took office in June, and the police have killed 1,000+ drug suspects (according to the police). Duterte's statement was a reaction to criticism about these killings — criticism from European Union officials.
ADDED: From a Washington Post article, published last April, quoted on this blog:
Duterte’s neo-authoritarian style, alongside ‘anti-Imperial Manila’ sentiments, has fueled his popularity, particularly in his birthplace of southern Mindanao. Duterte does not deny his poor human rights record — instead he brags about extrajudicial killings that he claims were necessary to pacify Davao.... Along with his bombastic style and rough language — which is typical of a many local politicians but unusual in national politics — this cavalier attitude makes him a kind of Philippine version of Donald Trump.I don't know how seriously to take Duterte's statement about killing 3 million drug addicts. It's important to see that he was getting bombastic pushing back the Europeans who were assuming the high ground, lecturing him on how to behave. He also took a shot at them for not taking in migrants from the Middle East: “You allow them to rot, and then you’re worried about the death of about 1,000, 2,000, 3,000?”
Is Duterte properly comparable to Donald Trump? Well, both men use language in a way that works with the people, and both get compared to Hitler. Obviously, Hitler had a way early on of coming right out and saying what he planned to do. It was hard to believe.
Things that sound so much like hyperbole.
AND: "I believe that those who knew me in those days took me for an eccentric."