Ouch, Yet Another Foreigner Brutally Murdered - Goodbye Herman Kruse

peter's picture

"A 68-year-old German man was stabbed to death by an unidentified attacker at his residence in the central Philippines, a police report said Friday. Herman Kruse was watching television with his Filipino wife at their house in Daan Bantayan town in Cebu province..."  http://www.earthtimes.org/articles/show/275950,german-man-stabbed-to-death-in-central-philippines.html

For the past week, the yahoo boards have been full of the discussions of the "British national" who was murdered in his home seven days back... was he stupid to have left the door open (no signs of forcible entry...? ) or was the foreigner an evil person who deserved to die (so who cares how it happened) or did his wife kill him (http://www.aklanon.net/news/police-suspect-wife-killed-briton-husband.html).

The week before that, it was another foreigner, near Manila, killed while his wife was having tea next door.

It's interesting to watch the conversations - some people say in ten years in the Philippines they've never had any trouble whatsoever, etc.  The next response is that these people either don't understand what's going on around them ("ignorance is bliss... and a ticket to survival...") or are trying to justify an existence that is fraught with danger - but still less unpleasant than returning to some situation they've run away from (?) ... Then the conversation turns to how the wife was the one who killed him, or had him killed by her boyfriend or even her other husband ...

Did the foreigner insult the wrong person?  What did he say?  Did the foreigner sexually abuse prepubescent girls?  Or physically mature but underage girls?  Or did he get angry at his wife?

Unfortunately, in most of these cases, we just do not find out even one tenth of the story.  We read the discussions as if they are a Rorschach test, and even our reading of the discussions is a Rorschach test of ourselves.  Expats are such an odd lot -- the odd bunch who never quite fit in at home -- it's like trying to herd rottweilers to get them to support one another and share perspectives calmly.

One thing that is certain is that life expectancy in the Philippines is reduced when one has enemies; and that enemies can be made.

Whether or not some particular foreigners were poorly-behaved in the actions that made them enemies, I have no idea.  But the importance of remembering everyday to try to avoid making enemies - this is something Filipinos wake up and go to sleep thinking about - at least the ones who are still here with us - and we have to follow that example to increase our life expectancy too.


what concerns me the most is the absence of justice in the philippines.

a suspect of a crime is considered guilty until proven innocent.

you get accused of anything that you have not done and you will have to buy your way out of the injustice.

in some areas crime suspects get executed before they are even tried.  in a normal country suspects are innocent until proven guilty.

people get shot in the phils regularily by vigiliantes for being crime suspects, for voicing an opinion or for writing an article:




do you think there is a warning?

It does seem that a relationship-independent sense of justice doesn't occupy the same place in the dispute resolution philiosophy/system in the Philippines (and most of the world) as in comparison settings.

Do you think that there is always a warning "shot over the bow" or do you think that those who are the recipients of extrajudicial dispute resolution are simply terminated with/without prejudice?

warning from killers?

peter, that is a good question.

i do not know. does it matter?

maybe sometimes those victims get a warning, sometimes they don't.

do you think that the children who get shot in davao got a warning from their murderers?


think about a situation when a foreigner has a dispute with his filipino neighbor. do you think that can happen?

or a foreigner dating a girl without even knowing that she has a filipino boyfriend. does that happen? will he get a warning?


most foreigners in the phils get killed by robbers and jealous boyfriends.

most foreigners go to jail because of setups by police, police plants drugs on foreigners  or because of double standards. filipinos can operate bars, if a foreigner gets involved he will be put to jail for trafficing. jail in the phils is like a death penalty or even worse.


does it matter

It matters to me.  If I'm living in the Philippines, it certainly benefits me to understand the written and unwritten laws and morals here.

I don't know the statistics on why foreigners die or are victims of murder/attempted murder.  I do read about regularly and would like to know the statistics.  I'd also like to know more of the background of the specific cases, but like most foreigners here I don't do the journalistic work to investigate the specifics but keep my head semi stuck in the sand.  Maybe if you come back here you can take up the hobby of whenever a foreigner gets killed, flying to the scene, doing your own investigation.  I'd pay a dollar a day to subscribe to a newsletter with that information.

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