>> What do you do when the President lies?
Then it’s repeated.
A million times.
>> The critically acclaimed film about one woman’s fight.
>> I’m Maria Ressa.
>> Maria carries the torch of press freedom in a country held in thrall by a popullist president.
>> It’s going to be bloody.
>> We demanded the government be held accountable.
>> The charges against Ressa were aimed at intimidating those who challenged Duterte’s rule.
>> This is not the Philippines I knew.
And I have done no crime.
>> >> If you don't use your rights you will lose them.
>> Now on Frontline - A Thousand Cuts.
(people talking in background) >> You want to be somewhere within reaching distance, because I will come to you for...
Pia, you're my first strike.
>> What will you ask me?
(giggles) >> I'm assuming I'm going to ask you what it was like to get banned from the palace.
>> Okay, got it.
>> Rambo, you, of course, numbers.
Drug war, what's changed, right?
>> Because it's on two fronts, right?
You have the, people expect... People think that's the main accomplishment, so what did they really accomplish?
>> Okay, breaking it down.
>> Five... >> Hello and welcome, I'm Maria Ressa.
We are at the 2018 State of the Nation address.
Use the hashtag #SONA2018.
"Rappler" team is there.
>> Rodrigo Roa Duterte, president of the Republic of the Philippines.
(audience applauding) >> Let me begin by putting it bluntly.
The illegal drugs war will not be sidelined.
Instead, it will be as relentless and chilling, if you will, as on the day it began.
Your concern is human rights.
Mine is human lives.
>> Wow... wow.
♪ ♪ >> (speaking Filipino) >> Award-winning Filipina journalist Maria Ressa, the founder of the independent news site "Rappler," vocal critic of Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte... >> Maria Ressa, a high-profile journalist in the Philippines, she was named Time Magazine Person of the Year in 2018... >> Maria Ressa carries the torch of press freedom in a country held in thrall by a populist president.
♪ ♪ >> "Rappler," since you are a, a fake news outlet, then...
Your articles are rife with innuendos and pregnant with falsity.
Tell me where is our lies, and I'll tell you where are yours.
♪ ♪ (horns honking, vehicles moving in distance) >> Okay.
It's, like, let me focus you first on what's happening in the entire information ecosystem.
It's dark and light, let me, let me use that now, right?
They're trying to actively form alternative news.
And they've succeeded.
Trending News Portal was a really good distribution.
Mocha is a really good distribution.
That's why, all of a sudden, our society is so polarized, because that's what they're doing.
This group just amplifies, pounds, but they never share any of the traditional news sites.
And the traditional news sites are so blind that they don't even see they're getting killed here, right?
This is fascinating-- it's a snapshot of our information ecosystem today.
(performing "Buttons" by The Pussycat Dolls) >> I never planned to be in politics.
When I supported then-Mayor Duterte, it was just voluntary.
We need an iron hand in dealing with criminals.
The reach of Mocha Uson blog, 50 million people.
(speaking Filipino): I entered the government helping with the information dissemination of different government agencies for social media.
For a dancer like me, for an entertainer like me, to be appointed in Malacañang, that's really something big.
(speaking Filipino): And last but not the least... (speaking Filipino): "Duterte: Journey to the Presidency."
(speaking Filipino): >> 1,164 shares.
>> (speaking Filipino): >> Reached 233,860.
♪ ♪ (crowd cheering) >> So I take this as a God-given mission to become President Duterte's right-hand man in his fight against drugs, criminality, and corruption.
>> He's the first chief implementer of the government's war on drugs.
After his retirement, he was chosen to clean up the corrections bureau, also plagued with illegal drug problems.
♪ ♪ (people talking in background) >> (speaking Filipino): (clears throat) (men chuckling) (men laughing) (men cheering and applauding) Trust me, I have my own way of stopping you from doing your illegal acts-- trust me, ah.
Believe you me, I can stop you, ah.
So... (speaking Filipino): (men respond) >> Gentleman's agreement, huh?
>> Yes, sir!
>> Gentleman's agreement.
(speaking Filipino): >> Yes, sir!
>> (speaking Filipino) >> Yes, sir!
>> (speaking Filipino): >> Yes, sir!
>> (speaking Filipino): (man coughing) (speaking Filipino): (men cheer and applaud) ♪ ♪ >> We're sitting now with Davao mayor Rody Duterte.
Thank you for joining us.
>> (speaking Filipino): >> Can you please, you are the man of the hour, people wanting to know whether you're running for president, vice president, yes, no?
Where are you?
>> I told you to avoid me.
I'm telling the Filipino people... (speaks Filipino) It's gonna be bloody.
>> So no qualms about killing killers?
>> Yes, of course, I, I must admit, I have, I have killed.
(stammers) Three months early on, I, I killed, what... Three people?
>> The level of poverty on the ground is phenomenal.
They've had other presidents and other governments, and their lives have not gotten better.
>> (speaking Filipino): It is not for the people.
>> Duterte comes in, he offers not just change.
He offers revenge.
"Whoever did this to you, I will stop it."
>> (speaking Filipino): Four months from now... (speaking Filipino): (crowd cheers and applauds) >> Rodrigo Duterte and Alan Peter Cayetano campaigned in Cainta, one of the most... towns in Rizal.
I've covered Duterte for a long time.
I covered Duterte when he was still the mayor, who nobody really, who everybody thought was just a wild card.
(speaking Filipino): >> Usually salted fish and eggs, sunny side up.
>> He had a reputation of being an iron-fisted mayor.
He had a lot of nicknames, like, people were calling him Dirty Harry, or the Dirty Harry of Mindanao.
>> Just because you're a journalist, you think you're exempted from assassination?
>> But, sir... >> (speaking Filipino): It's all wrong.
>> He may have been a politician, but he was an outsider politician, like, a small-time politician.
So his messaging was being someone cut out from political elite circles in Manila.
"I'm an outsider, and I'm here to change everything."
(crowd cheering and chanting) >> (speaking Filipino): (crowd cheering and applauding) >> (performing pop campaign song) (song continues) >> I, Rodrigo Roa Duterte... >> President Duterte, right after his inauguration, stood on a platform and said, "If you're into drugs, "sometime in the next few years, you will make a mistake and I will kill you."
It took three hours.
The first body was found a few blocks away from where he spoke.
♪ ♪ >> Please, sir.
>> The longest time.
>> A year-- actually, that's what I'm going to start off with.
And I'll just say that, a year ago, this is what we, we talked then, and you've done everything you said.
>> In the hindsight, did you really believe that...
I had a good chance of making it?
>> All of our surveys showed it.
We had-- I'll show you all the... yeah.
>> (speaking Filipino) >> We knew by February.
>> By what standard... (speaking Filipino) >> Social media.
>> It's a powerful thing.
>> By February we knew.
In 2016, "Rappler" fought two levels of impunity.
The first was the drug war.
The war on drugs became a war on the poor.
We had one team that would go out every night, they would come home with at least eight dead bodies a night.
The narrative of the government is that they fought back.
These are extra-judicial killings or murder.
>> (speaking Filipino): You can criticize us to high heavens.
(speaking Filipino): Inside your heart... >> "Impunity" in the drug war was a continuing series.
We put faces and names to the people being killed.
We demanded the government be held accountable.
Anyone on Facebook who questioned the people who were being killed was automatically bashed.
We began to gather data.
We began to look at the accounts attacking all of media.
We stumbled onto something-- disinformation networks.
When you see the network that spreads it, you can follow other networks, and then you can see its growth.
Mid-September, I started writing.
First, the weaponization of the internet.
The second piece was how Facebook algorithms impact democracy.
As soon as we released it, we got pounded.
I was getting an average of 90 hate messages per hour.
Mocha Uson blog, she attacked "Rappler," said, "Oh, 'Rappler's' C.I.A."
Followed by another blogger, Thinking Pinoy, who seeded the ideas that we're foreign-controlled.
>> "Rappler" is misrepresenting itself... >> (speaking Filipino): >> It was the second State of the Nation address.
It comes out of President Duterte's own mouth.
Try to pierce the identity, and you will end up American ownerships.
You're supposed to be 100% Filipino.
>> Of course, we were covering it live.
I automatically tweeted, "Mr. President, you're wrong."
I was told later on that offended him.
What do you do when the president lies, then it's repeated a million times so people have no idea what the truth is?
This set the stage.
A week after the president did that, we got our first subpoena.
January 2018, the government tried to close "Rappler."
Tried to revoke our license to operate.
In a little more than a year, we faced 11 cases.
(people talking in background) >> Oh, hi, sir, sir, earlier in your speech, you said that the issue in the SEC ruling against "Rappler" is not an issue of press freedom.
But at the same time during your speech, you were giving comments about the media and about "Rappler."
(speaking Filipino): >> So what does that mean, sir?
You say that this is not an attack on media, but you also have attacks on media in your own speech... >> Let me give you an example.
Your inquisitive mind goes beyond its normal proportions.
One of these days, I'll file a plunder case.
But when I go plunder case, you will go to jail without the bail.
>> 'Cause the end goal is to actually make you doubt the facts.
>> (chanting): Mocha!
>> (speaking Filipino): >> (speaking Filipino): (drumming) (crowd cheers) (people talking in background) >> Good morning, we're joined today by former Philippine National Police chief Ronald Bato dela Rosa, who's now, of course, the Bureau of Corrections chief, also.
Now, as soon as you file your C.O.C., you'll be deemed resigned... >> Yes.
>> Now, what made you decide to actually run for senator?
>> Uh... (speaking Filipino): At the same time... (speaking Filipino): >> But other people also see it as the way of the president to put loyal lieutenants in the Senate.
That's why supposedly he wants you there.
(speaking Filipino) Loyal to the president, to protect his interests, not just his... agenda of governance.
>> (speaking Filipino): Anybody who'd like to, to bring down the president... (speaking Filipino): (crowd shouting) ♪ ♪ >> (speaking Filipino): >> Duterte!
(crowd shouting and chanting) >> Duterte!
♪ ♪ >> (speaking Filipino): >> Your boss is already talking to us, no need for that.
(cameras clicking) >> A prominent critic of Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has been arrested.
Maria Ressa is C.E.O.... >> A warrant for a cyber-libel case was served past 5:00 p.m. inside "Rappler's" office in Pasig City.
>> Press freedom advocates say the government's charges against her are retaliation for her critical reporting of authorities in the Philippines.
>> (speaking Filipino) >> We'll go, we'll go to NBI now.
We'll go to the NBI, can you guys come?
(people talking in background, cameras clicking) >> It's a shock, it's a shock, but we're going.
♪ ♪ (people talking in background) >> No further comment.
>> (speaking Filipino) >> Excuse us, excuse us.
(cameras clicking) >> They're running the clock.
What do they think they can do by keeping me overnight?
>> Can you go to the NBI team and ask them why they are not talking to us?
>> We have until 9:00 to be able to post bail.
Without the right documents, we cannot post bail, so they're...
Stumbling blocks to prevent...
It's a night in prison, it's a night here, but apparently the delay is on purpose.
>> Free Maria Ressa!
>> Demand press freedom!
>> Free Maria Ressa!
>> Demand press freedom!
>> Free Maria Ressa!
>> Demand press freedom!
(audio fades) >> Free Maria Ressa!
>> My stay last night at the NBI really made me think about what this is all about, right?
And for me, it's about two things: abuse of power and weaponization of the law.
This isn't just about me and it's not just about "Rappler."
I'll be very transparent.
(voice breaking): Because I have done nothing...
This case, the cyber-libel case, the National Bureau of Investigations' own lawyers threw it out.
But they reversed their position, and the Department of Justice and the government prosecutors now are taking this.
The story which supposedly violated the cyber-libel laws published seven years ago, four months before the actual law we supposedly violated had even been enacted.
They're applying a law retroactively, right?
(people talking in background) >> International journalists' organizations are saying this is an attack on the media.
>> Blaming the administration for it.
>> (speaking Filipino): >> Your policy on critical media?
>> (speaking Filipino): >> Thank you, thank you.
>> (speaking Filipino): It means nothing to me.
♪ ♪ >> When the war on drugs started, a lot of people were dying.
The government wasn't quick enough to show how many people were dying.
How many people were gunned down in police operations.
How many people were gunned down by vigilante-style killers.
So there's this counting by the government.
4,500 gunned down within police operations.
And human rights advocates estimate the killings to be around 20,000, including the killings which were at least inspired by the war on drugs of President Duterte.
>> Tonight, we are following a team of policemen conducting a simultaneous anti-crime and law enforcement operations to seize people who are violating city ordinances, following the order of President Rodrigo Duterte to go after tambays.
We will see how they execute the order of the president.
(speaking Filipino): (dog barking) >> (speaking Filipino): >> (speaking Filipino): >> (speaking Filipino): >> Congratulations, sir.
>> (speaking Filipino): >> MAN: >> TALABONG: >> MAN: (music playing) (audience applauding) >> Otso Diretso candidate, the sole woman in our lineup of nine candidates, Samira Gutoc coming in... (audience applauds and cheers) >> (speaking Filipino): is a woman who stands without fear, without threat to her life, that she is willing to run alongside giants and along honorable men.
(marching band playing, man calling on microphone) ♪ Otso Diretso!
♪ ♪ Otso Diretso!
♪ >> Morning!
(speaking Filipino) (laughs) (trumpet playing) It's a trial for our country, it's a trial for our democracy.
There needs to be genuine opposition.
The excuse that people say is, like, "We're tired, we want results.
"We want people who really fight drugs.
We want people to, to look at safe streets."
I understand that, of course, everyone wants that.
But you cannot kill the young.
You cannot kill youths.
You cannot kill a man for the sake of, you know, like, cleaning up the streets.
We cannot be judge and executioner at one time.
(engine revving) >> (speaking Filipino): (crowd cheers) (clears throat) ♪ What would I do without your smart mouth ♪ ♪ Drawing me in and you kicking me out ♪ ♪ Got my head spinning, no kidding ♪ ♪ I can't pin you down ♪ ♪ What's going on in that beautiful mind ♪ ♪ I'm on your magical mystery ride ♪ (speaking Filipino): >> (calling out) I love you, Bato!
♪ ♪ (thunder rumbling) >> We were in a place called Cessna.
There's a murder.
So, one body on the ground.
Sprawled, his eyes were open, he was dead.
And they were shooting, everyone was shooting, and the brothers showed up and they were screaming.
(speaking Filipino) (bleep) Because he was dead.
And... uh... the... We were all crowded, and I remember someone from "Playboy" magazine asking someone to translate, so I said, "(bleep) you."
I didn't mean "(bleep) you" to the guy, but the brothers really were saying, "(Bleep) you."
And I remember that, I don't know why I remember that.
But two seconds after that, we hear a wailing from the other side of the alley, and...
I'm not sure they were words.
The mother had discovered her son was dead.
And in the narrowest alley that I had ever seen, there was a woman who was crawling along the wall of the shanties, hanging onto grills, trying to pull herself to her son, because her legs wouldn't work.
She, she was trembling and she was screaming.
And on top of all the screaming, there were journalists who were also screaming.
"Is your son an addict?"
"How do you feel?"
"What's his name?
", "What's your name?
", all of that.
It was one of my first days.
And I didn't know what to do.
I didn't know if I was supposed to step in.
If I was supposed to...
I didn't know what I was supposed to do.
So I just recorded.
And then the... the mother, who was still screaming, heard the questions, and, being Filipino, answered them.
At a wail, "No, my son is good.
"No, he's a good boy, he's a good boy, he's a good boy, he's..." I can't, I can't forget the scream.
The story was called "Execution at Cessna."
>> (speaking Filipino): We submit to his authority.
We respect the government, we respect the president.
(speaking Filipino): (laughs) ♪ ♪ >> Hi, guys.
So we're now here at "Rappler" office.
To prove to Ms. Ressa, that, you know, we're not trolls.
That we are here to express our outrage.
>> And fight for our country.
>> 'Cause they are destroying our country and we're not going to sit here and let them do it.
>> (speaking Filipino): And this is what we're going to say to Ms. Ressa and to the people at "Rappler."
>> Tell your boss she has no business destroying the country.
You take your orders from an American.
How can you live with yourselves?
(speaking Filipino) ♪ ♪ >> This one, this is why, because that account posted, and then it was amplified by what's-his-name.
Everything can be turned upside down.
(woman murmurs) I just let Facebook know.
♪ ♪ Hi!
Just this morning, they said, "Come to Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf."
Yeah, for a physical protest at our office.
The worst thing, of course, is, the government amplified their call.
Well, we don't even know whether we can trust the police to protect us.
Our security will now be ramped up, one, two, six times.
I also am going to deal with that.
And I want you guys to be very aware of your surroundings.
We've always been like that, anyway, and please report immediately if there is anything, um, that you see that is strange, right?
They wanted to come to prove they weren't trolls, but then their very action is actually proving they're trolls, and then that is what incited all the comments.
So that's the liability that we think they have.
Because it would, those threats would never have happened if they never did the Facebook Live outside our office.
>> I see.
Um, taking the devil's advocate position... >> Please.
>> They will argue that they're just exercising their right to free speech and they don't have any hold over their DDS supporters or... >> But they have hold over their timeline.
They could have deleted it, they could have told their people, "Hey, that's not good.
You shouldn't say things like that."
Or, "Hey, that's illegal."
The fact that they didn't and, in fact, even encouraged it, Facebook took it down because this is inciting to hate and inciting to violence.
That's the policy they violated.
>> We'd like to continue with our, our live... Our live Facebook.
>> You know who's this for, right?
>> Who is it for?
(laughs) >> ♪ Maria, Maria ♪ (men speaking in video) >> All right... >> Losers!
(people talking in background) >> Hello!
>> Are you a troll?
>> Uh, (bleep) you, Ressa.
>> (laughs): Are you a troll?
>> No, I'm not a troll, you look like a tree troll, though.
>> Yeah, tell her, tell her.
We are at the devil's lair, people.
Okay, we'll continue later.
>> Is any of it being shared?
>> Mocha wasn't there.
>> But she amplified long the call to... >> Go to here.
>> But the timing of it, why now?
>> (mumbles) >> Elections.
(music playing) (singing) >> (speaking Filipino): (applauding) >> When I dropped out from med school, my parents were really hurt.
(speaking Filipino): One night...
He called me on the phone.
(speaking Filipino): "I love you... no matter what."
(speaking Filipino): Finally he's accepted the path that I chose.
So I went to bed very happy.
The next day, we got a call, he's dead.
Shot six times.
He was assassinated.
(speaking Filipino) riding in tandem.
Because he was a judge.
And he was handing a mayoral electoral protest.
So it was political.
(speaking Filipino): There are criminals pretending to be politicians.
(speaking Filipino): ♪ ♪ >> Violence.
And you say this, um, you know, violence is okay.
>> Violence is my strength.
>> Is it necessary, to lead?
>> There is a need because there's a war.
And with that kind of problem in my hands now, I tell you, Maria, until I see the last pusher out of the street, until the last drug lord is killed, this campaign will continue to the very last day of my term.
>> Is it important that people be afraid of you?
>> But Mr. President, as president, you now also defend the constitution.
>> And so, again, this, this is a contradiction from our last interview.
You break the law, you threaten to break the law.
You said you had killed, a year ago, right?
You told me that, and yet you now have the task of keeping the rule of law, and you said you would do that also-- how do you...?
>> Because the rule of law, there must be fear.
>> Thank you for having me.
>> We are so honored.
>> It's about time.
>> No, I mean-- and thank you for the statement, I saw you got trolled.
>> Right away!
>> You got trolled there!
>> And we had a bomb threat yesterday.
So that's a good sign.
(laughs) (audience applauding) >> At a time when our basic rights are constantly being threatened, human lives are being disregarded, and our freedoms are under attack, Maria Ressa's resilience has become revolutionary.
In our moments of doubt, allow us to draw strength and courage from you.
(audience applauds) >> (speaks Filipino) My arrest doesn't hurt me.
Because it only makes me more resolute.
Because I see firsthand how the law is bent to the point that it is broken.
What we're seeing is death by a thousand cuts of our democracy, and it is done... Then think about the bleeding, right?
Little cuts to the body politic, to the body of Philippine democracy.
And when you have enough of these cuts, you are so weakened that you will die.
We at "Rappler," I've said this, it's been a year now since I've said this.
We will not duck, we will not hide.
We will hold the line-- join us.
(audience applauds and cheers) (live music playing, crowd cheering) (man rapping) >> (speaking Filipino): (cheering and applauding) (cheering) >> (speaking Filipino): (crowd laughing) (crowd laughing and cheering) (crowd laughing) (crowd laughing) (people shouting, music playing) >> (speaking Filipino): (cheering and applauding) (cheering and applauding) ♪ ♪ The trolls, they hate me because I attack the president.
It's the president, he's talking about his penis, I mean, isn't that something to be, like, mindful about?
It's, like, appalling.
It's appalling to have this kind of language, so we cannot have this six-year presidency or administration hijack all the values that we fought for, that we cherish.
>> What do you know about Bong Go intervening?
>> Sir, as far as we're concerned, we've already addressed the issue of fairness on that article-- can you just answer, please, the question?
>> (speaking Filipino): Just because you have the power of, what, press freedom?
You are a Filipino who is allowed to abuse our country.
And you are an active participant of that.
(speaking Filipino): In the name of the Holy Grail of press freedom.
(speaking Filipino): Young, young reporter, they will be allowed to criticize us, but you'll go to jail for your crimes.
>> (speaking Filipino): >> RANADA: >> MAN: >> RANADA: Duterte banned me from Malacañang because he was "annoyed by our reporting."
It hurts, that's really been demoralizing.
I mean, I'm a reporter, I want access.
>> So, why should you care about what happens in the Philippines?
For one, we spend the most time on the internet.
More than ten hours a day.
We spend the most time on social media globally.
And as we found out, lies laced with anger and hate spread fastest.
When you only look at content, it's a Whac-a-Mole game.
I want to figure out what the lie is, then look at the network that spreads the lies.
That's the nervous system.
We started looking at one account that was attacking, "All journalists are corrupt."
One account that had 25 followers.
They were all following each other.
We fact-checked every single item.
These were all fake accounts.
We began to count and found that 26 fake accounts can influence up to three million other accounts.
I think the first attacks, this word "presstitutes," you can even track this word.
Mocha Uson starts to popularize "presstitutes," Thinking Pinoy picks it up, then it's repeated a million times.
To make you distrust institutions, to shift the way you think.
In May 2017, we did a story on the transcript of Trump's call with President Duterte.
"'Rappler' just made the Philippines a legitimate target of North Korean nuclear missiles."
It's laughable, but people believe it.
It jumped to, "I can smell an arrest and possible closure of Rappler.com."
Then from there, we go to sexualized attacks.
Fuel misogyny-- women are a favorite easy target.
It didn't trend, and that's probably why it took them another two years to actually arrest me.
That was the end goal.
>> Court is now in session.
(gavel bangs) (people talking in background) (cameras clicking) >> We can go that way?
(cameras clicking, reporters clamoring) I know many of you received press releases that this is a private citizen.
Please understand that it is the Department of Justice that is actually going against...
This is the Philippine government.
It's the Philippine government that is filing this.
The Department of Justice prosecutors are there.
This is your tax pesos at work.
♪ ♪ (woman speaking in background) (woman speaking Filipino): Are you ready?
Let's all welcome Mocha Uson!
>> (speaking Filipino): Hip-hip!
>> (faintly): Hooray.
>> (speaking Filipino): Hip-hip!
>> (speaking Filipino): (cheers and applause) Duterte!
>> (chanting weakly): Duterte!
(woman speaking in background) I really messed up.
Because I didn't have a message.
I have my message, but I wasn't able to focus on the message.
I was just there to entertain.
(laughs) So I've learned my lesson.
♪ ♪ >> Okay, you guys keep eating!
>> (over phone): Okay!
>> I'm taking you out, Dad.
(laughs) I think we should just try to find a weekend and do a beach.
>> Yes, a beach.
>> Hold on, let me look at my calendar.
There's a human rights awards thing.
And then FCC thing.
>> Oh, just another award.
>> And then I go to New York.
And then I'm in New York until the 24th, and I come home on the 25th, Saturday night, though, at, like, 11:00 at night.
We could do-- oh, no, I can't.
Because after Saturday night, then I have Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday in Manila.
Then I leave at, like, 11:30 at night on Thursday for Glasgow.
>> That's, this is impossible.
(laughs) >> Unless we do...
Unless we do Sunday-Monday.
We could do Sunday-Monday.
Sunday the 26th to 27th.
Then I'm in Geneva on the third.
Am I happy to be leaving?
It's just a non-stop marathon.
I'm upset one court put a half a million peso bond on top.
Now I'm almost up at three million pesos that the government has asked for, for me to be free, right?
Because if I didn't do that, I'd lose my constitutional right to travel.
(music playing in background) (song continues) >> Mayor Inday Sara Duterte!
(music playing) (man speaking Filipino) >> (speaking Filipino): And they're asking for an explanation.
>> (speaking Filipino): ♪ ♪ (people talking in background) >> Maria Ressa, executive editor and C.E.O.
of "Rappler," with Matt Thompson, the editor-in-chief of the Center for Investigative Reporting.
(audience cheers and applauds) >> Good morning.
I can tell you that countless editors across the country are asking the question, "What would Maria Ressa do?"
>> That's scary.
(both laugh) >> You've gotten to see a democracy slide into increasing authoritarian present.
What lessons do you have from that experience, from witnessing that, that we should be really attentive to, sitting here in Washington, DC?
>> I think first is, what happens in America happens to the rest of the world.
I mean, in order to solve this, you have to act.
And I'll tell you two reasons, right?
Just earlier this month, I spent time with the Cambridge Analytica whistleblower, Christopher Wylie.
The whistleblower said they tested the tactics of how to manipulate you in our countries.
And in other countries in the global South.
And the reason why he said that was because our, we don't, we don't have strong governments.
They can get away with impunity, and then if it worked in our countries, then they would, his word was, "port" it over to you.
So the first step is, I think we have to realize that something horrific has already happened.
And that we are at this existential moment where, if nothing significant is done, journalism is only the first part.
Journalism, and democracy as we know it, is dead.
We're in your dystopian future.
I think the last part I forgot to say is that data is plutonium, right?
We go back to nuclear war.
>> That's the only thing.
>> (responds) >> This was where we went to elementary school... And Walnut Street.
I never really knew where home was.
My parents were both Filipinos.
My real father died when I was a year old.
My mom went to the States, so I guess like an overseas Filipino worker.
My stepfather, my dad, now, they came back and got us.
My primary language is Tagalog.
So when I landed in New Jersey, I had to learn how to speak English.
You try to leave behind being brown.
You try to understand what you're walking into.
And the best way I could deal with that was, you work really, really hard.
150%, it's proving that I belong.
You have to prove you deserve it.
What can you say, right?
What can you say?
(laughs) >> Where are we going?
(people talking in background) >> We'll go, I think we'll go into... right?
Well, I would like to post bail, but I've been served a warrant.
>> A prominent Philippines journalist, Maria Ressa, has been arrested on fraud charges.
Last month, Ms. Ressa, the executive editor of a news website, "Rappler," was arrested over an alleged internet libel case.
>> Prosecutors filed the latest charges against her while Ressa was on a trip in the U.S. Media watchdogs say the charges against Ressa were aimed at intimidating those who challenge Duterte's rule and his war on drugs.
>> Right now, she's undergoing booking now.
And after this... (murmuring) >> So there are... charges, one for anti-dummy, one for securities and regulation code.
So it, the warrant is for the anti-dummy issued yesterday.
(people clamoring) (car door shuts) (police sirens chirping) >> The seventh time I've posted bail.
The second time I've been arrested.
It's obviously clear I am not a travel risk, right?
'Cause I came home.
Even after the new charges were laid out and the arrest warrant was issued.
This is not the Philippines I knew.
This is not the Philippines I voluntarily chose as my home country.
And it's shocking that after a 14-hour flight, you're, you know-- and I have done no crime.
I'm certainly not a flight risk, but I'm greeted by police who will take me.
(electric bell ringing) >> (speaking Filipino) Go in the back, go in the back, go in the back.
(object slamming) >> Did I say too much?
Oh, my God!
(laughs) >> (speaking Filipino): >> RESSA: Joseph... we have to be extra-careful now.
The People Power revolt happened.
Not a shot was fired and a government was changed.
As a kid just coming out of school and feeling the exuberance of that, I wanted to come back to the Philippines.
This country was actively creating what the future was going to look like.
We were building institutions.
I felt, 20 years later, the Philippines was going to be an amazing country.
I worked at CNN, I ran the Manila bureau for almost a decade, and in 1995, I opened the Jakarta bureau.
I was there until 2005.
We had covered every single country in Southeast Asia as they transitioned from authoritarian one-man rule to democracy-- that was incredible.
I decided I would make the Philippines my home.
(music playing, man speaking on truck speakers) (car horn honking) (child shouting) (music, horn continue) (clamoring) ♪ ♪ >> You would expect a government to use subtle means to stifle dissent.
You do not expect a government to outright say, "I am banning you," and then start implementing it.
Standing in the line of fire, that's what we call it.
We always say that the line of fire is a place of honor.
And that's what you're doing right now for your profession, especially under these circumstances.
This is not one of those simple cases.
If I have a problem already, finding lawyers to take it on, then you know how different your case is.
They want you to hide.
So this is actually the reverse of what they want.
>> (cheers softly) >> They want the palace to be able to say, "Oh, this is only about Pia, this... "brat who keeps on pestering the president with hard questions."
They can't say that now because apparently it's not just about Pia.
♪ ♪ >> (speaking Filipino): We are journalists.
Physical presence in a newsworthy event is integral to our work.
Asking officials questions, face-to-face, is integral to our work.
Malacañang's ban prevents us from doing our jobs.
Press freedom, free speech, due process, and equal protection are guaranteed by the constitution.
We're asking the Supreme Court to affirm these fundamental rights.
(cheering and applauding) >> (speaking Filipino): ♪ ♪ >> (sighs): This is just insane.
The palace is now coming out with a press release saying that, confirming their Oust Duterte coup plot.
I mean, how could you even... >> Who briefed you about the matrix?
>> (speaking Filipino): >> So the president told you... >> PRESS SECRETARY: >> REPORTER: >> PRESS SECRETARY: >> REPORTER 2: >> PRESS SECRETARY: >> REPORTER 2: >> PRESS SECRETARY: >> REPORTER 1: >> They're laying the groundwork for a non-bailable charge.
It's, like, it's fantasy.
>> Oh, I'm going to show you the gown, Maria, come here.
I'll show you.
Can you see it?
So this is a nice material.
>> Oh, I'm not going to wear that.
>> Maria, try it first.
>> No, no, no... >> It's a gown, my gosh, come on... >> No, no, no... >> Look, oh, my God, it's going to be so beautiful.
>> No, number one, number two, it's also long.
>> It's okay, you can pick it up.
Let me see what you... let me see... >> There's not enough time to have it fixed, anyway.
>> You don't get it fixed, that's the thing.
They just flow.
>> Seriously, let me see what you got.
I think you should try it on.
You think she should try it on?
I think you should try it on.
>> I'll trip on it.
(laughs) >> Maria, when you have it on... >> What'll happen?
>> When you have it on and you're walking, you lift it.
>> (laughs): And then you trip on it.
>> And then, no, when you lift it, then you can walk with your loafers up this way... >> (laughs): No.
>> No, look... >> Maria, why don't you try first?
You don't even know, it's so beautiful.
You have a great shape for it.
>> You can wear it.
>> No, I'm not, this is, this is a small.
>> I'll be cold.
I'll be cold, 'cause I want, like, a jacket.
>> It's 75 degrees tomorrow.
>> It's not 75 degrees tomorrow.
>> Yes, it is!
>> And this does itch my neck.
>> Let me see what you're wearing.
>> Then I guess we have to go to rent the runway now.
>> I told you I brought two.
>> (laughs): I've seen you in that.
>> I know you've seen this, but I haven't worn it since like, a long time ago, a decade ago.
>> Do you even want to see or do you care?
>> I don't want... >> Because the shoe makes the outfit.
>> (laughs): These shoes are okay.
>> Check this out.
>> Ah... no.
Mary Jane, I can't wear heels.
>> You can wear heels, that would be, like, awesome.
Look at it.
>> No thanks.
>> That way when you-- Maria Ressa... (both laughing) That's why this is shorter.
This is like a flat.
>> No, no, no.
I don't wear those.
>> Maria, this'll be so nice.
>> I've never worn things like that.
You know I've never worn things like that.
>> Go out of the box.
>> No thanks.
>> We're 50s now.
>> No thanks.
>> We're no longer safe.
(laughs) >> She and I were born in the Philippines, but we made different choices.
Starting with the place we call home.
For Mary Jane, home is here in New York.
I choose my home in Manila, the Philippines.
For better or worse, I hope not... (chuckles) It's ironic that even though our choices are different, our two nations now have the same type of leaders.
Macho, populist, sexist at best, misogynistic at worst.
They both use anger and fear to divide and conquer.
They've created a politics of hate.
We need to put hope and love, but I'm going to sound so schmaltzy.
It's not with hate, but with hope and love we hold the line.
Is that too much?
>> Is it corny?
>> Maria, it has to be yours, it's you.
You're corny, then.
(laughs) >> Shut up-a you face, let's go, let's go.
>> What'd you say, check my face?
>> I said shut up-a you face.
(laughs) (laughs): We stupidly believe goodness wins over evil.
May the Force be with you.
(laughs) >> Are you going to say that?
Are you really going to say that?
>> (laughing): No.
>> Oh, my God.
(people talking in background) >> So, Maria Ressa.
(cheering and applauding) >> Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome journalist and "Rappler" C.E.O.
(cheering and applauding) >> What an incredible room full of people.
I mean, the energy from the Mother of Dragons, to Nancy Pelosi, I, it is...
I don't know what to do with it.
(laughs) It's a completely chaotic time where technology has helped make facts disputable, eroded truth, and crippled trust.
♪ ♪ >> At the moment, it's incredibly easy for governments to get away with this kind of behavior.
That why they're using trials, because it gives them a way to silence dissent and yet have a veil of legitimacy.
You know, one of the things I take away from today having heard people who were behind bars speak out is, you know, apathy is the enemy, and we need people to be angry and to care, and if you go to trialwatch.org, you will see a "get involved" button.
And that doesn't mean send money, it actually means tell us about trials that you're worried about.
It means volunteer to be a monitor.
So please help us make this a success.
>> Yeah, I would also say, just, my takeaway from today, we had all these panels, and we were with President Nasheed, who spent time in jail for telling the truth, and Mohamed Fahmy, who also spent time in jail for telling the truth.
And Jason Rezaian, you know, spent time in jail for telling the truth.
Maria is, um, where is she?
Oh, there Maria is.
Is going back to the Philippines, she's been arrested twice in the last five weeks.
Um, the rest of you are out.
Maria is about to risk going back, and she's going back because she believes that shining a light on crime, shining a light in general, is the best and most important thing, and she won't be afraid.
I'm afraid for her.
And all of us here are so proud of the, your ability to shine a light.
And we're all going to do everything we can to make sure it stays loud for you.
(all applauding) >> (chuckles): Thank you.
Sorry about that.
(laughs): Okay, thank you again.
>> Reach out anytime.
>> I'll do it through David.
Is that all right?
>> Yes, no, he should give you my direct email address.
>> Oh, yeah, sure.
>> Or I'll give it to you.
Let me... How about on here?
Can you write it on there?
>> I'm going to get going.
>> Yes, thank you.
I'll write you and I'll answer the questions you ask.
>> Do, and, look, whichever way is most helpful to you.
>> Yeah... thank you.
Thanks so much.
Too many things happening.
Have you heard about this?
>> This happened this week.
So the palace released a matrix of coup plotters.
And it includes my organization, as well as other independent news groups.
>> And you?
>> And me.
And now the Philippine National Police say they will investigate the journalists on that list.
Do I have more support outside than inside the Philippines?
I think we have a lot of support in the Philippines.
But I think anyone who stands up has a lot to lose.
Our country needs the mission of journalism even more today than at any other time.
(birds chirping) >> It's a big irony on my part to be a religious person, and at the same time waging the war on drugs that resulted to deaths of thousands.
The anti-government forces, you can never satisfy them.
Everything that the government does is... wrong for them.
I don't care about them.
I care about the ordinary people who have been suffering from this drug menace.
These ordinary people say, "Sir, it's okay, "thank you for what you're doing.
"Our streets now are safer.
"Our communities are a lot safer.
"We can have, we can just let our children walk "going to the school "without being molested by the drug personalities, by the drug addicts, by the drug pushers."
>> What I saw out on the streets never really escaped me, it never really left me.
I still remember vividly how bodies are left in the streets and how families are traumatized.
And the trauma of the family isn't just theirs.
They also, it also to some extent, gets passed on to me.
And I remember how they feel, the feeling of losing someone so brutally.
It affected me, and sometimes it also appears in my dreams.
(people talking in background) >> I'm terrified daily, because I'm so close to the ground.
The concern isn't getting hit from above.
It's getting hit from below.
It's not that the person will name me, but that a story I did wrong, or a person I shouldn't have named would die because of what I did.
And half of me is a journalist who wants the story.
And the other half is, I do not want to be party to anything like this.
It sort of leaks into every part of your life, the paranoia.
(sniffles) See, Maria says a lot, she doesn't scare easily.
>> I can't not go back.
I mean, that sounds really...
It's easy to say it, but I actually did think about this.
There's, I have to return, and part of it is also regardless of what happens, then, you know, chronicling what does happen.
(music playing over plane intercom) Thank you, thank you.
We're okay, we're good.
(chuckles) That's where they picked up before.
(people talking in background) >> Ladies and gentlemen, let us welcome Miss Pia Ranada.
>> (applauding) >> It's quite challenging to be a journalist now.
We feel like we're criminals for being journalists.
But we're fighting it.
Other "Rappler" reporters and I went to the Supreme Court, and we filed a petition asking the Supreme Court to lift the ban.
This is our first offensive against the government.
Because previously, we've always just been at the receiving end of these legal cases.
And I'm just so proud of my company, that despite all of our attacks... (voice breaking): All of the legal cases against us, they still... sorry...
They still muster the resources and the willpower to file a case on our behalf.
And you know, you, you don't have a boss like that every day that...
It takes a certain kind of boss to stand up against a greater power when they're already themselves on the receiving end of so many attacks.
So thank you, Maria, and the rest of "Rappler," for standing up for us.
And, we know, we're just praying... (audience applauding) Thank you.
(pulsing music playing) >> (rapping) (cheering and applauding) >> (speaking Filipino): Do not do drugs, because I will kill you.
(speaking Filipino): (applause) You know it's not an easy job, president.
You have contend with this son of a bitch, and with the bitch in media.
>> My question is, the victims are the 27,000 victims of EJK, the marginalized Filipinos, the drug runners, and of course the media.
But how about the rest of us?
Do we feel victims?
I myself, I don't feel a victim.
In fact, my retirement pay went up.
(chuckles) In fact, we feel safe.
What are you going to do about making us feel also victims?
We don't buy drugs.
>> I'll quote to you one of the most famous Holocaust poems of all time.
"First they came for the Socialists "and I did not speak out.
"Because I was not a Socialist.
"Then they came for the trade unionists.
"And I did not speak out because I was not a trade unionist.
"Then they came for the Jews.
"And I did not speak out because I was not a Jew.
"Then they came for me and there was no one left to speak for me."
This was a poem by Martin Niemöller.
And the "Enquirer" pushed it down to one sentence for today.
"First they came for the journalists.
We don't know what happened after that."
♪ ♪ (cheers and applause) >> I have been appointed as counsel for another award-winning journalist, Maria Ressa.
Ms. Ressa was one of four journalists named as "Time" Magazine's Person of the Year for what "Time" called "great risks in pursuit of greater truth."
The government's response has been to arrest her and initiate a series of civil and criminal cases that expose her to a maximum sentence of 63 years in prison.
>> Colleen was asking if we've had to make adjustments based on what's happening with you and... your safety.
And are we safe, she actually asked, you know, "Are you guys safe?"
And I think that your friends didn't even realize how... how dangerous it is for you.
>> It's all relative.
>> Relative, and funny that you say it that way, because I did tell her you dismiss... >> I'm not dismissing it, it's just done.
We dealt with it, we know what can happen.
And I'm okay with it.
And... we just... >> Well, even that resignation.
You know, that... Look, I know you don't want to worry mom and dad, or the siblings or... >> Because no one else really needs to know, right?
>> That your life is in danger?
>> All we need to know is just we're doing our work, that's...
It's not that it's anyone's, anyone says, right?
We're not different from anyone else, except a little bit more.
This year when, at the Trialwatch, Jason Rezaian who was like in prison for 500 something days, and then Mohamed Fahmy was in Egypt.
>> And he was in prison for nearly 348 days.
And so that was like the first time where I really had to figure out, okay, I haven't... Am I okay with this?
If this happens, can I deal with it?
And it took me a little bit, but I can deal with it.
And so we keep going and, argh, I forgot this!
How could I forget it?
>> It's a very real possibility.
Your actions, what I do will determine how real it is.
I mean, intent is always there.
And I think part of what will make us, give us a better defense is if we're not afraid.
because the first factor is to make you afraid.
And you shouldn't be afraid.
And if I'm not afraid, I'll be a much better... Um, I'll actually prepare better for the worst case if I'm not afraid.
And the only way to not be afraid is to understand the worst-case scenario and embrace it.
>> I mean, you're prepared to go to jail?
Are you prepared to... >> Look, the point is I never want to get there.
>> I don't want to see you becoming a martyr in all of this.
>> This is a stupid conversation.
I don't like this.
>> I think you're talking about reality.
>> No, but I've already done this.
I've dealt with it... >> Not with me.
>> I know, but you don't need to deal with it.
And you shouldn't deal with it.
>> Well, that's not fair.
>> Oh... >> Why are you crying?
>> Because I'm scared for you.
But you shouldn't.
We're, we're ready.
(crowd chanting) >> We will be asking General Bato Dela Rosa where are we on the war on drugs?
Can you give us your assessment?
>> (speaking Filipino) >> (speaking Filipino) Your war on drugs has failed.
(bell rings) (cheers and applause) >> (speaking Filipino) >> MODERATOR: >> A reminder to the audience, please behave.
Please show respect to all the candidates.
Thank you very much.
>> The big problem is (speaking Filipino) >> (speaking Filipino) >> If you wage a war on drugs, you cannot be selective in the implementation of justice.
(speaking Filipino) (cheers and applause) >> Sir, very calmly.
>> (speaking Filipino) (cheers and applause) >> Time's up, sir.
(speaking Filipino) >> It will become a narco state.
>> It's not the PNP's job to kill people, it is to protect the people.
There is overstretch of power when journalists are arrested.
There is an overstretch of power when local governments are afraid to host the Otso Diretso in their locations.
There is an overstretch of power when we do not question his rape jokes and statements against women.
(cheers and applause) Silence, silence of the public means there is an overstretch of too much power by our executive, the President.
♪ ♪ >> We are in the last few days and I asked Jodez how she was doing.
You know what she said?
Here, she has to tell you, I said, "Jodez, how are you?"
>> I'm enjoying the last days of democracy.
(laughter, groans) >> (speaking Filipino) (laughs) I am enjoying the last days of democracy... all right.
We still think there is hope.
Do we not?
(laughter) Look, (speaks Filipino) Promise, it could be surprising.
(chuckles) ♪ ♪ (music playing faintly) (door chimes) We have 61.8 million registered voters.
They're going to the polls for 12 hours to choose more than 18,000 elected positions.
Right up top, 12 members of the senate.
12 senators are going in.
>> Number 83... (people talking in background) >> The Senate hopeful, Bato Dela Rosa has actually voted.
This is Pia's photo of him voting.
>> There's also this, I don't know, fragmented opposition, for instance, because Otso Diretso, right?
So uh... >> Right.
In Davao, the Duterte children set to sweep local elections, that doesn't seem like too much of a surprise, right?
>> Vote buying as well as obstruction of justice.
These are questions that we are going to ask the... >> And he is set to consolidate his power.
>> You know, that's why the senate race is so important because that will, we'll see if we can, actually balance what the president is doing.
>> The senate is the last standing independent body in terms of voting for what President Duterte wants...
Wait, guys, I have a hearing tomorrow.
(people talking in background) And the headline, "Opposition bets fail to get in the Magic 12."
(pop music playing) President Duterte is President.
The institution has morphed.
The man hasn't changed, the legislature, the executive, the judiciary, the checks and balances, well, they're bending to the man.
So there we go.
(people talking in background) 2019 was a difficult year, right?
I never had any doubt that "Rappler" had my back.
And I hope you guys all know, I think our nation has our back.
You can't fight monsters by becoming monsters.
I'm quoting Bono.
And what prevents us from becoming monsters is one word.
It starts with L. (crowd, together) >> Love!
>> I love you guys!
(cheering) ♪ ♪ >> I'm here at the Manila Regional Trial court, where a branch court has just convicted Maria Ressa over cyber-libel charges.
Sentence, up to six years.
>> We are meant to be a cautionary tale.
We are meant to make you afraid, right?
So I appeal again.
Don't be afraid.
Because if you don't use your rights, you will lose them.
♪ ♪ ♪ If I fall I stand up, break these walls I rise up ♪ ♪ Even when I lose it all I always got my eyes up ♪ ♪ They praying I'mma downfall but I'll never give up ♪ ♪ A thousand cuts won't be enough ♪ ♪ To keep my fists in these cuffs ♪ ♪ And I'm never breaking down with the odds against me ♪ ♪ Brown girl, gold crown with the Gods within me ♪ ♪ I was the flower that bloomed in the backroom ♪ ♪ Flows like monsoons from the womb and the right moves ♪ ♪ Ruins that resume my roots that lie soon ♪ ♪ Pray to many moons that my ruins would not bloom ♪ ♪ Where we from death looms so we hum with these tunes ♪ ♪ And hope it sparks light like a night in mid-June ♪ ♪ My heart's consumed by hate here ♪ ♪ It's harder when you live fear ♪ ♪ How can you see clear when you don't see you in the mirror?
♪ ♪ I lost too many peers they seem to disappear ♪ ♪ But they living through these words that I putting here ♪ ♪ So tell me you'll remember me ♪ ♪ I'm here to blow the legacy ♪ ♪ I got the ground moving under me ♪ ♪ A thousand cuts ain't never stopping me ♪ ♪ And that's why I'm never giving up ♪ ♪ Where I am or where I'm standing up ♪ ♪ And I ain't never need no ounce of luck ♪ ♪ To understand myself 'cause that's enough ♪ ♪ Yeah that's enough ♪ ♪ I can live a thousand cuts ♪ ♪ I can live a thousand cuts ♪ ♪ I can live a thousand cuts ♪ ♪ And live a life that's covering up ♪ ♪ And I swear I'm never giving up ♪ ♪ Who I am, or where I'm standing up ♪ ♪ And I ain't ever need no ounce of luck ♪ ♪ To understand myself 'cause that's enough ♪ ♪ Yeah, that's enough ♪ ♪ I can live a thousand cuts ♪ ♪ I can live a thousand cuts ♪ ♪ I can live a thousand cuts ♪ ♪ And live a life that's covering up ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ I can live a thousand cuts ♪ ♪ If I fall, I stand up, break these walls, I rise up ♪ ♪ Even when I lose it all I always got my eyes up ♪ ♪ They praying I'mma downfall but I'll never give up ♪ ♪ A thousand cuts won't be enough ♪ ♪ To keep my fists in these cuffs ♪ >> I 2019.
Captioned by Media Access Group at WGBH access.wgbh.org >> For more on this and other "Frontline" programs, visit our website at pbs.org/frontline.
♪ ♪ To order A Thousand Cuts on DVD visit shopPBS.org or call 1.800.PLAY.PBS.
This program is also available on Amazon Prime Video.