Imelda Returns

November 14, 1991

The return of Imelda Marcos to the Philippines after nearly six years exile to face trial on 70 charges of tax evasion and corruption, and to court her old popularity, is a testament to the growing confidence of President Corazon Aquino that she can finish her term without overthrow.

Mrs. Marcos, as former first lady and consort to an avaricious dictator, fans the nostalgia of some Filipinos for what they are pleased to consider the good old days, and shamelessly claims her mission is to abolish poverty, when in fact the late Ferdinand and Imelda Marcos used his power to amass the national wealth in their own pockets.

Mrs. Marcos stands for the past, not the future. Manila officials had best get on with her trial, and either bring solid evidence or drop charges. The modern Philippines has trouble bracing for a storm such as killed thousands on the islands of Leyte and Ormoc. But it is strong enough to withstand the return of Imelda Marcos.

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