To whom Mr. Obama was talking; what he said

obama_aquino

[Source: scmp.com]

I sense a need to do a little translation here, especially for those who wanted Mr.Obama to be more warlike in his remarks, you know, firmer in committing America to engage in shooting to remove the Chinese from Filipino seas.

First, let us consider to whom Mr. Obama spoke. The three audiences:

  • Americans, who are vaguely loyal to the Philippines and war-weary.
  • Filipinos, who want China to get out of their territory but remain an important economic partner.
  • China, who is adamant about claiming resources she needs to fuel the economic growth that will make her the world’s greatest economy and power.

Second, let us consider that Mr. Obama was not speaking for Filipino interests, although he is sensitive to them, but speaking for American interests.That is his job, and those who would expect him to become Filipino in that job are sure to find their expectations unmet.

I got the sense that Mr. Obama was speaking first and foremost to the Chinese. He has to represent Americans, so he did that, but he was not really speaking to them. He was speaking to Filipinos to some extent, but he had just completed a working session with top Filipino officials, and presumably got the official message across to them, face to face.

He wanted to say something to the Chinese, first and foremost. He wanted to talk to them, directly, but in diplomatic-speak. And this is what I think he said, and, in parentheses, (what I think he meant):

  • We believe disputes should be resolved peacefully, under established laws. (If the Philippines wins its ITLOS filing, that is the law, and at that point, Philippine territory would be as clearly defined as the Japanese islands that are under dispute.)
  • We don’t believe confrontation and threat is the way to deal with disputes. (Warning, China, think about what you are doing.)
  • We are not trying to limit China. Indeed, we expect her to become a major part of a harmonious economic world. (But kindly respect other nations, even if they are not as big as you, for we are here to defend our friends.)
  • We do not chose sides in disputes of sovereignty. (But once sovereignty is established, it is a new ball game. Until it is established, take care that you behave properly, or we will be forced to take sides.) (To Filipinos: take care of your business, as you are doing; we wholeheartedly endorse your approach.)

Those who wanted as firm a statement of intent to defend as Mr. Obama gave the Japanese (and the important Chinese audience) must understand the distinction between the two situations. In Japan, he said “by law, these islands belong to Japan, and we are obligated to defend Japan if she is attacked”.

Mr. Obama could not say that in Manila because the disputed territory is indeed in dispute, not settled yet by law.

We are in the early stages of a giant tug of war for dominance of the moral principles of the world. This is not, as many claim, a matter of economics, or land and military conquest. It is whether we abide by law or not.

China’s morality is not law-based. It is autocratic. Both domestically and internationally. Power and subjugation are primary currencies.

For Filipinos who say, well, you know we have to choose between two big economic and military powers, and we are being used as a puppet of either, I’d offer this:

No, you have to choose whether to be a leader, under laws, or a follower, under autocracy.

 

Comments
44 Responses to “To whom Mr. Obama was talking; what he said”
  1. edgar lores says:

    *******
    1. Speak softly and carry a big stick.

    2. The distinction between “owned” and “disputed” territories, and the manner of addressing these, is well-made.

    3. The long-held notion in political science that nation-states act alone on their own interests, and not on morality, is patently false.
    3.1. Nations are condemned for “evil” actions, such as extra-territorial aggression and internal suppression of – and even internal spying on – citizens.
    3.2. Conversely, nations are praised for “good” actions, such as appealing to international law and coming to the aid of other nations in times of catastrophe.
    3.3. I hope this paradigm takes greater hold henceforth, and that the UN is accorded greater powers to support it.

    4. The fact of the presidential visit is an act that in itself speaks much louder than words.
    *****

    • Joe America says:

      To point 4, it is interesting which four nations Mr. Obama visited:

      1) Japan, embroiled in dispute with China and, to a slightly lesser degree, with South Korea.

      2) South Korea, embroiled in dispute with North Korea, a nation that is out of touch with everyone but China, and in dispute with Japan over lingering WWII bitterness. In that latter point, South Korea is more closely aligned with China.

      3) Malaysia, a moderate Muslim state of growing economic strength in Asia. Underscore Muslim, underscore moderate.

      4) Philippines, embroiled in dispute with China.

      I’d say his itinerary had a clear purpose other than “make good” for not dropping by earlier. The fact that he was here, even though the Russian affair is blossoming full force, indicates exactly how important all four nations are to American interests. Those interests being peace and order, under laws.

      As I wrote on Raissa’s blog, the U.S. stands at the side of the Philippines, and a step back, out of respect. The step back can bee seen in the visitation agreement that gives in entirely to Philippine interests on shortness of term, every troop visit having a specific purpose and requiring Philippine approval, approved buildings built by the US becoming Philippine property once built, base commander having full right of authority to visit anywhere on base at any time, and no nukes. And lots of equipment coming in, staged for disasters, for training, for surveillance, and for battle.

    • Your 3.3 is doomed to fail because of 3 which is accurate. Once the UN is accorded “greater powers”, nation-states will feel more insecure about their sovereignty. There will be a perception of a Cabal World Power, which may be comprised of a few countries that’ are the most influential in the UN.

      Some more notions for you: Absolute power corrupts absolutely.

  2. chit navarro says:

    Very well said and explained. Pres. Obama represents the interests of the American people and yes, the distinction between Japan’s Senkaku Island and our islands claimed by China is well presented. Filipinos should be grateful of the new treaty with USA as it provides a greater counter punch to China’s bullying tactics.

    • Joe America says:

      Thanks chit. The one correction I would make is that the agreement with the US is not a treaty per se, but an agreement under the Mutual Defense Treaty of 1951. That is why Senator Santiago and others can scream and shout, and even take it to the Supreme Court, but it is not a constitutional violation. That said, I think the President could have been more inclusive of the legislative Defense Committees, and kept them better briefed. I think it got a little rushed to get it done prior to Mr. Obama’s visit.

  3. Lil says:

    I can’t believe Miriam is shooting off her mouth again, talking about foreign bases?! WTH? There are no new bases in the agreement, just access to and shared facilties. And people think she’s smart?!8O

    • Joe America says:

      Her political ego is getting ahead of her thinking and, as I read general public criticism of her stance, she is not getting more popular because her position effectively aligns with Chinese interests. I’d also say that other senators also risk damaging their own political futures if they go against this agreement, that gives so much to the Philippines and asks to little in return. What the US asks in return is “keep doing what you are doing, Philippines” and don’t make us pay rent. Oh, and I suppose, don’t muck with the VFA. The VFA is a very sore point with Senator Santiago because of the unbalanced imprisonment clause. She refuses to see that other imbalanced clauses benefit the Philippines (e.g., valued training slots at the US Military Academy granted to Filipinos). And she views the Philippines as a sorry victim.

  4. Joseph-Ivo says:

    I agree that Obama is an American president, his first loyalty being American. So what’s in the deal for the Americans? Keeping the shipping lanes open? Or just posturing? Or showing their love for the Filipinos?

    Read Miriam as Miriam, she is wicked, nobody will discuss. But so now and then she has a relevant question. Why was the deal signed in a back room by two assistants when both presidents were available to give it some more relevance?

    • Joseph-Ivo says:

      What I heard the President saying was “China, whatever you do we are still the ultimate deciders, we are stronger and in top we can build alliances 10 times faster than you, so go back were you belong ”.

    • Joe America says:

      The deal for Americans is to keep them safe and their liberties safe from a perplexing China who steals their industrial secrets and uses a robust, growing economy, not to compete or help the world at large, but to build a war machine that is, by American standards, frightening: control of press and disregard for human rights and saying one thing and doing quite another. In short: prudent balance in hope that China will grow up.

      The deal was signed in the back room because it was negotiated nation-to-nation in confidence. Who knows, maybe there was a confidentiality agreement, as many negotiations typically contain, to prevent erroneous rumor and information from overwhelming good intent. It was accelerated to fit into Mr. Obama’s presentation of the partnership and Executive would have missed a big opportunity to consign it to Congress to debate for months or years. My guess is that Americans granted big concessions (10 year term) to facilitate bringing the deal forward. It was signed by lower-ranking officials of both nations to make it perfectly clear that this is not a treaty, but implementation of a treaty (the 1951 Mutual Defense Treaty), and thus within the scope of Executive. This responsibility falls to Executive because Executive is responsible for defending the nation, and the reason is that Congress cannot effectively run wars. Executive executes, and they are doing it well. Indeed, the way the U.S.and Philippines worked to bring the deal together brings confidence that this will be a constructive partnership.

      As long as egos and political players like Santiago and Bayan Muna are kept on the sidelines.

    • edgar lores says:

      *******
      1. The Senate at present is a lame duck. Only Miriam is functioning as a senator. All the rest are protagonists and antagonists embroiled in the corruption scandal.

      2. It is not too late to mount a constitutional challenge in order to avoid contretemps (Miriam’s term) in the future, and to keep intact the principle of checks and balances.
      *****

  5. manuel buencamino says:

    In Thucydides’ Melian Dialogue, the debate between an Athenian and a Melian, you will see this whole drama between the Philippines and China, including the reference to allies by the weaker state. As the old Greek said, “right is only in question between equals in power.” For easy cruising check http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Melian_dialogue#cite_ref-7

  6. Grace says:

    I gathered the same conclusion. The soft diplomatic tones Obama and Aquino used at the press conference was a calculated message to China. Diplomacy works better than provocation.

    • Joe America says:

      Certainly being direct with China is impossible. It is a dancing game of force and interpretation. I hope China chooses well, and her leaders are not just listening to their own distortions.

      • macspeed says:

        Good Evening Joe Am…nice classy site :), i feel i need to be more polite, ehem…

        Yes, China should be aware now of what has signed of by US of A and Philippine. They need to filter out their distortions to be able to connect and maintain their economy, otherwise, all their triump will just be like landfill.

  7. R.Hiro says:

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/in-the-long-run-wars-make-us-safer-and-richer/2014/04/25/a4207660-c965-11e3-a75e-463587891b57_story.html

    The Enhanced Defense Access Ambiguity will most certainly be challenged in the Supreme Court.

    Obama said the U.S. does not intend to contain China. China looks at U.S. actions. War with China at this moment in time is more advantageous to the U.S. The semi-failed state that is the Philippines is simply an American base to preposition military hardware.

    Forward fire bases has always been part and parcel of American military tactics.

    America has eight carrier battle groups. Missile technology which China aimed specifically at Americas advantage and is fast developing cruise like missiles makes carriers part of the old ways of waging war.

    Admiral Yamamoto learned that a while back. Luck was on the American side in Pearl Harbor and Midway. The failure of the Japanese to sink the carriers in Pearl Harbor and Midway later came to be the strategic cause of Japan’s defeat. Leapfrogging islands to provide landing fields for fighters and bombers proved fatal to the Japanese. In the end Japanese had to turn their planes and pilots into manned missiles.

    Obama was also pushing the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement which is the biggest proposed trading bloc on the planet which excludes China due to the dominance of State owned enterprises in China. It also disallows countries that have closed capital accounts. Again directed at two of the more important foundations of China’s fast rise as an industrial power..

    George Kennan the architect of U.S. Cold War policy warned the U.S. and NATO that pushing the expansion of NATO right up to the borders of Russia was unnecessary and dangerous.

    They gave Putin the perceived provocation and he acted. They cornered the Russian bear and he is clawing back.

    U.S. is a self contained economy. Strategic resources are within its borders and allies in the Americas.

    Apart from benefiting nightclubs and the women who work there what is the Philippines getting?

    • Joe America says:

      Interesting. I suppose to answer the question, one could ask, what would the Philippines get if the US were not in the picture at all. That is exceedingly hard to imagine, but that is the answer.

      For me, I see the US as a force not simply for economics, but for human rights, throughout Asia, and in which the Philippines will participate. The Philippines also will get assured independence, perhaps economic boundaries that are recognized by all her neighbors as ITLOS works through, more assistance during natural disasters, more relief spending in the Philippines, whatever buildings the US constructs, more training of her military, and better information as to what China is doing in Philippine waters. I rather think that if the US were not strongly in the picture, China could be very tempted to punish the Philippines for the ITLOS filing.

      • Joe America says:

        Perhaps economic stability, as S&P would look at it. Investors can remain confident.

        • RHiro says:

          Firstly the chicken hawk colonials here were sadly disappointed with Obama’s stand. Also the U.S. is not part of UNCLOS.

          U.S.A walks alone as far as national interest dictates. That is slowly being challenged by the PRC. The history of the U.S. as far as human rights is also subservient to its national interest. America till today has a history of coddling dictators and authoritarian governments. Credit rating agencies look at macro standings. Balance of payments and fiscal deficits. Total foreign debt of the country is half what American banks and European banks hold as reserves for the Philippine Republic. Most of those reserves came from Filipinos overseas and we are now a foreign creditor to the U.S. and the IMF…..

          The U.S has two things going for it right now as the U.S. is the issuer of the primary fiat reserve currency of the world and this is turn allows the U.S. to fund budget deficits as their foreign debt is in their own currency.

          China is the upcoming power and will eventually replace the U.S. as their economy becomes larger than the U.S. and the dollar goes the way of the English pound.

          The world is subsidizing U.S. trade and budget deficits and this will have to come to a glorious end as states lending to the U.S. lose money in the U.S. controlled financial system….

          • Dan Backus says:

            I agree America has a history of “coddling” dictators. But why?

            First, America can barely solve its own problems, much less the worlds. With this limitation in mind, the logic goes this way.

            It is far easier for a people to free themselves from a dictator/strong man than it is to free themselves from a authoritarian bureaucracy imposed by an ideology.

            Dictators/strongmen die. Their passing may be hastened by the actions of those they oppress or they will simply succumb to old age. No one gets out of this world alive.

            That is not true of entrenched bureaucracy based on an enslaving ideology. There is no natural death there. For a people to free themselves it can take generations.

            So given the choice between enslavement of a people by an ideology or a dictator, we opt for the lesser of two evils. And leave it to the people to free themselves.

            In the meantime, American business is happy to cut the best deals they can with the powers that be. That’s a sordid thing to do, but not unnatural, evil or even unexpected. Nature dictates all of us will act in our own best interests. America is no exception.

            • Joe America says:

              Most interesting perspective. Americans are less free than those under dictators because their ideological binding is eternal whereas those under a dictator can get out from under it any old time they choose. I rather think I need an entire blog to unravel that thinking and will address it when I return from vacation.

  8. andrew lim says:

    I rarely comment on geopolitics since I am not that well-read on it compared to other topics here, but on this one I will contribute a frame with which to view this issue:

    When the US bases were stationed permanently here, Marcos deftly played the Red card, convincing the US that he “may be a son of a bitch, but I am YOUR son of a bitch”. The US, on the other hand, in its desperation to counter the growing influence of Marxism, was only too eager to look the other way when it came to Marcos’ corruption and oppression. (though there were segments like some Democrats who were aware and critical of what was happening here) Obviously, the ones who suffered were the Filipino people.

    The Marcos regime falls, and the new Senate is only too aware of how the US and Marcos played each other to serve their purposes. They vote to remove the bases. Succeeding administrations are not as corrupt and not as oppressive. Communism crumbles, too and loses much support.

    Now my questions to the readers:

    1. Let’s say Marcos, the devil that he was, did not exist. Let’s say Marcos was just like Ramos or Magsaysay or a President whose term was not considered very corrupt or oppressive. Would the Senate have thought of removing the bases?

    2. Will the US play this EDCA again like what it did when the bases were permanently stationed here? Meaning, would they support a corrupt and oppressive authoritarian regime as long as it supports the EDCA?

    3. The intellectual and moral basis for insisting on independence and national sovereignty is well-grounded. But how do we react to a monster like China?

    • edgar lores says:

      *******
      1. Probably not.
      1.1. Magsaysay was probably controlled by the US (Lansdale) to a greater degree than Marcos. The US supported Marcos but did not control him or Imelda.
      1.2. The removal of the bases was probably a historical necessity for us to cut the apron strings with the US, to develop into adolescence.

      2. That’s more up to Filipinos, whether they will suffer such a regime. US support should be irrelevant.
      2.1. Don’t such mini-regimes (dynasties) already flourish in the regions?
      2.1. How the US behaves under EDCA is our outlook as well. That is why EDCA requires Senate review. (In relation to question 1, we are always re-acting and not pro-acting. We are still in our adolescence, not fully grown up yet.)

      3. Precisely what we are doing now: appealing to international law, resorting to diplomacy, firming up our defenses, and arranging mutual defense pacts. But these alliances should not only be with the US. It should be multilateral with all neighbors who are threatened by China: the ASEAN countries, Japan, Australia/New Zealand, and even India.
      3.1. Independence is not mutually exclusive with the formation of alliances.
      *****

  9. andrew lim says:

    Just two trivial comments:

    1. Dont know if anyone else noticed it, but when the toasts were made, Pnoy’s glass had water, not wine or champagne. It was clear liquid. Pnoy was seen smirking, looking for the waiters to replace it, but it was not replaced.

    he he he here’s the spin: Pnoy is the designated driver for this EDCA, so he cannot have any alcohol.

    2. If the Obama staff had updated intelligence briefings on Philippine politics, it would have easily come to this conclusion after taking note of the VIPs who attended the State dinner:

    (the intel report may have read like this)

    SO MANY OF THE ATTENDEES HAD/HAVE CORRUPTION CASES AS A PRESIDENT, SENATOR OR CONGRESSMAN OR CABINET MEMBER. AND YOU HAVE SCIONS OF CORRUPT PRESIDENTS WHO WERE BOOTED OUT.

    I was speculating that Obama may have wondered, how in hell can they get things done here if every other person they elect/re-elect is corrupt? ha ha ha

  10. letlet says:

    I can’t understand how the Filipino activists protested against the visit of Obama and the signing of EDCA. They can’t offer what America is offering for the Philippine security against China – technical, logistic, and military tactics and some weaponry, which is a light at the end of a dark tunnel against the giant China, no matter how big or small the defense support is.

    These Filipino protesters and some politicians are badgering that rape cases of Filipinas against US soldiers might happen again, but the rape of scarborough, mischief and ayungin shoals by Chinese of our rare wild species of fisheries are not protested by these most unpatriotic people. Can we shipped these undesirable Filipinos to our disputed shoals and let them face the chinese bullies to give them a dose of a bitter pill of chinese aggression.

  11. Lil says:

    I just watched Anthony Taberna’s on Obama visit. Is it me or does this anchor have a leftist slant?
    He brought two of them known leftists on the show, in fact his opening remark was “sumali ka ba sa rally kahapon”? 80

  12. What provisions in the Mutual Defense Treaty to be exact?

    I guess this: “ARTICLE II. In order more effectively to achieve the objective of this Treaty, the Parties separately and jointly by self-help and mutual aid will maintain and develop their individual and collective capacity to resist armed attack. ”

    What I don’t like about the MDT is that I find it too vague. Or making loopholes is the desired effect.

    On the US coming to our aid once China declares wars:

    “Each Party recognizes that an armed attack in the Pacific area on either of the Parties would be dangerous to its own peace and safety and declares that it would ACT to meet the common dangers in accordance with its constitutional processes.”

    The last 3 words: ITS CONSTITUTIONAL PROCESSES. Again, the US Congress needs to declare war for the US military to come and save us once China strikes.

    Source: http://www.chanrobles.com/mutualdefensetreaty.htm#.U2GvcaJbg0E

    Coming to help their little brown friends will be too unpopular for the American populace. They just need to remember Iraq and Afghanistan. And oh! Surely, many Americans will complain about the cost of war.

    • letlet says:

      Iraq and Afghanistan are a different league from the Philippines in terms of geopolitical, military and strategic relevance of America in Asian countries and waters. Some US senators and congressmen are in support of Philippines against China on territorial dispute, even endorsing our filing of complaints to ITLOS. They are very much aware of the importance of the Philippines to the American causes. Yes we are indeed their little brown friends and they are our big white friends. When the push becomes the shove, America will keep their words. Integrity is of the essence to their nature.Some Filipinos have very questionable integrity, loyalty and patriotism.

  13. edgar lores says:

    there is an ongoing debate about why the bases left the philippines on the wiki page of the philippines under the talk tab. can i ask experts here to post there?

    • edgar lores says:

      *******
      Doppelganger,

      Greetings!

      I am flattered, confused, and amused – but mostly flattered – that my double is able to post whilst I am actively engaged in a session of Spider Solitaire. I did win the last game but I am at a lost as to how and why my non-digital self has digitally cloned itself in virtual space.

      May you, Doppleganger, have the wit, wisdom and the sense of humor that your Original possesses and displays in grand profusion.

      And should we meet face-to-face in the real world, let us collaborate on a Wiki page that will reveal not only the mysteries of the American and Filipino psyches but also the mysteries of male and female, yin and yang, and substance and shadow.

      Until then, sweet friend and alter ego, hasta la vista!
      *****

  14. sonny says:

    Reactions, please! (These Q & A’s were sent to our yahoogroup

    EDCA Primer No. 1.
    Q: What is required for an international agreement to be valid?
    A: Sec. 21 of Art. VII of the Cory Constitution says: “No treaty or international agreement shall be valid and effective unless concurred in by at least two-thirds of all the members of the Senate.”
    Q: Is the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) constitutional?
    A: Permit me to doubt. Sec. 25 of Art. XVIII of the same Constitution says foreign “troops or facilities shall not be allowed in the Philippines except under a treaty duly concurred in by the Senate . . .and recognized as a treaty by the other contracting State.”
    Q: How long will the EDCA last?
    A: Thereunder,INITIALLY for ten years but there is automaticity in extensions, so that my apos, eldest not quite six, may be affected.
    Q: As a member of the Malevolent/ Magnificent Twelve who ended
    ​the presence of foreign troops​
    ​ of more than 400 uninterrupted years, you (RAVS) keep saying that EDCA is a rotten egg, can you lay a better one?​
    A: Let me try. The American should be asked to return the Bells of Balangiga, now in Fort Warren, just outside of Cheyenne, with another in South Korea. These trophies are Catholic Church’s property tahen in 1901. Then they should be asked to put troops and facilities in Ayungin and Scarborough. We should be ready to die to the last American.
    Q: We are weak; can we defend our territory alone?
    A: It is a question of heart, as shown by the Vietnamese in defeating the French and the Americans. And the U.S. and Japan will help, if it would be in their national interests to do so. EDCA or no EDCA. No permanent friends of enemies, only permanent interests. Japan was our foe in WW II when we were one huge military base of the U.S. Japan successfully invaded us anyway.
    Q: But, doesn’t EDCA only implement our Mutual Defense Treaty of 1951?
    A: It is superseded by the 1987 Constitution and both our and American jurisprudence uphold the super-cession theory.

    • edgar lores says:

      *******
      Q1: What is required for an international agreement to be valid?
      A1: Sec. 21 of Art. VII of the Cory Constitution says: “No treaty or international agreement shall be valid and effective unless concurred in by at least two-thirds of all the members of the Senate.”
      Comment 1: True.

      Q2: Is the Enhanced Defence Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) constitutional?
      A2: Permit me to doubt…
      Comment 2: (a) The Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA), ratified by the Senate in 1999, allowed transient troops to be rotated. (b) EDCA is an extension (?) of the Mutual Defense Treaty (MDT) of 1951 and of VFA. EDCA is different from VFA in that it allows the construction of US facilities in Philippine military bases and more rotation in frequency and magnitude. Is it constitutional? It depends on whether it is considered a new treaty or an extension of the MDT/VFA. Both MDT and VFA were ratified by the Philippine Senate – but not by the US Senate which considers them to be Executive Agreements. IMHO, its constitutionality should be tested. When in doubt, verify.

      Q3: How long will the EDCA last?
      A3: Thereunder, INITIALLY for ten years but there is automaticity in extensions, so that my apos, eldest not quite six, may be affected.
      Comment 3: Yes, 10 years. There should be no automatic renewal. That is up to the Philippines. We are adults, aren’t we?

      Q4: As a member of the Malevolent/ Magnificent Twelve who ended the presence of foreign troops of more than 400 uninterrupted years, you (RAVS) keep saying that EDCA is a rotten egg, can you lay a better one?
      A4: Let me try…
      Comment 4: Cultivate compassion and sustainability, individually and collectively. Then there would be no rotten eggs.

      Q5: We are weak; can we defend our territory alone?
      A5: It is a question of heart, as shown by the Vietnamese in defeating the French and the Americans. And the U.S. and Japan will help, if it would be in their national interests to do so. EDCA or no EDCA. No permanent friends of enemies, only permanent interests. Japan was our foe in WW II when we were one huge military base of the U.S. Japan successfully invaded us anyway.
      Comment 5: (a) Most wars are fought, directly or indirectly, with allies. The Vietcong was supported by North Vietnam, Russia and China. (b) There is a contradiction in Answer 5: first it says no allies, then it says with allies. Japan came, saw and was conquered.

      Q6: But, doesn’t EDCA only implement our Mutual Defense Treaty of 1951?
      A6: It is superseded by the 1987 Constitution and both our and American jurisprudence uphold the super-cession theory.
      Comment 6: Not familiar with the theory; I interpret it as there being no legal continuity in the entity called the Philippines because of the change in constitutions. Question is: Is there in fact a continuity in the entity called the Philippines despite the change in constitutions? Did the Fifth Republic starting from Cory require new recognition from the US from other countries? Did we have to reapply for membership with the United Nations and ASEAN? Were all existing treaties with other countries pre-1987 automatically abrogated, and did they require re-signing and re-ratification by the senate? Or was there recognition that the Philippines post-1987 was the same legal entity as the pre-1987 one? I believe the MDT was considered to be in force until the question of the renewal of the bases came up.
      *****

  15. Janice says:

    The funniest rant regarding this issue as well as US troops is the comment from the left that the US should station US troops in Scarborough and Pag-asa/Ayungin…which is a crack and illogical given their long cry for “Philippine sovereignty”. That statement alone negates their anti-US bases/troops diatribe.

    Talk about Philippine leftist logic.

    The politicians and activists who often complain about US trampling on Philippine sovereignty ep regarding VFA are the ones quick to complain that the US is not “doing enough” for the Philippines.

    Are they expecting for both Aquino and Obama to be…chest pounding?

  16. ella says:

    Again with a lot of emotionally disordered Filipinos, many will be joining the leftist organizations against the US of A yelling anything against the US just for or any or more of the following purposes: popularity, just to belong to a group, to seek attention or just to yell something.

    • Attila says:

      So senseless. Also a tragedy for those girls. Many of them probably will be killed or raped. Not by kanos or whites but by Filipinos.

  17. sonny says:

    It’s deja vue time. The Philippines during the Commonwealth years was hard-pressed to come up with an effective plan for defending the Philippines even as a Japanese blitzkrieg was imminent (Japan then was running out of natural resources). Fast forward to present day encroachment by PRC over resource-rich Scarborough Shoal (Philippines). The Chinese energy juggernaut is forming and we are second-guessing the President and his advisers.

    http://americansecurityproject.org/featured-items/2012/counteracting-chinese-hegemony-in-the-south-china-sea/

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