How Duterte Turned the Philippines Into China’s New Play Thing

Contemplating on the geopolitical earthquake of the twentieth century, namely the collapse of the once-mighty Soviet Empire, Francis Fukuyama emphasized the necessity for distinguishing between ‘what is essential and what is contingent or accidental in world history’. Drawing on the works of G. W .F. Hegel (via Alexandre Kojève) and Plato, Fukuyama foresaw the twenty-first century as the age of Western triumphalism, a unique era marked by the world’s post-ideological embrace of democratic capitalism as the only game in town. Inspired by the works of Friedrich Nietzsche, he came to…

Buchanan: If Duterte wants us out, let’s go – Opinion – News Chief

President Trump has been given a historic opportunity to reshape U.S. and Asia policy along the lines he ran on in 2016. Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte has just given us notice he will be terminating the Visiting Forces Agreement that governs U.S. military personnel in the islands. His notification starts the clock running on a six-month deadline. If no new agreement is negotiated, the VFA is dissolved. What triggered the decision? Duterte was offended that one of his political allies who led his anti-drug campaign in the islands, which involves…

Duterte Does The Right Thing For A Change – OpEd

By Walden Bello* Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte’s termination of a key military pact with the United States, the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA), which governed the deployment of US troops in the country, has evoked varied responses. In some liberal and progressive circles, the move provoked trepidation owing to Duterte’s perceived closeness to Chinese President Xi Jinping. Others were disoriented by the fact that the agent of a change they had long wanted had also been responsible for thousands of extrajudicial executions in his “war on drugs.” Adding to the confusion was…

Duterte Pivots Away from the U.S. in South China Sea

U.S. Marine Cpl. Iuann Lopez signals a Philippine Marine Corps amphibious vehicle during a joint exercise, October 2019 By The Strategist 02-21-2020 09:54:00 On February 11, 2020, President Rodrigo Duterte gave 180 days’ notice of the termination of the 20-plus-year-old US–Philippines Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA). The agreement provides the legal framework for US forces to be stationed on rotation in the Philippines. Duterte’s termination of the VFA, which significantly weakens the US–Philippines alliance, will be his lasting legacy. The cancellation of the VFA is the most significant downgrading of the US–Philippines…

Lawfare under Duterte | Inquirer Opinion

The first time I came across the word “lawfare” was when I read Justice Antonio Carpio’s book “The South China Sea Dispute: Philippine Sovereign Rights and Jurisdiction in the West Philippine Sea.” He used it to describe what the Philippines was doing to protect itself in the dispute with China. Engaging in lawfare, rather than warfare. The Philippines brought suit against China in the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague and we won an outstanding victory. That was lawfare in the positive sense—a nation’s use of legalized international institutions…

Duterte wants to break up with the US military. What does that mean for Australia?

Posted February 20, 2020 12:48:56 Photo: Donald Trump has shrugged off a decision which would have huge implications for US power in Asia. (Reuters: Benjamin F. Davella III via US Navy) Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has informed Washington that he will tear up a longstanding military pact, a decision that would have ramifications far beyond the South-East Asian nation. Key points: Observers say ending the agreement amounts to ending defence cooperation The US and Australia were instrumental in defeating IS-inspired militants in the Philippines China is likely to take advantage…

Duterte Does the Right Thing for a Change

U.S. Army 1st Lt. Alex Donahue discusses the importance of proper knots and rigging with Philippine soldiers at Fort Ramon Magsaysay, Philippines on May 4, 2017. US Army Photo Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte’s termination of a key military pact with the United States, the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA), which governed the deployment of US troops in the country, has evoked varied responses. In some liberal and progressive circles, the move provoked trepidation owing to Duterte’s perceived closeness to Chinese President Xi Jinping. Others were disoriented by the fact that the…

How Duterte Could Sever U.S. Military Ties, and Why: QuickTake

1. What defense agreements are there? • The Mutual Defense Treaty was signed in 1951, five years after the U.S. granted the Philippines independence, and it has been at the center of defense relations ever since. The eight-article pact — one of seven collective defense treaties the U.S. has globally — calls for each side to help build defense capabilities and “meet the common dangers in accordance with its constitutional processes” if either side is attacked. • The Visiting Forces Agreement, signed in 1998, spells out the legalities for U.S.…