What is really needed is an executive summary of the arbitral ruling, with a comparative analysis of what what status was before and after. One also needs to take into account US foreign policy under former presidents Barack Obama and Bill Clinton, or was it the toner way around?
In his Manila Times piece “Not a debate but full-blown probe of Panatag loss, anti-China drive needed”, Bobi Tiglao writes…
We lost Scarborough because del Rosario ordered our vessels to pull out on June 4, 2012, leaving the Chinese vessels there which have since has secured the lagoon. He claims that in negotiations brokered by US assistant state secretary Kurt Campbell, China agreed to a simultaneous withdrawal, but which it reneged on. That is preposterous, considering China’s etched-in-stone policy of not allowing the US to show its face in any of its territorial disputes with other countries.
The Chinese have denied there was such an agreement. Campbell has refused to comment on it, which is strange as such Chinese “duplicity” would advance his and the US campaign to demonize China.
Remember what happened in the events leading to, and after the Arab spring. Libya became a failed state and triggered a humanitarian crisis of people dying on the high seas in the process of fleeing to Italy. The US tried to push for Bangsamoro autonomy in a bid to obtain base rights in Mindanao. This is why USAID focused on its Growth In Equity for Mindanao in the 90s which led to the development of its potential air and naval bases, both in South Cotabato, Makar Wharf and the General Santos airport at Tambler.
It’s also important to note that US Special Forces had been operating in Zamboanga after 9/11. A section of Edwin Andrews Air Base was cordoned off for the purpose. These special operators were also involved in monitoring the Mamasapano operation to arrest or kill bombing terrorist Zulkifli Abdhir a.k.a. Marwan. The Americans eventually had to deploy their Bell Jet Rangers to evacuate the wounded.
The Yellows have been gaslighting the public by pinning the blame on Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte. If it were not for the rapprochement policy he adopted after he became President, our fishermen still wouldn’t have access to Scarborough Shoal. We should be wary because the next target of the Yellows is the economic track record of the administration.
We are in a bind because oil prices are on the rise. The peso is appreciating which is not good for exports. In an election cycle where what is foremost in the minds of the public is what the plan is moving forward, the Yellows could be successful in their efforts to undermine Duterte.
The government is not without its faults but do we really want a return to the time when nothing worked and we were at the mercy of an unscrupulous government?