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Philippines not that important to US

(People's Daily Online)

08:20, June 15, 2012

Philippine President Benigno Aquino III, who just returned from the United States, gladly participated in the country's 114th Independence Day celebration. Much to his surprise, many Philippine people participated in street protests condemning U.S. intervention in their country’s internal affairs, with hundreds of them fighting with riot police near the U.S. embassy in the country.

The protests show the Philippines' mixed attitude toward the United States. The Philippine government seeks to cooperate with the United States in preventing China's "southward expansion," without considering the interests of the Philippine people. Heaps of rotting bananas, a sharp decline in the number of Chinese tourists, and the indefinite postponement of Yao Ming and his basketball team’s friendly games in the Philippines do not bode well for the Philippine people who work hard to make a living.

Aquino has lost his face. He hoped that the United States could lend the Philippines a helping hand in the South China Sea issue according to the 1951 Philippines-U.S. mutual defense treaty, and the Philippines would then give the United States a foothold it needs to return to Asia. However, both U.S. President Barack Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton failed to satisfy his desire.

It is not that the United States is no longer seeking to contain China, or Chinese diplomats have persuaded the U.S. government to stay out of the South China Sea issue. It is just that China, the Philippines, and the United States view the issue in different ways.

China claims sovereignty over the South China Sea, but does not reject jointly developing the disputed sea with neighboring countries. The Philippines claims an exclusive economic zone (EEZ) of 200 nautical miles from its coastline in the sea according to the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. The United States sees the South China Sea as international waters with fuzzy sovereignty, and wants to ensure peace and the freedom of navigation in the sea for its merchant ships and warships. The superpower considers the standoff between China and the Philippines over a disputed land to be a small matter.

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Leave your comment9 comments

  1. Name

Harald at 2012-06-16101.5.212.*
Excellent article, highlighting the complexity of the situation. Hope there will be more articles on the actual situation in the Philippines.
phil_am at 2012-06-16208.54.5.*
This article just makes me laugh lol
wende at 2012-06-1571.251.44.*
US will always want to add more countries to contain China. That"s one thing China has to realize. China should repeat that freedom of navigation in the South China Sea will never be impeded as long as it is a regular commercial passage. US is trying to stir trouble for China by muddling the issue to freedom of naval passage. US will not mention surveillance ships in the same breath. It is making the image that China is stopping regular shipping lanes. China should do more to harp on this point.
Sam Teng at 2012-06-15175.136.52.*
Several countries in the Asia pacific region are willingly subservient to US; using the China threat as an excuse. This is all part of a political agenda of the government of these countries to side track the attention of the people of these countries on their governments" failure to uplift the livelihood and prosperity of the people. The Philippines is one example but the people are not so stupid. That"s is why President Aquino is facing a lot of street protests condemning U.S. intervention in their country’s internal affairs.
half chinese at 2012-06-15180.192.66.*
reading this article makes me laugh :))who is yao ming anyway?In reality US will Build/re use its old base in philippines facing Panatag shoal Just last mont a US nuclear submarine docked on that port and what is china? did he say super pawer? your nothing as an insane writer wannabe

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