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US shows naval force amid Asia arms buildup

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A few weeks ahead of the visit of President Barack Obama to four of the United States’ Asian allies, including the Philippines, on April 28-29, to sign an enhanced defense agreement that would give the United States wider access to Philippine military bases, the US Seventh Fleet sailed into Manila Bay on March 17 in a show of force to impress upon its allies its commitment to defend them against China’s aggressive encroachments on disputed territories in the East China Sea and South China Sea.

Posted: April 14th, 2014 in Columnists,Columns,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Alliance of US, Japan and PH hardens

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In quick succession in one week, the United States sent a series of clear messages to China that it is firmly committed to protect the Philippines and Japan in their territorial disputes with Beijing.

Posted: April 11th, 2014 in Columnists,Columns,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

US tells China: Don’t use Crimea land grab model

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In its strongest message since the standoff between Manila and Beijing over the disputed Second Thomas Shoal (Ayungin Shoal) in the South China Sea (West Philippine Sea) on March 29, the United States warned on Thursday that China should not doubt the US commitment to defend its Asian allies and the prospect of economic retaliation should also discourage China from using force to pursue territorial claims in Asia, in the way Russia has done in the annexation of Crimea.

Posted: April 7th, 2014 in Columnists,Columns,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

PH braces for China dispute fallout

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The Philippines is bracing for a heavy fallout of retaliation from China after Manila filed last Sunday a case with the United Nations arbitration tribunal in The Hague, subjecting Beijing to international legal scrutiny over disputed waters in the South China Sea.

Posted: April 4th, 2014 in Columnists,Columns,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

China blockade shifts focus on bullying

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Two small Philippine fisheries boats ferrying food supplies to a tiny detachment of Filipino troops on the disputed Second Thomas Shoal slipped past a blockade of two Chinese Coast Guard ships on Saturday, breaking into the international news spotlight the escalating territorial disputes between China and the Philippines and five other countries in the South China Sea and East China Sea.

Posted: March 31st, 2014 in Columnists,Columns,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

The standoff on Second Thomas Shoal

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Almost to a man, most of the states on the rimlands of Asia-Pacific have closed ranks to denounce China’s “bullying” actions in the South China Sea and East China Sea.

Posted: March 28th, 2014 in Columnists,Columns,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

PH repivots defense links to US

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In his keynote speech at the summit of the Asia-Pacific Council of American Chambers on March 21, Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario did not mince words when he warned:

Posted: March 26th, 2014 in Columnists,Columns,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Centrist bloc backs PH in row with China

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A bloc of more than 60 democracies around the world has backed the Philippines’ effort to settle its maritime dispute with China in the West Philippine Sea (South China Sea) peacefully by submitting it to the United Nations for arbitration.

Posted: March 24th, 2014 in Columnists,Columns,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Aquino ally berates ‘NPAs’ in Cabinet

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Sen. Sergio Osmeña III hit the bull’s-eye on March 18 when he called President Aquino “an honest and good man but an awful manager.” Osmeña’s political loyalties are unpredictable, and political observers sometimes define him as an administration ally. Others say his primary loyalty is to no one but himself.

Posted: March 21st, 2014 in Columnists,Columns,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Senate clash seen over US bases access

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Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago, chair of the Senate foreign relations committee, warned on Friday that a new security agreement with the United States, which would expand US forces’ access to Philippine bases, would run into a head-on clash with constitutional restrictions on American military presence in the country following the closure of US bases in 1992.

Posted: March 17th, 2014 in Columnists,Columns,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Aquino sends FOI bill to death row

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The administration of President Aquino pronounced on Tuesday the death sentence on the freedom of information (FOI) bill by leaving the fate of its passage in the hands of its minions in the House of Representatives.

Posted: March 14th, 2014 in Columnists,Columns,Featured Columns,Featured Headline,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

China rides roughshod on neighbors

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The Philippines and the United States on Saturday jointly expressed concern over recent incidents in the South China Sea that “threaten freedom of navigation in disputed waters,” an apparent reference to China’s increasing assertiveness in pressing its territorial claims in the region.

Posted: March 10th, 2014 in Columnists,Columns,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

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