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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 »

A better deal for our ‘new heroes’

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Overseas Filipino workers have long been called the nation’s “bagong bayani” (new heroes), earning the accolade not because they give up their lives for the country, or fight for its sovereignty or independence, but because by their sacrifices, they support their families and keep the Philippine economy afloat.

Posted: August 9th, 2013 in Columnists,Columns,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

DFA passport service uninterrupted

This is in response to Neal Cruz’s column “DFA’s ePassport project goes bust” (Inquirer, 11/28/12).

Posted: January 14th, 2013 in Inquirer Opinion,Letters to the Editor | Read More »

DFA’s e-passport project goes bust

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HERE’S BAD news for applicants for Philippine passports: The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) has decided to terminate the P900-million e-passport contract with controversial French firm Oberthur Technologies.   Not only has Oberthur been a part of recent mistakes, it has also dragged the Philippine government down along with its mess.   It will be [...]

Posted: November 27th, 2012 in Columnists,Columns,Editor's Pick,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Sovereignty first

There are many situations where the mind of a businessman can solve problems and break deadlocks where the mind of a politician cannot. Often, the businessman—thinking only in terms of pesos and centavos—can formulate innovative solutions that are beyond the imagination of the politician who is hobbled by having to balance a million and one considerations for a multitude of stakeholders. Indeed, a pragmatic businessman can move things forward in ways a pragmatic politician cannot.

Posted: May 21st, 2012 in Editor's Pick,Editorial | Read More »

Could China’s sanctions choke us?

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One hundred fifty container loads of Philippine bananas are being left to rot in the Chinese ports of Dalian, Shanghai and Xingang, according to reports that came over the weekend. Our own government officials have been quick to play down any link between the holding of the banana shipments and the ongoing tension at the Panatag Shoal. But even if there wasn’t such a link before, who would believe there wouldn’t be one now?

Posted: May 15th, 2012 in Columnists,Columns,Editor's Pick,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

‘Makapili’-approach

From Lapu-Lapu to Jose Rizal, Philippine history is replete with people who fought against overwhelming odds and won. Of course, we were still colonized by the Spaniards and Americans, occupied by the Japanese and subjugated by a home-grown dictator. But the point is the Filipino spirit is indomitable and, despite the awesome might of our oppressors, we still prevailed in the end.

Posted: May 15th, 2012 in Inquirer Opinion,Letters to the Editor | Read More »

Dispute becomes economic

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The maritime standoff between the Philippines and China in the disputed Scarborough Shoal escalated into an economic conflict on Friday following a Chinese clampdown on Philippine banana exports to China and on travel of Chinese tourists to the country.

Posted: May 14th, 2012 in Columnists,Columns,Editor's Pick,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Tit for tat

Manila should not get deep into a tit for tat with Beijing over the Scarborough Shoal dispute despite the two capitals trading barbs against each other.

Posted: May 13th, 2012 in Editor's Pick,Editorial,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Scarborough issues

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Both the Philippines and China continue to assert sovereignty over the same area in the South China Sea. We therefore have an “international dispute,” an element necessary before one can go to an international court. We want to settle the dispute through the judicial resolution provision in the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (Unclos); but China does not. That is the bind we are in.

Posted: May 13th, 2012 in Columnists,Columns,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

‘Buti nga’

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Tatagalugin ko na at mukhang di mo talaga makuha. O kaya e nagbubulag-bulagan ka lang. Ang pinakamahirap gisingin ay di ’yung tulog kundi ’yung nagtutulog-tulugan, ang pinakamahirap pakitain ay ’yung nagbubulag-bulagan.

Posted: May 13th, 2012 in Columnists,Columns,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Name as proof of ownership

Christine Avendaño (“What’s in a name? Scarborough, Panatag or Bajo de Masinloc?” Inquirer, 4/29/12) gives three Philippine names for the 150-square kilometer shoal whose ownership is now being disputed by the Philippines and China. There is a fourth and earlier name: Panacot, which is found in the first detailed map of the Philippines made in 1734 by Jesuit Fr. Pedro Murillo Velarde and Filipino engraver Nicolas de la Cruz Bagay.

Posted: May 13th, 2012 in Inquirer Opinion,Letters to the Editor | Read More »

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