outbrain
Close  

Clarify Mutual Defense Treaty

05:01 AM March 12, 2019

I note with keen interest the exchange of views between Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana and Foreign Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. regarding the Mutual Defense Treaty (MDT) we have with the United States.

According to Lorenzana, who favors a review of the MDT, the treaty was signed in 1951 when conditions were so much different from today. Locsin, on the other hand, simply pooh-poohs the idea of a review, saying “vagueness in the treaty serves as deterrence.”

ADVERTISEMENT

Locsin’s take, to my mind, may have some logical and contextual justification had the US bases not been removed from the country in 1991; their presence alone then spelled limitless
protection and security in the area. No country ever attempted to lay claim over any swathes of land in the South China Sea, much less any island closer to home.

But with the US bases gone, we see the unbridled use of military power by China in claiming islands and building artificial ones in areas specifically declared by The Hague as part
of the Philippines’ exclusive economic zone.

FEATURED STORIES

Thus, Locsin’s theory of vagueness as deterrence is just that—wishful thinking, proven starkly wrong by what has happened, and is still happening, in the South China Sea.

BENJIE GUERRERO, [email protected]

Read Next
EDITORS' PICK
MOST READ
Don't miss out on the latest news and information.
View comments

Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.

TAGS: Benjie Guerrero, Inquirer letters, mutual defense treaty, Teodoro Locsin Jr.
For feedback, complaints, or inquiries, contact us.


© Copyright 1997-2020 INQUIRER.net | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.