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Siding With China: A Wrong-headed Decision, or Duterte’s Stroke of Genius

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte shakes hands with Chinese Premier Li Keqiang at the 19th ASEAN-China Summit on September 7, 2016
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte shakes hands with Chinese Premier Li Keqiang at the 19th ASEAN-China Summit on September 7, 2016. Noel Celis / AFP

or whatever reason, it is now obvious that Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte is not a “fan” of the United States of America. In recent statements, Duterte has pledged closer ties with the People’s Republic of China, and admitted to admiring Russian President Vladimir Putin. At the same time, Duterte has called U.S. President Barack Obama a “son of a whore,” refused to join U.S.-sponsored naval patrols in the South China Sea, and ended several joint military programs between the two countries. Rumor has it that it is Duterte’s way of getting back at the Americans for previously denying him a visa to visit the United States.

Whatever the reason, many Filipinos are alarmed at Duterte’s shifting alliances away from the West. They question whether he has the right to unilaterally move the Philippines away from its traditional democratic allies, towards totalitarian communist countries.

While administration spin-doctors scramble to put the right “spin” on the president’s statements, pompously proclaiming that the Philippines no longer wants to be seen as an American “lackey” or be beholden to the West in any way. Whether such perception is indeed reality or simply a manifestation of some kind of inferiority complex, the fact is those who feel that way now seem to hold the reigns of government in the Philippines.

But putting all that aside, and simply asking whether Duterte’s decision is the correct one or not—only time will tell. China appears hell-bent on not just surpassing the United States economically as well as militarily, it also appears to want to eviscerate its industrial might to insure that an American resurgence will never happen (click to watch YouTube video).

If that is indeed what happens, because of America’s complacency, hubris, or inability to counter the Chinese onslaught, then America, at some point in time, will bow to China and Duterte’s decision to choose China over the U.S. would be heralded as a truly brilliant one. If he is wrong however, he will be forever ridiculed or worse. Duterte might have to suffer the fate of leaders who allied themselves with the wrong country—remember Benito Mussolini who picked Adolf Hitler and fascism instead siding with the Allies? We know how messy that ended. Published 10/24/16

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Demonic forces engulfing the Philippines—President Duterte should resign

The world’s good and decent people should force President Rodrigo Duterte to resign. It’s also for his own good. I don’t hate Duterte. But I hate his terrible sins. For his own sake, I hope that he amends his evil ways and saves his soul as his days are numbered. No one is beyond redemption if he turns to our Lord Jesus Christ. Published 10/19/2016

Duterte’s First Hundred Days: What Does It Say About Him?

Since assuming office on June 30, 2016, Rodrigo Duterte has now been in Malacańang for over a hundred days. And for most Filipinos, what a hundred days they have been. Without doubt, Duterte has shaken up the local establishment and ruffled feathers all across the globe. Published 10/15/2016

Dissing God, Cussing Obama, and Praising Hitler—What a Week!

President Duterte’s mouth may have set a world record for traveling the longest distance in the shortest time. In a span of just six days, the mouth went from doubting God in Heaven to condemning Obama to Hell and they were not even the most outrageous remarks uttered that week. Published 10/08/2016

A Final Adieu to Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago

We are in many ways saddened by the passing away of former Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago. She was the most prolific Philippine senator by far. She has authored over 437, 435 bills and filed 181 resolutions since becoming senator in 1995. Published 10/04/2016

No Fil Am Plot to Oust President Duterte

It all started with a radio interview on Manila radio station DZRH on September 19, 2016 when Pres. Duterte’s Communications Secretary Martin Andanar announced the breaking news that Filipino Americans in New York were planning to stage a coup against Pres. Duterte in January of 2017. Published 9/30/2016

The Duterte Presidency So Far--Pass or Fail?

It is now readily apparent that President Rodrigo Duterte’ management style is a far cry from that of former President Benigno Aquino III. If Aquino was the cautious and measured type, Duterte appears to be the stir-up-the-pot type of guy. Published 9/24/2016

Filipinos Need to Understand That Two Wrongs Do Not Make a Right

There With the killings mounting and the global community’s alarm, Filipinos need to realize that there is no quick-fix to the widespread problem of drugs. Sure one can appear to accomplish a lot by trampling over the rights of others to quickly meet their objectives. Published 9/17/2016

What Happened to ASEAN? Will It Become a Lapdog of China

There will be absolutely no mention of the Arbitral Tribunal’s unanimous decision against China and in favor of the Philippines during the current ASEAN summit in Laos. Following the footsteps of Cambodia which in July of this year also blocked any mention of the UN arbitration court’s decision during an earlier meeting ... Published 9/6/2016

The Marcoses Should Be Careful What They Wish For

At the book launching of “Women Against Marcos: Stories of Filipino and Filipino American Women Who Fought A Dictator” held at the Philippine Consulate in San Francisco on April 1, a Balitang America reporter from The Filipino Channel (TFC) mentioned that his assignment for the following day was a Bongbong Marcos for Vice President rally in Sacramento ... Published 8/31/2016

A Libingan ng mga Bayani Burial: Is Slyness a Marcos Family Trait?

The Philippines' octogenarian ex-president, Fidel V. Ramos seems to have spilled the beans on whether another former president/dictator, Ferdinand Marcos should be allowed to be buried at the Libingan ng mga Bayani (heroes cemetery) in Fort Bonifacio ... Published 8/16/2016

A Libingan ng mga Bayani Burial: Is Slyness a Marcos Family Trait?

The Philippines' octogenarian ex-president, Fidel V. Ramos seems to have spilled the beans on whether another former president/dictator, Ferdinand Marcos should be allowed to be buried at the Libingan ng mga Bayani (heroes cemetery) in Fort Bonifacio ... Published 8/16/2016

Shoot to Kill Directive of President Duterte Violates Fundamental Right to Life

Philippine President Duterte’s promise on 5 August 2016 to maintain a “shoot to kill” order in his crackdown on crime is a clear violation of the fundamental human right to life and could lead to further killings in the country. In a further statement, two days later, President Duterte claimed that policemen or soldiers would not be held accountable for conducting such so-called ‘duties.’ This is a deeply alarming call ... Published 8/12/2016

Is China Using Cyber Attacks to Sabotage the Philippines?

On July 12, 2016, shortly after the arbitral tribunal ruled in favor of the Philippines, internet access for many Filipinos was inexplicably lost. And for several days thereafter, once stable online access fluctuated on and off to the consternation of thousands of Pinoy internet users who found it difficult to go online. Coincidence? Maybe, but the timing seemed highly unusual ... Published 8/9/2016

The Philippine Government Should Start Levying a Tax on Diesel Fuel

A few days ago, the Philippine Department of Energy (DOE)said that it would soon conduct a study that would look into the imposition of additional excise taxes on fuel and how that would impact the country's consumers ... Published 7/31/2016

Initial Reactions to President Rodrigo Duterte's First State of the Nation Address

President Rodrigo Duterte's first State of the Nation Address (SONA) was a chance for Filipinos to size-up their newly elected president, to listen to what he had to say, then determine for themselves what the next six years will probably be like ... Published 7/25/2016

Read more articles from our archives

China slams 'provocative' US sail-by in South China
BEIJING - China has slammed the US for sailing a warship near disputed territory in the South China Sea, saying the move was a "serious illegal act" and "deliberately provocative". In a statement on its website late Friday night, the country's defense ministry said ...

Foreign Affairs Sec. Yasay: ‘Letting go as interdependent brothers’
MANILA, Oct. 23 - "Philippine separation from the United States - economically and militarily" does not mean severance of relationship or terminating the special bond between our two nations, which remains firm notwithstanding the formidable but surmountable challenges ...

Former foreign secretary Del Rosario calls pivoting away from US a national tragedy
MANILA - A "national tragedy: is how former Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert Del Rosario described President Rodrigo Duterte's announcement, in the Chinese capital Beijing, of a pivot away from certain alignments with the United States of America.

Duterte’s move towards ASEAN economic integration to open PHL to 1.8-B-strong market
MANILA, Oct. 23 —Two key members of President Duterte’s economic team said that President Duterte’s directive to his Cabinet to move “strongly and swiftly” towards the Philippines’ economic integration with its fellow-members in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) ...

Ifugao solon Teddy Baguilat calls for passage of pro-women bills
Ifugao Rep. Teddy Brawner Baguilat has urged Congress to immediately deliberate on and pass a slew of bills that are aimed at upholding and protecting the rights of women. Baguilat said his bill seeking to extend the maternity leave of female employees in the governemnt ...

Erap, claiming US hand in ouster, worries of same threat to Duterte over China shift
MANILA, Philippines -- Manila Mayor Joseph Estrada accused the US Saturday of involvement in his ouster and worried President Rodrigo Duterte could meet the same fate for shifting his foreign policy to favor China over the Americans.

De Lima has the right to file complaint vs President Duterte – Ombudsman Morales
LEGAZPI CITY, Oct 22 (PNA) -- Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales said Senator Leila De Lima has every right to seek and consider any legal remedy by filing a case against President Rodrigo Duterte wherein the latter could not invoke presidential immunity.

Briones presents DepEd’s accomplishments, agenda beyond the first 100 days
PASIG CITY, Oct. 23– Education Secretary Leonor Magtolis Briones marked her 100th day as Education chief by iterating the Department’s 10-point agenda before more than 190 education stakeholders and partners on Oct. 14, and to the DepEd Central Office employees ...

Duterte's blooming bromance
Davao City—After declaring in Beijing that he would align the Philippines with China and Russia “against the world,” President Rodrigo Duterte pressed his courtship of Moscow and said he cares little for the results of the US presidential elections and would rather bet on his favorite hero Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Jail Bureau inmates' designs featured in Design Week Philippines
MAKATI CITY, Oct. 23 - The Department of Trade and Industry’s Design Center of the Philippines (DTI- DCP), together with the Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (CITEM), welcomes the participation of Bureau of Jail Management and Penology ...

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