Last night we had a very enlightening discussion with my neighborhood barkada.  They were anxious of the  recent  aggressive bullying acts of China in the West Philippine Seas.  It caught their particular interest  because they too are fisherfolks and certainly they sympathized and empathized with their Filipino  compatriots who were driven away by the big Chinese seacrafts patrolling  in the area believed to be within Philippine waters.

JIMMY:    Klaro  man  kaayong  pangbusabos  tong  gihimo sa  mga Insek  ba! [What the Chinese did was really a clear act of bullying!]

RENREN:  May  ra  bag  ilahang  teritoryo  nga  sakop  pa  man  to  sa  Pilipinas  tong gipangisdaan  sa  mga  Pinoy  nga  mananagat… di ba?  [And those Filipino fishermen were in the seas that belong to the Philippines, weren’t they?]

PEDIO:       Kon  pasagdan  na  sila,  nah!  Kitang  mga  Pilipino  mawad-an  na  hinoog katungod  sa  atong  kaugalingong  kadagatan?  Kadakong binuang!   [If that is allowed to prevail,  gosh!  We Filipinos will be disenfranchised in our seas? What a big folly!]

LITO:       Alaot  gyud  ta,  kay  unsaong   wa  man  tay  ikasukol.  Bisag  kinsa lay moyatak nato! Busa,  karon  si  President  Noynoy  nanawag  nag  pakitabang.  Aw, andam  man  sab  ang  Amerika  nga  motabang,  karaan  gud  nato  nang kaalyado.    Unsay tan-aw  nimo  Bay Don?  Okey  ba  ning  gihimo  ni  Noynoy?   [We’re really helpless because we have nothing for a counter move.  Any one can just bully us!  So, President Noynoy is now calling for help.  Well, our old ally America is always ready to help.  What do you think, Bay Don?  Is that okey — what Noynoy is doing?]

RENREN:   Luoya  sad  sa  atong  nasod  oy!  Murag  batang  gamay  nga  gi-ilogag kendi!  Way mahimo  kundi  motiyabawg  hilak !  Hahahaha!  [How  pathetic our country is!   It’s like a little child  robbed of its candy!  All it does is cry and cry and cry ! Hahahaha!]

MYSELF:  Exactly!   Our country’s leadership  is  really  a cry baby!  But this is not anything new.   Our government has been a cry baby since the birth of our republic.  Our first uha  was when we were granted a bogus independence by the US  in July 1946. As a nurseling  we were a republic that could not stand by itself.

Economically, politically and culturally we were tethered—or we can use the euphemistic term “controlled”— by the US.  And their control  made them freely explore, exploit and utilize our natural resources for their own enrichment.  We were made to barely survive.  Just  to barely survive.

Politically?   Oh, President Manuel A. Roxas was  an excellent puppet  of the US.  And his legacy was a challenge for all the subsequent Presidents to surpass his puppetry!  Our foreign policy, in fact, has been like an extension of American foreign policy.  Whatever the US  wants our country’s leadership  to do is followed most faithfully.  The US commanded, “Send troops to the Korean War!” And the Philippine President promptly sent the 10th BCT  to fight alongside the American sokdiers in the Korean War.

Then the US commanded again, “Send Filipino soldiers to Vietnam!”  Did we not send our best Filipino fighters under the monicker PHILCAG?  Yes, we did!  Some our soldiers might have been involved in the infamous My Lai Massacre?

Wherever the US wages war  of interventionism to advance its imperialist interests, we are   invariably requested  to be there also. No Philippine President can ever refuses US  “requests”.

And through all these years that our combatants have been assisting the US interventionist wars in other countries, what have we learned?  Certainly we have excelled in the art of puppetry and unconditional obeisance to US whims and caprices.   Our leaders, bright boys as they are, have illustriously exercised  acts of State that proved to be inimical to the Filipino people’s interest, but extremely beneficial in advancing the US interests.  For all our  extraordinary feats in defending US imperialist interests,  we have not developed the capability to defend our own country in face of military threats from other countries!

Our government leaders  and cry  when bullied by China?  Hear President Noynoy and Secretary Gazmin cry!   Hear also the ‘brave’ General Catapang!  You’ll  certainly be amused by the pitch of their crying voices!     But these cry babies do bully our own people!  Our military  men are  bullying the Lumads in the countryside.   They are bullying Filipinos who are asserting their human rights!

But!  For all their cry and cry for help,  is the US that ready to help us protect our own country’s interests?  Are the VFA and EDCA — vaunted as defense cooperation agreements — really dependable instruments [or weapons, we might say] for our benefit?  Is this an agreement between equals?— meaning, the stipulations are so crafted in a manner that benefits and privileges  accrue equitably to both parties?

In the first place, there is already a patent violation of our country’s sovereign rights!  Do we have a parallel right of sovereignty over an inch  of American territory by any of these  wondrous  agreements?  We  have everything to doubt that it will redound to our interest as a republic and as a people.  Our government allows basing rights of American troops on our soil!—  something that has been junked as an immoral and illegal  phenomenon by our illustrious and  nationalist legislators in the1990s when they abolished  the US Military Bases in Subic and Clark

Secondly, the deployment of American troops in the Asia-Pacific region is not a strategy of defense in behalf of Philippine sovereignty. It is the implementation  of a militaristic strategy of ”Rebalance  of Power“ that the US has long charted in its drawing board to maintain its military might and advance its economic goals in this part of the globe,   And  because our leaders are either stupid as unthinking puppets our government has fallen prey to the US  militaristic intentions.

Once upon a time — or say in the 1940s—our lands were made battlegrounds in a war not of our own making.  It was a war between imperialist powers.  And we as a nation and people were to absorb its tragic consequences.  The present-day imperialist powers are again playing their favorite war game — a scramble for the resources of the underdeveloped countries around the globe.

Here in Southeast Asia, the US imperialists are making all sorts of tactical guise in order to re-position itself at an advantage. China is doing the same strategic re-positioning.  If war breaks out between the two giants,  again—yes, again!—our country will be a sure battleground!  And we are made to believe by our own puppet leaders that we are going to fight a war to protect our sovereignty.  Baloney!  We have already surrendered our sovereignty to the US!  What sovereignty do we have the honor to protect?

Our leaders should look into the example of Vietnam.  They earned their precious freedom  by the sheer might of their will  and  determination to win victory. And they succeeded in driving away the most rapacious imperialist superpower without shedding a tear—without crying!

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