By Reni M. Valenzuela
Focus on the issue where the main issue is.
The Philippine government is right on track making a strong statement related in particular to the West Philippine Sea crisis through the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) we have with the United States of America.
It is equal to telling the Chinese government that we are ready to defend our territory to the last drop of the Filipino blood in the event that they would escalate further the tension in the said disputed sea or their aggression therein to decisively, ultimately grab what is ours, by hook or by crook.
It is consoling, though, that for as long as there remains hope to resolve the issue through bilateral negotiations and China is open to fair, lawful and equitable concessions with the Philippines and other WPS claimant countries, there is no reason for a military clash between our two nations, with the US of course and other faithful Philippine allied/friend countries by our side, not to mention more likeminded countries with open eyes that would likely sympathize with us.
The US embassy in Manila is clear about the good intentions of EDCA as it stated in its website. The US government assures Filipinos that “The Philippines retains its sovereignty and control over EDCA agreed locations.”
Moreover, President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., stated in no uncertain terms that the expanded EDCA sites will not be used for offensive attacks against China and/or other nations for that matter, and for matters connected to China’s insane intention to invade Taiwan. But we will stand with Taiwan together with the rest of the world (in a peaceful way) should China proceed with its plan to invade the small country that has been officially recognized as an independent member of the United Nations since 1971.
Dear China and Russia, for peace and order in the world, and to preserve lives – let sanity and the UN rule.
EDCA, as its name indicates, is all for defense and it ought to be just for that purpose that EDCA sites are being put in place in different parts of the country, no more, no less, no fears. Whatever possible economic benefits EDCA will bring to the country would have to be treated as a non-issue, but just as a consolation prize.
Continue praying for our performing Secretary of Defense and Secretary of Foreign Affairs.