Reference: Renato M. Reyes, Jr, BAYAN secretary general
US President Barack Obama has been given four more years in office after winning the elections against Republican Mitt Romney. As the rallies end and the confetti falls, there’s still the stark reality that there will be no significant changes in US foreign policy for Obama’s second term. There will be no significant changes in the unequal PH-US relations that has plagued the Philippines for decades. Obama’s victory means the continuation of current US policies which include more of the same destructive neo-liberal economics and more of the same drive for US military hegemony.
We likewise expect the Philippine President Benigno Aquino to continue the PH government’s policy of subservience to US dictates, under the illusion that the US is assisting the Philippines. Aquino will remain loyal to US dictates and uphold US interests in this region.
The so-called special relations between the Philippines and the United States will become more lopsided than ever. The US is preparing to increase its military presence in Asia in a bid to strengthen its influence in the region. It will be taking advantage of the so-called “special ties” with the Philippines so that the US can have access to our ports, put more US troops on PH soil and transform the entire archipelago into a virtual US military outpost in Southeast Asia.
Unequal agreements such as the Vesting Forces Agreement and the Mutual Defense Treaty will continue to be in force. The US will continue its blatant violation of the Philippine Constitution with its permanently deployed US troops in Mindanao, as well as its plans to establish military hubs in its former bases in Subic and Clark. The US is poised to further violate our Constitution with plans to put up a land-based radar that is part of an Asia-wide defense umbrella. And the US will continue to use the “China threat” as a pretext for increasing its troops presence in the entire Asian region.
We also raise serious objection to the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement being dangled by the US before developing countries like the Philippines. The TPPA intends to expand free-trade and heighten the plunder of our national resources.
With more of the same unequal policies expected to be imposed by the US on the Philippines, it becomes necessary for the Philippines to define and assert its own national interests as opposed to US imperialist interests. The Aquino government should stop being subservient to US dictates. The Aquino government must stop thinking that PH and US interests are identical. For decades now, the so-called special ties with the US have only tied us down to the level of an underdeveloped and impoverished state.
So long as the neo-colonial ties with the US persist, Filipinos- whether in the Philippines or in the US- must continue to resist. ###